The Blog that's not always wrong.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Adebayor makes his excuses but stays.

I warned you son about missing it.
Now  explain it to me again starting with the run-up.
The JimmyG2 Column
'For this relief much thanks. ' Tis bitter cold and I am sick at heart'.
 Two Spurs supporters on guard at Elsinore Castle in Denmark after another abortive penalty shoot out on a cold night in Switzerland. Denmark? Switzerland? Whatever. We know exactly how they feel.

They now have ten days respite from the mental turmoil, hope and heartbreak that is the lot of the supporters Tottenham Hotspur Football Club. Ten days in which to get their crossbows re-calibrated; their pikestaffs sharpened; and the battlements swept. Watch out for the Ghost of Sir Harry Redknapp though boys.

Ten days for me to get greenhouse spring cleaned; the potatoes chitted and the grass cut without distraction. Ten whole days for the lads to practise their skills: penalty kicks; defending from corners and passing to their fellow team members. Time to get in some rest and recreation and an invaluable opportunity to take their blood for a quick spin.

Time too for us all to reflect on the events of the recent weeks and to pass interim judgement on Andre Villas Boas, Daniel Levy and Emmanuel Adebayor amongst others. Our path is now clear: it is Champions' League or bust. The two pronged focus is now resolved courtesy of yet another penalty shoot out too far.

We showed some guts and determination in Basel but overall they were the better team and deservedly went through to the semi-finals. Their timid tactics helped our cause but in the end individual errors by Dembele and Vertonghen and injuries to Bale and Lennon undermined our efforts.

In the shoot-out they were focused and clinical scoring all of their goals in some style. Huddlestone's opening kick was well saved and Adebayor's a joke in bad taste given the circumstances. A sad but predictable end, given our shoot-out history, to our latest European adventure.

Some say we should have concentrated on the Premiership and qualification for the Champions' League and that playing on Thursdays and Sundays has weakened our chances. For the life of me I can't see the difference in playing on Wednesdays and Saturdays against better teams although I concede that the games are fewer and the rewards and status are bigger in CL.

It's been a rocky and dramatic journey with some distinctly average performances in the early stages and some late tie winners against Lyon and Inter. Finally our luck ran out even though the pundits insisted against all the evidence that our name was on the cup.

Some things are established beyond doubt, though I realise that that is a provocative thing to suggest on a public blog with a comments facility. Gallas and Friedel have hopefully played their last games for the club, barring catastrophic injuries. Take the gold watch boys, thanks and good luck.

Lloris wouldn't have saved any of the penalties but he might have got down more quickly to the toe poked first goal and probably wouldn't have tamely patted the ball out for the second. AVB kept faith with Brad for the Europa which somewhat undermines his avowed intention to take the competition seriously.

With the return of Sandro next season Parker's opportunities will be limited. Huddlestone has until the end of the season to stake a claim for next year after two encouraging appearances this week. Carroll has done enough this season to establish himself as a more active member of the squad and I hope to see him start a game before the Summer Recess.

AVB emerges with his reputation enhanced whatever happens in the last seven games unless we lose them all by huge margins which is unlikely. He has handled himself, the team and the Press very well which is a relief after the Redknapp era. He has certainly given us some belief and instilled some discipline at the expense perhaps of 'sexy' football.

Some of his substitutions and occasionally his formations have been eccentric but most of us will be greatly let down if he decamps to Madrid which Musings dismisses as pure press blather based on their usual random associations. Mourinho used to work with AVB. Mourinho might be leaving Real Madrid ergo AVB is going to Madrid. Pathetic.

Levy will be the main scapegoat for any failures this season for not providing us with more powerful attacking options especially if Bale leaves because we don't make Champions' League. But he did take a chance on AVB which has undoubtedly paid off. He now needs to back him whatever position we finish in.

Players out: Friedel, Gallas, Naughton, Benny. Defoe.

On death row pending appeal. Huddlestone Parker, Livermore. Adebayor.

Jimmy's Video Spot.
Vertonghen,  hero and villain. Can't imagine what he thought he was doing. All four goals were cock ups in one way or another. That Dempsey eh. Bit like Defoe just when you think he's had it, he scores a couple. We had five players at the near post for the corner and it still went in. I think Adebayor's smile was one of embarrassment rather than delight.
 He says  the wet pitch, exhaustion and tension are the reasons he missed it. I think Defoe will move on before he does. He fits AVB's tactics and vision better.


