The Blog that's not always wrong.

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

What's Lamela ever done for us?.

Mauricio's Secret Weapon: A pressing Machine!

This could be the start of something good. Let's hear it for the boys. Experienced internationals have given way to the younger generation in our search for effort and heart.

Against Forest and Arsenal we had a sprinkling of home grown and younger players on the pitch at various times providing a balance of the enthusiasm of youth and the experience of, well experience.
It worked for Pochettino at Southampton and it might just work at Spurs.

Ryan Mason got his chance in the Premiership after his enterprising appearance against Forest against the advice of many including me. But Mauricio was right and the boy played well again.

He turned in some impressive stats particularly on forward passes:

..................................Touches......Accurate Passes......Fwd Passes

Danny Rose ......................54...............19........................8
Ryan Mason......................51................25......................18
Etienne Capoue ................50................27......................12

He was also right about Kaboul who was named captain against the advice of many including me. But he played the game of his life against Arsenal and was MOM by several football pitches.

This clearly upset Adebayor who in protest against not being given the top job has declared a go slow. However newly appointed Vertonghen although not signing a new five year contract to replace his old four year one turned in his best performance for some time.

So hats off to Mr. Pochettino who appears to know his squad better than the average fan. He changed his match attire and his tactics to suit the occasion. Out went pressing, except for the suit, and in came solid defence and rapid counter attack.

And it nearly worked with Chadli's goal giving us the lead for nearly 20 minutes after some sound defending by the back five. Lamela provided the assist once again. It was his sixth of the season and no-one else is even close.

So the answer to the question 'What has Lamela ever done for us ?' is 'Provided the assists for over a third of our goals. He can be irritating but he has a talent we are clearly short of; the ability to spot a run and deliver a pass.

We defended 15 Arsenal corners successfully and got a point with 31% possession. Against W. Brom we had over 60% possession and got nothing for it. Slippery things statistics and I only use them when they prove my point.

My point here and Mauricio seems to agree is that there is more than one way to skin a cat and I hope we see more of this Mourinho like flexibility of approach. (No cats were harmed in the writing of this blog by the way)

So is this the week that things turned the corner for Spurs? After all a week is just as long in football as it is in politics.Turning corners is a cliche for writing about Spurs. It seems more of a labyrinth at times. We turn so many corners we sometimes bump into ourselves coming back.

But something has changed. Reports are that Mauricio let rip at the post West. Brom team meeting. The message seemed to be 'Shape up or ship out. My way or no way.' The inclusion of Mason seemed designed to reinforce this message.

For most of the Forest game it appeared that we had not taken Mauricio's words on board. But it came good in the end with the arrival of Mason and Kane. Mason scored a cracker and Soldado diverted a wayward shot from Townsend (What other sort are there?)

Kane finished coolly from a through ball by Lamela. A very similar goal to the one against Arsenal where top scorer Chadli was set up by top assister Erik the Argentinian. Youth to the left of us: youth to the right of us. Well Nacer is only 25.

We have tough tie on Thursday in the Europa against Besitkas but home advantage and new found confidence and momentum should see us take the points. Expect several changes ahead of the game against high flying Southampton.

They are due altitude nose bleeds any time now but the desire to beat their old manager and his equal desire to build on the events of this week should produce a game high in intensity, tactical craftiness and several goals. Hopefully Spurs to win by the odd goal in 5.

Obviously we need a balance of youth and age. We used to have the Bale/Modric axis but as usual we couldn't hold on to them. However the future is bright and we need to build a new axis of the Lamela, Kane, Mason/ Vertonghen, Lloris type.

We have sold the heart and heartbeat of the team in recent seasons but after transplant and cloning advances in medical science it is not impossible to rebuild or grow it again.

Jimmy's Video Spot.
I'm hoping that this marks some sort of milestone this season. Ryan Mason's equalizer; a poacher's delight from Soldado; Lamela sets up Harry Kane  and grazes the post; Mauricio comes from behind to win; his substitutions are timely and effective.


