Saturday, 31 January 2009

'These boots have bagged some goals'

But are no longer required. Not for a while at the very least.

I guess this constitutes great timing from the webmaster of the official Tottenham site.

Click on this link and try not to shake your head despondently at the irony.

Friday, 30 January 2009


Rafa Benetiz is angry. Apparently Harry Redknapp and Spurs are tapping up Robbie Keane. Tell you what Rafa, how about we return the 'donation' your club made to the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation and we'll take back the player and you can quietly admit to yourself that you haven't got a clue what it is you're doing at the moment.

(Arguably, neither do we.....)

It's now a trend that no manager is permitted to make any positive comment about a player who doesn't play for their club as this now constitutes 'tapping up'. I know Harry is a bit norty at times, but directly answering a question from a journalist about a player isn't exactly underhanded tactics is it? If we wanted to tap him up, we'd get Jamie Redknapp to make a massive phone call to Robbie and invite him round for some Mario Kart action and tell him that Spurs will have him back, embarrassing boyhood dream blotch included.

What Liverpool did in the summer WAS underhanded, which is why we got our little donation to the charity. What Liverpool are doing now is probably their way of making it look like Robbie Keane has been unsettled so that it's easier on them when they let him go. It's all Tottenham's fault, innit?

News in this evening that Defoe is out for several games (probably 3 weeks) even though the initial rumours suggested he had broken his foot and was out for the rest of the season. I've had 6 text messages already from suicidal Spurs fans. Still waiting on the official word, but I don't expect Spurs to say much until after Mondays transfer deadline. The more desperate we are to bring in a player, the more an opposing club will demand we pay. Keane or otherwise.

Karma Karma Comollion

£170M spent in 3 years at the club whilst director of football. Instrumental in the sacking of Martin Jol and the appointment of Juande Ramos. Signed Younes Kaboul for £8M.

Damien Comolli, the quintessential director of football who apparently didn't realise how difficult it would be to break Spurs into the Top 4. An undiscovered tribesman in the depths of the Amazon would even know that dislodging the Cartel of Utd, Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal is a nigh impossible task for any club especially one that has never been a 'league' contender (two decent seasons at both ends of the 80's and that team from the 60's doesn't qualify as pedigree).

So, what has our dear departed friend been telling Sky Sports News?

Comolli on Berbatov

He stated what we knew already. Berbatov went on strike and was disruptive, affecting team moral. What Damien fails to answer is the underlying fact that Berbatov was itching for a Utd move after just one season at WHL. This has been well documented already and explains his (Berbatov) fall out with Jol. Fact is, everyone at Spurs knew he was going to go. Rather than just go out and sign someone or at the very least target a replacement months beforehand, we wait until the final seconds to hand him over to Utd. What Damien is suggesting is that Levy stuttered till the very last second.

I (in a moment of weakness) actually agreed with Levy's stance but his delivery wasn't clever at all. As a DoF what Comolli should have done is explain to Daniel 'I know nothing about football' Levy that the sooner we get rid of him the better. What part Ramos had to play in all this depends on what side of the bed he got out of as he has contradicted himself half a dozen times with his viewpoint on that particular saga. Telling us that Berbatov staying until the final day of the transfer window was a mistake is like watching your slice of bread burn in the toaster and then point at it and exclaim: Its burning! It's burnt!

Levy has stated that the reason there was a DoF was so that someone can take responsibility for the footballing matters. Levy's stance made it difficult for the Frenchman to do his job on this occasion. But what kind of club dithers in such a manner and thinks they'll get away with it?

Comolli on Zokora/Redknapp

This is a good one. Damien tells us that Pompey (and Harry) didn't rate and thus sign Zokora when he had a trial at the club and that now, Zokora is selected for practically every game under Harry at Spurs. It's a question of timing apparently. Whatever that is meant to mean. I guess he is trying to justify the signing and that its proving to be a good one. All it proves is that neither Comolli or Redknapp have a clue what they're doing when it comes to the midfield anti-general that is Didier.

Comolli on Nugent and Redknapp again

He has a go at Harry for signing a player for £6M and not playing him. Well Damien, how about signing several players for several million and having to play all of them because we don't have any f*cking decent players in the squad (you built) to come in and replace them?

Comolli on AC Milan

The DoF works well in Milan and has done for years. This is basically Comolli's pro-DoF argument. Comparing Spurs to Milan is ridiculous. We have not been run properly as a club from top to bottom with any type of style and cohesion for 30 or so years. I'm not referring to the money side of things. Add to the mix that England and the Premier League is not exactly a hotbed for DoF systems. Ask Fergie and Wenger to show you their trophy cabinet.

I don't have a clue how Comolli is getting on at his new club, St Etienne. We'll have to keep an eye out for the type of quality he signs and how they fair in the next couple of seasons. I'm sure he'll be keeping an eye out for us and how a traditional chairman-manager set-up works out for us.

I won't make any smart remarks until after the transfer window shuts.

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Tomorrow is another day

Appiah. Still no word. He played in a 4-4 reserve game yesterday (and played well according to reports) and was today meant to be meeting with Harry to receive the decision on whether we plan on offering him a contract. Either we still haven't made up our mind, or we have but we are not too keen on the money he wants paid for his services. Maybe by the weekend.

Talking of defensive midfielders...

Veloso is a player we were linked with in the summer and has been linked to both Utd and Arsenal, with a hefty £20M price tag for his signature. As you've probably been following, Bolton are interested. £12M is being quoted.

I asked a couple of fanatical Portuguese football fans about the player. They both gave me this look of......well actually, it was more of a shrug than a look. A shrug that simply said, 'Veloso? Meh'.

The problem with this guy (according to them) is he thinks he's the bollocks. Has a massive Beckham complex and simply isn't half as good as he thinks he is, and if he applied himself to football with 100% commitment he'd fulfil his potential. It was almost like they didn't rate him that much because of his attitude and arrogance and cited other players at Lisbon who are better. It would appear he frustrates supporters. But that's not to say he lacks quality. He has it in abundance. But quality alone isn't always enough.

I think if he joins Bolton he will probably stand out in a big way regardless (no disrespect to his team mates) and thus do no harm to his shop window value.

At Spurs, he would be one of those superfluous type of players we like collecting. Don't think he is right for us (one or two of our fans are asking why we are not interested) and the fact its Bolton and now Newcastle courting him, suggests that others are aware he has a lot to prove to warrant a big move to a big big club. If he comes to England, he'll probably end up in Spain or Italy a year or two from now. Does appear the player himself wants to stay in Lisbon, so maybe this is nothing more than an agent exercise to bag a new contract.

Elsewhere, SSN will be running an interview tomorrow with the legend that is Damien Comolli. Apparently he admits he didn't leave Spurs in a sorry state. This I got to see.

Robbie Keane. We've inquired about him. So basically we go from chasing a 'perfect foil type player' like Jones at Sunderland (tall and good in the air) for Defoe and then taking an alleged glance at Santa Cruz, to then asking Liverpool if Keane is available. Short Robbie Keane.

Pav, Defoe, Keane, Bent.

Hmm. For the sake of sakeness, let's pretend we get rid of Darren Bent.....who's our first choice partnership? Pav will play upfront which means Defoe and Keane will take turns. Can you see either of them being happy with that? I still refuse to accept suggestions that JD and RK can play up front together. Where is the logic in this signing? We need another striker but surely he has to compliment what we have already. So maybe Harry does intend to mix it up when it comes to who partners Pav.

I will also go mental (i.e. boycott the Spurs shop and protest nude in the South Stand) if Spurs consider giving Liverpool anyone in exchange. Keane mugged himself off leaving us to go up there. Rafa doesn't know how to use him effectively. IMO, the Anfield club should accept they f*cked up and see it as a very expensive and unsuccessful experimental loan. But I can't quite work out - selection headaches aside - if taking him back is the right thing to do. Lennon MUST STAY at Spurs.

Maybe while we are at it we can re-sign Ghaly.

Spurs transfer dealings according to 'club insiders'

As a direct follow-up to my previous blog entry, I'd thought I share some perfect examples of message board In The Know information. As I referred to it earlier, the cryptic style is an art form I'm sure you will appreciate.

If you are interested, for further updates, visit the originating source for the complied and up to date list of current ITK information at (put together by Stoff who collates the info from various sources).

Alternatively you can browse to Glory Glory which tends to have random ITK info copy and pasted from the more exclusive Spurs forums as well as Stoffs complied lists.

Both of these forums are open communities and are not exclusive (which I think FTL and COYS are).

I've left the info below in it's original state.


[Update 70] Dragon1 on Lennon and Keane
Posted: Thu, 29 Jan 2009 12:11:33 GMT
who dragon1
date 29/01/09
time 10:52
site COYS

scousers wanted lennon for keano, we told em to do one

he is one of the few harry actually rates!


[Update 69] jurgenthengerman on ?
Posted: Thu, 29 Jan 2009 10:29:59 GMT
who jurgenthegerman
date 28/01/09
time 17:56
site COYS

Levy is negociating three situations that involve additions one is a match (that involves a player going the other way ) two are straight additions subject to change !!!! Of these three two have a reasonable chance
Don t shoot


The road to redemption is very long with Harry


[Update 68] Ben on Appiah
Posted: Thu, 29 Jan 2009 09:18:37 GMT
who BEN
date 29/01/09
time 09:13




[Update 67] Arigold on Keane, N'Zogbia and Hunt
Posted: Thu, 29 Jan 2009 09:17:23 GMT
who arigold
date 29/01/09
time 09:12
site SO

Big interest in Keane and either N'Zogbia or Hunt will sign, hopefully before Saturday. Hunt is waiting to see if we'll match two bids already in, but (surprise surprise) Reading are getting sick of dealing with us dithering.

