The Blog that's not always wrong.

Monday, 18 January 2016

Welcome relief for Mrs Pochettino.

 Don't worry Mrs P, it's Sunderland up next.
The JimmyG2 Column.
It's a well known fact, or is it just a rumour, that you can play well and lose and play poorly and win. In addition if you play poorly and win it's the sign of a good team.

Now what this astute analysis omits is the quality of the opposition. In mid-week we played the team that are top and who all the pundits predict will implode at any moment  but for now have a game plan and the players and the Manager to implement it.

We played pretty well, more possession, more shots more passes, usual stuff. and fell to a set piece again, by Huth scoring his first goal this century or some such from a  header from a corner while our defenders were falling over or out among themselves.

The famous dictum that Spurs are fitter and stronger than the opposition and don´t fall to late goals came back to bite us but really the game should have been wrapped up well before the 80th minute. But Leicester are not above us by accident.

Not sure that ´parking the bus quite covers it. I will have to invent a brand new cliche. More like an ants´ nest which sends out soldier ants if you don´t completely destroy it with the first kettle of boiling water. Still needs a bit of work.

We had the better chances but that Evil Witch Notyorday decreed that Lamela and Alli should fluff their chances when well placed and that Schmeichel should somehow turn a Harry Kane shot down onto the ground and then up onto the bar.

The other highlight occurred when Lloris bailed out Walker by saving from Vardy when Walker mishit a back pass. 'Mishit a back pass' is putting it kindly but it´s his first brain freeze for a little while.

Dembele came on for Carroll and made little impact. We were not losing when Tom went off.  Davies and Lamela played well and the rest were all a bit ´meh´. We didn´t deserve to lose but didn´t do enough to win.

And so on to our encounter with Sunderland and Jermain Defoe, relegation candidates certainly but on the back of two straight wins not to be taken too lightly. Their goal, with Hugo surprisingly beaten at the near post just before half time raised all sorts of ugly spectres.

Firstly, the end of this year's dreams and hopes, though with 16 games to go this would have been been a somewhat premature knee jerk reaction. But Spurs fans definitely have that in their locker.

Secondly the vision of Mrs. Pochettino and all the little ones huddled outside Daniel Levy's house pleading in the snow. But again surely we've outgrown that type of immature managerial over reaction. Surely.

Defoe was odds on to score after our experience with Aaron Lennon but he had no service or support except for one breakaway which came to nothing.

Anyway Eriksen to the rescue with a couple of somewhat fortunate strikes. The first within 2 mínutes of their goal when Cattermole couldn't quite decide with which part of his anatomy to divert his shot off the line and ended up helping it in.

His Kyle Walker moment if you will. The second when a spinning deflection took his shot out of the reach of debutante keeper Pickford who had saved well on several occasions. The Evil Witch relents and the panic is over: the Dream continues.

All square at half time and for some reason Allardyce changed it all around and we ran riot. Well minor disturbance at least. Quit when you're ahead Sam or at least drawing away from home.

Between Christian's goals Dembele scored and played well. Danny Rose secured a penalty and Harry thumped it home. A just reward for another non-stop 90 minutes of effort on his part.

We controlled and dominated the game with 26 shots, 11 of them on target to maintain our place in Europe's elite. (See last week's blog) The defence though not unduly pressed played well especially Vertonghen who was more positive.

Curiously Manchester Utd who are having such a terrible season are within two points of us following their 1-0 win over Liverpool. We're on cloud nine and they are toying with sending poor Mrs Van Gaal out in the snow with the bairns.

Both ladies much relieved then.

Jimmy's Video Spot.
A few words on Andros Townsend who seems to be on his way to Newcastle or somewhere for £10  miliion or a little more*. Our nearly man and a key element in my All Academy dream team, one of our own and a local lad.

Plenty in this to suggest he could have made it and nearly did. Not sure descent into the Championship in a relegation scrap up in the North East is the best place for him. Too much night life may be his final undoing.

 We usually advise young players to get their heads down; with Andros it's the opposite. Good luck to him anyway, a very likeable boy, off the pitch. He's nearly too old for us at 24 anyway.

* ITK says we've turned down £10,500,00 and that £12 million will do it. ITK?. Pish. I fully expect him to sign a new contract with us by Wednesday in that case.


Anonymous said...

I can't help feeling that Alli is being played out of position. He is best, surely, playing alongside Dier and marauding forward from deep, ala' Gerrard. Currently he looks well short of his earlier form and I'm convinced that too much is expected of him playing further forward. Dembele has become vital to us but is better further forward, and our three behind Kane could come from him, Carroll, Eriksen and Lamela. I don't believe Carroll is a deep lying playmaker, but he could be a hell of a combination with Eriksen in the final third. I think we'd see more clear cut chances for Kane as a result, without him trying to work his own channels and creating his own chances all the time. It's all too narrow, predominantly, as well. When Poch's centrally focused system (combined with our fitness levels) works, it's heart warming to see, as we outplay, press and out-muscle or simply break down the opposition, but, when things go wrong or we're kept out by strong and organised defences (as with Leicester and as seen in many of our drawn games etc.) we revert to possession for possession's sake ('short back and sides' passing) and there seems to be no plan B to get us forward in a threatening way. Son somehow looks lost, currently, in whatever system is being played, as does Chadli, so, until Nyje comes back (and I hope HE can find his optimum place in this team) we're relying on not having injuries to key players in the final third. Width in attack has always been a Spurs trait and, while most of the time we can perform well without it, Poch's obstinacy in keeping Townsend out of the frame (while he's still our player) and not getting him on down the right in the last half hour against Leicester, as well as allowing a pacy Rose to enter the fray on the weak/slow left flank also, cost us hugely (a real 6 pointer at the top of the PL). This result could come back to haunt us at the end of the season.
I'm not saying change things much ...just when things aren't working (or when we've been worked out). So come on Poch. We believe in you, but show us some flexibility and imagination when games aren't going according to plan.

Ashley Collie said...

Not quite "park the bus" - how about "Ranieri's Anglo-Italian, premiership version of catenaccio!" Park the bus in disguise with pumped up players — are they on anything, like our guys???

IKnowAlanGilzean said...

Good to get back to winning ways after the disappointment of Wed night. It didn't go for us vs Leicester and a draw would have been the fairest result, but never mind, it happens. It was worrying how hard we found it to break down Sunderland in the first half, but I put it down too growing pains and the fact that it is hard for everyone. I love all the academy boys and will be very sad to see Andros leave. But it is the best option for him with the Euros coming up and for his career. A good player who will be very useful for many premier league clubs.

JimmyG2 said...

1st. anon.
Thanks for your views.
Anyone with that goal instinct like Alli needs to be further forward and I prefer Dembele deeper with Dier or Bentaleb, the forgotten man, although he might play tomorrow.

Ashley Collie.
I think yours needs work too!

Welcome back. Agree about Andros but he's probably had enough chances.

Ashley Collie said...

I think yours needs work too! - ??? And so much for the theory of Alli playing deeper and Dembele forward...that goal of the season vs Palace sort of disproved that, eh! COYS!

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