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James Tomkins: Handling different opponents

In nine seasons as a Premier League defender, West Ham United’s James Tomkins has had to deal with all sorts of attacking threats.

Strikers come in various shapes and sizes, so the job of a defender changes from game to game. Marking Sergio Aguero or Peter Crouch are two very different propositions, and your tactics must adjust accordingly. What works to stop Anthony Martial might not work for Diego Costa, and vice versa.

Tomkins provides tips on the best tactics to stop a variety of strikers – the tricksters, the target men, the speed demons and the workhorses.

He explains how to halt a box of tricks like Eden Hazard, how to avoid a pace ace leaving you trailing in their wake and why it might not be such a good idea trying to wrestle a forward more powerful than both Klitschko brothers combined.

Follow Tomkins’ tips in this video and become a defender capable of dealing with pretty much anything.

Spire Roding is the official private hospital to West Ham United. James Tomkins opened the brand new £1.2 million state of the art Bone and Joint Centre at Spire Roding Hospital for more information go to