Why do we still under appreciate Winks? | Vital Football

Why do we still under appreciate Winks?

#2
I was struck that against West Ham, post match Jose explained that he brought Winks on to hold the ball and control/see the game out...

I was subsequently surprised to see he's one of the top 10 midfielders for positive passes forward/yards carried...

Yet, he seems not to gain the credit for doing exactly what Jose has asked of him.

Why?
 
#4
I was struck that against West Ham, post match Jose explained that he brought Winks on to hold the ball and control/see the game out...

I was subsequently surprised to see he's one of the top 10 midfielders for positive passes forward/yards carried...

Yet, he seems not to gain the credit for doing exactly what Jose has asked of him.

Why?
It's the nature of the role he plays I think. He is tidy and usually effective in the role that he plays, but through no fault of their own, players who play in defensive midfield roles seldom get many plaudits because they don't contribute to the offensive part of the game. Even Dembele who was as good as it gets in that type of role, often attracted criticism regarding his goals and assist record. Winks biggest weakness for me is that he doesn't have the long passing ability to turn defence into attack, as compared for example with Alderweireld.
 
#5
It's the nature of the role he plays I think. He is tidy and usually effective in the role that he plays, but through no fault of their own, players who play in defensive midfield roles seldom get many plaudits because they don't contribute to the offensive part of the game. Even Dembele who was as good as it gets in that type of role, often attracted criticism regarding his goals and assist record. Winks biggest weakness for me is that he doesn't have the long passing ability to turn defence into attack, as compared for example with Alderweireld.
hmm, where he plays in the hole and keeps the ball moving, it's not what I would have expected or do expect from him anyway, Toby does the Dawson pass - RM, to Left Wing, which more often than not would give the ball away ..so can't say it was/is part of his game that impresses me that much - and obviously I know he's done more of that since Jose arrived.
 

Harry-Kari

Vital Squad Member
#7
I guess I’m just a ball watcher most of the time and the only time I notice Winks is when he gives away a stupid foul in a dangerous area and then argues with the ref about it.

On the rare occasions he ventures forward and tries to shoot it is either powder puff or way over the bar...I just don’t see him making a major contribution to the play either defensively or in attack but I guess he is doing something.
 
#8
I think the reason is two fold. My son refers to him as the Spurs Joe Allen. I think he has a point.

Winks is a good player. He is very good at what he does which is moving the ball around quickly, maintaining possession and the odd challenege to win it back. He is definitely worth having around our midfield. However his limitations are

1) He cannot physically impose himself on midfield. He just cannot manage to get the upper hand. He's the plucky one who does his best and holds his own. This is ok if he has other aspects to his game but he doesn't. He doesn't score, he doesn't set much up. He is just there. Nothing wrong with that but it makes him easy to under value.

2) He doesn't have any special relationships on the pitch. If him and sissoko, or dier or Ali or whoever struck up some amazing partnership where they destroy other midfields. Or were able to run other midfields into the ground. Or passed it around until the other team got confused etc etc etc.

He just does his job and its not enough for a team like spurs. Its as if they get into the team, have a great start and then someone gets hold of them and says if you do this for the rest of your career you will be sorted. They need to work at improving every aspect and he just gives out blah.

I like him and think if he could get himself a place in a proper midfield 3 where they link up properly he could be class but maybe he doesn't have it in him.
 

freundorfoe

Vital 1st Team Regular
#9
earlier this season it was point out he had the highest forward passes per 90 of any player of aged 24 or under in Europe's top leagues. This is obviously directly at odds with the usual cacophony of "he only passes sideways or backwards".

I went to a game with a friend earlier this season who doesn't watch us live much and was not a big Winks fan. He felt he didn't really do anything. I started pointing out things he did that would possibly go unnoticed on TV, cutting out passing lanes, some timely interceptions, generally buzzing about and stopping counter attacks as well as a few times where we were being pressed and he managed to dribble out of a tight space and alleviate pressure. He left having changed his mind and seeing his value.

TBH I had hoped he'd have improved the other areas of his game. His shots are too often wayward. He's great at catching someone on the ball, but not necessarily at winning physical duels. He's good at progressing play/moving the ball up the pitch but doesn't necessarily pick a killer pass often enough. If he stays at his current level I think he's a solid squad player who will have an occasional brilliant performance, but I really hope he can either get stronger defensively or influence things in the final 3rd more, otherwise he'll always lose out to a bigger physical presence or a more creative player in our setup.
 
#10
He has been played as a deep playing DM type midfielder for 2 years now. Like it or not to play this position successfully you need to have a natural defensive brain and have the ability to tackle and screen the defense.

Whilst he works hard and is tenacious he is nowhere near good enough defensively to ever be successful in the role.

I find it madness that we still shoehorn him in like this when the evidence shows we lose most midfield battles and he and Sissoko are the route of the issue.

I have seen so many times where Winks is left isolated when Sissoko hogs the right and Winks just doesn't have the presence or ability to hold the fort.

We will never achieve anything with him or Sissoko playing every week. Nowhere near the standard required.
 