Anonymous said...

I think we've seen enough of Dembele and, especially, Paulinho. I wish the latter had gone to Chelsea for £20k+ when we had the chance, and let's bite Everton's hand off if they come in with £15k for Dembele. I hope Stambouli proves a decent gamble (although he was inept against Forest) and Bentaleb really has to learn the Spurs way, rather than copy the 'stuff' that D and P play. But I believe he will. Obviously, it's not just D and P who have influenced the dire & dull way we've often played since Bale, and Modric, left managerial tactics and the inability to change such tactics when little impression on the opposition is being made, have done for us too, while other dead wood has been shifted out ..but those two great deceivers in the middle of the park have been significant contributory factors to our loss of 'Glory' on the pitch. Capoue is now the stand-alone DM we want/need and, as cover for him, I hope Bents and Stamb can step in ...but let's concentrate now on the Lamela/Eriksen/Mason type of final third play. If we can get a genuinely creative and pacy left winger, and perhaps another striker, then with Townsend (or Lennon) reverting to good old fashioned wide right wing play also (not the inverted crap) perhaps we can excite again like we did in the Bale/Modric era. Finishing let us down in those 2 or 3 golden years, but I don't believe that will be the case this time if we can add those two missing links! We can't expect to replace Bale, and replicate what was the best left flank in the PL, but we can greatly improve on the awfulness of that flank since Bale moved inside and ultimately left. And I believe Soldado (the striker we should have had when loads of chances were being created, and wasted, back in the Harry days) will come good when more chances are made for him. With Ade and Kane, plus one more, we can really look forward, as the defence has plenty of good options for us to worry about.

TMWNN said...

Jimmy, until I see us have a run of decent games, I won't believe that anything is that different from AVB and Sherwood. There is a massive lack of quality at the club in all positions except in goal. A long season beckons.

Anonymous said...

Imagine that you're a bloke who just happens to pull a gorgeous world class model. You are really happy for a couple of years.....admittedly, you would have liked more time together travelling European capital cities instead of Baltic seaports - but all is ok till she runs off with a rich swarthy Spanish git. You are heartbroken. No girlfriend after that can compare so you fall in and out of love really quickly with every replacement. You forget how sometimes she was moody and you forget the times she didnt show up at all and you forget the times she kept you waiting for that one magic moment! No-one else compares to her. Until you get her out of your system you are doomed to mope about, even revisiting those same obscure east european cities you once saw with her. But the magic isnt there. You have two choices.....find another stunner who fancies you too and who wont run off after a year or accept that you were only lucky once and change your attitude. Dont look for the 10/10 stunner (they only let you down anyway). Dont settle for the Town Bike either of course.....find an attractive woman who will stick with you, and who you can stick with too. Give love time to grow. Dont keep telling her that she isnt as good as your ex. Move on. Maybe even go for someone younger (but not too young). But look forward not backwards and who might get the tour of European capitals one day. Its better than just sitting there re-reading old love letters wondering where it all went wrong.

Anonymous said...

Love it!

JD DUCKETT said...

There are hugh weaknesses in our Spurs team and the players who will not improve no matter what are Dembele , Paulhino , Chaldi , Capoue , Lamela , Soldado , Adebyor , the weak players are Stambouli , Bentaleb , Lennon , Townsend , Ericksen , Ryan , pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeese get above average players for a change and maybe just maybe we will have something to cheer about .

JimmyG2 said...

First Anon.
Hope you are right about Soldado.You don't become rubbish overnight. Everybody needs time especially Pochinetto.

We always say we understand that things are transitional but both fans and Levy are so impatient.
AVB should not have been sacked, or Sherwood appointed or sacked.

2nd Anon
Nice work.

3rd Anon.
Clearly a man of taste and discernment.Welcome.

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