Keane, as I've said for 6 weeks repeatedly, wants to come back. Liverpool are looking at other targets as well.


[Update 66] Smudgemeister on Keane, Santa, WP and Appiah
Posted: Thu, 29 Jan 2009 09:16:13 GMT
who Smudgemeister
date 29/01/09
time 09:11
site FTL

Keane was never a target.

Harry looked at Santa Cruz but Rovers want too much (City in so Rovers want a bidding war and we aint going there)

Not terribly impressed with Appiah and not required now WP is on board

Close that (transfer)'s giving me a chill

The sooner this month of January is finished the better. Deciphering the tabloids (and broadsheets) logic when it comes to transfers is beginning to bore me. The truth is out there. It’s just buried under heaps of rubbish.

Whether it’s swapping Luka Mordic (22 years of age) for a defender in his mid-thirties or giving Aaron Lennon to Liverpool to allow for the return of Robbie Keane (along with writing off the debt owed to us from the Anfield club even though we’ve already re-signed Defoe who could never really play upfront with Keane anyhow)….it’s borderline fantasist paradise. 1 + 1 = 3.

Bale and Gio are surplus to requirements if you believe some quarters, suggesting that Spurs want to replace youth with experience. Which means in a few years we’d have to re-look at bringing in young players again for the future. The formula here is, if a player is young and is either not in form/just come back from injury/not playing on a regular basis – then he is not good enough, and thus will be sold. Therefore, link him to a move away every other week. There's always a chance it might actually happen, and if you've linked him to 5 different clubs, you're in with a chance to stamp one of those exclusive 'we broke the story' articles, basking in the glory that your information was sound, even though you made it up.

Agent talk? Guess work? Bit of both? You’ll find rumours and transfer scenarios of equal quality on any given message board. It’s a mess of a month.

Is the Lennon story simply Liverpool/Rafa testing the waters to see if we are stupid enough to lose a young lad with the world at his feet for a 29 year old who decided that the prospect of playing Champions League football was enough to write-off 6 years and leave the only true footballing home he had? Or is there credence in the story that Aaron wants to leave the club and move back up Northish? If Appiah is signed by us, then what happens to someone like Jenas? Palacios, Modric, Zokora, Appiah, Jenas, Huddlestone…that’s quite a selection headache. Although we’d be two short next year when the African Nations Cup is held, so depth is required which would mean selling players isn't. Still, anyone can see that one of these players will potentially fall victim to a Harry midfield cull because you can't keep 'em all happy. So, as Jenas is high profile, it makes sense to flog his name around as the player who will be sold on. Jose had him in his fantasy football team, so that surely means Inter will be after his signature. Can we have Adriano in exchange please? We need about eight strikers to climb away from the bottom three.

Darren Bents name crops up everywhere. Apparently, with Michael Owen injured, Newcastle are looking at Darren as the man to save them from the drop. Nobody has said this other than someone who wrote up an article with no quotes or suggestions of truth. So naturally, this would involve N’Zogbia/Viduka coming to Spurs as part of the deal. Naturally. Maybe Owen faked his injury and is currently having a medical for Chelsea who are also signing Robinho for a cut-price £7M. Obviously.

In the past month or so, that hasn’t been a single eventuality that hasn’t been discussed in print or on SSN.

I don’t mind transfer gossip. As long as it’s within the realms of logistic reality. Digging through to find that 5% which is sprinkled with a little logic is no longer fun.

What is even worse is the alleged 'In the Know' people who claim to be connected in some way to the club or know people who work at Tottenham, and then pass on info in forums and message boards using a cryptic style that actually protects them if they happen to be wrong with their information. It's like an art-form. But it's nothing more than a parody of what's printed in the press. Fact is there are X amount of teams and X amount of players and it's not rocket science to sometimes take that 1 and take an other 1 and add them together to get a 2. And when one of these ITK characters gets it right, it's almost like he's done something akin to predicting the lottery numbers, with fans worshipping his oracle-like awareness of events before they happen.

Well thanks for letting us know something five minutes before we officially know it through the official site. Knowing it for those five extra minutes makes it so more satisfying.

Just a few days left now. And then we'll be back to reading Rafa rants and Wengerisims, Harry drafting his wife into the first team and Ronaldo linked with Madrid (that one is with us all year round).

3 days and counting...

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Hands up if you want Villa to win the league

It's unlikely with Utd currently clean-sheeting their way through opponents and finally knocking 'em in for fun. And Liverpool and Chelsea will do their utmost to get ahead of them. Especially Liverpool who believe this is their year. Potentially, Arsenal might drop out of the Top 4 and lose Champions League football and a shed load of cash with it. I say might because there is plenty of time for more swapping of places allowing for the Gunners to climb back into contention. And there's always the possibility Villa might choke.

Personally, Martin O'Neill and his men HAVE to crack the Top 4 because, well.....because it's time for the Cartel to have its monopoly broken-up. Sick of Grand Slam Sundays and Richard Keys dismissiveness of anything that isn't Utd, Chelsea, Liverpool or Arse? Bored of massive massive analysis from Jamie Redknapp? How great would it be if there were 5 or 6 clubs fighting toe-to-toe for those 4 positions? Fantasy football, right?

Cracking it is one thing. Villa would then need to maintain their position with Europe's elite for longer than a season. No point having a one-night stand and finishing 6th the following year. That's the tricky part and any of the current Top 4 that (might) lose out this season would be gunning to finish back up there the season after. The distraction of being in the Champs League might have a negative effect on league form. Still a nice scenario for Villa to be in. Their transfer policy would have to change to compete on both fronts.

As for the impact failure to reach the premier European (world) Champions of Champions could simply be disastrous. Imagine if Arsenal didn't make it. Financially, it wouldn't be too great for them (I doubt they would be that strapped for cash) and their ego might be a little dented, but their pedigree won't be hurt too bad. It's the itchy feet syndrome that may well break out across their squad that will be the main concern. I'd much rather see Chelsea not make it. If anything, for the potential of a Roman that he doesn't return from.

If the qualification for the Champs League does change to the Top 3 rather than 4, then things will get interesting in England. Finally.

Still, the Cartel are very much there on merit at the minute, and Aston Villa have to keep believing and plugging away and hope for a bit of luck that the teams around them self-destruct once or twice.

This has almost happened before, hasn't it? My advice to Villa would be.......avoid the hotel lasagna.

General Observations from the Spurs game

Mike Riley. Is atrocious too harsh of a description for this alleged Premier League referee? Personally, I think I'm being a little too kind. His pièce de résistance was a delightful moment of decision making that saw him hold his hands out to signal play to continue when a foul was committed against us in a rather tasty area of the field to allow for advantage. When advantage was more than evident, he blow his whistle. Staggering. Since when was stopping play, taking play back to where the foul was originally committed and taking a free kick from there more viable an option than allowing for advantage to proceed?

Riley is obsessed with his whistle. Minimal contact? Blow that whistle. Not a foul? Blow that whistle. Anything that is borderline controversial or requires a professional unbiased viewpoint and decision, the whistle stays firmly away from his mouth.

Zokora committed one or two fouls last night and yet inexplicably got away with it.

If you want a ref who does his best to stop the game from flowing and gives about 80 decisions out of 100 the wrong way and enjoys blowing his whistle for no apparent reason, then Mike is your man.

He belongs in a rave.


David Bentley. Not too shabby again yesterday. Not brilliant by any stretch of the imagination. If there is one thing that will improve his performance by about 60% its the removal of the flicks and showboat attempts. David mate, stop trying to get onto Soccer AM. When a simple control of the ball and pass is the best option, use it.


Dawson. Yes he made a boo-boo that led to Stoke's goal, but how great has he been in recent weeks? Once upon a time it always seemed like he could only play if he had Ledley King by his side. Even looked like he would be shifted out of the club at one particular point. Great to see him grow in stature and confidence. Still needs Woody and King to lend a helping hand with his concentration and composure. Apparently, Daws is inseparable from Ledley (they sit together on the team coach, share rooms, probably even swap mp3's). Bless. If Ledley doesn't ever make it back full time, then I hope he can continue to inspire Michael.


Chimbonda and Palacios watched the game from a box. Rumours Fred was also hiding somewhere within the ground, looking on. However, according to Harry, the player failed to turn up yesterday. Not sure if this one has any legs in it. Wondering if we should have made a cheeky bid for that young lad Heskey who joined Villa and scored on his debut.

Spurs 3 Stoke 1: Just like watching Barcelona

I had to rub my eyes a couple of times yesterday evening to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. There’s been nothing sexy about our football for a while now and although yesterday wasn’t quite Agent Provocateur the performance had plenty of rampant rabbits making plenty of noise in forward positions. There was titillating balls and penetration, as White Hart Lane vibrated. I’m so glad I come. Came. Went. I’m so glad I went to the game. Went.

One cold shower later..........Yes it was only Stoke City. But let’s place things into perspective. We haven’t been playing well all season. We hardly score any goals at White Hart Lane. We’ve lacked any kind of confidence and swagger for a fair while. It was important we won, more than anything, but winning with a little bit of style and slickness means we can finally have something to smile about. Simply put, Spurs showed their Premiership pedigree against a newly promoted side. Something we have failed to do against most of the opposition we have faced.

Modric was sublime in midfield, orchestrating the tempo and playing clever balls. Showed an abundance of skill on the ball, and once Palacios slots in alongside him you get the feeling he will continue to improve to life in the Prem. Zokora was busy, getting stuck in, and was lucky to escape without a yellow card. Still lacks that footballing brain to make him a quality defensive midfielder. You can never fault his effort or athleticism, but that’s not enough to claim a place in the starting line-up. Lack of competition, so looking forward to Wilson’s debut and hopefully Zokora raising his game to fight for his place. Hopefully Palacios won’t give too many free-kicks away in dangerous positions. Something of a triat for our Didier.

