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Why Harry had it right

After Sunday's result I found myself wishing away the end of the season, praying we finish 7th, and letting Everton and United contest the Europa League next year. Don't get me wrong, I want to win trophies, but the stats do not lie. Nearly every time we play in the Mickey Mouse league, the league game that follows is a shambles. It doesn't matter if we rest players or we prioritise the league game, Sunday is a day of woe.

So, stats man that I am, I began looking at results not just this season, but last season. I was aghast at what I found. We have played 22 Europa League games over the past two years. In games that followed we have won 10, drawn two, and lost 10! To put that into perspective, over a season we would finish on 55 points, likely around 10th, and 8th place last year.

In games that didn't follow a EL game, we won 27, drew 12, and lost 7. Again, over 38 games, we would finish on 77 points. This would have seen us 3rd last season, and surely would get top 4 this year.

Then I started wondering. Is this an affliction that just affects Spurs. I think you know the answer.100% not. This Europa League plague is killing off Europe's 'second-tier' teams. To prove my point, I randomly selected teams who a) play in a competitive league and b) aspire to, but are not guaranteed Champions League football - just like Spurs. Those teams are Lazio, Valencia and Lyon.

Poor old Lazio. Last season they only won 4 of the 12 games they played following EL games. They also had to play both Rome derbies following EL games (sound familiar?) and were embarrassed against Siena and Torino - games they would be expected to win. Played 12, won 4, drew 2, lost 6. This year was even worse, winning only one game, drawing 3 and losing 2. Record overall, played 18, won 5, drawn 5, lost 8 - bottom half of the table form.

Then Valencia. Following 8 EL games this season they have won just 3 games, losing 4. Defeats include 4-1 to Villareal, 3-0 to Atletico, and defeats to Real Vallecano and Real Sociedad. Again over the course of a season this form would see Valencia in the bottom half of the table.

Lyon are interesting, as like us they want to be a CL team, but have found themselves outmanoeuvred by money men, and playing EL the last two years. Their form can be described as mediocre at best following EL games. Last season they only won 2 games following EL games. Once they went out of the EL their form picked up! This year it has been even worse. Following NINE EL games they have won just twice, and defeats include humiliations against Montpellier (5-1) and PSG (4-0). Sound familiar? Their form over the past two season after EL games reads P 17, W 6 D 6 L 5. Again middle ground in Ligue 1.

But if you need further proof, look no further than Liverpool. Last year they played EIGHT EL games, all before Christmas. Their record following these games? ONE WIN. Yes, just one win, a fluke 3-2 victory at West Ham. They drew five and lost three. This is RELEGATION form. If you take away their games following EL matches their form last season would have seen them finish on 70 points - touching distance to the Champions League and not the lonely 7th they actually did finish.

For those who are saying we must finish as high as possible, I say, NO WAY! We must do everything we can to finish 7th this season and ensure Everton and United play Europa League. I don't even want to send reserves. There are other issues as well, such as CL teams playing two legs over three weeks, but EL teams playing two legs inside a week. Why?

The Europa League is a UEFA con designed to keep Europe's true elite at the top table for as long as possible. They want the big grounds filling up, with the biggest sponsorship deals possible. Little old Spurs, as well as Lyon, Lazio, Valencia (and I'm sure there are others.) don't fit into that equation. We must 'do a Liverpool' and have a clear run at the League next year.

Written by Sebastian Short

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The journalist

Writer: sebastian Short Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday March 19 2014

Time: 8:34AM

Your Comments

Sebastian - I don't get it, stats or no stats. Sunday is 2 clear days after Thursday, just as Saturday is 2 clear days after Wednesday. All teams in the PL, CL and EL are allowed squads of 25 players plus under 21s. Granted we might do a few more air miles in the EL than the CL but the players aren't going with Ryanair. We need to stop blaming the EL for us being, unfortunately, just a very average squad at the moment. We can argue if that is to do with talent, leadership or motivation all day long. How did Chelsea do in the PL after each of their EL games last season? Was that significantly different to their win percentages after CL matches in previous campaigns. I don't know but I guess it wasn't. What matters is putting together a quality squad of players, coaching them properly, motivating them properly and rotating them properly. Whether you're in the PL, CL or EL unless you do that you will eventually get found out. Stop blaming the EL for us getting found to be what we really are at the moment - AVERAGE.
incredibly interesting read and thanky you for putting the time in to comb through the stats. i think it's our last 11 EL games we have only won 2 after it. Harry was clearly very right. For comparison I'd like to see how CL teams do in the league after a CL match. you'd have thought the form would be similar?
Its nice to see someone else has figured it out. I wonder though why we need to finish outside the qualifying places, why not just decline to enter ? that would make a statement. The only games you have to play are the league games, you don't have to compete in cup competitions asUnited demonstrated when they declined to enter the FA Cup one year. I see from Spuriouslife's comment people still fantasise that you can afford a champions league squad on europa league money.
I would also ask - how well have Liverpool done without any European footie this year? challenging for the title!
Jod - so what you're saying is it's not to do with the number of games, distance travelled or playing Thursday and then Sunday but the reason we struggle is because we buy poorer players because we're in the EL and not the CL? So if we're not in Europe at all what standard of player are you expecting to bring in? Better than now or worse? Why would better players come to Spurs if we can only offer PL games as opposed to PL and EL?
There are no guarantees any of those games we lost would have been won were we not playing in the EL. As spurious says, it would also be the same situation as playing in the CL. Your stats are fine in the face of it, but who did we play in those games? Home or away? Injuries? Bans? Playing with 10 men? Too many factors to make the stats invalid!
are you suggesting we throw games to not qualify? What's the point in not trying to win games and cups? Just to finish 4th. And no guarantees we would finish 4th anyway... Especially as we would have a mediocre squad with all our good players leaving with no prospect of european football? I hate this attitude!
Dublin Hotspur
So if we cant cope with 2 games a week in the lesser euro competition, how do you propose we cope with 2 games a week in the elite euro competition? We need to build the club up, we ARE building the club up. We are consistently in the top 6, we play European football every year, we have a an unbelievable squad fit to fight on 4 fronts (at the moment). The CL is the best and richest competition and is the priority - but it is not the be all and end all of the football universe. The EL gains us exposure throughout europe and is shown across over 100 countries worldwide including our focus area north America. The team that wins the EL can bring in anything from 15-20m when prize money, gate receipts, tv money and advertising are taken into account as well as entry to CL next season. And the club is building its squad and mentality accordingly to cope with 2 games a week. its not just europe though - we also need to start winning things - the fa cup, the league cup. Its winning that brings in the next generation of fans, the magical moments that got us all hooked originally. We need the stadium built - a new iconic WHL known to have the best atmo in london. In the short term we need a proper manager to ensure the progress we have made over the last few years is not dismantled. Dropping out of europe completely to me is a no-no. It means trimming the squad back to the jol days, cutting our cloth accordingly and regressing as a club. How on earth do we cope with CL football (if indeed we do qualify) with a smaller squad than now?!
I think the main difference, is that the CL games are often on Tuesday or Wednesday. The team involved will frequently play their league game the following Sunday.
Hotspur 1882
firstly when you consider that a team like Southampton will be fully rested and a few knocks cleared up, not to mention have more time to prepare, that is one obvious advantage, though I concede this is also much the same as a CL team playing Wed/Sat. I also wonder if there is usually more travelling for EL as opposed to CL games over the course of a season. Just look at our distances this season, not to mention conditions and climate changes. Is there also a case of Wet & Windy Bolton of a freezing Tuesday night about the Europa that fatigues and uninspired players?
Spot on Spurious mate
Harry seemed to have a lot of things right. Like finishing 4th, 5th then 4th.
Hotspur 1882
It's an extremely anti-football - in fact anti-sport - suggestion. However, it's hard to argue that the Europa League is indeed a "Poison Chalice".

