Valencia striker Roberto Soldado is on his way to join the North London club Tottenham Hotspur in the summer, as the latest reports say that Spurs have agreed to trigger his release clause.
The 28-year-old is enjoying the form of his life and feels it is the right time for him to make a move abroad. The former Real Madrid player joined Valencia for only €10 million, replacing the club’s cult-hero David Villa, who joined Barcelona.
Soldado didn’t take long to showcase his true potential. Surrounded by some very good creative players, he found more chances in the box and as a result goals started to come in plenty. In his three seasons at the Mestalla club, he has always scored 25 and above in all the seasons.
Soldado is a typical no 9 whose only strength lies in finding the back of the net on a constant basis. He is physically strong, technically sound and is an excellent player in holding on to the ball.
The Spaniard should not face much difficulty in adjusting to the system of Andre Villas-Boas. Valencia were heavily dependent upon his goal scoring exploits and therefore he was always deployed as a lone striker in either 4-2-3-1, 4-4-1-1 and 4-3-3 formations.
Villas-Boas has used all the three formations last season, though 4-2-3-1 is his favourite having used it 26 times in the league. Soldado is a different sort of striker from the current crop of strikers at Spurs – he uses his pace intelligently to create gaps for himself in the penalty box. He has the skill to dribble past players and relies mostly on instinctive finishing than hitting powerful shots.
However, Soldado was never used too much in a 4-4-2 formation. Villas-Boas likes to play that system too, using both Defoe and Adebayor and from that point it will be interesting to see how he links-up with the other fellow strikers.
Though Soldado was used as the focal point in 4-3-3 system, surrounded by Jonas and Sergio Canales, the Spaniard could interchange the position with either of the wide players brilliantly, just to get away from the marker and make the system fluid.
Spurs have used the system only once under Villas-Boas last season. Defoe, with all due respect, isn’t tactically that strong enough to create space from going right or left side of the pitch, which makes the system rigid, and probably that’s why the former Chelsea boss didn’t use the system again. With Soldado, he can easily use this system more often, coz of the striker’s better tactical understating of the game.
Therefore, whether or not, Bale stays for the next season, Spurs can expect to do really well with Soldado upfront, as he will not only add goals, but will provide a tactical fluidity to the side.