Tottenham have invested heavily this summer, and on the basis of their victory against Crystal Palace, they appear to have bought wisely.
Paulinho, Etienne Capoue and Nacer Chadli look to have brought a physical stance to the team, adding to the power already in the squad from Mousa Dembele and Sandro.
Spurs were up against an organized and pumped-up Crystal Palace team who were playing their first game back in the top flight of English football. Spurs weren’t imperious, silkily creative or stylish, but they looked resilient, sharp and ready on the defensive end.
Jan Vertonghen was an unexpected inclusion from the start, and he and his center-half partner Michael Dawson were rarely troubled. Tottenham are also boosted by the return of Younes Kaboul, who has been out for almost a year.
Roberto Soldado, Tottenham’s record signing, also impressed with his movement and positioning. The Spaniard was eventually the difference, netting from the penalty spot.
Palace, who defended pretty resolutely throughout, look to be facing an uphill battle to survive this season alongside fellow promoted clubs Hull City and Cardiff City.
Still, speculation persists around Gareth Bale‘s future. The situation has died down and hasn’t changed in the last few weeks. As far as we know, the player is still not for sale, but wants to move to Real Madrid.
Bale’s desire for the move has been widely reported in all sports media over the past month or so, but despite those claims, the rest of the Tottenham squad doesn’t appear to be affected by the saga.