In terms of prize money this competition is a joke. Teams who make it to the group stages of the Champions League are guarantee'd more financial rewards than the team that eventually wins the Europa League - surely that is wrong no? Then there's the scheduling of games and the sheer amount of games required to make it to the tail end of the's utter nonsense. Add to the fact that the competition prior to the quarter finals is simply boring, as managers up to that point treat it as a distraction by playing weaker, less committed teams and you get a competition that requires a complete reform - if not abolished.

That said, I'm not convinced by the conspiracy theories of UEFA keeping the less fortunate down in order to accommodate the elite. The more cynical among us will argue that UEFA only care about money - and that to an extent is true - but it is in no way UEFA's best interest to create a sport that is predictable. They may be a lot of things but stupid is not one of them - at least not to the point where they will end up with the situation Golf, F1 and Tennis have previously found themselves in.

I would love to see how far we'd get without European distraction but at the same time I cant very well say we should "throw" enough games to finish lower. That would undermine the very basis of the club. "The game is about Glory" "To Dare is to Do"'s emblazoned around the stadium and we had it embroidered on our shirts for about 20 years!!
lies damn lies and statistics....of course you also looked at how well teams did after other cup competition such as the CL...didn't you? and the correlation between results and distance traveled? etc etc....the premise is wrong - because we're poor after EL we don't want to take part...! perhaps we need to look at how to better manage our players and our squad to improve results because the simple fact is if you want to win things you have to play more games!
Champions League qualification for the winners of the Europa cup would be an incentive.
Hotspur 1882
Problem as I see it with missing the EL is the squad .. Something that will become apparent with Liverpool if they make the CL. They will need to upgrade and perhaps sign a good few players, or a few good players even.Otherwise they will tire and lose their CL place in the foloowing season. Personally I would like to see the EL as a minimum each and every season. Perhaps the stats that show more losses after EL games could be addressed by having and actually sticking to a core of players, say 8, for EL and cups, with the other stronger core kept for the League. Think also the manager situation needs to be addressed before the WC this year, players and more importantly Managers are going to be occupied in Brasil for most of the close season . Coys !
Hotspur yep harry certainly good at finishing 4th. Looks like he will finish there again in the championship with a squad worth more than the rest of the league put together! Harry at spurs was in the right place at the right time - did nothing before us, nothing after.
Oxford spur of course southampton have the advantage. Its because we are the big club playing in europe with the squad and resources to match. Or would u prefer we go back 10 years to a time when we didnt have to worry about 2 games a week and had a mid table squad to match? It can be arranged - I believe tim sherwood has it in hand.
Also remember all of our players have been messed about playing in wrong positions, playing next to different team mates week in week out! This has more to do with it than 2 games a week! As Robert says, we have no core...except bentaleb of course!
Dublin Hotspur
most spurs fans work 40hrs plus every week some like me when i worked (too old now) do 7 days a week for salaries ranging from probably 10000-50000 A YEAR not per week like our players and are much more tired than any player who plays two games a week even including traveling oh to have been talented enough to be a spurs player and fulfill my dreams i wouldnt have been too tired to play twice a week so lets not get into blaming euro footy for our failures subconsciously maybe they use it as an excuse but its all mens plums just get rid of dimsum(TS) that would be a great help to start coys
It's all about the management of the players...not the competition....
Roger, those facts in the article are affected by the points I raised! There is no guarantee we would have won those games! There is no guarantee we would achieve top 4 without those EL games. Our squad has been mis managed. Miss coached. Mis treated! Those are the reasons we are losing games. Not EL!
Dublin Hotspur
I really don't get it. Why do people say we are hopeless after a EL game, and would, therefore, be better off without it? And then, at the same time, people demand CL football. The demands on the team are exactly the same. If we cannot cope with EL football, we certainly canít cope with CL football. Am I the only one that thinks this? Serious question, because I would really like to understand the logic. The EL competition allows us to see just how competitive we are with European teams.
SpuriousLife - More money means you can afford better players which means a stronger squad which you can withstand the extra games better, why is that difficult to understand ? Why do you fanatasise about players being motivated by Europe ? as Man City have shown its about money, the best players go where they can get the highest wages. Fans like you who don't live in the real world are part of the problem.
The europa league has had an effect on our performances this season but does not mean we should not be in it. Like Dublin said I think the bigger contribution was mismanagement of the squad, that needs to be look at.
Roger. An example. I had a bet last week on a horse called "our Conor" at Cheltenham. My bet lost. The fact is it lost, the stat is it lost. It ran all it's prep races and was of a high enough standard to win it's race. It won a similar race the year before. Now why did my bet lose, because the trainers tactics were wrong. The wrong jockey was on him, and he fell, and ultimately died! I'll never know if he would have run the race if the other factors had been right, but he took his chance. Same with spurs and the way we have been managed this year! There are more factors involved in how the stats got to be where they are than purely being in Europe.
Dublin Hotspur
Itís beginning to sound like winning the CL is the only measure of success, in which case we are not going to have much success in the future of this club. I thought success was judged on winning silverware. Over the next 50 years I would much rather see THFC win 15 trophies (whatever they might be) than one CL and nothing else. Itís not rocket science ... we are not good enough to win the CL at this time; hopefully if we develop well this will come. But, we are good enough, on our day, to win any other completion we are in!
StillRickyVilla -Why do people pretend the world cares about who plays in the europa league ? they don't care much who wins it. What they care about is the champions league, that's why its where the money is. £15m for grinding out an extra half season and winning the europa, significantly more for playing a few games and getting knocked out in the group stage of the champions league, there's no comparison. As Liverpool have shown this season the whole point of not being in europa is you can compete with a smaller squad, they get champions league, we don't, unless you think the number of players on the list is somehow important in itself.
I think I need a Bacardi, or ten!
Jod - I believe we'll have less money if we miss out on European competition altogether than we would if we played in the EL. You're right that players are mercenaries and go where the money is but they love the fame and exposure too. As crap as the EL may be in your eyes the players are still playing in a European competition. Surely that's better than no European competition at all. We also get a few extra million quid for being in it. So it adds to our pot not takes away from it. As for fans like me being a problem I'm never going to apologise for wanting Spurs to win things. We have more chance of winning the EL than the CL. If having a bigger bank balance and and a bulging balance sheet are what tick your boxes then good for you. However, I'm a Spurs fan. Spurs are a football club. Football clubs are supposed to try to win trophies. I don't think there is a trophy for finishing 4th in the PL? More money for sure but on my Spurs shirt there is a cockerel and the words 'to dare is to do' not a £ symbol and the words 'balance sheet for period ending 30.9.13.'
Jod so the 36000 fans at WHL for every EL game dont care? So the sponsers, advertisers , 100 odd global tv broadcasters dont care? So the ecstatically celebrating chelsea fans and players in amsterdam last year didnt care? The CL is the better competition mate but its not the be all and end all - as I said we have to build the club through mininum annual euro football, start winning things again and stay in the conversation near the top of the PL. We are getting there as long as levy has the managerial situation in hand. With the right management this squad has top 4 potential PLUS the experience and strength to manage 2 games a week. Cant wait to see how pool cope next season with a thin squad and relying on SAS strikeforce.
Crisis I do not respect anyone who goes about calling a European Trophy Micky Mouse cup, this article is pointing towards a failure for us as a club, a failure which will as the author so proudly boasts as a solution is to finish worse off in the league? Lol there is nothing worse than stats trying to explain the facts about a football match. Personally u can shove ur facts because football stats have phuckall to do with going out onto the pitch and playing football. Have a game plan and formation and stick to it, trying to lose or "finish" worse off is an embarrassment to the code of sporting ethics. Doubles, Triples, Quadruples, unbeaten seasons are what makes history. A team mentally should never consider any match a waste of time, that leads to losses on the park, if u win all ur matches it pushes u to win the next and so forth. The article has no valid point other than bringing the game into disrepute!
'Those in the EL trying to compete in Leagues with CL teams don't stand a chance. nd yes, if memory serves me right, when we played CL our results did suffer, which is why we finished 5TH!' So then WTF is your point Seb?
Geof for goodness sake don't start to apply logic, to this age old argument, seems many of our fans have a blinkered view with regards to the EL but think we would cope fine in the CL !! I appreciate travelling is difficult in first class cabins, buses that are better equipped than my house ! anyone would think they have to travel across the continent in VW camper vans taking turns in driving and stopping every 50 miles for someone to take a leak, I wonder how we managed to get to a final in 1963 when planes were prop driven travelled at half the speed of todays planes ? I can just hear Jimmy Greaves saying sorry boss cannot play feel a bit tired !! About time modern days players grew a pair and manned up ffs they play twice per week not exactly hard labour is it, and not exactly a couple quid a week they are being paid.
I can't remember, did the CL money lead to bolstering squad issues last time?
Dublin Hotspur
Sebastian the CL would be much TOUGHER than the EL. The games are tougher and more intense (no luxury of resting best players in the group stages!). The number of games played are the same when taking the CL play-off into account (at most 2 xtra games). Wed/sat is no different to thurs/sun. The point is if we cant cope in the EL with a deep, experienced squad, how do u propose we cope in the more difficult competition with a lighter, less experienced squad? We need to shake off this whinging mentality and act like the big club we purport to be.
lol roger can't u read his answer is for us to finish 7th...
Spurious ... I like your post! :-)
I'd like to pose a hypothetical question to all those who think the EL is crap and the CL is all we should focus on. My hypothetical question is this. We have just finished in the top 4 and have qualified for the CL. Man City have finished 5th and have missed out. The owners offer us £100m to give them our place in the CL. We can keep the money, play only one game a week the following season so we've got a better chance of qualifying for the CL again. Do you take the money and give them the place?
roger ... I get what you are saying, but if Pool blow out next season because of the demands of CL games what is the point. Arsenal and United have played in the CL forever and not, like us, been affected by midweek games. That's where we need to be ... but not before we are ready and, right now, we are a work in progress ... imo.
The Europa would be OK if we used it for our convenience by putting a combination of Youth Development and fringe squad players in the spotlight to see what they can do The problem is Redknapp although he talked in a disparaging way about the Europa played too many regular first eleven players and Sherwood does the same. Walker was flogged to death by Redknapp and Vertonghen by AVB.People on this site need to understand there is a limit to the number of games that can be played before the body breaks down and the player is out for an extended period.How much they are being paid is irrelevant, the human physique has its limits.
