The JimmyG2 Column
The JimmyG2 Column
I could get used to that sort of show and the signs are that I might have to. We are starting to enjoy the kind of confidence in performance that Man.Utd fans have enjoyed for years. I am beginning to watch without the usual level of tension to which I have become accustomed.
The years of 'lack of mental strength'; the 'soft Spurs' decades; the 'easy touch; the 'going nowhere' club as Rodney Marsh alleges this week could be over if my sensitive nerve endings are anything to go by.
Last night's devouring of Inter was not completely unexpected. In fact we began as favourites not only to win but to go through to the last eight. This reflects partly the hard times on which a once great team has fallen even since we played them in the Champions League not so long ago.
But they still had to be beaten and we went about it with some gusto. We harried them from the start and played with a swagger only occasionally seen this season under AVB. Several players stepped up and turned in much more effective performances than of late.
Parker, Sigurdsson, Lennon and Vertonghen in particular. Scotty was much more direct and Siggy at last is rewarding Andre's growing faith in his ability and not just with goals. He showed persistence and quality for Bale's headed opener and awareness for his own follow up to Defoe's parried shot.
Less than 20 minutes in, two goals up and we were playing with some style. Lennon was fizzing in attack and tackling back as fiercely as a fully grown man. Dembele was quietly authoritative alongside Parker. Even Gallas was put under so little pressure that he had had time to forage forward.
Vertonghen was back to his impressive best and scored an unchallenged header from a Bale corner and might have had another. The team raised the crowd and the crowd raised the team. What Andre calls a positive spiral.
Even the Hugo shaped hole in goal caused little problem. Friedel was in the right place a couple of times and kept a vital clean sheet. An away goal in Milan would put the tie well beyond Inter's reach if it isn't already.
This was the Spurs we dream about. A European night taken seriously by the manager and consequently the team, coasting to victory against one of the European greats. Well they used to be.
This was a lasagna with more than a trace of horse in the prime beef filling.
I am increasingly looking forward to games and enjoying them. Last weekend was different because local derbies are one-offs. People can get carried away or off and anything can happen. But it didn't. Sunday offers another opportunity let the air out of the balloon of another challenger's hopes.
Jimmy's Video Spot.
All the goals. Strength by Siggy for the first cornered by two defenders. Excellent movement by Lennon, well found by Dembele for the second. Damn poor marking by the Italians for the third.
Did they even want to win?