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A resurgent Tottenham are yet to lose under new boss Tim Sherwood, collecting 13 points from five games, as the dark cloud circling over White Hart Lane for the final few days of Andre Villas-Boas' tenure looks to have given way to brighter skies.
Although Spurs have not been in scintillating form, recently recording a stuttering yet spirited performance against Crystal Palace and a disappointing draw against West Bromwich Albion, several players have thrived since Sherwood's arrival.
Romania captain Chiriches arrived from Steaua Bucharest for £8.5 million in the summer but was not favoured by Villas-Boas early on in the season. However, the centre-back has been key under Sherwood.
An outstanding passing average of 90% puts him joint second in the team, 80.9% of which went forward as Spurs build attacking impetus from the back.
Nine average defensive actions per game also puts him in second place, the majority of which were clearances, highlighting his ability to get rid when he senses danger.
Chipping in with two key passes, the powerful defender looks like he is starting to repay the price tag forked out for him in the summer.
2. Michael Dawson
Club captain Dawson is leading by example at the moment and enjoying his partnership with Chiriches in Jan Vertonghen's extended absence.
The England international has won an average of 65% of his duels, with a further impressive 68% success in his headed duels, coming out on top of 21 of 31 challenges.
Tackles have been another strong point with a 67% success rate as Spurs have conceded just four goals in Sherwood's five games.
An average of 13 defensive actions puts him a comfortable four above any other Tottenham player, while a man of the match performance against West Brom points to a decisive performance when those around him were struggling to deliver.
Another summer arrival, Eriksen found it difficult to find his feet, but now Sherwood has taken off the reins he is quickly becoming a potent attacking threat.
Three goals in his last five appearances is the tally of a confident man, while six chances created, including an assist, denotes a player beginning to pull the strings.
Only wide man Aaron Lennon can match his key pass total but if the play is central, Eriksen is likely to be the provider.
His goal threat is most encouraging as goals from midfield can be a huge difference at any level; his sublime finish against Crystal Palace was enough to secure Squawka's Young Player of the Week Award while his 66th minute strike away at Old Trafford secured a vital victory for his side.
- Sports & Recreation
- Tim Sherwood
- Vlad Chiriches
- West Bromwich Albion
- Andre Villas-Boas