The Blog that's not always wrong.

Monday, 5 August 2013

Another fine mess at Spurs

If you're gonna get thrashed
you might as well do it somewhere warm and pleasant.
(Sponsored by the Monaco Tourist Board)
The JimmyG2 Column

To lose one centre half who is well past his sell by date seems sensible:
to lose a second, to long term injury, seems like misfortune:
to lose a third, to pre-season injury seems untimely:
to lose a fourth similarly is heading towards calamitous:
to sell the fifth seems to be rank bad management and more than a little careless.

To start the game against Monaco who have just paid over £50 million for one of the most formidable strikers in the game, without a recognised centre half in sight is verging on the disrespectful to our hosts and embarrassing to this fan at least.

They looked like a team using pre-season to fine tune a Rolls Royce. We looked like a team that had lost the plans to assemble a kit-car spread out all over the garage floor. That we only lost 5-2 was a relief.

Up front it was no better. With Adebayor, out for 'personal reasons', still yanking our chain
( Edit. Apologies for this, his brother Peter died a couple of weeks ago and this was the reason for his absence. Thanks to Ist Anon poster.) ; Defoe off injured after 5 minutes; Soldado not signed in time to play; Dempsey on his way back to his homeland it was all left to the boy Kane to do the business and he did at least manage to score.

'Another fine mess' as Laurel and Hardy used to say. Now everyone assures me that Sandro, Vertonghen, Kaboul, Dawson, Holtby and Defoe, will all be fighting fit and raring to go in a fortnight's time.Yes folks it's just two weeks to Crystal Palace and the hope fest opener.

 Soldado, Paulinho and Chadli will all slot in nicely with people they haven't even met yet let alone spent pre- season integrating with to produce a force capable of challenging for top four. Chadli looked dire yesterday and should have started on the left and been subbed earlier.

 Lloris was well below para and never recovered from his first goal mistake; Lennon didn't look remotely interested; Parker is still perfecting his pirouttes, he goes in both directions now but the ball still ends up where it came from.

Dembele put in some effort but still doesn't release the ball quickly enough, possibly because there is no one ahead of him to release it to. Soldado hopefully will solve all that. The full backs Walker and Rose weren't bad, well not that bad but overall we looked disorganised and inept.

Huddleston should have started with Livermore ahead of the inexperienced Fryers; Siggy and Chadli should have swapped positions; Carroll and Townsend, who once again scored a fine goal, should have been on much earlier.

AVB looked like a rabbit caught in the headlights. When the fifth goal went in his whole life flashed before him especially the short period he spent at Chelsea. To add insult to injury Moutinho showed him exactly what we had missed out on.

Now you're going to tell me that this is exactly what pre-season is all about. But we are leaving it very late to assemble the squad and I haven't even mentioned Gareth Bale. Yet another summer spent knee deep in speculation and rumour and the fans are no wiser than we were over Modric.

If the injured recover, the new signings settle in quickly, Bale stays and we sort out who's staying and who's going we'll be fine. Of course we will. No need to panic. Yet. But this is Tottenham and we just don't do anything the easy way.

I liked AVB from the off and think that Levy stuck his neck out by appointing him. We had a good first transitional season but he seems to have been struck down by a fatal Tottenham curse which guarantees that things never go according to plan.

The 'what can go wrong, will go wrong at Spurs' syndrome. Only two strikers available: one will get injured. 5 centre halves at the end of the season: none at the beginning of the next. Some of this is bad luck and some of it is mismanagement.

Selling Caulker seems particularly ill advised  and the selling of Dempsey may turn out to be the same. Neither player is highly rated by the majority of Spurs fans but both would have been useful to say the least against Monaco.

Gareth Bale update 
Gareth is now 'desperate' to leave apparently, an upgrade on 'keen' from last week and interested' the week before. AVB is having a go at Ancelotti's tactics and making it clear that we are refusing to deal. Harry is sure that Bale would do well there.