Roger we all understand that it is easier to be a mid-table club, not in europe and out of the cups. I dont understand your point. We have progressed massively since the early noughties to the point where we now have seasoned internationals on the bench! We now have annual euro football and the club is adjusting to 2 games a week as man utd did in the 90s. We now have a deep enough squad to compete but for our management issues and some weak mentality. Regressing to a 8th, 9th placed club with revenues and squad to match is nonsensical.Its going backwards to 2005.
Roger - What would you suggest is done to solve this problem with the EL apart from not being in it?
A simple question: Does anyone believe that, last season, Liverpool, deliberately finished 11 points below us and 2 points below their local arch rivals, Everton? (It's a stupid question isn't it)?
This whole liverpool argument is a red herring. They are where they are because of excellent stable management and a wonder strikeforce and in particular a worldy of a striker in suarez. They have a relatively weak squad and their profitability is poor judging by their recently released accounts. We are ahead of them in terms of development but we need to get our own management situation sorted out fast. Sherwood is a big big worry. If he has levys ear and hes let loose for another year we could well be mid table and we wont have to worry about this 2 games a week debate!
totuae In 1963 I took two days off from school and got a boat from Harwich to Ostend and a train from Ostend to Rotterdam. The rest is history! Iím sure itís quicker these days! :-)
Cynic. Europe is the big stage! I agree to put a few kids on the pitch in the group stages, when we are ahead, and from the bench, to give them experience of playing with a team full of proven international players. Not in the knockout stages though, and not at any stage of the competition to give the lot of them a run out to see what they can do! The same has been said about the league and fa cups! Ludicrous! How will we ever win anything again without trying! We need to try to win 3-0 on Thursday! It's all we have left this season, as well as striving to finish 5th and qualify again, if we don't win the cup in Turin!
how would you feel being a travelling fan, spending over a grand on getting to the benfica game, just to see the kids play and roll over for a resounding defeat! Not happy id imagine.
Dublin Hotspur
sebastian Short: your stats are interesting and I doubt it's pure coincidence that so many teams are loosing after EL games. But that's just the ups and downs of football. A club, team, squad, just have to do their very best to deal with it and put it right.
Roger, have you been on the phone to topho, and he asked you to post for him! I've had very similar debates with him in the past as you are putting to me now! Maybe it's just a similar train of thought you have with him, and a similar style of writing. Or not! ;-)
Dublin Hotspur
I'm out of here for now! Getting depressed at the thought that we have supporters who want us to finish down the league, throw Europe in a desperate hope that we miraculously overtake top 4 teams into CL places due to playing less games! And probably not wanting us to try to win the league or FA cups to boot, as it's a strain on us getting to the holy grail of 4th, to play in a competition we are not nearly ready to play in under current circumstances! Laters!
Dublin Hotspur
Love seeing Spurs in Europe. Fact is, if we are good enough and have a deep enough pool of talent within the squad, playing twice a week should pose no problem. In conclusion, the only argument i can see that there could possibly be, is whether we have enough talent right through the squad. Not the twice weekly games. If the squad is good enough, most should only be playing one game a week. Logical to me. But...what do I know!. ;-)
Cider spurs
I will say that playing on a thursday and then on a sunday must have an effect on performance. Most of those teams we play on the sunday will have an advantage on us by having more days training, preparation and rest, between their matches. But there's always a price to pay if you're to be successful. It can be the making of a team/club.
Before I go, man on! To answer your question re liverpool, absolutely not!
Dublin Hotspur
Cider, and of course how that talent is nurtured, coached and managed, surely? Right. Off I go!
Dublin Hotspur
Hands up who wants Spurs to be knocked out tomorrow? Hands up those who would love to see us make an amazing comeback and reach the last 8? (I can't believe there will be some that will want the former of the two choices).
Sadly Man On you would be surprised. It seems unbelievable to me too when I hear that some would prefer we finish 8th and don't bother playing on Thursdays. I wonder if they watch our EL games? If they are true to the beliefs they hold they shouldn't watch our EL matches but I bet they do.
Well then, we may as well steer clear of all European competition. Only logical conclusion. Couldn't have anything to do with managers and players learning how to survive and thrive while playing in four competitions. Throw all of the cups away. After all, Mourinho is complaining that Chelsea have to play on Saturday. What, with all the travel from yesterday's game factored in it really is daunting. These millionaires are more and more spoiled by the day. No doubt it's why we'll lose against Southampton. Harry was right, you need lots of excuses. Harry was happy for West Ham when they beat us with him at the helm. AVB wasn't. What an idiot. Now, where is that money my dog needs to deposit in Monaco. COYS
Harry got it massively wrong in his last season. Obviously he should have got us 3rd or 7th. He messed up.
Good points Roger, we might have a year out of the EL next season if the results carry on like they have recently.
The whole concept of choosing a favoured finishing position in the league is ludicrous beyond imagination. I choose finishing above Arsenal every time. Why do the Gonners never cooperate. It's so unfair of them.
Had Timmy got our tactics right against arsenal and west ham in the domestic cups, we could have gone on to win one or both competitions this year! There is a problem with the domestic cups as even teams like Southampton field weakened sides! Why? All my good memories are from cups! We never won the league in my lifetime, or the CL, but the cups have given me great memories! I do want more, and for my kids to have some too! Chelsea fans have great memories from winning the Europa now. A bit of glory!
Dublin Hotspur
stats suggest most teams are more likely to under perform between European fixtures, CL or EL. look at chelsea and their losses from this season. Most of them are between CL fixtures. Maybe they are tired, maybe the tactics are different, maybe less time in training because of the need to rest ends up showing on the pitch... I don't know. But there is a pattern there and people that play with stats, math models, linear regressions and stuff like that know it.
Good point roger re giving the domestics a proper bash! My guess is though that even without EL next year we will not take the cups seriously under current management. No guarantee we would make the step up to top 4 as a result of no EL either! That would be a disastrous season and we would begin to drift downwards again!
Dublin Hotspur
logos8.. Yes, but Chelsea are still in the running to win both the CL and PL.
MAN ON! absolutely but they are a different animal. Imagine them without CL fixtures. They would be 12 points clear at the top. All big teams have to cope with the extra fixtures and they do, and end up with trophies. We are not such a big team. For other European teams is much easier to cope with Europa League for example because their domestic leagues are not that demanding when it comes to tempo and physicality so their players can cope with extra fixtures better.
rogerthelodger also we were playing Capoue in defense and he was at the center of both goals.
logos8.. That's true, but it's something that comes with experience, hard work and skilled management. I'm sure their fans won't mind winning the PL by 1 point as opposed to 12.
Man On I don't know what you think I was trying to say. I was just stating the fact that there is a pattern there especially for English clubs, because the domestic league is more demanding and the players get tired. It also affects the performances of the national team. I am not saying English teams should ignore EL and certainly am not saying they should ignore CL. I was just confirming that indeed there is a pattern and intelligent people should be aware of it. Weather it's worth it to have a go in the EL is a good debate but I don't think there is a good or wrong answer. It all comes down to what you want and how capable you are to produce the desired result.
logos8, I know and I agree with you. I posted similar thoughts above.
SpuriousLife - relax mate. think about what he's saying. Being in or out the EL for one year won't make the difference between keeping or losing players (some may leave because we're not in CL but lack of EL will not make a difference) so for one year we have a clear run without these games. Those in CL regularly have a better 25 man squad therefor they can bring in better replacements. A clear run for one year may be the difference, to making that top 4, in which case we can then sign better players and have a better chance of maintaining form for the extra games. It makes sense - I don't like it one bit but it does make sense. This is not 'glory' we're talking about here and I have a personal dislike for the idea of throwing away participation in Europe and attempting to not finish as high as possible!!! The logic adds up though... but then it's about the individual... logic or emotion. Emotion for me but this article has made me feel a bit more relaxed about missing out!
Dan Mac
rogerthelodger- yes we may tire after a midweek game but fact is to win a cup you have to play more games...if we get top4 we have to play more games, to be successful you play more games....the answer is to prioritise. We already have a decent squad but for example we started the season with a problem at LB....Rose got injured playing in a game where quite frankly Fryers should be good enough (bad mgt)....the group games especially against lower opposition are ideal times to integrate youngsters, get the injured fit, bed in new players, set a pattern of play etc it's like an extra pre-season! but flogging your best 11 twice a week is stupid! If we're out of europe next year our income would drop (we received 11m for EL in 2012 as against 21m for PL gate receipts...not as insignificant as some would say), we would struggle to manage our squad as we wouldn't be able to offer enough playing time AND next year the winner of EL gets a CL shot!...but honestly I don't know why we're chasing the holly grail of CL...we did get there only for our board to sit on their hands!
Exactly shed. Lots of people assume the CL revenue woul exactly correlate to increased purchases, higher standards of players and according wages. I don't remember but I don't think that was the case last time? This is our level at the moment under current circumstances! There are no guarantees being out of the EL = top 4.
Dublin Hotspur
yep dublin we reached the promised land but the club wasn't prepared to try and complete the virtuous cycle and buy a couple of quality players...again recently, most famously with the purchase of Nelson and Saha we had the opportunity to progress the club but held off...our owners only seem to want to make money for themselves through property...
Fantastic article and yet despite being a second rate competition that no one cares about people still argue we should want to be in it! You can not argue with fact but yet people on here are.....
The stats in the article reveal an interesting trend, and there are compelling arguments on both sides, however there are no guarantees. The anti EL side figure that we would have a better chance at CL qualification without EL, which may be true, but we would still be up against Chelski, Arse, Pool, City and Man U, so it's still a tall order. They also think that if we were to qualify for CL then DL would open the war chest and the coin would flow. Recent history however tells us that in our lone CL foray DL didn't really do that. We bought VDV for approx 8M and Gallas on a free with not much more in the Jan window. As much as the stats in the article are facts, so are the ones I just posted. I agree with those who suggest that we should try to finish as high as we can an take our responsibilities seriously in all competitions. The club owes that to the fans who pay, travel and support the club. As Shedboy says, it's about prioritising, and re-evaluating those priorities as the season progresses. We are not yet in a position where we can expect to win everything.
Cleveland ARTSPURS
We often speak of having a "winner's" mentality, in fact we demand it from our players. Yet this article proposes the opposite. The lack of success after EL games highlights our deficiencies. Not to address it and to turn away from is altogether is the trait of a loser.
Super post cleveland
Dublin Hotspur
spurticus87: Strangely, those of us that want to be in it, don't believe the EL to be second rate and, do care about it.... The obvious logic of all this is we cannot choose our finishing position in the PL. Obviously, at the start of the season we can't as a club decide that it's CL or nothing. I find the whole argument incredible.
Still, beggars can't be choosers.... What ever that means?
The Europa league is $hit & hope we win it this year because we`re in it,but hope we can`t win it next season because we are not.