Lennon started the first half mini-goal spree with a great dinking run and shot. Defoe showing vision to play in Lennon who darted towards goal and scored with his left-foot. Kodjak moment. Lennon continues to impress this season, rediscovering form I thought had been lost. If he can get more power behind his shots, then he’ll score plenty more. But I won’t lose sleep if he continues to place them the way he did yesterday.

Back on track. Six more points please.

Pavlyuchenko and Defoe then showed us a glimpse of what we hope is the start of a very beautiful relationship. We got to see Pav’s all-round game in technocolor, including a wonderful highlight for goal number two. Without looking, he sent a ball into the path of Defoe. Great vision from the Russian. It's the simple things in life, no? Who cares if he can’t speak English as long as he can speak the language of football?


Defoe hammered the ball into the back of the net rather than attempting to score across the keeper (which is what I would have tried had I found myself in a similar position on the Hackney Marshes, before looking up at the sky and cursing the Gods for the divot). That’s confidence. JD has an aura of maturity about him nowadays, with his game improving in abundance (he was only away for a year – maybe we can loan out players more often). He doesn’t get caught offside that often nowadays, which is worth a few pints in celebration alone. Pav, who usually plays ok and still scores - played very well, but didn’t score. Not that I care too much. He was a livewire.

Modric crossed with his left peg for Dawson to nod it in (great header) to make it 3-0. Party time. I laughed out loud when Dawson followed up his goal celebration with yet another one, running towards the Park Lane with what looked like a disorganised guard of honour when his team mates huddled around him. I love the big lump. The unbridled joy displayed was felt all around the stadium, apart from that bit in the corner.

Spurs? 3-0 up at the Lane? Are you mad?


All four players buzzed around with the type of swagger we haven’t seen all season. Swagger with end-product, which is the only type of swagger that matters. Tottenham clicked. Could have had a few more in the first 45 minutes. It was Charlie and the Chocolate factory stuff.

And relax. Feet firmly back on the ground.

Second half didn’t go according to plan. It probably would have been more of the same, but a mistake from Dawson allowed Stoke to break and score, with James Beattie (does he ever NOT score against us?) getting one back. That gave Stoke a bit more belief but it was never enough to trouble us. Yes, as a Spurs fan, even 3-1 up at home is enough to make the experience uncomfortable. I joked we should bring on Bale to end his hoodoo, but only if we go 6-1 up and only in the 91st minute.

Stoke, in the first half, had three good opportunities. Did we ride our luck? Yes. But don’t all teams? They missed another very decent chance in the second half too. In the end, we got the points we deserved and players can take the confidence up to Bolton where we could do with ending that particular hoodoo.

So, in conclusion. We kept the ball very well, played it around the park with a little bit of a spark, passed it across the middle with urgency and precision and even got the fullbacks involved. There was hunger, pace. Bit of spirit and passion. And most importantly belief. Wasn't perfect by a long-shot. Would have been nice to take control of the ball (win it back) and dictate more when the impetus was momentarily lost with the Stoke goal. We need to boss it for two halves, not just one. One step at a time I guess.

Barcelona? More like Brazil, innit?

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Juande the press will get it right

From the official Spurs site, via, in response to several media outlets running stories suggesting Ramos was shaking his fist furiously in the direction of Levy, and then pointing and saying 'IT WAS YOUR FAULT'. This is Juandes response to the coverage:

"I understand that my comments regarding the sale of Keane and Berbatov have been misrepresented in the UK press. For the record Daniel Levy did not sell these players to make money. They were sold for footballing reasons. The players wanted to change teams because they had the opportunity to play in the Champions League. During my time at Tottenham I always received support from the Chairman regarding sporting decisions to make Spurs an even greater team: I maintain an excellent relationship with him and I am convinced that he is doing everything he can to lead Spurs to a successful future."

Lost in translation perhaps? Whether it's the tabloid newspapers or the broadsheets, it seems its quite acceptable to take a quote, slap a bit of make-up on it, and push it out to walk the streets where it gets picked up for cheap thrills.

I don't know any journalists, apart from one chap (a Gillingham fan) who covers football for a non-national (he has yet to be corrupted by the dark side) so I guess the editorial process allows for mistakes like this because cheap thrills will always be in demand.

Reminds me of one particular TV channel that ran a story about a Barcelona player, and that said player was in talks with Spurs, only to then remove it from their screens and their site and never mention it again, all in a rather zany 10 minutes.

Then again, we can hardly trust anyone in football either. It's not like they don't lie.

Rock. Hard place.

Spurs v Stoke: The Biggest Game in our History.....ever™ - Directors Cut

We must win tonight. No excuses.

Spurs v Stoke: The Biggest Game in our History.....ever™

How many times have we been here before? Far too many. This season we keep finding ourselves with a golden chance which would allow us to push on if we take it. When we've taken similar chances earlier in the season, we haven't built on it, meaning every time we think we’ve made the type of progress to elevate us away from the bottom three for good, we end up back there. Each time we’ve gone up against a ‘bottom 12’ club we’ve bottled in. And now we find ourselves in yet another ‘must win’ situation that will save us from the mire. These chances won't be available to us forever.

The Great Escape is on.

We can all sit back with our English cup of tea, dunking a biscuit and discussing why things have not been working out and when exactly it all started to go wrong.

We can point the finger at Ramos who in turn will point at Comolli and Levy. Others will long for Jol. You could argue Harry Redknapp speaks far too much, contradicting himself from one day to the next. When he slates the likes of Darren Bent in the press, is he doing it because brutal honesty might just inspire a reaction from the player? Or is he simply letting the player know he isn’t good enough because that's just how honest(yeah yeah) he is? When things are going well, the squad is a good set of lads, and when it's not, its the fault of the previous regime (DoF and coach) and their scatter-gun approach to transfers. Regardless - this must have some form of detrimental effect on the morale of the team, no? It's having one on the fans.

Over the past few seasons we have constantly chopped and changed our side meaning little cohesion in the way of rapport and structure from one year to the next. There is no sense of progression as a unit, a team. No growth. There is no patience from board level all the way down to the stands. If someone doesn’t fit in they are moved on and replaced. If someone doesn't perform, they get booed. All this pretty much sums up the post-Jol era (actually it sums us up since the 1990's).

And to add to the circus, this season most of our transfer dealings have been played out in the public forum, granted, the press ignite the stories – but Harry has no qualms about lapping up the camera time. Nothing wrong with this football flirting half the time (all managers are guilty of it), but the current crop of players we have must be losing motivation to see their names thrown about as part of exchange deals or being replaced or labelled as ‘not good enough’ in a TV interview or the butt of a joke.

Not that I’m defending the players as it’s nigh disgraceful they don’t attempt to react positively and prove their worth to the club. Not that they haven't tried on occasions and I can detach myself long enough from all the hype and knee-jerking to understand that if the team is lacking balance then it won't be corrected by a bit of man-management. As we've seen it's simply not enough thanks to various weak spots in key areas. A player is only as good as the players around him. It's a bit of a paradox like the end scene of the Terry Gilliam sci-fi classic Twelve Monkeys when Bruce Willis makes eye contact with his much younger self. No matter what, this will always happen in an infinite loop, never to be broken. There's something very Tottenham about that. However, Willis does not have the option of Palacios and one or two others to gatecrash and change the course of history. So even with the fixture list working against us, we have a new injection that will soon stir things up a little. Otherwise, our Eleven Monkeys will take us back in time to the late 70's when we dropped down a division.

Harry has to take start taking responsibility without the constant necessity for sound-bites and cheap-shots.... (if you've fallen out of your chair, I'll give you a moment to compose yourself).

So, like I said, we could sit back and discuss the whys and wtfs for an age. Regardless of how it happened, the only reason to look back and work it out is to make sure it doesn’t happen again. Daniel Levy needs to take responsibility with how we’ve managed to go from two 5th spots to this. But for the moment, that isn’t important. We can worry about it later. What’s important now is we go back to winning ways starting with tonight’s game against Stoke. It’s all up to the players. It’s in their hands. Once again, it's a chance to start moving upwards.

Can they handle the responsibility?

Do they comprehend that we face a struggle to stay up if our form doesn’t change NOW? We are in the midst of it and our form should have changed weeks back. To dare is to do, right? Then know your history and stop feeling sorry for yourselves you absolute melters of a club side.

Palacios and Chimbonda are not available for tonight’s game. Cudicini might well start in place of the injured Gomes. Woodgate, Lennon and Modric are all carrying knocks but will probably start. As for potential newcomers, Jones is no longer a viable transfer target (he’s signed a new contract with Sunderland – so I was thankfully wrong about that potential signing). Tabloids are happy to let Robbie Keane go, but might want Lennon in a swap (thanks, but no thanks). And Fred (Lyon) is now being linked and has reportedly flown to London for talks. Some ITK's are suggesting a fee has already been agreed and he'll be watching from the stands tonight.

Stoke will be no push-overs. Just ask Chelsea. We should have beaten Pompey last time out in the Prem. But I’m bored with the should haves.

Epic Fail

Our manager has made the insightful statement that ‘you can pull yourself out with a couple of results’, with regards to our league position. Really? Is that not what we did when you first took over? The problem has been sustaining that must-win attitude all the time and not just now and again. That’s why we are still bottom and not sitting comfortably in the top half.

It’s bricking-it time. There are 16 games left and the comfort of always having time on our hands to change our luck is fast running out. At the moment it’s far too much of the to dare is to do nothing from our players.

