The Blog that's not always wrong.

Friday, 5 April 2013

Fat lady prepares to sing for Spurs.

Basel: A lovely place to visit
 if you don't have to win a football match.
(Although 3-3 would do)
 The JimmyG2 Column.
 The best you could say, until Bale injured himself, was that it could have been a lot worse. After that it couldn't possibly have been any worse. If he and Lennon are out for more than a couple of weeks then I think we might say farewell to a Top Four place this season.

 Not that he did much against Basel but he at least distracts the opponents' attention away from our other players. Of course we all fervently hope that these other players will step up but there are no imminent signs that anybody could. Holtby certainly played well and both Ade and Siggy scored but these are but straws to be clutched at in view of the tests to come.

Parker is looking shot, not literally, that's only for horses; Dembele is only playing well in patches; our main counter attackers are both injured; we are down one fit certified striker and we look vulnerable at full back on both sides. Even Vertonghen played poorly although he was carrying the faltering Gallas for most of the time.

Basel were better than us all over the pitch and it is hard to see any reverse of form in the away leg unless the 'stepping up' process is more of a leaping or pole vaulting nature than mere stepping. Siggy has improved over the weeks but it has been a painfully slow progress.

AVB is 'hopeful' that Bale will be back in a couple of weeks. Welcome to Spurs, Andres. 'It's the hope that kills you'. Gareth's Mum says that he has a very low pain threshold and that injuries are rarely as bad as they seem at the time. So I'm guessing, he'll be out for the rest of the season and most of next. 

We are awaiting confirmation at the time of writing. Pre-scan medical 'experts' predict a month at least. And where is our natural, home grown back-up for both flanks? Tearing up trees at QPR when he could have been planting seedlings at WHL.

Musings queried this decision from the start and we are not happy to have been proven right. He could have had plenty of opportunities at Spurs ahead of Dempsey and Sigurdsson on the wing in the Premiership and in the three cup competitions. We felt he had shown enough already to be part of the squad.

Due credit to the boys who fought back to retrieve a situation that looked beyond them. Basel were quicker in thought and movement and we were only ok for about 15 minutes at the start until they worked out that we were not all we were cracked up to be. They crowded out Bale and then set about us.

All the goals had an element of luck or misfortune about them. Naughton lost his man and Adebayor deserted his post for their second and the ball rebounded conveniently for their first though they probably should have scored anyway.

Adebayor missed his first attempt for our opener but persevered to reach the ball back in from Bale. His foot was high and I was waiting for the referee  to rule out the goal for dangerous play. Sigurdsson got a helpful deflection for the equaliser and for a while we pressed with some determination. But it didn't last and they might have had a couple more.

AVB's substitutions were strange. Dawson for Ekotto and Holtby off for Dempse. Dawson for Gallas and leaving Holtby on as he was having his best game yet would have made more sense.

By the end we were down to nine men.  Gallas took himself off although we had used up all our subs at the time. Friedel made some routine saves but it was their failure to capitalise on their lively attacking play that kept the score down in the main.

So we got away with it but need to keep a clean sheet and score more than them to make any further progress which is a big call against a very decent side away from home. Particularly without Bale and possibly Lennon although his chances of appearing against Everton are being talked up. But I doubt it.

Scan updates. (Friday. Official site)
Bale, Lennon and Gallas all underwent scans and should return to training within two weeks. So that's a minimum of four games: Everton, the away leg at Basel, Chelsea and Man. City. Then hopefully back for the last four games. It might be beyond our reach by then.

So we look like ending up where many forecast that we would at the start of the season in 5th or 6th. We have taken the sacking of Harry, the loss of our two best players and the appointment of a new manager sacked by Chelsea in our stride. We have suffered key injuries and have witnessed the decline of Parker.

Without playing particularly well we have made a good challenge for Champions' League. Of course it's not over until the fat lady sings but I think I've just spotted her her standing in the wings. Players might step up yet of course; we might get through against Basel and beat a weakened Everton on Sunday and maintain our momentum.

But we have become dependent lately on Bale for goals so Sunday is the perfect opportunity to prove that we are not a one man team. One might be enough, Ade.
Spurs 1-0:

Jimmy's Video Spot:
Lovely through ball by Siggy for Holtby. The ball deflects back to Parker and he misses the chance for  his first goal for Spurs at a crucial moment. Parker fans will say it hits Holtby's boot and goes wide but I'm not so sure and I was never a fan of Scotty.


Anonymous said...

why 4 games ...chelsea is off and he will aim to play against city.
He will still be training in the pool and gym so should be fit.
cheer up mate and support the spurs

JimmyG2 said...

Ist Anon.
I sincerely hope you're right. Chelsea match postponed as you say, thanks. I'm not depressed and I have supported them a long long time which is why I'm like I am.

TMWNN said...

Two weeks till he can train, and probably another two until he can play.

We can go on about the players and the manager, but Levy is the real problem here.

AVB is just a 'yes' puppet in ENIC's game of stringing the fans along until the chips are cashed in.

We'll go out in Switzerland then finish 5th, getting stuffed by the blue scum along the way.

How's that for positivity?

Mr B said...

I'd like to see either celebos or coulthirst get a game, but based on AVBs form so far he seems even less inclined to field the fledglings than ol' floppy-chops (fer fuck sake)

Yossarian said...

Agree about Andros Townsend. I thought he'd shown enough to be part of the first team bench and not have to be shipped out. Of course, now we all know he can cut it at top level (so it seems) because of the loan so being positive we have a good winger next season to support the other two. Don't agree at all with TMWNN unless he's privy to the accounts.

Anonymous said...

Mr B: beware the old 'guys who aren't playing must be better than the guys who are playing' rule. It doesn't work like that. AVB and HR know more than us. I'd like to see the U21 players, particularly Cebellos, too, but let's support the guys that see them every day and are nurturing them.

harvey the hudd said...

In the absence of Bale, Lennon and Defoe, we only have one player who has any pace: Walker. So we're going to have to play through Everton and Basel and beat them using quick, one-touch football.
I would like to see Hudd and Livermore in the holding roles and Dembele further forward. We need to be rock solid at the back and look to nick a goal.
Totally agree with Jimmy that Parker is shot through. And please, Lloris and Dawson to start every game between now and the end of the season.

Anonymous said...

Gotta play a smart game.....benny and walker providing the width and dempsey and siggy tucking in.
agree with the point earlier that it looks like a low scoring game as everton arent too clever attacking either so a clean sheet will probably be needed for a victory.
Being positive the goons have a tough game and chelsea will be playing their 4th game in 8 days with city going to man u.
with 2 weeks off now we could be playing city in 2 weeks time for the right to go 2nd...when did that last happen at this stage of the season.
lets get behind the lads

JimmyG2 said...

Harsh words sir.
I'm just concentrating on the current crisis. The wider blame is above my pay grade.

Next game is once again crucial and should tell us plenty about AVB, the attitude of the boys and our prospects in general.
Arsenal's win tightens the screw even further,
No room for anything but a win.

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