Spurs have struggled due to too many massive changes.There`s going to be even bigger changes come the summer so the new manager needs it as easy as he can get it.
If you think Spurs have a great squad,then there is too much evidence to suggest otherwise.
Playing 20 less games a season will do new Spurs players,new backroom staff & new manager a favour imo.
Spurs can`t even win one thing let alone all of it,so therefore you have to prioritise.
How many injuries do Spurs have? reign it in,sort it out & that means less games.
Sometimes to go forward you need to take a step back,take it easy,have a look & get it right.
Fanny adams
Roger, if that mismanagement is directed at AVB, I would suggest in this instance, ie, the early group stages of the EL in the 13/14 season, the manager was rotating and using his full squad, in the group stages, excluding youth, to gel them. Wouldn't call it mis management that early in the season versus, as you say, weak teams in a weak group! A different scenario began when our current, as you say, interim manager took over. But I agree, in a normal season with a more settled squad, those group games, if we are ahead, are the ones to bring some of the youth off the bench and give them some pitch time amongst the seniors.
Dublin Hotspur
To add to that, a group in the competition at that stage of a season is not to be sniffed at. Was it 100% success rate? Or near as damn it. You have to progress to get to the good games. I love being in the EL but don't agree with the format btw, but if you had read my previous posts on the topic in past threads you would know that. Maybe not as I don't think you've been posting too long. In it to win it, as the saying goes!
Dublin Hotspur
Dublin Hotspur, I am also against the format but, until it changes, I don't believe it to be second rate to the CL. It's just a different competition, that's there to win. Why rate one against the other? It is what it is and not every team can be champions or runners up in their league.... Still nobody seems to recognise the logic of not being able to pick and choose a final league position. Without, of course, some cheating and fraud thrown in.
Sebastian Short. Not agreeing with your point is not the same as missing it. Obviously you're seriously advocating that a team should cheat.
I'm out of this, as people are really not gonna recognise that they are, in essence, suggesting that teams deliberately fail by a form of cheating. Yeah, I'd pay good money to watch that............ In a movie!
Hey, liverpool please don't miss that last minute, match winning penalty, as we desperately need to lose the 3 points! Anyone remember Grobbelaar being accused of conspiracy to match-fiixng? Are we expecting Lloris to follow him!?
Fanny, I hope we win it. If we do we are in it next year, and a historical double win would mean CL qualification. If we don't win it but qualify again, winning it next year means CL qualification!

