The Blog that's not always wrong.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

A pitch for Roman

A furrowed field

 Wigan away

Yes they're the ones we have to thank for our excellent goal difference, but this time its away, which might make a difference. Even the home side have complained about the state of the pitch. Without Lennon we're not quite the same team, having only won a single game since his departure in December and scored just 3 goals in the last six games.

The argument before Xmas was: we are doing very well so if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
But its not working very well at the moment so we might try some changes. With the going officially 'rough to ploughed' it looks as if Harry might have found a good reason not to play Pavlyuchenko again. His head's not right; he's not fit; other pairings are playing really well and now the pitch is unsuitable. The 'other pairings' argument won't wash as Defoe and Crouch are awful; Gudjohnsen isn't match fit as he recently demonstrated and Keane's fulfilling another of his boyhood dreams.

By process of elimination Roman should get a game but between him and his agent they seem to have seriously got up Harry's nose and I can't see it happening. Our game plan on a sub-standard pitch will be to keep it off the floor by playing cloud passes instead of wall passes to Crouch who will give it, one way or the other, back to Wigan. Modric in the meantime will wander about like Little Bo Peep in search of some sheep until he falls asleep under the haystack and gives way to Kranjcar. You've heard of mixed metaphors, well these are mixed nursery rhymes.

Why would an experienced manager whose career depends on results ignore a talented player? Because like you and me he is fallible and human. 'Harry not perfect shock' We all make mistakes and are distracted by personal feelings and I think that the assumption that Harry is acting irrationally is the most rational explanation. His approach to training doesn't fit in with Harry's old school approach which clearly doesn't help.

Pavlyuchenko came to us at a traumatic time and showed some spark amongst some lacklustre performances particularly when paired with Defoe. In 2008/09 he scored 14 goals and his goals to minutes played ( 1/150) was better than top scorer Darren Bent. This season his goals to minutes played (1/139)is better than that of Keane and Crouch and second only to Defoe. Statistics eh.You do the math.

I don't know whether he is the answer to all our current scoring problems but only that he should be given a go, with Crouch as the impact sub. I said last time that he should have started against Bolton and I think he should start against Wigan whatever the state of the pitch. The build up of games and the cup replay practically guarantees him a game in the coming weeks. We only have three front line strikers so Harry is going to have to mix it up even if we don't get injuries to Crouch and Defoe.

Perhaps the truth is that Harry doesn't rate Roman and his reported whingeing to the press just makes his return impossible. He keeps him on the bench purely as emergency back-up. He's like one of those kitchen fire extinguisher that you stick in the back of a cupboard somewhere but can't quite remember where. You know you're supposed to test them from time to time but never quite get round to it. Harry would quite probably be pleased to have sold him, whatever he says to the contrary, but Levy won't sanction the paper loss and an impasse has been reached.

Without Crouch we might at least get back to playing some decent football and give Modric a chance to influence the game. If Wigan can try to play football on it then so can we.. We are overdue a decent score and we might just get one on Sunday as they will be apprehensive whatever their motivation to avenge their crushing defeat

If Harry goes the other way we could even see Palacios and Kaboul patrolling the midfield up to their axles in mud and to hell with the football. Winning ugly I think they call it which is something apparently we've got to learn to do if we are to become a successful club. Funny sort of success it seems to me but I suspect I might just be in a minority. If he gets another chance I hope he takes it for Tottenham's sake, and for mine and Harry's too.


TMWNN said...

'You do the math.'

Ah, so you're American JimmyG2. That would explain a lot.

Why not play 5 in midfield? As far as I can tell, away from home, we have at least one 'striker', if not both, doing sweet fuck all for large percentages of the game. I'd try Niko, Modirc and Bentley behind Defoe with Huddlestone and the sarge supporting. O'Hara would be a better option than Huddlestone as he could cover the left side when Bale gets forward, but we have Jenas in reserve instead :-(

Anonymous said...

