Adrian Clarke looks at key tactical points and players who can be decisive in Matchweek 6.
Player analysis: Dejan Kulusevski (Tottenham Hotspur)
Head coach Postecoglou demands bright minds, sharp movement, high fitness levels and positive attacking intent from his players.
Judging by his displays so far this season, Kulusevski is perfectly suited to those requirements.
But it is the Swede's general performance levels which have stood out most.
Kulusevski is likely to be a real handful for Arsenal’s roaming left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko, due to his ability of combining with team-mates and the threat he possesses on the right.
Postecoglou must be mightily impressed by the 23-year-old’s work ethic.
Diligent in his work off the ball, but especially dynamic when Spurs build their attacks, Kulusevski has covered more ground than any other Premier League player so far in 2023/24.
Most distance covered 2023/24
He is a winger who loves to look for one-twos around the box and is consistently prepared to make bursts into the area, hoping to be picked out with a pass.
Arsenal’s Gabriel will need to be aware of those runs, especially if Zinchenko is caught ahead of the ball.
Most runs made 2023/24
He may not always receive the ball from those off-the-ball pieces of movement, but by making those sprints he occupies defenders and creates space for others.
Kulusevski is also ranked among the league's top 10 players for sprints and runs into the box.
More ball time
Kulusevski, along with every Spurs attacker, is spending far more time with the ball at his feet compared to when he played under previous head coach Antonio Conte.
Their transition into becoming a more possession-based side has helped him receive passes in advanced areas more regularly.
This has understandably increased his shot output to 2.84 per 90 minutes and Kulusevski's ability to create opportunities.
As shown below, his attacking numbers have jumped significantly compared to 2022/23.
Kulusevski's attacking stats last two seasons
|Succ. passes/opp. half||15.09||24.53|
|Chances created/open play||1.86||2.43|
*Per 90 min
Postecoglou believes in a tactical style of play that is built to create overloads.
From those 2v1s or 3v2s, the Australian loves to see overlaps, underlaps and sprints into spaces behind the opposition defence.
As outlined already, Kulusevski is a strong runner, both with and without the ball.
Chances created from ball carries 2023/24
Overall, Kulusevski has made 12 key passes in open play, ranking him joint second in the Premier League behind Mitoma's 14.
If Kulusevski is not closely marked, he could be the player to end Arsenal's unbeaten start to the season.