Roger. There is no guarantee of two steps forward. Pool are where they are because the are well managed and have a core team playing regularly together in their specialised positions!

Sebastion. Stats can be played how you like them to look. The fact remains, as I said earlier, there are underlying causes for all of those losses outside of the EL! Wishing the club to fail, to throw games, to match fix, bring the club into disrepute is wrong and not support of our wonderful club! Support through thick and thin, good and bad. It's like a marriage! No guarantees, but hope and faith!
I'm with you man on, and like you. I'm off(again)! I'm fuming at this attitude!
Dublin Hotspur
MAN ON I've got my hand up, what was the question again?
spu 4 life
Ok next season if we qualify for the EL we can forget top 4 and just concentrate on winning the EL then we will get a place in the CL the following season ! see job done. I must just add that although we lost to the scum on Sunday and it was not pretty to watch, it was still probably the best we have played since we beat MANURE, so how did they manage that ?
Up what? I give up I'm gonna find myself a saucy little netball team to follow. I won't care about them loosing as long as they're pretty. (Sexism at it's finest, girls)!
I'm fuming at this attitude! grow up,Spurs just simply do not benefit from this competition.

We have played 10 & lost 8 after the Europa.
Now if we had played 10 & won 8,you pro Europa boys would be using that in your argument,but you can`t.

Spurs need stability,no more chaos please & it means taking it slowly.Being out of Europa is the best way to ease everybody in next season.
The evidence is there for the world to see & the fact that nobody can back up facts to support being in it,says it all.
When people lose an argument they just say how annoyed they are without actually bringing up a good argument for.
That`s because there is no argument for the Europa cup,everything points against it.
Have a strop because the only reason fans like it is because they see Spurs more.Spurs have been poor for too long & need to win more games,not play more games.

Spurs playing is about quality,not quantity.But let`s hope tomorrow is not 4 losses in a row.
Quality games not quantity games is the key for Spurs next season.
7 games this month & lucky if we win even 2 of them,that`s not what i want.
Fanny adams
... I mean ladies..
ok question for the EL haters, if we finish 7th (quite possible on current form) and dont qualify for EL, then next season we also finish 7th, what would your theory be then ?
Dublin- yes I think AVB mismanaged us in the EL....last year as well he risked Bale and Lennon when the Pl game was the priority and we had no back up...I posted on here before it was a mistake...then low and behold they both got injured with Lennon out costing PL points...btw did you break the site???...;)
One you can tell your kids before Bed tonight; Once upon a time Daddy (Arry Redcrap) loved Mummy (THFC) and all the children (players) even the adopted children (us the fans) who came from all walks of life, he even had a nickname for them ''idiots'' Everything was happy at home, we had are up's and down's, most family'sdo from time to time, but then things started to turn, Daddy would stay out late, started to talk to strangers, because the women down the road Dear Mrs England was devorcing her husband (Cap-in-ello), Daddy decided he wanted to move in with Mrs England and started flirting with her, saying 'I would like to look after you'' but Mummy got wise, Mrs England's Brother FA would not give Mummy any money, so Mummy told, Daddy to go and phuck off for good, Daddy gave up on the children and all the adopted children, because he wanted to be with Mrs England and he never cared about us. Now he tells Mummy that Mr Sherwood is good for us, that's because Mr Sherwood is a tool, and the devorced Daddy does not what us to be a happy family again. But don't worry x daddy is not coming back, but a new daddy may be coming from Italy or Holland, but Mummy hopes his not coming from Tim Buck Two.
spu 4 life
Or three if we keep chris as well
spu 4 life
I don't see why we would write off 11m?.....we only made 10m more than that in PL gate receipts...perhaps we should drop out of that as well! Or would that affect our TV, Commercial, sponsorship, merchandising etc?? The EL next year is the most attractive it has ever yes I expect us to miss out.....mid table here we come!
Thank you. Now I can go to sleep for the rest of the season. Wake me up when we're in the CL final please...
FA seems your the one in a strop, If you believe that finishing 7th is a good thing then I cannot accept that, I want my team to finish as high as possible, how did we manage to win the 1963 cup winners with the transport system as it was and a 17 man squad thats how many played in the whole competition !! people are blaming the EL for us just being under achievers its nothing to do with the EL its to do with us
MAN ON that's the question netball, I'm with you on that one, I've started supporting the south korean dance group Waveya
spu 4 life
Aaron Lennon quote ''Playing in the hole against chelsea was a new experience, I asked the boss what do I do in this position, he told me the same as you do out wide, I laughed, but boss I do sod all out wide'' Tim replied ''Yeah I know''
spu 4 life
rogerthelodger. Did you read the bit where Sebastian writes; "we must do everything we can to finish 7th"?
I interpret that as being the most ridiculous thing I've ever read on here. (Barring a few of my own posts)
Roger, there is always, and has to be, interpretation! In my business in question every stat presented to me! If I didn't I'd be living in a broken caravan on a disused holiday camp!
spu. Love the story, gonna tecite that to the kids tonight!
point totuae!
shed, like the carlsberg ad.... Probably! And good points btw!
Dublin Hotspur
I`m not in a strop,i don`t even take football seriously anymore.
But it looks like fans think that being in Europa is too blame for being rubbish.
Noone is blaming Europa & it`s not the only issue,it`s not even the biggest one,the management is the biggest one.
But Europa is an issue & the article has stated those facts,not all of it can be coiincedence.
IMO taken a step back from Europa could be a positive thing in a funny kind of way.Because it could be a blessing in disguise.
In December we played 9 games,it`s too much for a club that will be in a transitional period next season.
There will be teething problems & trying to run before you can walk is not a good thing.
A fail to plan is a plan to fail as they say,Spurs cannot plan for everything,look at us we are all over the shop & the Europa league hasn`t helped things.
How many injuries do we have?unhappy players?under performing players?

Is it not fair to say we need to get our house in order before we go jumping into Europa?
it`s not that i want us to finish 7th,it`s just what you have to do not be in the comp.

