“Second objective for Spurs…scored in second-half stoppage time…from quantity 22…Brennan Johnson!” breathless stadium announcer Pete Abbott screamed on the prime of his lungs down the microphone at 4:58pm on Saturday.
Tottenham Hotspur’s Welsh winger had simply given the hosts a late 2-1 lead in opposition to Brighton & Hove Albion, racing onto the tip of a low cross from Son Heung-min and thundering the ball into the roof of the online from shut vary within the 96th minute.
For the third time already this season, Ange Postecoglou’s aspect had snatched a win on the final on house soil. It was well timed vindication for the Greek-Australian and his band of younger stars, who had been criticised intensely during the last week for conceding too many late objectives.
This objective specifically was an additional ‘I informed you so’ argument for Postecoglou and Johnson as a pair. The 22-year-old has been thrust right into a shiny highlight in his debut Spurs season, with accidents and absences elsewhere throughout the frontline that means he is needed to function much more prominently than was possible deliberate upon his arrival in September.
Johnson impressed in his early Tottenham appearances, making a distinction off the bench in opposition to Sheffield United and Crystal Palace, whereas he additionally performed properly in begins from the left when taking up fierce rivals Arsenal and Chelsea.
These temporary cameos and the odd look from the off had been adopted by a run of 12 successive begins in all competitions. Even when Johnson was within the type of his life, this would not have been within the script.
For essentially the most half, Johnson was switched again over to the precise and tasked with stretching play. Together with his tempo and normal model, he’s the one participant in Tottenham’s squad who’s a pure match with Postecoglou’s common system that includes touchline wingers. He made a behavior of popping up with low crosses aimed in the direction of the close to submit, the in-form Richarlison normally the beneficiary.
Johnson wasn’t offering an terrible lot else although, and Spurs’ predictability in assault – notably whereas Son was away on the Asian Cup – aggravated supporters.
However Johnson and his £47.5m price ticket are simply the most recent victims of a switch coverage enforced upon golf equipment like Tottenham. They nonetheless cannot go and purchase ready-made superstars and need to take extra dangers available in the market. If Johnson had stayed at Nottingham Forest and had an excellent season, he’d most likely be value much more and Spurs can be muscled out of any race for his signature – they need to take the prospect on these gamers having that type of breakout marketing campaign with them as a substitute.
Postecoglou was an enormous fan of Johnson’s when he was at Forest and was eager on bringing him simply earlier than the summer time switch deadline. His squad nonetheless lacked a winger able to driving on the skin and getting chalk on their boots, one who may be moulded into not simply offering these low crosses however changing them on the final line as properly.
As such, Johnson is a non-priority member of Tottenham’s assault however with the expectation to play like one. It is a arduous sufficient ask of a younger and uncooked participant as is, however he is beginning to thrive with Spurs’ squad coming back from accidents and worldwide responsibility.
With Tottenham nearing full-strength once more, Postecoglou eventually has the chance to relaxation his stars when wanted, to take them out of the firing line for defense or simply once they’re slightly subpar. In principle, that must be of profit to somebody like Johnson, an finish to the times of 12 straight begins and to hold extra of the scoring load.
Johnson got here off the bench in opposition to Brentford and helped to alter the sport, scoring Tottenham’s second in an eventual 3-2 comeback victory. He was additionally used instead in opposition to Brighton, placing in a irritating efficiency proper till he made one last sprint to the byline and smashed house the winner – however that is precisely why he is in Postecoglou’s squad, precisely why Postecoglou wants him.
Tottenham are available in the market for one more vast ahead in the summertime, making Johnson’s path to begins a lot trickier, however that is simply how modern-day squad-building works. You want totally different profiles for various wants.
Johnson’s newest strike took him to seven objective contributions in 21 Premier League matches for Tottenham, averaging one each 186 minutes – so roughly as soon as each different sport. It is hardly a disastrous whole, more-so one possible to enhance on Spurs’ present trajectory with a match squad once more. The child’s alright.