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The Second Half Beckons

We are now a little over halfway through the season and currently we sit in the same place we were this time last year - third, albeit a little further behind second and with no 10 point lead over fourth.

Same position, but with a different manager and a very different squad. The second half of last season could be described as a disaster. What does the future hold for us now? The squad is different and we are playing very different football. The first half of last season we played some breathtaking stuff. Went on a run of 11 wins in 12. The first 11 was a match for any in the Prem. We were on such a run of form we were realistically described as title contenders. I don't think that's happened any other time in my time as a Spurs fan. Then it all went horribly wrong.

It could've been the England speculation. That certainly won't have helped and once it was clear 'Arry wasn't going to get that job there was a significant improvement in our form. It could also have been a lack of rotation. Incredible first 11 but where was the plan b? We had players like Sandro, Kranjcar and Defoe withering away on the bench while Scott Parker ran himself to death and VDV couldn't finish a match. The problems with the lack of rotation were twofold; the first team were exhausted, the squad players lacking sharpness when called upon. We were a finely tuned engine, to the point that taking out one component meant the whole thing ground to a halt. A house of cards, if you like.

This season it feels somehow different. More solid. A slow start, for sure, and we have not at any point shown the same marauding form of the first half of last season, but have quietly gone about it, picking up results, which have so far been good enough to leave us in third. We have enough about the squad to be able to lose key players for a match and still pick up results. We seem to be able to play with different players, different systems.

The squad is not complete, obviously. We are in need of a striker and possibly another midfielder. Losing Ade to the ACON (must they really hold that every 2 years? Really?) is a blow, though JD has been in fine fettle, with Demps finding his feet as well. Lose Dembele and there may be an issue, though with Demps and Siggy finding form and Parker back we may still be ok. Lose Bale or Lennon for a match or two, we will get by. Defensively, no problem. When have we ever been able to say that before?

It is fitting that we should face our old boss now. Fitting, but a dangerous match. They will be up for it, big time. It is a big game. We win, we put pressure on those around us, all of which have tough games. There is a strange symmetry in that both this season and last saw our fortunes change following a 5-2 hiding at the Emirates. I am aware that I am tempting fate and the wheels could fall off again, but I have faith that we have learned and we are building something stronger.

Written by Yorkspur




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The journalist

Writer: Yorkspur Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday January 10 2013

Time: 8:27AM

Your Comments

We're in a perfect position to pounce, although another striker surely must come in?
yiddyboy
I can't see a 'wheels falling off' scenario this year. Yes we will have a bad game or 2 but nothing like last season. QPR will not be easy and I have a horrible feeling the media will have their 5 minutes of fame, as you mention 3 points would put the pressure on the rest but it won't be a given.
yiddyboy
First point, We will be better this time than previous 2 seasons. Second point.. Squad Rotation by AVB and tactical is way better than Harry can dream about... COYS
Block D Spurs
Good article. I am sure AVB is aware of what happened last season and to an extent the season before and so will the players. I think QPR game is a very important game for us before the UTD game because we don't want to lose and then meet UTD and lose again that could spell yet another bad start to the second half of the season and who knows where that will take us.

Win QPR game with a good display and meet UTD with confidence and even of we don't win that game hopefully it will not cause too much problems and we can bounce back, furthermore we may actually get a result against them.

We all know QPR will be up for it and it could potentially be either a thrashing and we win comfortably or it could mean a shock result and we lose, PL matches are unpredictable.

We haen't shown great performances this season and once again others around us have not been brilliant so once again we are in that third spot. However, as mentioned not with a 10 point lead over fourth. I personally think Chelsea and Arsenal despite their weak start this season are actually better than they were last season. It is closer and I still think both will come good. Arsen has done it all before and Benetiz is no stupid manager he has worked under pressure before and I expect him to turn it around and for Chelsea to be competing up until the last game of the season so imo we still have a difficult task of taking fourth.