Liverpool rejected the chance to get into the Europa via the fairplay route.
Bradford were going to reject the Europa league if they beat Swansea in the cup final as it was too expensive for them to be in it.
Teams are rejecting the Europa league,WHY would they want to do that?.
Fanny adams
rogerthelodger. I don't deny the facts but I can't agree with the principle of deliberately finishing low to avoid the EL. I can't believe that others think that's ok. I mean how do you deliberately finish in a particular position in the league anyway. Unless it depends on the last match of the season and, let's not forget that the other team will need to be in on it. Where's the intelligence in that? I'm not stupid but, I must be really dumb.
Some reality pills are needed. If we are not in Europe, we will play one game a week for most of the season. The same starting XI, plus or minus will play. We will be lucky to involve 18 players to any significant extent if only in the domestic competitions. So, even if, as I expect is going to happen anyway, Lloris, Sandro, Vertonghen, Paulinho, Dembele, Walker all head for the door, we will still need to sell, or loan out, another 4 or 5 payers. That assums we don't buy any players. Liverpool (10 players have started at least 17, no players have double digit sub apps) and Everton (12 have at least 18 starts ad 13 have 21 plus appearances) only need 15-18 players (that's all that plays). It is far easier to manage a team when the team sheet essentially writes itself. Players are not going to bide their time as the next Harry ignores them and takes seasons out of their careers while they all await for the manna that is CL. Is sitting out of Europe, losing our top players, reducing our squad, really going to do anything to make s a better contender for the title or to be better able to qualiy for the CL? Not a chance in Hades unless you have one of the best players in the world on your team. Suarez has 25 goals, 10 assists and is responsible for several penalties that h did not take. They have scored 76 He is responsible for half of their offensive output. Thy are not where they are becase they are out of Europe. They are there because Suarez has been healthy and is one o the best players in the world. Last I checked, Adenbayor has 8 goals and 3 assists. Our top playmaker is Sodado with 4 and he has 6 goals. We nee Adebayor, Soldado Eriksen, Paulinho and Sigurdsson to just be as productive as Suarez. Does anyone else see the problem? It has nothing to do with Europa. COYS
... FA, if you don't take football seriously anymore then why bother writing so seriously about it all the time?
But Fanny, we won't be in transition. We will have our players. Friedel, Archer, Naughton, Stewart,Hall Dawson, Chiriches, Kaboul, Rose, Fryers, Bentaleb, Livermore, Carroll, Sigurdsson, Lennon, Townsend, Kane, Coulthirst, Fredericks Obika. That's 20 senior players. Add to that Pritchard and a couple of others and we have our squad of 25 to play in the League, League Cup andFA Cup. That is ton for the 4 games we will play. Tally ho. That is a great Championship squad, ish. COYS
That should have read 45 games that we will play. COYS
MAN ON! You have a good point though & agree with you.
But let`s just say if we lose a few games now i won`t be bothered.
The season was over in February in reality but you never know.Now we do though.

brendan Rodgers said this about not being in Europa
"ĎIf we have a year where we are not in it, itís going to give us an opportunity to push on,í he said.His own words
Our new manager could echo those words.Only for one season to gain stability & lose the chaos,it`s not going to be the end of the world & it may or may not have a positive effect,but i think it`s worth doing.
Not all is well at Spurs,even ground protests against Levy now.
I want the new manager to have a first season of less games as i think it will be better for him,the players,the club & the fans.
But most important,one sacrifice for one season,could see us much better as a team & club in the long term.
Fanny adams
Bradfords average attendance is around 6-7k that is one of their issues, Liverpool I was not aware they turned it down so thanks for that snippet, at the beginning of the season there was high optimism amongst fans/management alike that now we had a squad we could do well in all competitions, December 9 games how many other teams also played 9 games, and dont forget we did not know we would again be a team in "transition" again, both the drubbings by city were NOT after a EL fixture, so I think the problem lies with the management the players and their mentality, I am sorry but cannot and will not hope for my team to finish in mid table, because that is not good enough very simple, the reality is we will probably finish seventh anyway so this will all become a mute argument.
There is a difference between pushing on with a small telented squad, and a large squad of disillusioned players (Pav, Pienaar, Niko, Vedran, Gome, Bentley, Gio et al were not exactly happy sitting). Our situation is not akin to Liverpool's who are losing money hand over fist (according to the most recent finncials) and thus have a small squad that would be decimated by injuries if in Europe. We will lose players and will have to sell players. None will be the ones you wish to see go. They will be the best of what's left. COYS
Man On ,I don`t cry over it,but still watch every game & have played & loved football for too long to give it up.
I hope the next manager re-ignites my passion because i have become very disillusioned with Spurs last 3-4 years,Harry Redknapp started it really,couldn`t stand that bloke.
Everytime a player gets good he wants out & doesn`t stop stamping his feet until he does get out,become a Spurs trend.
We seem to be in the news every year but for all the wrong reasons.

And that is why i want us out of Europa,so we can take a step back sought the club out & push on.
Fanny adams
Regarding the point of losing so many games after the EL compared to non EL weeks is quite shocking, I think Topho mentioned it first .

As I mentioned earlier perhaps a core of players , 8 perhaps, being marked for the League and the same players are not used for the EL.

Even having two teams of 8! who stay with either the League or the Cups + EL . This would help on the tiredness front and also allow the spine of the League 'team' to stay away from the EL and conventrate on training and getting to know each others games...

Only problem would be when we reach the finals all the cups and EL .... do we stick with the players or draft in our League players, who would naturally having only been required to play non Cup and EL games would be tearing up the League..


totuae, I concur. 6th or 7th is where we will wind up. With Sandro and a few others we will not be close to getting in to Europe by the fair play League. So, anything lower than 5th, and we will play 45 games next season with a greatly dimiished squad in terms of talent. There will still be 25 bodies and 36k in the stands at WHL. Therein lies the problem. COYS
totuae I agree mid table is poor,but it could be the kick up the arse that Spurs need.
I too wasn`t expecting a transitional period this season & really thought we had a chance at winning it,a real chance,really thought we had a good set up & was positive.

But next season we`ll know we are in transition,so IMO let`s make it easier for ourselves this time.
Once bitten twice shy? Spurs don`t learn from their mistakes
Fanny adams
Fanny adams. I've already agreed with you that it could be a blessing in disguise if we fail to make it to the EL next season. That's not the same as wishing it to be so though. which I think is your stance. I am also not convinced as peterbalb writes, that we'll lose most of our decent players if we do fail to qualify and, that's why I feel it could be a blessing. But we don't know that for sure, of course.
I haven't read through all comments, but im pro EL, especially given next seasons incentive of CL qualification if you win the tournament. As far as im concerned, if we have a manager who cannot navigate through the earlier rounds of the EL, without it having a negative effect on our league form, then he shouldn't be managing a club like Tottenham.
tiredness !! what a load of old bollyrocks played 4 games in 10 days dec/jan won 3 drew 1 then lost to scum 4 days later
See that's hy one shouldcheck sats before posting. We are actually third in the fair play league behin Liverpool and Arsenal, neither of whom would get the entry as they will be in Europe as a result of table status. Everton is a bit of a ways back in 5th so we may get the reward of Europa through the fair play league which means two more rounds of qualifiers. Yee Haw. That will keep all the best players with Spurs, or NOT. COYS
Also as pointed out, the EL is an excellent way to keep fringe players happy and give youth players experience.
yes peter, checking tends to be more accurate than guessing....
peterballb knows the future like the back of his hand. Impressive.
MAN ON! I love the optimism. Can't see why the lure of CL and a huge pay bump will not have the same effect on Lloris, Vertonghen, Adebayor,Walker, Demele, Sandro, Capoue and others. The rumours are there. I also do not believe as a single one of Holtby, Sigurdsson, Chadli, Lamela are ging to be prepared to watch Livermore, Bentaleb and others play while they get to sit. 14 or 15 appearances is just not going to cut it for any international player. Doesn't mean they will all get out a the first try. But they will all be Jonesing for it. Announce TS as next year's manager and wait for the ruffle of Transfer Requests. Damage is already done. Body language is awful. I don't see any players playing for any one or any thing beyond themslves. Hope I am wrong. Mood around this club is all wrong. COYS
peterballb... May be I'm in denial.
peterballb Liverpool rejected it last season & it al depends on where the country as a whole sits on the fair play league for that league to have a representative.Will England even qualify?
So yes one should check stats before posting.