Tottenham Hotspur. I dare you.

I dare you take the game from the scruff of the neck from the opening second.
I dare you to boss the midfield.
I dare you to be constantly hungry for the ball.
I dare you to attack with urgency and pace.
I dare you to get men into the box and attack the ball.
I dare you to be first to every second-ball.
I dare you to retain possession with style and confidence.
I dare you to tackle with determination.
I dare you to play with passion and spirit
I dare you to show leadership and belief.
I dare you to wear the shirt with pride.
I dare you to stand tall for the fans.
I dare you to swagger.

I dare you to win. Pick up the three points and see it as a job well done, but nothing more, before focusing on the next game and the next three points. Pat yourselves on the back after you push through the 40 point barrier or when safety is assured.

If we can’t muster up a better than decent performance at home against Stoke City, then the players we have don’t care enough to be bothered about whether we stay up or go down. 11 jigsaw pieces from 11 different puzzles will send us down.

Dramatical metaphors and Custer’s Last Stand war-cries aside, having new blood at the club will only work if the players already there are galvanized by the fear of failure and strive to make amends and match the enthusiasm the new (and not so new) signings bring to the side.

If Tottenham manage to roll over for Stoke 'haven't won away in the league' City, then I promise you, I will endeavour to campaign relentlessly for our relegation to the Championship where our rebirth will be one of true grandeur and spirit, akin to the Keith Burkinshaw side that returned to top flight football to win Cups and play with undoubted style and grace. Then again we might get stuck down there for 5 years and end up ground-sharing with Leyton Orient.

All we have is hope then.

I’m going to close my eyes and imagine Steve McQueen makes if over the border and into Switzerland.

Monday, 26 January 2009


If anyone can let me know who the author of this majestic flow-chart is (so credit can be given), please do tell. Bagel in the post for you.

Monday Transfer Round-Up

Carlo Cudicini.

Free transfer. Unlikely he's moved from Chelseas's sub bench to sit on ours. Which means expect to see him play as our number one, whilst Gomes recovers from his slight injury concern, which means it will be up to the Brazilian to reclaim his place in the team. Competition for the keepers jersey. When was the last time that happened?


Ideal signing for the predicament we find ourselves in. Can hit the ground running, cover 3 different positions (yes, I know he ain't too hot at left-back) and ease defensive selection problems.

Personally, hate the fact that we've had to go back for him as I dislike the man and his lack of principles. But beggars can't be choosers. We are in a mess, so much so, that we've had to re-sign a player we sold 6 months ago, proving the point that he shouldn't have been sold in the first place. Even if he was a bit of a mercenary, we got rid of far too many players (in fact, three of them all to the North East). Hail the DoF system and our pre-season planning.


If you listen to the Sunderland boss you'll notice he isn't dismissing Tottenham's approach for Jones. Well, he is, but not in the direct fashion we've heard in recent weeks. In a SSN interview he acknowledges a bid has been made, mentions how the club and the player are under pressure, and how Jones is just getting on with it. He mentions that Jones wants to stay. Sunderland have said the player isn't going nowhere, but it still appears ominous. Redknapp has also commented on this by saying that there has been dialogue between both chairmen, so it's more than obvious that if the price is right, Sunderland will be happy to accept. Probably.

Still don't believe he is worth a penny more than £8M (and even that's too much but it's the average in today's modern day market).

Robbie Keane.

I kid you not. Harry is telling everyone how much he rates the player. It's common knowledge that Liverpool have only paid as around £6M or so thus far for his summer transfer to Anfield. Someone should point out that Keane and Defoe never made a decent partnership.


Worth a cheeky bid?

Sunday, 25 January 2009

Chimbonda, just the man for a relegation scrap

Sky Sports News understands that Pascal Chimbonda is having a medical at Spurs on Monday.

That's right, Chimbonda is on his way back to the Lane.

Pascal 'Kevin Keegan has approached me and they’ve offered me more money. I am definitely leaving Spurs. It’s all about the money. I don’t care about the final, I don’t care about the cup ' Chimbonda.

Pascal 'storms down the tunnel at Wembley' Chimbonda.

Pascal 'I would love to play for Arsenal' Chimbonda.

Pascal 'hands in transfer request to Wigan after the final whistle' Chimbonda.

£20M worth of right-backs at the Lane if this happens.

Gunter. Young and needs development. Talented, but we can't expect him to make the position his own just yet.
Hutton. Still injured. If you believe the whispers, he'll be off in the summer.
Corluka. A right-back, but required more as a centre-back thanks to King's constant trouble with fitness. Bringing in an experienced RB will allow him to play as a CB.

So what of Pascal? Ignoring his indiscretions as a person, can the logic of having him in a Spurs side out-weigh the mockery of a transfer this is, based on the fact he was sold not that long ago?

He can play left-back and he can play at centre-back too. Arguably better at CB (defensively) where he appears to be far more disciplined than at RB. He does possess decent attributes. Determination is there when he's on-form and as an attacking forward he is more than adequate, but he does suffer from lapses of laziness and concentration and has (in the past) undermined the likes of Lennon when playing behind him thanks to his own agenda when pushing forward (i.e. failing to cover and support the right-winger).

Zokora is the one tagged with having no footballing brain. Pascal's lack of positional sense is a deterrent to him being a reliable full-back 100% of the time (not that anyone is) as he sometimes plays for himself more than he plays for the team. Which is what I meant by undermining Lennon and having his own agenda. He has more freedom at RB, therefore, he goes on far too many walkabouts. Stick him at LB or CB, and he concentrates more because naturally, he is out of his comfort zone - but the fact he plays well when called upon proves he DOES have something of a footballing brain and the concentration and discipline to go with it.

However, part of me would consider that the reason for the Lennon/Chimbonda partnership not working was more to do with Lennon than it was Pascal. It's something up for debate.

As for the transfer itself, it's yet another laughable example of how desperate we are. No news on the improved offer for Jones at Sunderland. I'm scared to even listen out for information on that one. Perfect foil or not, if he is signed we'll be guilty of over-spending again. Desperate desperate times.

£3M is the reported price for Pascal. As much as I dislike the principle of this transfer (it's a massive risk) and dislike the man himself, it might just work as long as Harry knows what to do with him and re-ignites that fiery passion we did happen to witness on a number of occasions. We need that in every game, and none of the blasé drifting.

His attitude will remain questionable because of his history, but he isn't guilty of anything just yet.

We are in a relegation scrap, we need the cover. He can hit the ground running. If he shows no immediate impact and fails to do a job for us, then don't fret. He'll pull out that transfer request away to Liverpool on the final day of the season and begone.....

.....let's pray we are not gone.

Utd 2 Spurs 1: A Review in Quotes

Quotes from around the web on Saturdays FA Cup exit at Old Trafford, including a choice pick for best pre-match blurb.


If a team no longer strives to win, and admits even before taking to the pitch that it doesn’t want to win, it ceases to be sport. The team in question ought not to be there. The attitude towards the UEFA Cup is similarly odd, in that having strived so hard to get there for years, we’re now encouraged to view it as an unwanted extra burden, one we’d be better off without. If we don’t want to win any of the cups, why bother staying in the Premiership?

We’re certainly not going to win that any time soon, so why bother? It’s just one fixture after another. We don’t want to qualify for Europe, as that creates too many games, so let’s avoid the problem by dropping down a division. In fact, let’s just avoid the entire problem of playing every week and disband the team. Let the players become full-time celebrities, without the hassle of this 90-minute malarkey. (Depressingly, I can think of a couple of players who might be genuinely taken with the idea…)
- Mike Lac and the All-Action-No-Plot world


In places we played brightly and threatened. But what frustrated was that lack of oomph to go that extra yard. You get the impression if one of our lot started tearing around like Tevez he'd be greeted with looks of bemusement from his colleagues. It's a case of perception. And if you stop your average Yid in the street and ask, the response is that many of our lot don't look as if they're all that bothered. I do hope the gravity of our league position is clear in the minds of whoever plays against Stoke - Harry Hotspur

A complete roll-over by Spurs. They should have f*cked off back down the motorway at half-time - LaNausee (GU sports)

We were so dreadfully lethargic that I was wondering if Harry told them to play like that - Mulletperm (

I thought it was another pathetic urgency or desire to really get the result, just going through the motions really even when space opened up at times on the counter we never looked like we wanted to get at them. Even when we went 1-0 up I just knew what was going to happen, just isn’t enough backbone in so many of the players and we got knocked out without so much as a whimper - DC_Finsbury_yid (

Also noticed that Redknapp defended his players like a real manager today, in response to the harsh comments from Teddy Sheringham and others. On high time. Criticising lack of effort, lack of fight and character, players out of form etc. is relevant, But my main worry is that even on our better days there are no trace of a football team, a unit with a clear idea about how to play. In that respect we've gone from bad to worse.

Under Martin Jol we had a clear style of play, arguably very dependent on individual players and not based on the foundations of a system, a philosophy and well defined roles in the team. Under Ramos we saw clearly what he was trying to do, over ambitious maybe, not successful definitely, but recognisable nevertheless. Under Redknapp there's not a trace of anything but panic and turmoil, the players play for themselves to avoid being booed by their own fans or hung out to dry by the coach and his mates in the tabloids. For my life I could not tell what Redknapp is trying to do in terms of tactics, direction and leadership.

