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Spurs this season when Nabil Bentaleb has started:

P15 W10 D3 L2

Spurs this season when Nabil Bentaleb hasn't started:

P16 W7 D4 L5

Interestingly, if you look at the stats for when Bentaleb and Ryan Mason have lined up together in the middle of the pitch there's a further alignment of consistency:

P6 W4 D1 L1

Bentaleb holds. Mason pushes that little bit forward. Both are Pochettino players in that they follow instructions with discipline. We've seen it this season when Mason has hobbled off injured and been replaced by (say) Benji Stambouli. We lose that extra impetus of progression from the middle into the final third, that release and escape that gives us time to regroup and can influence defence into attack. Occasionally a pushed up Mousa Dembele offers an outlet, but not with the same combined shape that Nabil and Ryan allow for.

Pray for the Tottenham midfield in January.

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