Andre, what are you doing to our team?
Dear Mr Villas Boas, I am a fan of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club and have been since 1986. I have watched and supported Spurs through different eras, some fairly successful, others less so. I have a number of concerns about the way the club is being run. After months of growing confusion things came to a head at about 21:45 on Monday February 25th and I feel I can be quiet no longer.
There are clearly many things about Tottenham Hotspur Football Club that you either do not understand or have not been explained to you. This penchant for scoring late, decisive goals. Snatching draws or wins from the jaws of defeats or draws. It is novel, but it is not the Spurs way. We concede late goals. We do not score them. We suffer the disappointment, not the opposition, as we were doing at the start of the season. None of this 'we saw a problem, we came up with a solution' business. 'We did our best but they are a tough team and they never give up'. That's how we deal with that.
Which brings me to Manchester United. One of the golden rules is that we lose to Manchester United. We play well and we lose. We may be a goal or two up before it happens. You almost had this down at Old Trafford, we did actually hang on to win but we can overlook that as you were still new to the job. But how can we explain what happened at the Lane? Late equalisers against Manchester United are most definitely not what we do.
The confusion has clearly spread to referees; now United are suffering poor decisions, as demonstrated by the foul by Caulker on Rooney in the box being overlooked. And what is this obsession with dominating possession? Keeping the ball around 60% of the time? We charge forward. Charge. It works sometimes, others it doesn't. If it doesn't work, still charge. Wearing them down and patiently trying to find an opening? Keeping the ball when we are ahead with 5 minutes left? It works for other teams I'll grant you. Just not sure it's for us.
Transfer market, and I cannot emphasise this strongly enough: Under no circumstances should you be saying that the players you have are good enough to achieve our goals. Don't want them feeling too good about themselves. We hang our dirty linen out publicly. These phrases should see you safely through the next window: 'We need to add a couple of players', 'he's good but he's not our player', 'I haven't heard anything about that' and of course 'you'd have to ask Daniel'. And if you agree a fee to sell a player and for whatever reason it doesn't come off, well, there's always loans or the reserves. Don't be letting them back in.
Squad rotation. Why change a winning team? Take last season. Bale, Modric, Parker, VdV, Lennon. Could you name a better midfield 5 in the land? Why bother rotating when you've got those 5? If they're exhaused they're still basically more talented than those on the bench. VdV at 50% is still better than Kranjcar at 100%, right? If a player isn't good enough to be in the first team straight off the bat then they're not good enough, full stop. If I were you I wouldn't even bother talking to them. I mean, if they're not playing, its a waste of time, right?
On this note, if someone gets injured, regardless of how well their replacement plays in their absence, there must be an understanding that as soon as the first choice is fit again they reclaim their place. Immediately. I could go on to discuss our approach to the Europa league and cup competitions in general but I think there's enough to be getting on with here. Things may seem to be going well, but it just isn't the Spurs way.