And that scares the s**t out of me - Terje H (

That was the closest thing to the games running up to Leeds relegation I’ve seen since. No passion, no heart and if I was a fan having travelled up for that id be asking for my money back. Spurs are side in deep sh*t, I’ve sat through a carbon copy of this. Players that can’t be bothered getting paid far too much and don’t really give a shit. Disgraceful display - dermot mulligan (GU sports)

We do not play good football, we are rubbish. Completely devoid of anything resembling a midfield, nothing going forwards, no creative spark, passionless rubbish. To make it worse we have a 'winger' in charge who is already covering his own arse with the spectre of relegation looming large. I honestly believe we are the most boring team in the premier league, slow, dull, predictable and were in serious serious trouble - Vienna Spur (

The way Spurs rolled over in that game was pathetic. Looked as though they wanted to go out of the fa cup. Man Utd just sat back most of the second half a little bit like they did against Derby in the cup and what did Spurs do? A lot of them players should be ashamed of themselves I would be well pissed off paying out all that money to go and watch that shower of shit. Don’t think Harry was too arsed either otherwise he would have brought Defoe on well before he did or started him - Stacki (

Turns out the traffic cones wore white. Spurs never developed any rhythm, defended well in spells, yes, but offered far too little going forward, rarely causing United to raise an eyebrow, never mind break sweat, and conceding what little possession they did enjoy far too cheaply. Not bothered, though. Progression in the Cup would just have been an unwelcome distraction from the job of survival in the league, and an opportunity to collect damaging injuries - Dave Gallagher (

Damage limitation in a cup game. What has happened to Tottenham? - Diego_Maradona (

I thought we did well. It is tough to come here - you have to be careful, if you open up you can get beaten by four, five or six goals.We started well, but a bad two-minute spell cost us. In the second half neither keeper had an awful lot to do. But I thought we were always in the game and I could see us nicking a goal and earning a replay - Harry Redknapp (BBC)

I was encouraged by the performance on the whole. I thought Bentley put in a good shift and really caused a good Utd team some problems.. Gunter kept Ronaldo quiet for the most part. Pav scored a very good goal from the Huddlestone cross, (so who ever was saying Thudd dint get near the Utd box, what game where you watching..?)

The equaliser was unlucky and Scholes was 45 yards from the goal when the corner was taken, I’m sorry but if you mark someone on the half way line you lose someone in the box, it’s a Utd trate and its very hard to defend against you have to play the law of averages and say you’re better off with the extra man in the box marking and take the chance Scholes isn’t going to hit a screamer from 30 yards and yesterdays was going wide if not for the deflection... The second was the reason they paid £30m for Berbs we all know his class and that showed. Other than that Utd didn’t really cause us that many problems and Alnwick looked comfortable
- LillyWhite Yid (

We put up a better performance than usual, and their equaliser was lucky. Knocked our fragile confidence severely. To be honest, that was more than I expected before the kickoff, seeing that we have been gutless and lethargic lately. And that's not to say we wouldn't have lost had Utd not gone in at half time ahead, they would've broken us eventually. Utd were playing with belief. And for the record, Utd sat back and made us chase the game, meaning our fatigued players got more knackered as the game went on and posed less of a threat, we came up against a better team and lost, I don't think we disgraced ourselves, which is a change, but equally we didn't put in 110% but there are factors for that - Laudski (

Wonder if everyone is still in love with the "Redknapp Revolution" - David Soul (GU sports)

The Tottenham we want is the type that would run through a thunderous storm into a herd of stampeding steroid enhanced rhinoceroses just to look upon the shirt. To put the shirt on they would stare up to the heavens, laugh at the lightning bolts and silence the Gods with a dirty look before turning to the rhino’s with a war cry of such ferocity, they’ll curl up like kittens.

What we’ve got instead is a Tottenham that holds an umbrella while it apologetically shrugs towards a ditch until the herd has passed then decides the walk is too long so heads back in the opposite direction
– Spooky (this here blog)

Friday, 23 January 2009

Can we have our football back?

From next season, Arsenal fans at the Emirates will be able to stream the game they are watching live (with a one minute delay) on their PSP's. This will allow for an 'immediate replay' of key moments along with a 'whole new dimension for fans giving them information and statistics'.

Jesus wept. What next? Staying home and watching the game on television via digital broadcast technology?

Football continues to be marginalised and redefined to laughable levels. Tragically this is exactly the type of thing Levy will consider for our new stadium. Imagine that, being able to re-watch another invisible Jenas tackle and Zokora grasscutter.

Not that 30,000 or so Spurs fans would turn up carrying PSP's to games but at the minute if there's a controversial incident in the match, it's not shown on the Jumbotron. Reason being, they don't want to incite trouble by showing something that might cause a colourful reaction towards the ref, players or the opposing fans. We can watch it all later on Match of the Day. We do not need to see if the goal was without a doubt offside or not. The ref gave it, we swore/celebrated when it went in, we all debated it's validity in the stands. It's part of the match-day atmosphere. The buzz. The stands, the fans, the pitch, the action.

Would be nice for football to remain detached from all the corporate, cringe-worthy commercialism and modernisation, but in this financially obsessed society, it's naive to think it's ever going to go back to the way it was. Not when footballers are being offered 500k per week to play. Although the German's manage to do just fine, with just about the right balance, retaining old style traditions within their stadia. You can sit there with a pint in your hand and watch the game unfold. That's a pint, not a PSP. Sony offer Arsenal a ton of money, Arsenal accept. Most clubs would. Arsenal have the 'advantage' of taking up the offer due to the in-built technology at the Emirates.

Seems the more you go to football nowadays, the more pointless gimmicks are thrown in your way, paraded as advancements for your pleasure, but nothing more than a complete distraction.

Personally, and I'm even certain Gooners will agree, this is unlikey to take off. How many fans are gonna lug their PSP's to games? Surely a service that sent video footage of key moments to their mobile phones would work far far better (and that actually already exists independently).

Regardless, I'm looking forward to the first incident that involves a fan holding up his PSP right in front of the away fans after a 'controversial moment', pointing at it and shouting 'It was offside! HAHAHA, 1-0 to us'.

That should be a laugh.

In Defence of Redknapp

“When I see it devalued like a couple of years ago when teams suddenly didn’t want to get involved, like Manchester United did, it’s very disappointing. As far as I’m concerned I’ve always had a go at the FA Cup wherever I have been. I’ve never been at a club where we weren’t interested in winning the FA Cup. We start the season in two cup competitions where we have a chance of winning — the FA Cup and the Carling Cup — and we go for it. We’re not going to win the Premier League at Portsmouth, so we need to have a go at the cup competitions.” - Harry Redknapp, April 13, 2008

“I can’t risk [Jonathan] Woodgate on Saturday because we’ve got Stoke on Tuesday and I will go to Old Trafford with the weakest team I can possibly find.” - Harry Redknapp, January 21, 2009

For any Spurs fans having a dig at our King of the Soundbites manager, get a grip and look at the bigger picture. If we sat on 31 points rather than 21, or for that matter, had we beaten Pompey at home in the Prem the other week and avoided extra-time against Burnley, we probably would made plans to go to OT with a strong(er) team. Not that the desire to do well shouldn't be evident on Saturday, regardless of the team fielded.

Play a strong team against Utd, lose more players to injury, then lose to Stoke at home in the league is not the way I want to see things pan out over the next few days. Rock and a hard place at the minute for us. And unfortunately, in a competition which has a rich history for Spurs fans, its a sacrifice we simply have to deal with. Sums up our season really that we have to make the Prem the priority, but for the wrong reasons...which are the right reasons if we want to be playing top flight football next season. At least we've got a day trip to Wembley to look forward to.

I wonder how many copies of the 2008/2009 Season Review DVD the club shop will sell when its released? As long as we secure rights to have the theme tune to the Great Escape as the soundtrack, I'll be more than happy to kick back with some popcorn and a can of coke zero and relive those magical the thrashing dished out to Stoke City at White Hart Lane on the 27th January.


Thursday, 22 January 2009

Is this the reason Spurs form is so poor?

Aaron Lennon has complete control of the team stereo on match days. Nobody else gets a look in. I can only shudder at the thought of his musical tastes having seen plenty of photos of him at parties, baseball cap on back to front, dancing with an urban flavour and rude swagger.

Strictly no Chas and Dave, Barry Manilow or McNamara’s Band for our wee Aaron. He's got way too much street cred to associate himself with music that was made before he was born.

I have this image of a dressing room dance-off with Dawson breaking it down with mad floor skills as he body pops his way to victory against Zokora's mash-up of Usheresque fluidity and silky leg movements. Beats listening to ABBA.

In other news:

Ghaly is gone. I’ve always swayed from one direction to another with this guy. His attitude and arrogance was toxic, his abilities mediocre. He had one or two fine performances, but other than the game away to Chelsea in the Cup and the pitch-side dentistry that made you gasp he wasn’t exactly consistent. Shirt throwing aside, the Birmingham transfer fiasco summed up his tenure as a Premiership player. In his head, he was brilliant. Maybe if he was signed when he was in his early 20’s, we might have developed him into a worthy squad player (then again, us and developing don’t particularly go hand in hand).

The swaying I was referring to concerns some comments I made a few weeks back relating to the boo-boys who managed to change the mind of Redknapp during a game, sending Ghaly back to the subs bench rather than bringing him on. He’s been working his socks off in the reserves, so it’s possible he has managed to grow a little in maturity. We’ll never know. Al Nasr have him now on a 3-year contract. Maybe the fact he has moved there and not to any other continental top flight league sums up what most think of him.

The club has also announced that the price of season tickets will be frozen for up to two years (long enough for relegation and promotion back up to the Prem, hey Daniel?). So, that includes the reduction of VAT at 15% for seasons 2010 and 2011 meaning you’ll pay less for it than you did this season. Levy must be finally shifting those copies of the Opus he’s got stacked up in his garage. Don’t under estimate the power of car boot sales.