To improve our chances I think we need a few things to happen. Firstly we need to get of with a good start against QPR and make sure we continue with our consistent results and not take a dip like the last two seasons this is paramount. Secondly we need to invest in at least one player if not two, a striker, we should have invested last season in Jan and we didn't. Thirdly we need to stay quiet and keeps our own counsel regarding the press if we do go on a good run and start to compete at the top, there was too much hype too soon last season and whenever we start talking and bigging ourself up it back fires. Fourth we need to continue using the squad and make sure no payer gets run into the ground and we start to pick up too many injuries through fatigue like last season, this was obvious with Parker in the second half of last season he was shattered and carrying an injury and his performances were not as effective. Fifthly we should try and keep going in Europe and the FA cup because winning breeds confidence and players like to win and feel EVERY game is important. Finally we supporters need to do our bit and cheer the lads on even when they may hot bad form and we need to support the manager, he has done enough in such a short time to prove he has something about him and the future looks bright.
thfan
It should be a given it should be a nailed on 3 points no worries
spurs50yrs
Theres a real mixed bag to the fixtures for the 2nd half, 4 of the top 6 at home, 6 of the 2nd 3rd away, along with 4 of the bottom 7 at home, its going to be close. I'm fully expecting AVB to do much better than Harry did. Still optimistic 3rd is achievable.
coys1717
We simply must buy a striker if we are to remain in the top four. I would go far as to say it would be an act of gross negligance if Levy fails to do so and it will tell us alot about his ambition. We failed to act last January and look what happened. Daniel Levy is running out of excuses and it simply won't wash if we again "just miss out on that elusive big name we tried so hard to get". We've heard it all before. As for the season so far, performances are improving, the players are responding to AVB and the future looks bright. COYS
jonathan01
sorry about the no worries thing i have been in NZ too long
spurs50yrs
the striker situation is crucial... We cant expect Defoe and Demspey to bang in the goals we need.

i am expecting a goal machine to join us soon...

LCBOP... Levy Cheque Book Out Please
Yidmarks
And in regards to Holtby joining now or later...

Now is the answer, the longer he gets to fit in to the squad the better...

We want CL football next year... the better the squad the better the chance..
Yidmarks
It seems to have become a well established Spurs urban myth that we lost out last season because we didn't buy players. We lost out because we fell apart, with a 10 point lead anything close to average form and we would have cruised home. How far that was physical and how far mental weakness is hard to say, clearly both played a part. But one of the tests of AVB is that his squad maintains a performance level for the whole season. The omens are good, the squad looks strong and we have players coming back from long term injury. In football you rarely have the perfect squad, the test is what you do with what you have.
jod
I think with Ade going will now force Levy's hand we must get another striker ASAP and before the UTD game. Not so for the QPR game we should have enough to win that.
Yido T
Yido T - I'm in dream world, but imagine Damiao signed this week and was on the bench for the Utd game. We are 1-0 down with 15 minutes to go and AVB introduces Damaio. The crowd erupts, he bags a brace and we win 2-1. Then Levy walks past red nose chuckling and s*******ing with Fryers!!! COYS
yiddyboy
Jod thanks for that most sensible post. You are exactly right. a striker is a need but not getting one should have no bearing on how we play going forward. We just have to manage the team so that what we have maintains their level of performance and we will be third at worst.
jvd
