Darren Bent has boldly claimed that Paulo Gazzaniga could take over as the first-choice goalkeeper at Tottenham if he can impress during Hugo Lloris’ injury layoff.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Spurs and England striker says that the Frenchman’s recent mistakes between the sticks, which include losing possession against Southampton and dropping a cross versus Brighton, could see his Argentine rival stake a serious claim to manager Mauricio Pochettino.
As confirmed by Tottenham, the French stopper will not have to undergo surgery on the injury picked up against the Seagulls but will be missing for most, if not all, of 2019 after damaging ligaments in his elbow.
Hugo Lloris has undergone further assessment this morning after sustaining a dislocated elbow in our match against Brighton on Saturday.
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) October 7, 2019
With a lengthy layoff on the cards for Lloris, Bent has boldly suggested that Gazzaniga, who has been very much the Frenchman’s understudy in north London since joining, could make a starting role his own if he can impress over the next couple of months.
Bent told Football Insider: “When he (Gazzaniga) stepped in last season he was very, very good. Hugo Lloris is still a very, very good goalkeeper but we have seen in the last couple of seasons him start to make more and more mistakes.
“Now I hate to see people get injured, it’s horrible to say but this might just be the opportunity for Pochettino to have a look at it and go: ‘You know what, something’s got to change.’
“We know Hugo Lloris is a very good goalkeeper but he has been making mistakes that have been costing us goals. Maybe if Gazzaniga can get a run of games now and get some minutes on the pitch where he performs well, maybe Pochettino goes: ‘You know what, it’s time for a change.'”
Gazzaniga has only played a handful of times for Spurs since joining from Southampton, with only 15 appearances in over two years with the Lilywhites.
He has featured three times across all competitions this season, coming in for Lloris against Leicester City after the arrival of the French international’s newborn child, while also featuring in the League Cup defeat to Colchester.