Once again a well constructed argument for change based on our last six games.Like so many fans we all think its Harry or Lennon Missing or the favorite one long Ball to Crouch and i wish this was my excuse for our inability to score goals.If this was just Spurs dip in form then like all good side we would hit form and go sailing on a good run and the bad run would be a distant memory.I love football just has much has any fan on these blogs if not more but i cant sit back and let another season failure because of the Fear sweeping football.Let me explain when the season started the papers experts predict who will go down and who will get in the top four and so on and hear lies the problem Clubs don't expect to be in relegation trouble even if they cant buy decent players so they look for ways to turn average players some into there thirty's ,in to good players and good players to even better players.Just look at Hull last year a record run of success and a record of near relegation.This is caused by the fear of losing money clubs players medical staff all lose a lot of money being relegated. This is the real reason for shocks bookmakers record profits from these shocks. This is the year of of the field cheating in sport with Terry Cole Woods Tiger having to defend himself about performance drugs a top baseball star crying for forgiveness for using steroids for six years.two rugby Stars both codes failed drugs tests the first Golfer in the new tests and a Goalkeeper in the Championship the very league with ex teams and managers that has nearly damaged our season with energized 1-0 victory's and these teams have beaten our rival muti millionaires Man City with ten men and should have won.I hope this has given your fine blog some controversial thoughts on this record shocks wife cheating all in the cleanest league in the world. This is what our loved and gullible fans are told by the fact no one has faild a teste since Mutu was caught by his Manager ringing the testers and he got sacked .Its not Crouch or Lennon or Harry but Fear money the sack thats driving clubs to win games there teams on paper have no chance like one famouse cheat said when i looked down the line of fellow runners i new i would win Dwane Chambers a cheat but he is unique because he confessed and gave his gold medal back even tho he never tested positive for is winning run.We have lost points and we will never no if it was Harry or a team playing like Dwane way above there ability i have some insight thtat will remain in my thoughts because it looks like one big excuse.

alwyn said...

i personally like to see more of Pav, although i think he keeps shooting himself in the foot by his public comments. still, maybe his style of play (and obviously his height) is different than Crouch's and Harry's hoping the Peter-Jermaine partnership will still work out (somehow).

Still, maybe it's a good excuse to use Pav - but something tells me if he doesn't score in the first half he'll be off.

on the other hand, if we play the way we did against Bolton in the second - repeat: second! - half, we should making it at least 1-3 with Wigan?

Anonymous said...

Play Davspurs in the hole!!

JimmyG2 said...

Anon 15:56
I'm not sure we've got anyone who can keep up with him, not even Aaron.

No I'm not, I just like the phrase. Agree about O'Hara and have suggested Krancjar in the hole myself. We need to try something different. Anything other than the long ball to Crouch.

I agree its hard to play when you have shot yourself in the foot! If he got a start and played a whole first half I would be delighted.

Anon 12:44
Thank you, lots to ponder there.

Anonymous said...

By all means, let us give a chance to Pav against Wigan. He might be just the person we need to score goals and if he does not perform then we can substitute him.

Windy said...

Jimmy - do we "match up" to Wigan and go 4-2-3-1? I think I would.

It would mean dropping Defoe but, give his recent form (goals against Leeds aside), I don't think that would be such a bad thing, particularly in a tough away match. Perhaps Kranjcar or Gudjohnsen just off Pavlyuchenko could be useful in this one? Or even Modric centrally, and Kranjcar on the left.

I'd personally like to see Redknapp try SOMETHING different, because we're not playing well, and it's not as if we have many form players (Bale and Bentley aside).

We shall see.

elwehbi@ibleedhotspur said...

Interesting point Windy... I would like to see us mix it up in formations as it seems our opponents have uncovered our dirty secrets. We need Pav to start for once. The Crouch / Defoe partnership hasn't been working in the past few weeks as effectively as we would like... try something new and why not away at Wigan.


Anonymous said...

Nice prediciton. Got next weeks lottery numbers?


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