Tottenham vs Everton: Five things we learnt from Spurs' victory over Roberto Martinez's men

The talking points to take from Everton's defeat away to Tottenham

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The Independent Online

1) Aaron Lennon should play more often

He might not be the flying winger that was a regular in the England squad once upon a time, but Lennon should have a big part to play in the rest of this campaign for Mauricio Pochettino. Although Lennon failed to terrorise Leighton Baines when in possession, it was what he did out of possession that caused the Spurs fans to give him a standing ovation when he was withdrawn with an hour played.

All afternoon Lennon stuck manfully to his task of keeping Baines out of threatening possessions. He ran himself into the ground, keeping Baines, always one of Everton's best attackers, unable to make a meaningful attacking contribution.

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Not only that, but the one time Lennon did find some space he played the perfect pass to set up Roberto Soldado's first goal since March. Spurs have too many players in the No 10 role, with Lennon holding his position wide right Spurs are not as easy to defend against.

2) Spurs have a big problem at right-back

Vlad Chiriches is a centre-back by trade; when centre-backs play at full-back you can usually rely on them to be solidly defensively and a bit lumbering on the ball. That is not the case with the Romanian. Perversely, he was a decent attacking option but looked all at sea out wide. Too often he allowed Kevin Mirallas too much space on the left, drifting inside towards Federico Fazio, but Everton were not able to exploit the space.

 

Pochettino has now used Eric Dier, Chiriches, Younes Kaboul and Kyle Naughton at the position, and all have been found wanting. Kyle Walker can't come back soon enough.

3) Harry Kane and the Tottenham youngsters

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Harry Kane might not be the best technically, but he is keeping the likes of Erik Lamela on the bench through sheer force of will. The 21-year-old has become the driving force of this Spurs team, it's spiritual leader. Playing behind Robrto Soldado, Kane caused constant questions of Gareth Barry and the Everton back line.

Countless times he picked the ball up and drove at his opponents and always found the right pass, while his work rate allowed him to pick Barry's pocket in a dangerous position and bring the second goal.

Alongside other academy products Ryan Mason and Nabil Bentaleb, almost £80m worth of foreign imports are sitting on the bench. That's where they should stay.

4) Disinterested Lukaku

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Plenty has been written about £28m Romelu Lukaku failing to hit the heights of last season, and while he has found some form in recent weeks it was a different story for the big Belgian today. Against a defensive pairing of Jan Vertonghen and Fazio that has also come under plenty of fire, Lukaku barely made an impression.

He had a couple of shots on target but was barely in the game, failing to link play, hold onto the ball or make the kind of runs that could cause the Spurs defence problems - but worse than that, he didn't look like he cared that much. Roberto Martinez needs more from his big summer signing.

5) Have Everton been found out?

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The Toffees have now won just three of their last eight matches and although they dominated possession for large periods of the game - and were unlucky not to get a late penalty for a Fazio handball - from the first whistle everyone in the ground knew how the away side would play.

Since Martinez arrived at Goodison Park Everton have played with only a Plan A: a 4-2-3-1 formation where they keep the ball, get Baines and Seamus Coleman to overload on the wings and have wingers playing from outside to in. Everton had just shy of 60 per cent of possession and Spurs were happy to give it to them, they knew what Everton wanted to do and where to do it.

In 18 months in charge of Everton rarely has Martinez deviated from this plan, rarely to do they play with two up front, even when they are losing and chasing a point. Martinez showed at Wigan that he is willing to change his game plan, adopting a 3-5-2 that almost kept the Latics in the Premier League, perhaps it is time for some tweaking again.

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