#11
He has been played as a deep playing DM type midfielder for 2 years now. Like it or not to play this position successfully you need to have a natural defensive brain and have the ability to tackle and screen the defense.

Whilst he works hard and is tenacious he is nowhere near good enough defensively to ever be successful in the role.

I find it madness that we still shoehorn him in like this when the evidence shows we lose most midfield battles and he and Sissoko are the route of the issue.

I have seen so many times where Winks is left isolated when Sissoko hogs the right and Winks just doesn't have the presence or ability to hold the fort.

We will never achieve anything with him or Sissoko playing every week. Nowhere near the standard required.
I think what is highlighted for me in what are some top class stats is that he drops off alot depending on who his playing alongside; if we had a 'true' defensive midfielder he could push further upfield, improve his game to another level again and become that fulcrum that in Europe would have clubs idolising him - as you say, alongside Sissoko it doesn't work as Sissoko goes missing for long periods (as he did against Manure) and only woke up and putting the hard graft in you'd expect for a DM'er towards the end of that game.
 
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muttley

Vital 1st Team Regular
#12
Watching Liverpool this season, I think we all know that you need to load up on midfielders to keep the rotation and freshness going. Therefore Winks isn't a problem in the bigger picture. The other thing is that Winks has not long turned 24 and you don't really see the best of his type of player until the second half of their twenties.

To get to the next level Winks needs to play more like Scholes and demand the ball more. He needs to be 10 yards from any play in the middle third of the pitch and tell himself he is going to run the show. I've rarely seen him do that but feel that it's in his locker. Perhaps as we become a better side, he'll flourish more in the team.

I'm not surprised by those stats at all, but they don't reveal the bigger picture that he needs to find another gear now he's in his mid twenties. That's what guys like Modric and Eriksen did in our colours.
 

Matic

Vital Football Legend
#13
I like Winks. Always have. I think he has a great attitude and is a tidy player but he has always struck me as a player who lacks a "detail" that would make him undroppable. His short passing is flawless, he is strong in possession and he has a great engine but he lacks bravery in longer range passing that would make him a top class deep lying playmaker, he doesn't score goals as a box to box mid, he doesn't get assists and his key pass stats are very low, and his defensive stats are very average when used as a DM.

Until he develops that extra detail where he either contributes more to scoring goals or defending our goal, I think he is going to be a bit of a luxury player because just being able to control tempo and possession is not enough at this level.
 
#14
Mason, Bentaleb, Livermore, Carrol, all promising young midfielders with Spurs who ultimately proved to be not quite good enough for what the Club aspires to be, but have been decent journeymen elsewhere. Is Winks any different.
 

xvausch

Vital 1st Team Regular
#15
Winks's only real problem is that he's had trouble staying healthy. Without his long injury layoffs, my bet is that he'd be alongside Kane as top on the sheet for England, and he'd be getting Prem POTY votes.

Knocking him for aspects of his game, that are just not athletically/physically up his alley, not being at world class level seems silly. I've seen improvement in pretty much all of his game, except his marksmanship maybe. And that aint gonna change, prolly ever.

.
 

muttley

Vital 1st Team Regular
#17
Mason, Bentaleb, Livermore, Carrol, all promising young midfielders with Spurs who ultimately proved to be not quite good enough for what the Club aspires to be, but have been decent journeymen elsewhere. Is Winks any different.
Great question. I would say yes, but used to hesitate a little on Bentaleb as he looked the pick of them for a while. I don't so much nowadays as he never lived up to his potential even after the clear attitude and injury problems. Winks is clearly better than Carroll and Livermore who aren't in the same league. Mason gave the best of what he had, but unfortunately wasn't the real deal either.

Ultimately, Poch cleared out Paulinho, Mason and Bentaleb to ensure space was created for a young Winks. As good a sub as I've seen in the centre of the park in those days. Just couldn't stay fit enough to get more involved for club and country. I used to berate Hodgson for not even picking Winks when we used to watch him close out game for us in a great side every week, when fit. England needed a Winks and still do.

My guess is that Jose is working very hard with Winks to help him get to the next level. The manager / player relationship looks good.
 
#20
Great question. I would say yes, but used to hesitate a little on Bentaleb as he looked the pick of them for a while. I don't so much nowadays as he never lived up to his potential even after the clear attitude and injury problems. Winks is clearly better than Carroll and Livermore who aren't in the same league. Mason gave the best of what he had, but unfortunately wasn't the real deal either.

Ultimately, Poch cleared out Paulinho, Mason and Bentaleb to ensure space was created for a young Winks. As good a sub as I've seen in the centre of the park in those days. Just couldn't stay fit enough to get more involved for club and country. I used to berate Hodgson for not even picking Winks when we used to watch him close out game for us in a great side every week, when fit. England needed a Winks and still do.

My guess is that Jose is working very hard with Winks to help him get to the next level. The manager / player relationship looks good.
Once Mason had a DM type player next to him he started controlling games. Mason for me was better than Winks.