 Joe Lewis has taken over the negotiations which we are not having;  Ronaldo is refusing to comment, and Musings hasn't got a clue quite where we are on this one. Pay your money and make your choice. 50/50 at best and most fans are past caring. '£100 million? Take it and move on' they say.

 Musings is still solid on the view that selling your best player(s) is no way to build a team and develop a club and we're not always wrong. Despite the rumours he has confirmed that he will report for training tomorrow.
Clearly no Berbatov he.

Jimmy's Video Spot:
At last I can safely present  Soldado. Signed sealed, medicalled and delivered. He's ours and here he is.
The thinking man's Jermain Defoe. Excellent movement, instinctive finishing, and hopefully we will be able to give him the same sort of service.


Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure that Ade's younger brother died recently, so putting 'personal reasons' in scare quotes as if it's some excuse of his looks pretty distasteful.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

typically spurs..fickle as they come.

JimmyG2 said...

Ist Anon.
You are right on every count. Have duly amended copy and apologised. Thanks well deserved reprimand. Tragedy sure does follow that boy around.

Anonymous said...

Bit doom and gloom. With a world cup year approaching Dempsey and Caulker both wanted to play regular first team football. As for parker I couldn't agree more, hopefully he doesn't get near the starting line up this season. And hopefully Townsend will get more of a chance was brilliant at qpr and looked just as good in the small amount of game time in pre season.

Anonymous said...

Think you're overreacting a mite, old boy. Sure, 2-5 vs Monaco doesn't look great but you can't read too much into pre-season friendlies.

From what I know, a defender at the level of Vertonghen and Kaboul is being sought as Caulker, as promising as he seems, isn't top 4 standard and £8m is too good to turn down. Likewise with Dempsey. They won't be missed.

Expect the players to be livelier when the season starts, it's all about getting fitness levels up at the moment. Don't know much about Chadli but Paulinho and Soldado will really improve our side.

I'm not sure if Parker will stay or go but in his defence, he didn't get a pre-season last year cos of injury and was thrown straight in after Sandro got injured. I think wherever he ends up, he'll be a class player, much better than last season.

If only we could get Bale to stay...

JimmyG2 said...

Last Anon poster.
I don't agree with you very much but a reasonable case advanced.
'If only' indeed.
But four excellent signings before the season starts is a positive sign.
Think Parker is finished and hope he moves on.
We have a very 'robust' midfield and don't need his kind of input.
Etienne Capoue is an excellent replacement in midfield and he can play centre half. Shrewd buy.
Chadli is highly rated and looks good on you tube but then so do I.
Let's see what happens later today.

Anonymous said...

Hi, me again. If Parker can be sold for a decent amount, I'd say go for it.

I've made a list of the Spurs squad, divided up into positions.

The number in brackets is how many from that position will be in the starting 11 and the star indicates the likely starting player when all fully fit.







For me, our biggest weakness is the full back positions with the lack of a fourth central defender a concern too.

With Walker and Ekotto having sub-par seasons, I think they are in need of serious competition and I would move for Coentrao and someone like Van Der Weil if they are available. To me, full backs are the priority at this point in time. Rose and Naughton are decent but not top 4 standard and should be loaned out or sold.

For the centre back position, Caulker was ideal but clearly AVB preferred the money. It's up to him to replace the defender though he might take the risk with 3 full time centre backs and cover in the form of Capoue. If a good defender is available for around £5m, I would go for it or make a bid for Ashley Williams and immediately increase the competition within the squad.

The rest of the team looks pretty strong, though AVB has a job to keep them all happy. I'm not sure of the requirements of the 25 man squad and if Carroll is exempt from it, but the only issue that would remain is Gareth Bale. If he does go, I'd spend the money on just one world-class attacking midfielder, whoever that may be.

I think either way, this is still a strong squad and should be expected to get into the top 4.

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