Of course we need a striker, who apart from us in the top 4,5 rely on one striker, and a second one when he can be bothered or when "his head is right". This is not a new problem, it has been a failing since the Berbatov/Keane partnership was broken. Of course we will continue to play well, but unlike boxing you cannot win foootball matches on points, you only win by scoring goals. We have already needlessly conceeded 6 points in home games v Norwich, WBA, and Stoke City, games in which we dominated, but failed to convert enough chances to win. You only have to look at both Man U, and Liverpool to see the effect of signing a goal scorer can have, or even Swansea City whose modest investment in Michu, has been hugely succesful.
Frank
If we don't strengthen during this window then I don't see us finishing in the top 4. We need at least one front man, maybe two if the Adebayor/AVB rumours are correct. We also need a midfielder with the vision and ability (Leon Britton anybody?) to unlock those teams that are increasingly looking to 'park the bus' against us. Llorente and Erikson would be nice and would probably be all we'd need to retain a top 4 place this season providing we had no major injury scares. We could then go out in the summer and bring in Damiao with the lure of CL football.
I'm hoping that Levy has learned from his cowardice during the last January window, when if he had dipped his hand in his pocket for a couple of players, we'd have qualified for the CL in third place and it wouldn't have mattered that Chelsea won the CL. In fact it would have been the icing on the cake to see Arsenal miss out in such a way. To dare is to do, Mr Levy, now go out there and do your duty by our club. Stop making millions from selling our best assets and start making your millions from on the field success. We all know you'll be selling the old Spurs Lodge in Chigwell to property developers for at least £80 million, that's where your degree in Land Economy has come in very handy for ENIC. Stop dithering and start doing. COYS
thfc1882whl
How can anybody say that an influx of a couple of quality fresh faces, in key positions last January, would not have assisted us in consolidating our then 3rd place, and help to ensure our CL qualification. There must have been a perceived need, or why would we have signed 2 players. The fact that those 2 signings of Nelson and Saha, were a "sick joke", taking the pi$$ out of the fans, is immaterial. Hopefully we will have learned our lesson as a club, but I doubt it.
Frank
I am hoping to see muchos goalio at QPR - 1-4 to the away team with Defoe reminding Harry why he always seeks to buy him. Don't blame the guy....he's a lethal goal machine ;) Levy will only buy if the deal if right for the right player. I remember how people on this site moaned and moaned about the lack of buying in the summer. Well Levy was waiting for the right prices and the right men. He brought in Dembele and people quickly shut up when this Gascogne esq player shone. He brought in a goal scorer in Dempsey very cheaply who has played many 1st team games and will be a fantastic squad player. He buys youth with energy , players with potential to sell to the likes of Madrid for billions. IN LEVY WE TRUST
willfry
We missed out on third by 1 point and 1 goal last season. A world class striker last January would have made all the difference, end of story.
thfc1882whl
willfry..... Not seen Muchos Goalio play and doubt whether we'll sign him in time for the QPR game. Either way, I'm sure we'll have Muchos Tu Muchos for them ;-). Oh and speak for yourself with your in 'Levy we trust' remark mate, because I certainly don't.
thfc1882whl
There's no guarantee that buying a top striker and a midfielder would have had us finishing 3rd last season. We had the likes of Sandro on the bench because Harry preferred to run Parker into the ground. Who's to say Harry would have given the new faces game time?? This time around is different, AVB utilizes the squad far more effectively, which in turn should reward us come March, April and May. I think AVB has requested a striker and Levy has promised this, who is bought is another matter. I don't expect Levy to purchase a guy older than 28, on loan is a possibility. The need for at least 1 striker is obvious, even to Tango man sitting in the Bahamas. The issue I have is, we are not in a position to wait until 31st January, we need someone NOW!!!!
yiddyboy
"The second half of last season could be described as a disaster."