They said
At this stage it is hypothetical but there is no denying that travelling all over Europe and playing on Thursday night's can have a detrimental impact on league form. Although there is money to be made from the competition it is hard to argue with the club's proposed stance that gaining a place for Fair Play and consequently shortening the players' summer break and rearranging pre-season preparations is not in their best interests. The Champions League is where the club needs to be and not playing in the Europa League should enhance the chances of a top four finish next season.

Where are Liverpool now? so what they predicted actually came true.
Fanny adams
nice one fanny
...nice one son.
If we were not in the mix for EL there is no way many of the signings since Ramos would have come. Villa had no chance of signing Modric. Sorry folks, this is such an Engish-centric position. Far too good for all these tin cups we keep winning that we can only be considered when the CL comes calling. If we can't compete on four fronts, we don't deserve CL. To suggest we can keep 25 talented players happy with only 45 games is also ridiculous. So when we get CL, do we again go out and buy 7-10 CL qualiy players and have them all bed in in one week? We all saw how well that works this season. It's all a pipe dream. We need to be in Europe every season. How does Rodgers predict Liverpool will do next year? And when they unceremoniously fall back out of the CL, does anyone expect Suarez to stay? Then where wil they be? COS
We are falling into the trap of using the EL as a convenient excuse for a series of poor PL performances when in truth the answers lie elsewhere. We have a squad of 25 pros, plus a very successful U21 set up, and have failed to use either to proper effect to allow us to play Thursday/Sunday. Is anybody suggesting that we couldn't have got through that group, against that opposition, with a team of fringe players, and youngsters, and a smattering of rotated first teamers, rather than steamroller through using a virtual first team, the competition doesn't bloody well start until the KO stage, the group games are practice matches. Most of the opposition teams would have struggled in The Championship. The truth is we have inept and ineffective management (2, one after the other), we lack a clear pattern of play, we play good players out of position affecting their form, we lack pace all over the pitch, we get 1st team players injured needlessly in games in which they shouldn't be playing, and apart from Adebayor, we haven't got a consistent goal threat as figures confirm. These are the reasons we lose PL games that we should expect to win, it has got bugger all to do with the EL. Anybody who wishes for us to finish below the EL places is dangerously deluded. What's the point of striving to get into the top 4 and into the CL, if we can't handle the EL, obviously there isn't one. Hoping to finish lower down the league is a slippery slope, firstly what caliber of manager will that attract, when all the decent players leave for a more ambitious club, when the club plead reduced revenues due to no European football, and can't or won't pay competitive wages what quality of new player will we get. The next stage for those wishing our league decline, is that in a couple of seasons we will be reduced to the ambition of getting 40 points every season to stay in the PL. What we need is ambition, we need to ask the questions as to why we have declined from a CL Quarter Finalist (the best CL performance ever for a rookie club), to a team that is allegedly unable to handle playing in the EL and the PL at the same time, this after a massive investment of re-cycled money from player sales, in a clutch of players who have had very little positive impact on the team's performance. We need to get in a proper manager with a winning CV and pedigree, then we need to get rid of some of our "mistakes", replace them with players more suited to the PL, then the hierarchy must step aside, stick to what they do best, and let the football people run the football. It has to be remembered that THFC is a football club, and it's success is measured on the pitch, not in the balance sheet. Fans don't buy tickets to read the financial report, they want to watch decent football and a team which is least reasonable successful, and one that just might win a trophy one of these days, not the rubbish that has been served up, particularly at home this season, not too much to ask is it.
We need a quality football man who has full control over football operations wthin the budget set by ENIC. That person needs to hire a quality, experienced manager and quality, experienced scouts. They all need to work together to get the best out of the players we have in the squad. It is time to stop doing things on a whim. If there is a 5 year plan, whether Stalinesque or not, it needs to be seen through. There is no other starting point. COYS
rogerthelodger no worries,we shouldn`t let facts get in the way of what is right or is best for the future of our club.
I`m with you all the way regarding Europa.

Frank says it all when he says,,"We are falling into the trap of using the EL as a convenient excuse for a series of poor PL performances when in truth the answers lie elsewhere. We have a squad of 25 pros, plus a very successful U21 set up, and have failed to use either to proper effect to allow us to play Thursday/Sunday"

Does losing 3 games in a row,out of all cups barring a miracle tomorrow,4th has gone with 8 games still to play,an injury list as as long as my wifes Tesco receipt,disinterested players,gilet wearing manager which should be a sackable offence,etc etc

Do these problems concerning Spurs not ring any bells or are Spurs fans just in denial?
We have issues that are not going to get fixed over night.Tim is not just the issue,too many of our players have outstayed their welcome,not pulled their weight & need selling.

If the new man is allowed to build his own team,then everything will get done alot quicker & smoother without the Europa league.

How consistent has Brendan Rodgers been allowed to put out a similar team week in week out?
I wonder why that is
Fanny adams
Frank, I agree with most of what you say. My expectation this season was not CL. It was to be in the mix for CL. I expected 5th. Why? Simply because you cannot incorporate 7 new foreign players in to a squad and expect thatthee will not be growing pains. The torrent of injuries has not helped. Kaboul was supposed to be able to go from the off. Same with Sandro. Lennon and Rose got injured long-term and early. Adebayor suffered the death of his brother and then needed time to himself. Those injuries alone caused us to rush in Soldado, Paulinho, move Naughton then Vertonghen out of position, lean on Townsend too much. Dawson played far too much. Chiriches and Eriksen came in late. They were not ready, nor was Lamela. Chadli got injured. Capoue got injured. There were a lot of contributing factors, nd frankly, I am astonished that United have been so dire and that we remain in 5th. United will correct some issues by throwing money at the problems (Ronaldo?). They will be in the mix. So will we. So will Everton. Chelsea or City (whever does not win the League) will continue their proliferatio,as will Barca and Madrid. Itlian clubs are gettin serious. Arsena will add players. They just aren't deep enough and their injuries have been fairly serious. Once again, only 4 teams will qualify unless an EPL team wins Europa. That will cause more Europa teams to spend more money. The madness will continue. My only quesion is, what will we have left to be legitimately in the mix. If we are not in Europe, I reckon it wll be far less talent than this season. COYS
Fanny Adams, of course he can put out a consistent team. They play one game a week. Were out of the League Cup in September. 9 of their 25 roster players have barely played. These are not players you can lean on to carry you through the CL. What next year? What if Suarez gets injured? That is largely the team. I am not saying that Rodgers is not a good coach. He is. But significantly more games next season means they need betterquality in the squad and they will need to cope with mre injuries. Gerrard, Toure, Agger, Johnson, Skrtel, 5 of the players Rodgers leans on (109 appearances this season between them) will all be over 30. They re not going to just walk in and compete on four fronts without a massive overhaul, and that, as we ave seen, comes with huge potential problems.

