Wilson Palacios on Dembele, Wanyama and Mauricio Pochettino
11 April 2017|Tottenham Hotspur
The Spurs midfield is in the safest of hands at the moment, according to our former player Wilson Palacios.
The tough-tackling Honduran international, a regular member of our side that secured qualification for the Champions League in 2009-10, these days lives in the United States but still keeps a close eye on how we’re getting on in the Premier League.
The 32-year-old, who played 86 times for us between 2009 and 2011 before joining Stoke City and then linking up with American second-tier side Miami FC, where he was most recently in action last year, has revealed how impressed he’s been with the Victor Wanyama-Mousa Dembele pairing in the heart of our midfield set-up.
In addition, he was full of praise for the work Mauricio Pochettino is doing at White Hart Lane.
Above: Wilson goes for the spectacular against Charlton Athletic in 2011.
Speaking to us in the official matchday programme for the visit of Watford at the weekend, our popular former midfielder had this to say…
First of all, what do you think of the season Victor Wanyama has had?
“I am very impressed and, besides that, he uses the number 12 as well! Of course, that was my number but, seriously, he is doing really good work for Tottenham. Technically he’s really good and you can see that he’s very strong. I got the chance to play against him when I was playing at Stoke and Wanyama was at Southampton. I also recall that I played against him at Tottenham when he was at Celtic and we played them in a friendly match. He showed then that he’s a very good player with a lot of energy.”
What about Mousa Dembele?
“He is a great player and, like Victor, he’s very important for Tottenham. Technically he’s really good – he’s got a lot better since he went from Fulham to Tottenham and over the last couple of seasons especially he’s been fantastic. It’s really hard to take the ball away from him because he’s so strong and he uses his body and his legs to protect it.”
Above: Mousa Dembele and Victor Wanyama at Hotspur Way.
What do you think of the way Victor and Mousa combine their skills in our midfield?
“Together they make a great team, they don’t leave much work for the defence and they defend very well in midfield themselves too. The football has changed and now it’s very important for one of them to attack and the other to defend. Dembele goes on ahead and Wanyama stays a little behind but he also goes forward a bit as well, which is something else I believe he is very good at. I do think that it’s important that one defends and the other one attacks and because of that, they make a good team together. I’ve been really impressed with the way they’re playing.”
Finally, what are your impressions of Spurs under Mauricio Pochettino?
“Pochettino has given Tottenham a good image. Last year they were really good, really close to being champions and I was watching, screaming because I really, really wanted them to become champions! This season, they are doing just as well and they can get really far. The team now understands each other better than before because for two or three years they’ve been playing with largely the same players. Even the younger players, the boys from the youth system, have been very impressive when they’ve been playing.”