The second half of last season WAS a disaster, no "could be" about it. Even if the second half of this season holds some disappointments, it is unlikely to be a disaster. Unless, of course, a lack of depth (to say the very, very least) at forward costs us dearly, and unless we have a rash of injuries. But the team seems positioned to be much more stable than last year's version and no player is likely to be run ragged as so many were with Harry at the helm. I look forward to a solid second half of steady improvement under the new "head coach"/manager.

COYS and COYAVB.

Total knobhead
thfc1882whl - Chelsea bought a world class striker in Torres, didn't pan out like you describe. Don't get me wrong, we need another striker but spending a fortune doesn't guarantee success! What would most on here say if Damiao signed and scored 3 goals this season and by Christmas next year added another 3 or 4. Would we all want ANOTHER WORLD CLASS signing in January??
yiddyboy
I don't agree with this blown it 10 points and 3rd place melarky. The facts were Arsenal went on a great run of 6 straight wins at the same time we had Very tough fixtures end Jan,Feb, March, Man C, Liverpool, Arsenal, Everton, Chelsea ALL AWAY - 2 PTS. Wigan, Newcastle, Stoke, Manure ALL AT HOME - 7 PTS. This all coincided with off pitch distractions too. Did many expect a better return from these games. Those who did had huge expectations with the squad we had. Agreed our best 11 were right up there and could have got something but injuries, suspensions change things. This year we have a squad in depth (as proved v Coventry) as players can come into this system we play and know exactly what they should do and thier responsibility. I think and hope we are equipped to handle big games now, although we have lost most of them so far, and the fixture list is not so brutal as it was last year. This time we have winnable games in between the toughies.
COYS R US
yiddyboy.... Ah but if Levy had gone out and bought the players at the top of Harrys list last January they would have got the game time. Instead he went out and tried to secure third on a shoestring. Harry, whilst to blame for a lot of went wrong at the end of last season, was blameless for our transfer dealings in January. That was down to one man and one man alone, Daniel Levy. Those that say he didn't back Harry because he was always going to sack him in the summer are deluding themselves if they think that players like Hazard and Damiao wouldn't have been wanted by the new man and those players were available if he'd just been brave enough.
thfc1882whl
Last year's disaster was not caused by a lack of January signings, although the lack of signings also was a problem. The disaster was caused by a knacked squad and by the lack of tactical nous when other teams caught on to how we played in the first half of the season. Harry was a one-trick poney and the other managers caught on to what his trick was. There was not alternative plan. He knacked the players and was stuck in one way of playing and the two things knocked us cold in the second half of the season. We played at a relegation level from February through May, and not merely because we failed to sign someone in January other than a couple of pensioners. We had a couple of players on the pitch who could hardly run in the second half and a group on the reserves who were almost glued to their seats with inaction. Run about a bit, lads, and then we all fall down.
Total knobhead
yiddyboy.... No way was Torres world class when Chelsea bought him mate, he hasn't been the same since his long term injury at Liverpool.
thfc1882whl
Could people look at the stats? Halfway through, and Walker has played 27 games, Lennon & Vertonghen 26 games, Defoe & Sandro 25 games, and Bale 24 games. There is LESS rotation thus far compared to this time last season. Harry rotated in cups, so the fore-mentioned players played at most 19-20 times by this stage. Yes this meant that the cups were thrown last season, but we are due for a major burnout unless Parker replaces "no summer rest" SANDRO some of the time, we buy a striker to spread Defoe's load, and give one or two others a breather. The cups were not thrown this season, but we went out of the League cup anyway, and nearly went out of Europa whilst far from impressing even with a full team. Some players can play 40+ games a season, some between 30-40. Right now, we have several due for a 50-game season...
TonyRich
@yiddyboy - Torres was already in poor form and had been for about 18 months when Chelsea bought him. Certainly wasn't the player he'd been at the start of his Liverpool career when he was one of the best strikers in the world. I was stunned they paid £50m for him and not surprised Liverpool bit their hand off to do the deal. Shame they in turn wasted the money on Carroll lol!
Kes80
a one trick pony.
Total knobhead
AVB has a system. For Harry is was run about a bit, lads, and then all fall down.
Total knobhead
Lads this article and thread is just like last May and June. Lets get over the collapse and move on. Naval gazing won't solve anything. Further more the comparing of apples and oranges is pointless. The Spurs of 11/12 season bares very little resemblence to the Spurs of 12/13. The biggest difference is we are now hard to beat. Yes we don't convert enough of our chances to make winning games comfortable and this should be addressed this window to make our lives easier.
Slurms McKenzie
TonyRich.... The difference this season is that our style of play is slower and more possession based than the old 'Run around a bit' style of the last bloke. This in turn makes it easier for players to play more games as the headless chicken approach has been dispensed with. That said, there are still players who will need resting between now and the end of the season. As you say Sandro has played constantly now for almost 18 months and with his high intensity game it would be foolish not to bring in Parker for some game time on the run in. Also our pace players are more liable to injury as their workload increases, so it would make sense to rest Bale and Lennon where he sees fit, even if it's a case of only playing them for an hour here and there.
