Monday September 15th, Mauricio Pochettino announced Younes Kaboul as the new Spurs captain, following the departure of Michael Dawson to Hull in the summer transfer window. What had been a three-way shootout between Kaboul, Lloris and Vertonghen, quickly turned into a one horse race as Kaboul, occupied the captaincy for every game for far this PL season. So what can we make of Kaboul as captain – has he the qualities to be not only a Spurs captain, but a leader or even legend with the armband? Humble beginnings Originally arriving at the club in 2007 from AJ Auxerre for £8 million, Younes Kaboul was billed as the next best talent to emerge from France. Despite an emphatic equaliser in a 4-4 draw against Aston Villa on the club’s 125th anniversary, Kaboul’s inability to defend, combined with numerous errors saw him fall out of favour, before eventually falling on down to Fratton Park for a cut-price of £6 million. As Harry Redknapp swapped the South Coast for Spurs, Kaboul then re-joined the party in January 2010, with Redknapp adding that the player was "much improved" from his original spell at the Lane, and that Kaboul was a "late developer". Reputation repaired After a short spell at right-back in the starting XI, in which the Frenchman displayed exceptional power and pace, as well as a vital assist at the Etihad for Peter Crouch, our number 4 was then reverted back to his original position in central defence. Two promising seasons at the heart of the Spurs defence, capped off with a memorable winner at the Emirates in November 2010, saw fans and pundits alike rejoice at the birth of what seemed the real Younes Kaboul. As pessimists will assure you that no fairy-tale lasts forever, Kaboul’s fairy-tale truly did come to an excruciating halt, as he severely injured his knee in May 2012, ruling him out of that summers European Championship. Frenchman in full-cycle Since that injury, many (including myself) have doubted as to whether Younes Kaboul has ever, or will ever hit top form again. With a stop-start run in the first team, Kaboul has only shown glimpses of the quality that universally redeemed himself in the eyes of Spurs fans across the land. However, just as good aspects of his game has been visible in the Younes Kaboul of present, so has the bad – and I mean very bad! With every aerial duel, tackle and foot-race won by Kaboul, there has been red-cards, own-goals and school boy errors, a real footballer’s case of Jekyll & Hyde. And as we have opened the season under a new boss expected to raise the individual performance levels of those who underperformed in previous campaigns, Kaboul has done little to prove that he has evolved from the player that we had originally sold to Pompey. A sorry start Minus West Spam away, Kaboul has been the weakest player on the footballing field so far in our opening fixtures, I believe. Take QPR at home, a game we undoubtedly cruised, yet it’s important to look at one moment in particular. At 1-0, a simple long ball was hoofed up towards QPR’s frontmen. A ball that should be “bread & butter” for a centre-half 6ft plus was evaded by Kaboul, brought down by Matty Phillips – only for the former Blackpool winger to rifle his shot over the bar. Possibly a game-defining moment squandered by QPR, but it was an error by Kaboul that allowed this opportunity to arise in the first place. A week later and Kaboul was at it again. Although one of many to underperform in this fixture, our “captain” was bullied by Liverpool new-boy Mario Balotelli, whom despite not scoring, exercised his dominance over his opposite number all game long. You only have to look at how Philippe Senderos (YES Philippe Senderos) handled Balotelli last weekend, to understand how defenders should defend. And I haven’t even touched on Moreno’s goal! A super-strike of course, but how Kaboul allowed the Spaniard to advance 40 yards into our penalty area without a challenge or any pressure is beyond me. No responsibility, no spatial awareness from a defender and no commitment to the cause. The game at The Stadium of Light on the weekend saw Harry Kane score an unfortunate own-goal, but if you re-watched the black cats’ equaliser again, you’ll see that Kaboul is at fault. Provided with a solid opportunity to clear the ball on his stronger right foot, Kaboul willingly allows the ball to fizz past him in the danger area – suicidal defending to say the least! Dawson deserved of an apology? With Kaboul given the armband by Pochettino, it’s important to understand the no-one is questioning the Argentine’s decision on the basis that the Frenchman isn’t a figure who can lead. Instead, fans are actually questioning Kaboul’s ability as a footballer in the Spurs’ side, and believe that the player’s place in the team should be under close scrutiny from those in charge of selection. With Kaboul given this honour, it is more than likely he will be one of, if not the first name on the team-sheet, yet his recent form would suggest that he is more suited for a role on the bench. A captain who may be an excellent leader of teammates, but is let down by his limited footballing ability – why does this sound familiar? Oh, Michael Dawson! Just as Kaboom is about to enter the firing line for being el capitan, Dawson faced a similar torrent of abuse for a lengthy period. Was it deserved? Probably. But those who have said that Michael Dawson was not the same Michael Dawson without Ledley King next to him, are about to enter familiar territory with Younes Kaboul. Curse of the captain The problem with us fans, solely lies in the fact that captains are expected to lead by example on the field. Vocal or not, their performances must be consistent, disciplined and worthy of regular selection – three factors all absent in Younes Kaboul’s game. Win, lose or draw – Kaboul will be the man representing the players in the press, giving that inevitable “we must pick ourselves up” dialogue, after a sickening hammering to one of the top four. I can somewhat trust Poch’s decision to make Kaboul captain. He sees the players every day, so he will know who is most looked up to and most respected in the changing room, and maybe it is truly Kaboul who is that guy. Where I do hold my reservations though, is how a captain is expected to be a positive influence on his teammates game, when his own game holds so many flaws.