Anonymous said...

I never made it into the School team in any year, always a "possible" as opposed to a "probable", but I always remember a teacher scolding me once when I tried to pass across our goal in our half to a colleague only for it to be intercepted, leading to a goal. What Moussa was thinking while on our right flank surrounded by 5 FCB players when Naughton was somewhere in Scotland at the time I don't know...

We lost this tie at the Lane, so how can we have any complaints ? Only 4 players are of CL quality and two of them (Bale/Sandro as if you need confirming) were missing so what hope eh ?!

Having said that, discounting the pens and Verts misdemeanour which he walked into thanks to Dawson, I was very proud for most of the match as it evolved, we could have been annihilated/humiliated based on the form they showed against us at the Lane.

Holtby had a great game and Carroll was excellent too considering. AvB got the subs perfect and the timing for once too.

If we get the cherished 4th spot DL better put up the money to invest in at least 4 to 5 quality players otherwise we won't be in it for long. Otherwise 5th place plus another serious attempt at actually winning this Pot would be fine by me.

We have exceeded my expectations this season, AvB is our man, let's hope DL and everyone else gets fully behind him for 2013/14

Anonymous said...

Personally I hope Madrid pay big bucks for AVB if they really want him, then we get get a proper football man in such as David Moyes who's itching to leave Everton.

Anonymous said...

anyone who is happy to accept 5th place when the Arse and Chelsea have had their worst prem seasons in memory are seriously deluded in thinking we've got any chance of cracking the top 4 next year.

This was it. This season was the season to do it properly. We've blown it. And next year, even Liverpool will overtake us.

TMWNN said...

Does it really matter if AVB were to leave? League placement is usually directly proportionate to how much dough a club has rather than who the manager is. There are seasons when those above us in the financial stakes under-perform, this season, like the last few, is one of them yet we still don't look like taking advantage. Levy didn't invest the season we did qualify for the CL, what makes people think he will if we don't qualify?

The board simply aren't that interested in the CL, at least not to the extent of investing their own money to get there. CL qualification would raise expectation and require better quality players who'll cost more and demand more in wages, neither of which ENIC are willing to entertain until, perhaps, the new ground gets built, whenever that is.

JimmyG2 said...

First Anon.
I agree I thought it was a good performance. Holtby, Siggy, Walker and Adebayor all played well. AVB should be allowed to build something with Levy's help.

2nd Anon.
Rather live the dream with AVB than die of boredom with Moyes.

3rd Anon.
You might be right but I don't think so. Nobody is happy with 5th place but we can build from here.

Anonymous said...

I don't know why I'm depressed, but it's the way Arsenal seem to be winning with help: Steve Clarke deciding not to play Lukaku, bringing him on when the game was up; getting a ridiculous penalty and an offside goal against Norwich. I read an assessment that stated that Arsenal are just flat-track bullies, but we are behind because we haven't put away some teams. That said, AVB has us playing adult football and I hope he is supported by Levy. Maybe, Levy wanted to see what happened before committing.

JimmyG2 said...

Last Anon.
I'ts the old catch 22. Wait until you see what's happening before you commit. But nothing will happen until you commit.
Arsenal should have won that easily at home and they struggled and needed three dodgy decisions to do so.

I'm getting a bit worried about you. You're getting obsessive and depressed.
Enjoy it. We've had a reasonable ten years and it might just be about to get a whole lot better.
AVB is the man.Believe.

Anonymous said...

my heart sank when i switched on and saw friedel in the tunnel. just couldn't believe the selection and knew the game was gone the moment i saw him. just could not believe it.

Anonymous said...

TWNN - Spurs will never prosper until Levy & Lewis go - Levy & Lewis will only go when they are ready to make their profit & sell - otherwise the only way they will go is via a supporters's revolt that turfs them out but Spurs' supporters are too conservative and pro-establishment ever to do that. conclusion? we are fucked.

TMWNN said...


AVB is the man who played a 41 year old semi retired goalie in place of France's no.1 who is 15 years than Brad and in his prime.

I'd like AVB to do well, but anyone who already had one hand tied behind their back through a board which refused to back him, isn't that bright if he ties up the other himself.

JimmyG2 said...

Nicely put. Actually as you know from the piece I agree with you on this. He made a pact with his keepers and kept to it. Brad has deteriorated recently but AVB is playing the long game. Wrongly in this case.
Like us you're not always wrong.

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