thfc1882whl
...and those stats were just GAMES STARTED. Defoe was sub 3 times on top of that.
TonyRich
thfc1882whl - I disagree. Cristiano Ronaldo plays a high tempo game always, and plays stupid amounts of games each season. The EPL is intense full stop. It is not what happens in games, it is the fact that the games come thick and fast. Our players have regularly played twice week, whereas last season, they had a week to recover. Recovery times, plus the mental strain. Harry's football was hardly "just run about a bit" in the first half of last season. He had us playing the best football in the EPL. AVB has only managed to get some nice stuff happening recently. Let's see it continue.
TonyRich
Tony – Interesting stats. So all the more reason to bring in one or two fresh faces no? The thing is theres no pointing bringing players in just to make up the numbers, we need to spend the money that will make a difference. We could do with another winger / Attacking midfielder (Holtby?) and a quality striker. With the bench we have, if we try and rest lennon, bale or Defoe we are going to struggle big time. Now parker is almost 100% resting Sandro isn’t much of an issue. The problem is, we bought Dempsey and siggurdson who can play in numerous positions but didn’t expect them to be so average. Ok Dempsey is improving but we need the next level of class to make a difference.
hudderspur
The battle for third and fourth is going to be very tight. I echo all those on here that say buting a top striker is a MUST if we're going to get fourth. Levy has to take a risk for a change. Though it sounds that getting Damiao might be more complicated than appears because of the third party ownership issue. I could see Bale leaving in the summer if we fail to get CL through lack of ambition. We can't throw away another opportunity to progress.
ParkLaneBB
“Apparently” Sevilla’s president flew into London this morning to discuss Negredos transfer. If it’s true it’s us or arsenal.
hudderspur
for me their is a higher propensity for a bigger burn out than the last two seasons given the fact our top players have all played more minutes than in the last 2 seasons=harry at least rested everybody in the uefa cup avb hasnt.this to me is the realtest of avb
ghulamville
huddersur=dont rule out qpr,it appears leandro damaio has turned us down for the 100th time,dont know why we dont wash our hands with him
ghulamville
Including QPR saturday until Sunderland in May, the fixture's stand at 19, that takes into account the next Europa game and the FA Cup 4th round, success in both the Europa and the FA Cup will see that list increase, adding to both stress and strain on the players, being fresh and up for it is one thing, being jaded and tired is another, i know they are young and fit, but that little knock here and there can be a right downer and you don't need many of them to put us on the back foot, having made the first half the season a success, IMO. We have put down the foundations, let's get the remaining part built.
spu 4 life
Ghulamvile I would suggest that spurs have washed their hands of him and that is only ***** poor sports journo's who keep dredging this one up because the player hasn't been signed by anyone!
Slurms McKenzie
Why is everyone against playing our top players in the UEFA, Capital One and FA Cup. When we qualify for the CL do we expect to put out our kids?? Get real people, the top teams have to manage all the competitions. Winning one of them will install belief amongst the squad which we can build on. Disregarding them is a disgrace. AVB is getting his squad use to playing competitively twice a week. This is a great thing for us, certainly not a hindrance.
yiddyboy
ghulamville-leandro has never turned us down...the problem has always been ownership and cost, any quotes are always non commital as you'd expect from a player under contract. That said I would make us favourites for Negredo....they need the money, the player wants to move, we need the player and it's all within budget....win/win
shedboy2
Yea shedboy as long as its us and not the gooners he's going to!
Slurms McKenzie
slurms we'll probably see wenger parading him and Leandro soon...;) As long as we don't go in for Bendtner!
shedboy2
Yes, we are sitting at 3rd place like we did last season. Not a "spectacular" 3rd, 10 pts clear of 4th but still, surprisingly maybe, a stronger one. Why ?? Well, imho it is pretty much down to squad rotation which allowed players to have their share as well as keeping hope they can play while they keep match fit, ready to step up when needed. Sunderland away is the latest best example of how we managed to change 2 CB´s and still grab 3 valuabe away points. To me, this single point shows clearly where Harry failed in two consecutive seasons even having Modric and VdV...We still need, though, a playmaker and a striker to help us get CL football again.
AlexSpur
after the frist half of season it seems if we loose Dembele for any length of time we're fecked...
shedboy2
Yea shedboy but I think the team has improved and developed since that spell and have a greater understanding of the tactical formations that AVB is trying to play. That central creative midfield area is a bit of a problem for us, I agree but maybe Holtby is seen as the cover / solution to that problem so I wouldn't expect too much action there, transfer wise. Maybe a pre-contract with Sissoko but thats about it. One Striker to be signed I think will be the only movement into the club for the rest of the window.
Slurms McKenzie
Good article york. Certainly agree last season was the best start and run on games I have ever seen spurs go on, also agree the end of the season couldn't have gone any worse. Losing 5-2 to your biggest rivals and then letting a 13 point 'mind the gap' lead slip is wrong, combing that with losing 5-1 to your second biggest rivals in a £80 a ticket semi final and then having your manager complain about the support is unforgivable.

