According to writer Dean Jones, Antonio Conte has been “very pleased” with the commitment displayed this season by right wing-back Emerson Royal.
The Italian manager wasn’t sure what position to play on the right side of his defence when he first arrived at Hotspur Way.
Matt Doherty had been the most reliable at filling the role towards the conclusion of the previous campaign, but Conte still appeared dissatisfied with his team’s available choices.
As a result, the Lilywhites paid £20 million to acquire Djed Spence from Middlesbrough.
Emerson, who has started seven of the team’s first eight Premier League games this season, now seems to have cemented his status as the manager’s favourite.
The Brazilian was dismissed during the Lilywhites’ dismal 3-1 loss in the north London derby at the weekend for a high tackle on Gabriel Martinelli.
In response to the 23-year-dismissal old’s from the team, Jones informed The Transfer Tavern:
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“I believe he got a little bit unlucky, to be honest. I think the red card was more of an unfortunate situation than anything to truly analyse.
“I am aware that Conte has been quite moved by his commitment and his work ethic.
Sincerely, I believe he will continue to have opportunities for the foreseeable future.
Emerson is a surprise to see starting for the Lilywhites week in and week out as the team’s first choice at right wing-back after failing to impress Conte upon the manager’s arrival at the north London club.
However, it is simple to understand why when examining the Brazil international’s fundamental statistics. The 23-year-old ranks in the 95th percentile for clearances per 90, in the 94th percentile for pressures, and in the 92nd percentile for tackles, according to FBRef, when compared with positional peers across Europe over the past year, demonstrating defensive dominance despite his lack of attacking skill.
Despite his moment of lunacy, it’s likely that Conte will start the Brazilian in both Premier League and Champions League games – much to Tottenham fans’ initial surprise.