Further, what you suggest is that we do next year what they did this season. Great. If it's at their expense, it proves it is not a very good recipe for anything. United will be better. With or wthout Moyes. That still leaves 6 in the xix, two will not make it. uality an depth of the squad will likely determine where it all shakes out. I fail to see how ou quality next season will be better than this year. Just take out Adebayor, Sandro, Vertonghn an Lloris and we are, as they say, *&^%$#@! COYS
AVB is back in CL action tonight! First cup game for him, and zenit are winning for him! Good luck fella!
Dublin Hotspur
Liverpool playing almost the same XI in every EPL game this season, and that is one factor for their success. Throw in some EL fixtures and you can't do that trick any more unless you rest most of your regular starters and play reserves in Europe. If you don't see the advantage of not having extra fixtures then you probably don't understand how football works on the pitch. Having said that, if you don't understand the advantage of being in a cup like EL, then you don't understand how football works off the pitch. Balance between both is needed and it is achievable, but overall if you are not in it, you are not missing much, especially those thousand miles flights and crappy football on dodgy pitches, but if you're in it, although there is always a price to pay, for many it might be worth it.
Dublin Hotspur AVB took the job but will only start "coaching" them after today's game.
peterballb Exactly the points your making about Liverpool are exactly the same points i`m making about Spurs.
You say,,But significantly more games next season means they need better quality in the squad and they will need to cope with more injuries",,same for Spurs

They re not going to just walk in and compete on four fronts without a massive overhaul, and that, as we ave seen, comes with huge potential problems.
Fanny adams
You also say
I fail to see how ou quality next season will be better than this year. Just take out Adebayor, Sandro, Vertonghn an Lloris and we are, as they say, *&^%$#@! COYS.

So why compete in Europa if we don`t have the players.All you`ve done is unwittingly agreed with me.

Maybe Liverpool are doing this in stages,maybe they have a plan.There will be massive players wanting to stay & massive players wanting to join Liverpool,especially if they get 2nd or 3rd & automatic.

I like Liverpools plan,it`s worked & unlike Spurs,had a project,put it into place & executed it superbly.

Like i said, a fail to plan is a plan to fail,Liverpool could now be set for the next 10 years now if they play it right.
If playing one game a week for a season helps us for the next 10 seasons,then it`s an avenue worth exploring because whatever our plan is now is not working.
new manager,new players & no Europa is our best chance of having a succesfull league season IMO.

Logos8 knows the score
Fanny adams
The circular argment is dizzying. So don't compete (ie not in the comps), so next year you can fail to compete (when you are in but not strong enough), then don't compete so you can fail to compete the following year. All assuming that 4 don't finish higher than you while you are ding your fail to compete thing. Sounds like the path to glory to me.

The difference between us and Liverpool is that we have a squad with 25 players (if any can find health) that are able to compete on four fronts if properly rotated and used in a proper system. Better still, this club remains, by and large, young, so there is every reason to believe, if they stay together, they will improve together. We won't ever know if AVB's plan would have worked any more than we will ever see the potntial of this group of players. The deed, she is done. Barn door open. COYS
Yes, Fanny Adams, if playing one game a week for one season helps us secure CL for the next 10, that is a plan. It doesn't work like that though unless done on the back of a sugar daddy. If you think playing one game a week next season without our current best players is going to get us CL, you need to pass it round. Harry got CL. He then lost CL because he was a manager completely out of his element in 4 competitions. Moyes has never seen the leves of pressure as he has this season. Rodgers has ever seen what he will see next year. They are losing money. 40-50M per season. CL will not fix that. Where will they get the money to add 7-10 quality players and who is going to give them the time to bed them in? WC summer Most transactions will be late. Massive players wanting to join them? Really. In a league with 6 teams where only City and Chelsea are locks for CL. Your assumption is that they will be better next year with a bunch of new faces, more competitions and a manager who has never managed a large squad. It could happen. Tim Sherwood could get us to 4th this season too. COYS
I know that logos me old mate!! Just stirring!! Also utd were dead and buried, now back in it big time! Surely we can push to go through!!!
Dublin Hotspur
As you can most likely see Utd all square at HT 2-0, Agg 2-2, Moyes needs to get his utd team and go on and win this, keeping his job. Oh shi7 forgot to switch the sound down and put sub-titles on got Jamie whilst drinking a glass of water Carragher talking, what did he say preperation or penetration, both sounded the same, oh no it was Robin Van Perspiration
spu 4 life
ppl on here make me laugh, we have been mid table and fighting relagation, now we have moved om an ppl are still not happy, we hve never field a full team in a ay EL games over past few year only AVB done so, its also good to give players game time comming back from injury etc, ppl are obsessed with top 4 like that plonker FA,w need to compete for every trophy, what if we get CL next season are we going to complain that playing midweek could hamper getting into the top 4 again which is what ppl are saying about the EL, sad excuse and petty excuse, forget what pool are doing they are way over achieveing whih could help us next season as pressure wll be on them, COYS
And how exactly has Liverpool's plan worked? Including this season, how many times over the past 5 years have they finished on top of us? They are where they are because they have a player with 25 goals and 10 assists that was deemed not good enough for us by our scouts. It's one player, another three or four decent players and 5 older players. Plus a really good coach for that group. That's the team. Is that good enough to get CL next season with all of he other commitments? Time will tell. History is not on their side. Nor are economics. Who's to say PSG or Monaco won't want Suarez? Or Barca? Or Madrid who may well sell Ronaldo back to ManU? I hear those teams generally get what they want. COYS
There is no plan. COYS
If FFPR have any effect at all perhaps City, with losses of 150M over the past few seasons will lose their spot. Ironically, Liverpool, who have the same losses, are not subject to the rules as they are not currently in Europe. So PSG could be turfed, while Monaco could get to play. But the year after, Liverpool could get tufed, City back in, Monao out and PSG back in. I love a great joke. COYS
Playing two games a week or just one...which is more tiring? ....(by tiring I mean which is more likely to drop a physique below it's optimum level?)....seems straight forward....but then how many players do we have in a 1st team squad? many allowed on a pitch? the problem is managing those 25 players....something we are clearly not doing very well....try keeping those 25 players happy on just 1 game per week...not to mention the £11m less you have to pay them with...
Just finished the thread - been away for the day.... WOW...

Ok let's stop our involvement in the Europa for next year and guarantee that the players won't be tired by going to all corners of Europe - sorted..
However other issues remain to be sorted - mismanagement of players
mismanagement of treatment of injuries
mismanagement of the club's aspirations

It's much more effective to water the roots of a growing plant than the leaves it has!

IMO It's the loss of priorities that club has been demonstrating for a number of years

For all those stats lovers - have a look a roster of injuries and their recovery time over the past 4-5 years....
At the beginning of the season I thought we were on a strategy of using the whole squad effectively to win trophies as well as qualifying the top4!!

PL: Lloris Walker Rose Vertonghen Kaboul Sandro Eriksen Dembele Paulinho Lennon and Soldado

EL and C1Cup: Freidel Naughton Freyers Dawson Chriches Capoue Lamela Sigurdsen Carroll Townsend Defoe

With Holtby, Chadli and Kane supporting both 'squads'
subs: - Development squad

no major tiredness/loss of form, if so suitable players ready to replace?

So what happened ?
- mismanagement
Mismanagement of players
Failure of treating injuries inappropriately

For me, IMO it's the inherent problem of having inappropriate skills in the positions of influence that has caused the situation we are in presently; NOT the Europa participation!!!!
As I said that Commoli is a joke!!!

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