Michael Dawson proven right about £16m Tottenham defender after Man City performance

Michael Dawson has praised Ben Davies for what he brings to a Tottenham side and he lived up to the former defender’s verdict, in Saturday’s victory against Man City.

Spurs got their second victory of the season against Pep Guardiola’s side, when they traveled to the Etihad and Harry Kane scored the winning goal in injury time.

The performance showed discipline, energy and desire from the Lilywhites, which had been lacking in their two previous fixtures which had both ended in defeat.

The key for Antonio Conte’s side in their upcoming matches is to keep the consistency and quality from their performance against City.

Davies has now made 27 appearances for Spurs so far this season and has found a regular spot in the starting XI, after he struggled to get regular game time under Nuno Espirito Santo.

With the arrival of Conte, the Welsh international has stepped into the role at left centre-back and played 90 minutes in all of the league games he has featured in.

The 28-year-old has, overall, been one of a number of players who have improved under the new Tottenham boss and he has been the only real option on the left-hand side of the back line.

In the league this season, Davies has made 34 clearances, 54 recoveries and won 66 duels, showing his impact in defence.

The defender has also played his part in the attacking half of the field, making runs into the final third when he can and registering an assist in the 3-0 victory over Norwich.

Ben Davies rectified his mistakes against Wolves with a solid performance against Man City.

In the 2-0 loss against Wolves, Davies did make a mistake in the build-up to the visitors’ second goal but a change in position to left-back did see him then Dejan Kulusevski set up for a chance.

Ahead of the game, former Spurs defender Dawson spoke highly of the Welsh international.

“He’s had to bid his time. When he signed for the club in 2014 I was here and he’s been a great servant for the football club,” the 38-year-old admitted on N17 Live.

“I think he’s perfect. I think when you’re playing the formation you have to be able to use your left foot.

“I think he’s been brilliant and I’ve bigged Ben up an awful lot since he’s come into the team,” Dawson added.

“He does everything as a left centre-half you need to do. He can defend in wide areas because he’s played left back. Fantastic he’s been.”

Davies is the only real option who can play on the left side of the back three and although the likes of Davinson Sanchez and Joe Rodon could step-in if required, the Welshman’s experience makes him most suited to the role.

As Dawson alludes to, it hasn’t been an easy ride for the 28-year-old, who has had to deal with injuries and time on the bench throughout his Tottenham career.

This is likely to have been a big knock in confidence but since the arrival of the Italian and much like a number of his teammates, he has stepped up and been given a chance.

“I think that position [left centre-back] probably gets the best out of me with my best attributes,” Davies admitted in December.

“In that position, I feel like I can defend pretty well, be solid and read the game well, and I’m not necessarily expected to go and beat people one-v-one, which is probably not the strongest part of my game .

“I prefer to be able to see the game, pass the ball and make better runs, and so I think it suits me well,” he added.

“Antonio’s probably seen a lot of football, seen me play in that position for the national team and so was aware that I could play there.”

At the Etihad, Davies blocked a shot, made six clearances and had an 83.9 per cent passing accuracy.

He also played his part in the build to two of Tottenham’s goal, albeit one was disallowed and tried to make an impact in the attacking half of the field.

Much like a number of the Tottenham players the defender produced a solid display, dealing with much of what was thrown at him and showing composure when required.

A left sided centre-back may be one position Fabio Paratici looks to target in the summer transfer window, which would bring some competition for the Welshman.

However, if he can continue to perform well and develop even further under Conte, he may make it difficult for a new arrival to steal his spot.


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