Fans of Tottenham Hotspur may be somewhat disappointed with the recent developments following such a strong start to life under Ange Postecoglou’s direction, but that’s just how football works.
Over the past year, Spurs had little cause for celebration. An exciting start to the 2022–23 season quickly turned into a disastrous year, culminating in the dismissal of Antonio Conte, an eighth-place finish, no participation in Europe, and—perhaps most poignantly—the early days of Postecoglou’s reign saw Harry Kane sold to Bayern Munich.
However, Postecoglou has a knack for developing winning mentalities. He quickly put his system and style into place, and the early results saw Tottenham go up to the top after 10 games, until injuries and suspensions destroyed the purple patch and sent the team on a three-match losing streak.
While the failures have hurt Postecoglou’s recent development, Brennan Johnson has emerged as something of a shining light. Had Spurs not given in to the barrage of troubles against Chelsea, it’s very likely that a place at the forefront may have been preserved.
The stats for Brennan Johnson’s season
The 22-year-old Johnson had a stellar career under Steve Cooper’s tutelage at Nottingham Forest over the previous three years, bringing his former team into the Premier League and subsequently surviving relegation. Spurs acquired Johnson for £47.5 million on transfer deadline day in August.
The Welshman finished the previous season with 44 appearances, ten goals, and three assists, which prompted reporter Josh Bunting to remark on how the opposition “causes so many problems” with him.
The striker, who earns £70,000 a week, had a great game against Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium in his first start after arriving in London, but he was sidelined for the next two league games due to a hamstring injury.
Johnson is starting to play a bigger role under Postecoglou’s direction, having scored and assisted in his last four games. He may end up being the focal point that helps his team get back on track.
Brennan Johnson’s approach to playing
Although Johnson still needs to improve on maintaining his threat for the duration of games, he is a fantastic ball-carrier and provides a directness that might perfectly complement James Maddison’s inventiveness when the important England international returns from injury.
Spurs might have fallen to defeat against Aston Villa last time out but there were plenty of positive moments, with football.london’s Alasdair Gold penning his post-match thoughts and saying of Johnson’s performance: ‘Involved in some bright moments with good movement but just couldn’t force the ball home, including controlling and firing an effort that Martinez saved from point blank range.’
Remarking on his performance against Aston Villa, content creator HLTCO took to Twitter to say: ‘Brennan Johnson is such an exciting player to watch. He’s got frightening pace and directness; constantly looking to make something happen, it must be an absolute nightmare to defend against him.’