The freeze on season tickets has been introduced as a thank you from the club for our ‘continued and exceptional loyalty’ and to help ease the financial burden that nobody appears to be immune from at the moment. Looks like I have no choice but to continue my suffering.

Late late show saves spinless Spurs

Milk Cup Semi-Final
Burnley 3 Spurs 2 (6-4 to Spurs on agg.)

Imagine an incontinent old man who tries hard to avoid wetting himself, but can’t stop it. No matter how many times he changes his pants and prays it won't happen again, it keeps happening. Over and over again. That’s Spurs.

You could argue that on a mud drenched rain soaked playing field Burnley gave it a right go but only actually managed three worthy efforts on target. All of which ended up in the back of the net. They hardly ripped us to shreds. We missed several chances to score including a sitter from Roman (managing to out do Bent from the other night), long before the final two minutes which saw Roman (making up for that sitter) and Jermain spare us humiliation. You could argue that the performance – which was shambolic with our lack of cohesion and retention of possession – felt 100 times worse because we expect so much from our players.

We expect them to play like the players we know they can be. Although a professional and efficient performance will do just fine, which is something they should be giving us without expectation every bleeding week. But we don’t have the luxury of that at the moment. Face it, that’s how bad we are. We can’t even beat the promoted sides in the league, so what made us think last nights second leg semi-final was going to be easy? Even at 4-1 up you suspected that Spurs would make it difficult for themselves. Their attitude doesn't bode well for our up and coming games. New blood, unaffected by these pathetic moral levels, will probably be the key to turning things around.

Even though lady luck had more to do with it in the end than our class prevailing (Burnley tired out and got punished for settling for the away goal rule), if you swapped Alnwick for Gomes, we would have got through this game without the need for dramatics. Yes, I know Gomes is prone to the odd dropping of the ball, but Alnwick was very much a weak link and clearly cost us 2 goals. Not exactly the environment for an ideal debut.

As a team we were simply woeful, a side of individuals with no team structure who made it very easy for Burnley to get within touching distance of a cup final. We always do just about enough to lose games without getting battered, and last night was a prime example.

Far too many mentally weak players with the fabled ‘I don’t care’ attitude. No urgency or self-respect and very little acknowledgement of the fans loyalty. It’s been like this for quite a while now, and even the threat of relegation doesn’t appear to bother them. Maybe one or two of them are already thinking about where they wish to play next season. Wake up. Wake the f**k up.

Yes it was a game played in nasty conditions against a team that has battled through the likes of Chelsea and Arsenal to get here, but regardless of this and regardless of the players missing from our team, how can you possibly excuse that embarrassment of a performance? 4-1 up and they still managed to almost throw it away. Where was the determination? The passing? The possession? How can you possibly excuse that?

You can’t.

Shut your eyes, this time last year we swaggered to a 5-1 win over Arsenal. I think the final itself against Chelsea was the last time we actually played really decently.

Easily the most inept performance from Spurs I’ve witnessed for some time. We almost got what we deserved. But we suddenly decided to play for two minutes towards the very death and display a little of that almost forgotten Premiership quality.

I'm not completely sadistic. I am 'happy' we have another day trip to look forward too, but not best pleased with the display that got us there. Well done Spurs, you complete absolute joke of side that I love with all my heart, but hate how you pull it in all directions and bleed it dry.


Our players will probably think they did alright tonight. To be fair, one or two did not disgrace themselves. Dawson in particular and Bale and Bentley had far better games than anything else they've done for a while but that's not saying much at all. Zokora, possibly playing for his career at Spurs with the imminent arrival of Palacios also stood out from the dross, but put into perspective – this was all against Championship opposition. Adel (arriving us a sub) showed some spark. Overall, rubbish.

I was half expecting Harry to say we 'weathered the storm' in his post-match interview, but now I can understand his public slating of players. He is right to have a go at them after a performance like that. It's difficult to blame him for the tactics because the players don't look like they actually follow them. His post-match was brutally honest and to the point. We have players who look like they are sulking and feeling sorry for themselves. They need a good slap. The lot of them.

"The players should be fighting for their lives to stay at a great football club like this. Their future is on the line, they need to perform to stay at the club”, said our Harry after the game. Thing is, they stopped fighting a month or so back. I'm inclined to think Redknapp's man management isn't enough at the minute. It would be easy to say he is once more playing the blame game and deflecting attention away from him and onto the players. But the players performances are as bad as they were under Ramos.

You'll have one or two of the giddy idiots getting their suits measured for the final. Faces in Gants Hill tonight for them no doubt.

Looks like we are sending a second-string to Old Trafford on Saturday. Shame we have to discount the FA Cup, but even with a full strength team on current form, I wouldn't fancy our chances. FA might slap his hands for making the comment about a weakened side, but who cares. Mish-mashed will have to do. It’s sad really because it’s the FA Cup. And it’s at Old Trafford. Regardless of the team put out, they should give it 100% because if Spurs can’t be arsed with games like this how exactly are we going to fair in the bread and butter of Prem survival? Where is the passion? I can show you some passion for free, let alone the levels I could reach for £30,000 a week.

Only Spurs can make you feel despair and ecstatic punching of the wall joy at getting to a Cup final. My knees have gone all trembley.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Tottenham's transfer policy explained...

White Hart Lane. The chairman’s office. A few weeks back...

HARRY: We need some proper players here.
LEVY: Ok, not a problem. Let me just get Damien in here and…
HARRY: Comolli? You sacked him.
LEVY: Oh yes, of course I did. Laugh out loud!
HARRY: Come on Daniel, breathe nice and slow, here...take a seat, I’ll fetch you a glass of water.
LEVY: I’m not sure I can make...make any suggestions.
HARRY: You let me worry about the targets. Make sure you’ve got the readies ready for Redknapp. HAHAHA, got to use that one next time I speak to the boys from the press.
LEVY: Who are you after?
HARRY: For a start, Defoe. They love ‘em here. We should bring him back.
LEVY: He’ll cost more than we sold him for.
HARRY: Pompey owe £5M for Kaboul, so we can write that off as part of the deal.
LEVY: That might just work. I’ll earmark £15M for Jermain.
HARRY: We also need a proper midfielder. A DM, holding type of midfielder. Not enough grit from the current lot.
LEVY: Any thoughts?
HARRY: Not sure at the minute. Shame Diarra went to Madrid. Might need to watch Match of the Day to get an idea of what’s available. Or take a trip to Africa. All expenses paid of course.
LEVY: Well, we could…
HARRY: What?
LEVY: There’s a formula Damien and myself would use when we signed players. We could possibly implement it now. It’s effective. Worked with Bale, Bentley, Gomes and Pav.
HARRY: I’m all ears.
LEVY: Well, based on Fantasy Football points accumulated and tabloid reporting and tv highlights we calculate who is considered to be the most hyped up player of the past month.
HARRY: Ok. Then what.
LEVY: We bid between £14M and £16M for him.
HARRY: You know...that might just work.
LEVY: There is another system which is equally as affective.
HARRY: Hold on, let me get a notepad.....go on…
LEVY: We buy whoever played well against us.
HARRY: That’s brilliant! Gives us plenty of targets to choose from. We’ll use this going forward.
LEVY: You don’t want to use your system?
HARRY: What system?
LEVY: ...
HARRY: ...
LEVY: Right. Targets.
HARRY: I want Bellamy.
LEVY: Hold on, we haven’t used the formula.
HARRY: He’s scoring goals, he’s on form. He’s got grit and determination.
LEVY: I’ll call West Ham.
HARRY: Bid £12M, that should do it. West Ham are desperate for the cash.
HARRY: And Defoe?
LEVY: Already made a bid.
LEVY: Blackberry.
HARRY: Triffic. Triffic. Love modern technology. Only had paper back in my day.
LEVY: I was right getting rid of the director of football system wasn’t I?
HARRY: Of course you were, of course. Can you use that Bluebell thingie to text Duxbury about Bellamy?
LEVY: Also done. Fingers slipped though, and I bid £15M for him.
HARRY: Triffic. We work well together, don’t we?
LEVY: We do. Director of football? Who needs one?
HARRY: Not us! Let’s get Appiah in for a trial.
LEVY: Harry, Harry, Harry…the formula! The formula!!
HARRY: I know, I know, but he’s a free agent.
LEVY: Sorry, he’s a what?
HARRY: A free agent.
LEVY: I don’t get it.
HARRY: He’s free. He won’t cost us anything.
LEVY: He won’t cost us anything?
HARRY: That’s right.
LEVY: So, he’ll cost us something?
HARRY: No, he won’t cost us anything...something...we don’t need to pay a transfer fee. He’s free.
LEVY: But...but someone needs to be paid.
HARRY: Well, there’s his wages to consider. Signing-on fee.
HARRY: Daniel...Daniel, breathe...that’s’s your paper bag...breathe...that’s it...
LEVY: Can we talk about something else?
HARRY: Yeah, of course...of course.
LEVY: Good, good.
HARRY: How about Palacios?
LEVY: The Wigan player?
HARRY: Yes. Perfect fit, upgrade on Zokora.
LEVY: He can pass and tackle?
LEVY: Can he dance?
HARRY: I...I don’t know.
LEVY: Ok, hold on. Let me look at the formula…
HARRY: ...
LEVY: ...
HARRY: So...?
LEVY: Hold on a sec...And we...YES!! WOOOOOOOOOO!!! HE FITS THE BILL!!!!!
HARRY: Daniel, Dan mate...get down from up there, you’ll break your back!
LEVY: Stop your worrying! Today is a good day!
HARRY: So, Palacios?
LEVY: Texting via my Blackberry as I speak.
HARRY: Another £15M?
LEVY: Just under actually.
HARRY: Really?
LEVY: I’m feeling a little cheeky...