AVB is definitely a lot more composed and stronger and this shows in our play. We are much more patient and content in the knowledge we will get chances to win the game, just don't throw it away. There are some problems to iron out like letting in late goals, and our form can change (we'll be 6th if we lose to both utd and qpr) but I think whatever happens we will end the season with dignity and some respect. COYS
T.H.F.Chris
Tony R - nice piece of reality for people to chew on.
Love totty
Sod dignity and respect, let's end the season with CL qualification, and possibly a trophy chucked in. If we shape ourselves we should be in the last 16 of the FA Cup, without yet playing a PL team.
Frank
harry may have had us playing fantastic football at times, but harry relied on four world class players and now only bale remains, we having lost VDV,modric and king. no way in hell would we be any way near the top 4 if harry was still at the helm today imo
Guernman
If you look back at our collapse last season it came down to just two games; the back to back losses to Norwich at home and QPR away. All the other results were predictable and forgivable given the quality of opposition. We need no such lapses and a few better than expected results this time.
Love totty
Regardless of whether there are more signings or not, we have to keep our focus. The letdown the past two seasons has entirely been as a result of a knackered starting XI and a boss who was always in the middle of something. Every game is the most imoportant game of the season. All that should matter at this point on the training ground is 3 points at Loftus Road. Get 3 points and the pressure will continue to mount on Chelsea (slowly going backward - started season 7W 1D - have a ridiculously congested fixture list), Arsenal (busy fixture list as well and very fragile defensively), Liverpool (busy fixture list and still loking to find their playing style), Everton (least games of all but injuries to a couple of players, or losing Fellaini would be critical), WBA (starting to slide a bit). Not to mention that leaders ManU, while scorng tons, concede lots as well (still think the title is theirs to lose) and City, too few games to keep all of those stars happy and motivated, are both likely to have issues as well.

