The Blog that's not always wrong.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Here we go again.

Earwigo again*
 The JimmyG2 Column.
And so as the final whistle blows and the good ship Hotspur sinks below the Champions' League placings we bid farewell to Season 2013/14. It's definitely farewell to Tim and probably Hugo and Jan too.

Possibly Paulinho, Soldado,Sandro and Ade as well but we will have to wait for further news on all that until after the World Cup. To coin a phrase it's been a funny old season from the exit of Bale and the splurging of the money far and wide, to the sacking of AVB and the appointment of Timothy Alan Sherwood.

On the brighter side it's apparently hello to Mauricio Pochettino. (to be confirmed shortly  I'm reliably informed)  Well fairly reliably. He speaks English better than Harry and Tim but not well enough to do without an interpreter.

Some will complain that it's not on for the manager not to deal with the press personally and directly but I say good on ya fella. The press are 90% snakes and we owe them nothing. Best avoided by whatever means possible.

The sacking of AVB was hasty and surely contributed to the failure to settle of almost all our new shiny signings. Of the seven only Eriksen and from time to time Paulinho have made any effective contribution Lamela and Soldado never really got started.

Whether AVB would have improved on his points record and the style of football is a question to which there is no meaningful answer. In my optimistic way I would like to think so. Tim did better in terms of points per game and we scored more goals.

We finished sixth, one place up from where Tim started and he promoted Bentaleb for a time and Kane to the starting squad. Pritchard and Veljkovic made appearances late in the season. So plenty of positives including the resuscitation of Adebayor.

But the die was cast on his appointment with the end of season get out clause which Levy couldn't wait to evoke. He was set up to fail and duly failed by some measure or other known only to our esteemed Chairman. Top Four or bust presumably.

It was partly down to the same reason that Brian Clough and Harry never made the England job. Too gobby by half. Tim certainly lacked the experience and composure to manage a top class team but in a results business he made a good fist of getting the results in his own curious way.

Come back in ten years time Timothy and let's see where we all are. Meanwhile the next happy punter to try his luck is an Argentinian who played at international level and who did well enough at Southampton and who was well thought of in Spain at Espanyol.

Erik Lamela will be pleased anyway and might even get a game. Generally speaking we like Argentinians at Spurs but not necessarily at Managership level. I give him 18 months the average over the past 30 years and wish him well.

And here's a picture reminder of what he looked like.
( remember he'll be older now.)

If appointed, notice those weasily bloggers back covering words, he will be our third manager in a year; our fifth in seven years and our seventh in 10 years. You have been warned but no doubt the money will be a great compensation.

We went out with a hurrah against a poor Villa side and had it all wrapped up before half time. We scored in the first 15 minutes, just, for the first time this season and our lack of energy from the start of games has been a feature which inevitably gets the fans' nerves on edge. 

Pochettino favours a high pressure game with no sign of 442. This may help to get everybody's juices flowing. He also favours the introduction and promotion of youth, as indeed Tim did, and this will be a continuation of policies at Southampton who have produced several current stars including our Gareth.

Can we summarize the season in a word. Frankly no. Interesting is a good cop out word. Ultimately disappointing covers some of the ground though the sharper wits amongst you will have spotted that
that is two words. Moribund gives some its flavour; tedious too at times.

The sacking of AVB was the key moment. With no plan in place B Sherwood was an internal appointment who was cheap and available. It was cynical and sold not only the players short but the fans too. Progress at the club was virtually put on hold for the rest of the season.

Signing up to play under a young progressive thoughtful tactician is vastly different to being confronted by a rookie with attitude and a puzzling grasp of the essentials of team building and man management. He did his best certainly and only managed to upset about half the squad.

His treatment of Bentaleb is a case study. Surprisingly promoted from semi obscurity he established a role against some of the tougher opposition sides and was then ignored for the 'easier' games in the run in.

 Capoue got the cold shoulder, Soldado played well and was then dropped; Ade went off the boil but kept his place; Lennon went missing in many games but kept getting picked; Sandro was ignored even when fit until the last game. It's management Jim but not as we know it.

But he nearly pulled it off much to everyone's surprise including Dan Levy. Now we go again into the familiar world of Tottenham transition. Pochettino's early appointment would steady the ship but is hardly likely to give pause to any already determined to go or turn the heads of aspiring quality players.

Nor will it set the pulses of the fans racing though a solid case can be made. A sensible candidate but certainly not a world class name. But why would any self respecting manager  with a reputation to maintain want to come to us given Levy's impulsive trigger finger.

So there you have it, even for Spurs a dramatic season . Not far off success but once again we dig up the flower beds and replant. The estate will never mature and flourish under this kind of management.

To those that say 6th is about right given our spending budget I say what a boring bean counting world you must live in with Dan Levy for a neighbor. We need to be cleverer and more imaginative in every aspect of the game particularly recruitment and retention of players.

Perhaps some Argentinian flair on and off the field will do it. I hope so. There's that fatal four letter word again.

* Sorry about the old joke but my grandchildren thought it was 'ace'. I think that means it was good.

Jimmy's Gold Awards.
Best player..............Hugo despite a blip after a bang on the head. Formedablay.
Most improved........Kyle Naughton. Established as a squaddie if he wants it.
Least improved........Danny Rose. Bless him.
Most encouraging....Harry Kane. Touch and go whether he makes it big time. Like the boy.
Must keep...............Christian Eriksen. Make full use of him before he departs for Madrid
Most overated.........Jan 'the tortoise' Vertonghen (Smiler)
Most underated.......Michael (leave it me) Dawson.
Absent friends.........Erik and the other Kyle. Be like new signings.

Jimmy's Video Spot.
The King: Nothing more to say really. Another goodbye to mark the end of an eventful season.


TommyHarmer said...

Led, we love you ....... Monday was a great evening. MoM was Led, second prize went to the crowd - we were MONSTER!!

Cheshuntboy said...

We'll obviously never know whether AVB would have turned things around if Levy hadn't panicked, but all the signs at the time suggested that the wheels had well and truly come off; the players appeared confused and demoralised, and the results reflected that confusion. I imagine Levy frequently has nightmares about 'Groundhog Day', given that he's now been in this situation THREE times, with Hoddle having taken a couple of seasons to reduce the players to the same state, while Ramos managed the feat in less than half that time - Levy got lucky with Redknapp and I really don't think Sherwood has let anybody down this time, but Levy MUST do better with the next appointment (but leopards don't change their spots, do they? It'll no doubt be whoever's available and cheap)

Anonymous said...

Well all I can say is that is the truth, a well written and to the point musing, maybe the club should sell, or are we waiting for the development which seems to be very protracted, like every Spurs fan every season l say "at last" but there again like every Spurs fan, l think maybe next season, for the last 40 years.

spurgatso said...

Sorry avb might be all the things you said but he wasnt worth a bottle of cheap Portugese plonk in footballing terms,please explain exactly where his shown these abilities.The mistake of appointing the bloke was the catalyst for all the problems we have now.

JimmyG2 said...

I have no particular brief for AVB. All managers and | include Tim should be given time.
If you repeatedly sell your best players, fail to buy the managers preferred targets and dump a job lot of seven assorted players new to the Premiership and the country on any manager he will struggle.
AVB was qualified, and successful in Portugal. 18 months is not long enough.

Available and relatively cheap is the attraction of Poch.
He has limited experience and some feel he should have done better at Southampton with the quality of the squad.
We'll see but give the man time.

Nothing decent available on the Testimonial on video Will look again later.

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