Kenwyne Jones: Is he a Cole or a Drogba?

Palacios has completed his medical, all down to personal terms being agreed now. Would be nice that some day Spurs will have a scouting network that allows them to pick up these players BEFORE they become flavour of the month with other clubs who got there first. An obvious change in mentality is needed. Just because we are a rich club that can attract players to London life doesn’t mean we need to be lazy with our approach and wait for other clubs to pluck players from obscurity, and then wait for us to come in with an over-inflated bid. Well done to Wigan for purchasing a reserve player for less than a million and selling him for fourteen. Now that's sell-on value that Levy would appreciate.

Still no confirmation on Appiah, but the forum and message board 'In The Know' peeps are suggesting it's still going to happen. We shall see.

We have also apparently signed Chelsea keeper Cudicini for a million. Great if he is at the club to give Gomes competition and play as number 2. Not so great if ‘arry has decided to sell Gomes. My money is on Carlo being a replacement for Sanchez. If this is confirmed later on, then good work on getting experienced Premiership cover for this position.

Our interest in Kenwyne Jones seems to have gone quiet due to Sunderland’s insistence that he will not be sold under any circumstances. Two schools of thought about this player, so if you are either Spurs or Sunderland I wouldn’t mind hearing your opinions on him. To be honest, I’ve not seen enough of the guy in action. And Match of the Day highlights when he does play well is not a good basis for making a true educated opinion on his value.

School of Thought #1 ‘He’s a Carlton Cole’

Not that Cole is a bad player to have at the minute (evident by his recent form for the Hammers). Cole’s got rid of the dj’ing and other distractions (and his knees seems to be ok nowadays) and also has the comfort of no competition at West Ham which has actually worked positively in his favour. So is Jones just a clone of Carlton? Jones is not prolific. He is not a natural goal-scorer and arguably has a poor touch and finishing ability compared to other Prem forwards (let alone players actually worth '£15M'). He’s also a bit lazy and apart from being a bit of a lump the only quality he does have is he’s good in the air.

School of Thought #2 ‘He’s a young Drogba’

I’m sure this has stuck from the time Roy Keane said he was the best forward in the country and he wouldn’t sell him for £20M. It was Keane who compared him to Drogba, and others also believe he will develop into the same type of player and that currently he is simply a young version of the Chelsea striker (without the diving). Simply needs to mature as a player before the class shines through. Can you see it? I can’t. Maybe I’m not looking hard enough.

The only question that should be asked (if this deal was to get back on track)? Is he what we need? I’d say what we need at the moment is a foil for Defoe. I don’t have faith in Bent and I think Pav would also probably benefit from a foilesque type of player.

Both JD and Pav are potentially 15-20 goals per season players, if partnered up well (whether that’s together is something Harry needs to work out). So, Jones – or whoever we look at as an alternative – is going to be our 3rd option. And that would have to be a bit of a lump with a touch of pace. Would also be a bonus if he had a good touch and finishing abilities.

Jones is big and can put himself about. And he has pace. And he also fits the Redknapp seal of approval. He’s the type of player he goes for. Obviously, considering we have enquired/bid for him. We also need someone who is strong in the air, and there’s no doubting this particular trait of Jones.

So is he the right forward to help complete the required trinity for survival and progression? Goals have dried up at the Lane since Berba and Keano moved on.

Regardless of whether he is closer to Cole than he is to Drogba (I still don't see it) or somewhere in the middle of the two.

Would you swap him for Bent? Would Sunderland be silly enough to take Bent?

With us being far from safe in our Prem League standing, does Jones fit the bill with the task at hand? If he doesn’t, who does?

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Andrei's Magical Mystery Tour

This week I am mostly wanting to play in:

by guest blogger Andrei Arshavin.

Hello, my name is Andrei. Andrei Arshavin. You might remember me from Zenit's UEFA Cup games when we achieved great success in lifting the silverware, defeating the Glasgow in Manchester. I also play for Russia and I am their star player. I'm sure you remember my famous baby-face cheek when celebrating a goal in the European Championships.

You know the one. It's when I look into the camera and shrug knowingly, with a glum yet ironically tinged pout of the lips, suggesting to the viewers I know they know how good I am and I don't mind it at all. No? You don't remember the celebration? Really? Here is a picture I have prepared for you to help jog your memory:

This is me. Andrei.

I am still playing my domestic football for Zenit, but want to play elsewhere. I must leave Zenit. I have been leaving them for many months now. This is not a debate, it is fact. My dream move would be to Barcelona. I have supported them my whole life and even own a shirt that my agent gave me to prove my loyalty to the Catalans whilst photographed by many reporters. Here is another picture of me with a Barcelona shirt when I was a little younger. They are my boyhood club and no matter who I play for, I will always play for them in my heart of hearts even when playing for someone else.

That is not lipstick. The photo has exaggerated the colour of my lush pink lips and made them look red, red like the colour of the Arsenal, one of my English dream moves if possible, please.

I think I would be perfect for Barca and players like Messi and Henry would compliment my special special play. Zenit need to allow me to go and follow my dream. My summer dream move to Tottenham was sabotaged by Zenit's greed. Yes I am worth more than £20M but do not hold everyone to ransom. Let me be free to claim my destiny. And look at Spurs. They are fighting relegation because I am not there to create goals for them. My good friend Roman is struggling without my cheeky yet deceptive skill. Same say Spurs have pre-contract with Zenit and Zenit wait for bigger bid first before selling. I say this is sh*t. It is rumour from the gutter.

My new dream move a couple of months ago was Bayern of Munich of Germania. This is a dream but Zenit did not allow me to achieve this destination. I am not a slave. Europe must not be denied my petulant magic on the field. My cheeky glum shrugging should not be anchored to Russian land only. Here is a picture of me:

Why so serious? Because I am serious to leave the Zenit

The winter transfer window is now open, and I believe I am a step closer to playing with my boyhood club Barcelona or Munich. My other dream club. However, I like England. My friend Roman says it's cold like Russia. My agent Mr Latcher is speaking with the Arsenal about a move. It is a dream to play in the Premiership and Arsenal. I also have a picture of me in a Arsenal shirt when I was young:

Proof of my Arsenal bloodline

I am counting the seconds down to the closure of the transfer window when Zenit finally allow me to follow my dream and depart for North London where I will destroy teams with my vision and tapestry of talent.

I like North London. But not sure of the Spurs. Ramos is gone, no? Harry Redknapp has a scary face. If Barca, Bayern, Chelsea and Arsenal, if these dreams do not happen, then yes, why not Tottenham? My friend Roman is there. I speak to him regularly. But Spurs is no longer dream. Just a nap. And this High Road you have, I can not find Louis Vuitton anywhere.

Tottenham? It's not sexy.

But my heart is set. I must be a Arsenal player. My agent told me this and my dream is now clear. I must not wait any longer. They should pay Zenit all of the money up-front in cash. It is fair, no? I am worth it. I am a footballer and want to play football where my heart is, and my heart although its above my gut, its soul is in the Emirates Arena. Adebayor, van Persie, Walcott...... they will learn much from me and how to celebrate goals with true style.

Islington? Much more sexy than Tottenham High road.

Arsenal for me is the team I must be playing for. They must make sure my agent is happy and then I play for them. My agent understands football and what is dear to my heart. I hear good things about the Arsenal area. I visited recently when I was on holiday in London and it is my favourite place. I want to visit the Bierodrome in Angel. It has many beers. Russian beer as well I hope. And I hear many sexy girls in this place.

They are all angels in Angel, with wings to fly to my hotel

It is my dream to be with Islington girls. Many of them. Zenit must not stand in my way. My dreams for Barca, Munich and Chelsea are no more. I will be 100% committed and pray and pray Arsenal pay my worth to my club and then big holiday for Mr Latcher. If no deal, Mr Latcher will buy my contract and I will be free agent in the summer and then I go anywhere I want. For football reasons. And some money for Louis Vuitton. Yes - Arsenal is my dream.

Unless Manchester City want me. They are a big club building for Champions League. Bigger than Chelsea. Kaka is not great, but I am. They do not need Kaka and I can play golf and make goals for Bellamy. Bid for me City, if you want me to want you to be my dream.

Next week: It is my dream to play for Juventus and Inter.

Best Spurs moments of 2008

And the award goes to....

Dear Mr Levy,

Happy New Year and I hope your Christmas was a merry one. Did you receive my gift? A bottle of Morgan’s Spiced rum. Slice of lime and coca-cola, brings out the vanilla taste wonderfully well. I’m doing good, if you were also thinking of my well being. Hence this correspondence. Thought it best to start the year off with a smile and the sharing of mutual respect. From fan to chairman.

I’ve included below a list of the winners from The Annual End of Year 2008 Honorary Special Awards from my blog. I thought it of great importance that you would want to see this as it allows you a looking glass view into the hearts of all Spurs fans who bare their souls online, in forums.

Please pass on my congratulations to the winners, and if possible, ask your PA to get some reactions and comments so I can include in a follow-up feature.

This is the only on-line honours list that matters IMO because it pays homage to the select few that deserve a special mention for an outstanding contribution to Tottenham Hotspur. It’s free of the bureaucracy, politics and corruption of football magazines and the more established sporting websites because there is no financial gain to be had or blatant punditry agendas. The winners were selected after painstaking market research conducted by myself. I spent over 200 hours reading through all the major Spurs message boards and forums and using Excel spreadsheet to input nominations (in the way of forum user reactions, comments and key words), allowing for easy calculations when it came to selecting the winner for each category. And unlike on-line polls, nothing has been manipulated.