It's going to be very interesting. This is a very tough tie of year. Teams like QPR absolutely need points or they risk losing sight of the safety zone. WBA, Newcastle are fighting for their European lives. ManU want revenge and to keep their gap growing against City. Norwich and West Ham want to continue to build. No easy matches. Anything more than 10 points from those fixtures will have us in the thick of the fight going in to March. COYS
peterballb
TonyRich, I must disagree. Harry did have us doing the run around a bit type of play. It looked more fluid because we had a motivated Adebayor, a healthy King (first half of the season), Modric and VDV. Those four players plus Parker and Bale gives you a lot of ability on the pitch without doing very much on the chalkboard. Set pieces were horrid. We took forever to get the ball back in play on free throws. Friedel hoofed the ball up and gifted possession. There was no system. There was no planning for a specific opposition. It was all, we will do our stuff and will win more than we'll lose. All looked great until the starting XI started to become knackered. They all fell back and there was no one to pich them up. Subs were all rusty and unmotivated. Starters, too tired. VDV could never make 90 minutes. Bale was clearly tired. lennon alienated. friedel was not stopping anything out of the ordinary. Last year's squad was better than 4h. we lost out by one converted corner or free kick. Shame we didn't waste any time practicing that garbage. COYS
peterballb
just watched the Greasvie clips on the Media Watch page. Sigh!
Love totty
Couldn't be more right, peter. Run around a bit, lads, was the extent of the system, there was no more system, and with some brilliantly talents individuals (VDV, Modders, Bale, etc.) it worked as far as it could go. But in the end it was run about a bit, lads, until we all fall down, and knackered they became, and fall down they did.
Total knobhead
Our remaining 17 PL fixtures pan out as follows in playing order: HOME: Man U (20/01), Newcastle (9/02), Arsenal (2/03), Fulham (16/03), Everton (6/04), Man City (20/04), Southampton (4/05), Sunderland (19/05). AWAY: QPR (12/01), Norwich (30/01), WBA (2/02), West Ham (23/02), Liverpool (9/03), Swansea (30/03), Chelsea (13/04), Wigan (27/04), Stoke (12/05). This means that of our major rivals for CL qualification we play 4 at home (Man U, Arsenal, Everton, Man City) and 2 away (WBA, Chelsea, plus dark horses Liverpool). The key to it is then, that we must take full toll of advantage in our home games, whilst maintaining a "tight ship" "hard to beat" ethic away.
Frank
TK - we actually finished last season strongly with three wins and a draw. IMO it was only Ledley's and Scotty'ss fitness in the end that really cost us especially in those two games I mentioned at Qpr and Norwich. They were more influential than Modric and VDV.
Love totty
Love Totty, then you wonder why the blokes of my age moan about the lack of success of the modern Spurs teams, we have had some wonderful attacking players at Spurs over the years, and some of us simply yearn for a return to "all our yesterdays", unlikely I'm afraid under the current regime.
Frank
Frank, win 11 of those games and we get CL. All has to start with 3 points against QPR. COYS
peterballb
Me too Frank, but then I also remember Chivers, Archibald, Waddle, Gazza, Lineker, Klinsman and Ginola and also sigh. Add your own to that list.
Love totty
Frank, I just don't see things as that bleak. I do believe we had te talent the past two years to win the title. It would have taken some luck and exceptional coaching, but the talent was there. This season, there is less talent, but a better team ethos and far superior coaching. Will it be enough? Who knows. We all expected growing pains without Ledley, Luka and Rafa. Modric and Ledley have been replaced, albeit with different style players, leaving only really VDV as unreplaced, though Dempsey (again in his own way) is filling some of that gap. If Dempsey gets back to where I believe he can, if Defoe starts hitting the back of the net more than 1 in 8 , and if Ade comes back from ACN with a clue, then up top, we may well be ok. Bale and Lennon (most improved player under AVB) are playing really well, but they have more to offer. Dembele/Sandro and Parker are all solid. Cauker/Dawson/Vertonghen are all solid with Kaboul still to come back. Walker now has competition and BAE, possible the best LB in the PL, is back. Huge upgrade in goal with a steady, reliable commodity as the backup. Lastly, players like Sigurdsson, Naughton, Falque, Townsend, Livermore, Hudd, Carroll have all chipped in. I see nothing of the detritis that had set in in previous years where a sub was a significant drop in quality from the starters. Hotlby, Fryers, Luongo, Mason, Smith are all ones for the future. It's not glitzy, but then AVB is building a team. There's room for improvement. One thing we don't lack is competition for places other than at striker and on the wing. Sign Dzagoev. Both positions addressed in one signing. Get Benat too and we'd be hugely upgraded. COYS
peterballb
Love totty, a bloke called Bobby Smith wasn't bad either, and then a real curve ball, a guy called Len Duquemin (possible spelling) a free scoring CF from the Channel Islands who starred in the Arthur Rowe "push and run team" circa 1949-52, when I first started to watch Spurs as an 8 year old snotty nosed kid, I'm now a snotty nosed 71 year old, still allowing Spurs to drive me mad COYS.
Frank
Only vague memories of the early sixties for me, the 65 final was the first I really remember and by 67 I was Spurs daft.
Love totty
I agree with your analysis Peterbalb, but we still lack a "proper" striker, and a game changer in MF. When we see the impact that RVP can make from drawing, or losing positions, (see the impact his moving has had on Arsenal), and the same goes for Suarez who can carry a team almost single handedly (him and Stephen Gerrard), when you see the impact Hernandez often has even as a substitute, then you realise the effect of a "game changer", we have Bale (at his best) and nowt else that can change a game regularly. In MF we need a dominant figure as an AMFer, a Cazorla, a Fellaini, a Yaya Toure, no we can't afford these names but we are desperate for similar, but there seems no desire to look for, and sign them.
Frank
Frank, these guys really aren't what we need. Leandro or Doumbia and Isco or Benat. These guys are game changers. That said, we do have some other game changers out there. Our guys are just less flashy and don't score goals. Lloris, Vertonghen, Dembele have been huge additions to what we had. BAE back from injury makes our back 7 about as good as there is out there, and very young. Lloris, Walker/Naughton, 2 of Kaboul/Caulker/Vertonghen, BAe/Naughton, 2 of Parker/Dembele/Sandro. There's not much better. On form, Lennon and Bale are up there as well. Lots of chances created every game. We need to cover them off and it's why I'd go in for Dzagoev, if it had to be just one guy. Can play the wing, behind a striker or be the striker. Our goals against are decreasing. The issue is, we need more goals. Let's see what happens. All I care about, atm, is three points on Saturday. That sends a huge message to all the others in the fight. COYS
peterballb
THFC1882 the fact that we missed out by 1 point and 1 goal validates Levy's position not negates it. To pay 20 - 25 Million pounds for 1 goal or 1 point would have been foolish. Far better if Mr. Redknapp had kept his mind on the job he had and bagged the same goal and point from the players he had including Saha.
jvd
 

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