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Reading vs. Tottenham Hotspur.

Perhaps I have missed something truly terrible, such is the negativity over Tottenham's first three games, but this morning I actually feel pretty positive with my football world.

Though we sold one of our best players and missed out on signing one or two very attractive targets, on balance we did well in bring in players and also move on several others that either didn't want to be here or simply were no longer good enough. As I wrote earlier in the week, I now find it hard to pick my best Spurs XI and that is because there is both quality and versatility in so many players roles, but we also have genuine strength in depth and flexibility of formation.

The team could obviously still be better and with what we have, they have to gel as a unit, but things really aren't as bad as some fans and media are almost enjoying the idea that the wheels have fallen off and we are doomed to crash before we have even got out of first gear.

Tomorrow, I don't see AVB making too many changes from the team that disappointed at home to Norwich, but perhaps the sheer fact that we will have the likes of Lloris, Dempsey, Parker, and so many other top quality players breathing down the starters necks, can any player take a starting spot for granted and at last we have real competition as opposed to a bunch of highly talented underachievers.

As yet it is unclear whether Scott Parker is fit enough to be back in contention, but we know that aside from Younes Kaboul's long term absence, we only have Clint Dempsey and Sandro suffering from a bit of jet lag, but both are surely going to feel fully recovered by tomorrow afternoon. The main question is whether this is a time for AVB to rotate and rest a few players, with one eye on Lazio next Thursday in our opening Europa league game of the season.

Reading are a team that are hungry, hard working and play decent, effective football. What interests me is whether they again feel the nerves in front of their own supporters as they did against Stoke or play without fear as they did at Stamford Bridge? In terms of 1 - 11 quality, there aren't too many Reading players that would definitely get into the Spurs team, but the same would probably also be said of Norwich. Have Spurs tightened up their defence and also added the extra creativity that has so far been missing in the opening three games?

Lloris, Dembele, Dempsey and Adebayor, must all be close to getting a start tomorrow and perhaps all that will be stopping AVB picking them will have been the lack of playing time with their team mates due to the international break, but I would expect to see Dembele start in midfield to add some forward drive and creativity, but will Dempsey get the nod over Lennon or Sigurdsson perhaps and similarly is Adebayor fit enough in his new No10 number to take over from Jermain Defoe at the head of the attack?

Just having players of their quality on the bench will hopefully make those eleven that start fight that little harder, and with such competition and quality in depth, I do feel the future for Spurs is bright and perhaps 3 points tomorrow will bring some sunshine into Tottenham fans lives and give the media no more excuses to be critical of our beloved club...




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The journalist

Writer: OxfordSpur Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday September 15 2012

Time: 3:47PM

Your Comments

3pts coming and first win of many!
Little spur
It just feels like it started ok - despite the result at Newcastle, then worsened vs WBA, and the less about the Norwich game the better - as I was there... That is what feels negative. Good performance is more important than points....but points would get media off the back of avb.... Dembele and Ade to start in place of Livermore and Defoe.
TonyRich
Lets hope we get the basics right first and foremost, does not matter who plays unless we learn fast to defend as a team unit. Play Ade with dempsey playing off him like vdv used to do, we should have more presence and fluidity up front. Dembele with sandro in Mf and bale and lennon on the wings, it means switching back to a 4-4-1-1 we used to play under harry but for me with the players we have its the best formation still.
spurfect one
As Spurfect says: the basics are the priority. It was not a team last time out. 442 style formations promote team work as it is a number of partnerships: CMs, CBs, front two, full back and winger. AVB does not play that and has to play his way, but there must be more teamwork.
TonyRich
TonyRich, im not a big harry fan but under him we had some great partnerships, Vdv/Ade, Modric/Parker, Kaboul /king, BEA/Bale and Lennon/Walker. Obviously AVB has lost 3 great players in King, Modric and Vdv, but hopefully now he has nearly a full squad to choose from he starts to play players who contribute each other in different ways to offer us more fluidity. 2 Holding MF selection i hope was just AVB'S limited option and i hope he realizes now Ade is fit he must start.
spurfect one
For me its obvious. The minute I saw two holding midfielders in the line ups for the two winnable home games I knew it was going to be frustrating. If AVB does the same again and we do not get a result I will be incredibly upset.
startinggun
Personally, I don't mind if we play 4-2-3-1, as long as Dembele is one of the 2 central midfielders and Defoe does not start on his own up-front. I can't see us playing a 4-4-2, but that's how we will get the best out of Defoe, who is scoring goals this season.
Fanman
what worried me most against norwich was how slow we were at building attacks.it was very much like chelsea last season,predictable and very boring, a far cry from harrys fast free flowing attacking football. surely avb see's this too. if not well then were facked imo. he has to play dembele as one of the 2 in a 4-2-3-1 and ade up front. if he plays this way we should be way too strong for reading. we'll know this time (18.26) tomorrow anyway. coys
never blowingbubbles
neverbb : it was like that against newcastle too once we went behind....no urgency to build attacks. I put this down to the potential recipients not showing for the ball...and lack of team understanding.
TonyRich
Spurfect .... I am just struggling to see how avb can get this system working quickly. It looks too dependant on individuals. With 442 based formations, the partnerships can absorb a poor performance or two. You get the partnerships working and the team works. With 4231 we are trying to get the whole team working before the partnerships develop. But we must persue with it...and get it clicking...
TonyRich
It is not the fault of the press that we haven't yet won a match this season.
Shannon
The most we'll get is a point if AVB persists with 2 holding midfielders and Defoe as lone striker. We're looking for a first win, but so's Reading.
hiano
Looks like a 4-4-2 with defoe and siggie as the forwards? Did I get that right from the posted line up?
Total knobhead
G 24 Brad Friedel D 5 Jan Vertonghen D 13 William Gallas D 16 Kyle Naughton D 28 Kyle Walker M 7 Aaron Lennon M 11 Gareth Bale M 19 Moussa Dembele M 30 Sandro F 18 Jermain Defoe F 22 Gylfi Sigurdsson
Total knobhead
No BAE? No Livermore? No Lloris? No Adebayor? Audacious. A real throw of the dice. COYMFS. Come on you multi faceted Spurs. LOL.
Total knobhead
 

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