I’m sure you will appreciate the effort. My parole officer is currently monitoring all outgoing mail and thanks to the injunction….how did the Judge put it again….oh, yes….colourful expletives and threats are unacceptable as much as balloons full of excrement and nude protests. So I wasn’t joking when I said Happy New Year. My resolution is to be far more constructive and positive, and as a result, at my next review, my community service will need not be extended and I'll be able to quantify genuine progress has been made with regards to anger management and public disorder. So Daniel mate, hope you appreciate the positivity and maybe see you soon for a round of golf? I’ll have my people call your people.

Here are the awards in full.


The Michael Malcolm Award for Most Promising Youngster

A pulsating midfield dynamo. Who else? Jermaine Jenas. Think Gerrard with bling. This wonderful box-2-box CM continues to show the potential that will one day make him a seasoned world-class England international. A player that has everything. Cheeky eye for goal, but as effective defensively as he is offensively. Much like Michael Carrick’s uncanny ability to read the game so well, getting to the ball before the need to tackle for it, Jenas too possesses a sublime, almost majestic stride to his game that sees him ghost around the boiling points in central midfield, observing play and then proceeding to allow it to flow so that he can find himself positionally effective for assessing the next midfield battle. Absolutely unflappable.

Tottenham’s MVP 2008

Unprecedented this. An award that is deservedly shared between Robert Keane (posthumously) and our returned on-loan striker, Jermain Defoe. Thoughts and prayers for our former Irish king-pin forward who is solely missed by all. The brilliant talisman was the tormentor of many and the scorer of many more. Football is a darker place without his smile and vibrant personality. Defoe is back from Pompey having been recalled from his loan spell at the sea-side club. He’s had a wonderful time there, scoring plenty of goals, and regaining his place as an England international. A year older and worth a few million more in value, the complete fox in the box striker is back in Lilywhite. The master of beating the offside trap, Defoe’s added ability of holding up the ball and playing neat one touch passes in and around the box will fill the void left behind by Keane and Berbatov. Unlike players of Darren Bent’s ilk that can’t drop deep or help out in midfield when teams overload that particular part of the pitch, with Defoe back in the side, there is no limit to the tactical deployment Redknapp can utilise in-game.

Most Shrewd Transfer Dealing

The riddance of Steed Malbranque. The duff jewel in the triple-play £17M transfer mugging we dished out to sorry Sunderland who also paid out for Teemu Tianio and Pascal Chimbonda. A superfluous player, all glitz and glam with no head-down work ethics. This French prima donna much preferred posing in front of mirrors in the changing room than working hard for the team out on the pitch. Best described as a quintessential highlights player, always looks good for those 20 seconds on Match of the Day, but lacked the presence for consistency over a prolonged period. A deserved victim of the Ramos/Comolli cull, which saw other players leave the club during the summer for far more realistic valuations. The income from this tasty bit of business would then be spent on David Bentley, banishing all memories of 'Steeeeeeeed' forever.

Best Heart-in-your-mouth Moment

Arsenal 4 Spurs 4. Simply put, one of the games of the century. What were you doing when Spurs scored in injury time? If you weren’t there or watching it in a pub or at home on tv, then the only way you could possibly excuse yourself for missing out on this effervescent NLD is if you were standing on the Grassy Knoll with a gun in one hand and a flux capacitor in the other. Spellbinding match, including possibly, in pure footballing terms, the finest goal scoring moment of 2008. A cracking effort, forged in the fire of £16M worth of ingenious quick thinking and electric natural ability. Bentley’s goal was sensational. The game should have ended right there on the basis of its undeniable technical beauty. Alas it didn’t. But nobody complained. At 3-1 down, it’s safe to say most Spurs fans had long ripped out their own hearts in poetic suicide, leaving the dismay behind as they began their journey home, pondering and practising their excuses for the morning after.

Those that hadn’t left, soon did when the score mocked them at 4-2. But behold, the last chapter of a modern day classic. Each page revealing a twist towards its audacious finale. Joyful to the small contingent left in the corner of the ground. Gut-wrenching to the masses surrounding them. Oh yes, oh yes indeed. 4-2 became 4-3, and in the dying seconds, became 4-4. The diminutive Lennon equalizing for a share of the points. Imagine that. A second earlier the ball struck the post from a stonking Modric shot, which had everyone frozen in time, hearts in mouth, all awaiting the final twist to an epic evening of football. And with a dink, a smile and a celebration that buried a fan, it was all over. Victory claimed.

Best Official DVD Release from the Spurs Shop

There have been some quite magnificent games in the year that was 2008. But there’s no doubting the best 90 minutes that found itself neatly wrapped, with additional ribbon, sitting in everyone’s Christmas stocking. That’s right. Spurs 5 Roma 0. I’ll repeat it in case you momentarily went blind or blinked when reading the previous sentence. Spurs aka Tottenham Hotspur 5 (five) Roma 0 (zero). How can anyone ever forget that balmy Sunday afternoon in August?

Incredible performance from the Lilywhites, one that any young football scholar, not old enough to have witnessed the great Spurs side of 1961, would have been drooling over. A sexy, sassy mixture of push and run and deflowering free flowing play that saw the Italians decimated in 90 minutes of golden football. Roma experienced a Vikingesque rape and pillaging that had grown men in the stands tonguing each other in celebration.

The DVD includes plenty of special features, including ‘director’s commentary’ from David Bentley who talks us through his brace, including Thunderbolt Cam, which allows you to relive David’s 20 yard first-half stoppage time classic from 5 different angles including a specially devised ball-cam animated segment which shows the ball on its journey from his foot to the back of the net from the perspective of the actual ball. There’s also an interview with Dider Zokora on his monumental midfield dust-up with Roma winger Marco Cassetti, that captured the hearts of all that witnessed it. Terry Venables discusses and compares the incident to the legendary Mackay v Bremner ding dong from yesteryear and reveals how, in essence, this modern day tussle between two players at the top of their game was better. Don’t miss out on the limited special edition of this DVD which includes additional highlights from the 5-1 away day demolition job of Norwich City including the documentary ‘Foursome’ about Darren Bent's double brace and also the stunning holographic Star jump cover of David Bentley.

The Crowning Glory Award 2008

No doubting the moment. The magnificent 2-1 Carling Cup Final victory at Wembley against Chelsea masterminded by double UEFA Cup winner, Juande Ramos. Football is sometimes like an ocean. Each wave fading into the sand, while you wait for the next one, hoping the tide will reach your feet, soaking them in glorious salt water. It takes a man of great presence to guide you closer to the waves and allow for you to dip your feet ankle deep into the sea with no further frustrating need to wait for the tide to come to you. Ramos bought the tide to us. And we almost drowned in its beauty. Berbatov, in what would be his last significant performance for Spurs, along with legend Robbie Keane, were outstanding on a day that saw us fight back from 1-0 down to claim an extra-time 2-1 win thanks to the clever header from our defensive rock’n’roll centre-back, Jonathan Woodgate. But much like the ocean, football can sometimes produce the perfect storm. One with tragic consequences. Juande peaked too soon. Our ocean covered in an ugly slick from an exploded French oil tanker. As you know, Ramos has since moved on, but credit where it’s due. He led us to Cup glory and a safe passage back into the UEFA Cup. Not since the famous George Graham side of 1999 had we witnessed such giddy heights of progression.

The Tanner Literary Medal of Honour

One word has been on everyone’s lips this past year. Opus. This breathtaking collection of high definition photographic gems, some never seen before, and sharp incisive words detailing the history of our great club from year zero to the present has captured the imagination of the Spurs faithful. Such is the demand for this top-heavy must-have, that the club have taken the step to bring it to the fans by wheeling a copy out at every home match half-time interval. Why go to the Spurs Shop or even submit your interest on-line when you can be in its very presence at White Hart Lane? But that’s not all. Amazingly, the club is selling raffle tickets allowing one lucky person per week to pick up a copy at a cost of a couple of quid. And with around 4000 of these events scheduled into its White Hart Lane roadshow, you might just strike lucky. If you prefer not to gamble, for personal or religious reasons, don’t hesitate to order an Opus directly from the club. You’ll find the price competitive and if you are a keen investor, this purchase has mouth-watering sell-on value.

The Irving Scholar Lifetime Achievement Award for Astute Boardroom Tactics

Ridding the club of the leprosy that was Martin Jol and inviting Juande Ramos to offer his services to the club was textbook professionalism in the name of evolution. Daniel Levy directing Comolli and Kemsley masterminded a dizzying moment that won’t be forgotten for a very long time. The dissection of Jol’s football soul, publicly exorcised for all to see during the Getafe defeat at WHL, was Machiavellian magic at its finest. A true tour-de-force in power play politics. With Jol burning like a fly caught in a night lamp, Levy unveiled the Spaniard to much acclaim. The result? Silverware. European qualification. The dismantlement of the DoF system followed, allowing for a more traditional manager to take the place of the departed Ramos who has gone onto a new challenge, to help a team who play in white reclaim some past glory. It’s an obvious speciality that we tapped into first. How can one possibly follow on from such an appointment? One does not because one can not. Not yet. Levy must once more begin his search in earnest for the next man destined for the White Hart Lane helm and this is no easy task. It will take time. For now, we have our esteemed interim manager Harry Redknapp steadying the ship in perpetration for the next bottle to be smashed against its hull.

While Jol huffed and puffed for more than two seasons, Ramos, swiftly showed us all how it’s done. Credit to the chairman. Not since the day Alan Sugar pointed at a young Nick Barnaby and proclaimed ‘That’s our new East Stand!’ have we witnessed such a magnanimous display of commitment to all things Tottenham.