No not 'Going Down!'
Just going down.
And so now we're 7th., below Burnley and the usual suspects who are all finding form, momentum and not a little panache while we stand still.
In the last five games we have lost three times, all away. The 6 teams above us have only lost three times between them in that time.
Last year we were 5th three points off top four and 7 behind leaders and eventual Champions Chelsea.
Table after 14 games 2016/7
............. ..P W D L F-A GD Pts
1. Chelsea 14 11 1 2 32-11 21 34 2. Arsenal 14 9 4 1 33-14 19 31 3. Liverpool 14 9 3 2 35-18 17 30 4. Man City 14 9 3 2 30-15 15 30 ========================================= 5. Spurs 14 7 6 1 24-10 14 27 =========================================6. Man Utd 14 5 6 3 19-16 3 21
We started slowly last year and had a similar dodgy spell about this time too and recovered to finish second. But this year the heat in the kitchen is hotter, the air conditioning has broken down and more teams are involved.
Premier League Table - 2017-18
P W D L F-A GD Pts 1. Man City 14 13 1 0 44-9 35 40
2. Man Utd 14 10 2 2 32-8 24 32 3. Chelsea 14 9 2 3 25-11 14 29 4. Arsenal 14 9 1 4 28-16 12 28 ========================================= 5. Liverpool 14 7 5 2 28-18 10 26 ========================================= 6. Burnley 14 7 4 3 14-11 3 25 7. Spurs .14 7 3 4 22-12 10 .24 8. Watford 14 6 3 5 24-25 -1 21
This year we are 7th. four points off the top four but 16 points behind runaway leaders Man.City for whom Sterling has scored two last minute winners in the last two games. I think the Champion's spot is spoken for.
The good news is that unless we lose to Watford at the weekend by five more we are safe in 7th. for at least another week. Such are the straws I clutch at currently.
After only just over a third of the season panic is not called for. Our Champions' League form is outstanding but our Premiership form is not. We've been here before and moved on.
And so it went at Leicester. Plenty of possession, shots and corners but little inspiration until the re-appearance of Erik Lamela, double hipster and new dad. A heartening 15 minute cameo that should put others to shame.
Many doubted his return; asserted that he hadn't been missed; muttered dark rumours of drug addiction and worse. Well he's back with an assist and more dancing invention than Diaghilev: on a football pitch anyway.
His return should spark up the team and make the competition for starting places more lively.
We made three clear cut chances, all missed and went down to two top class finishes by Mahrez and Vardy. Lloris was a spectator except for retrieving the ball from the net, twice.
Eriksen and, would you believe, Llorente missed the proverbial sitters late on and would you believe Sissoko missed one in the first half before they scored. Believe, believe
We created chances but didn't take them until Lamela came on the scene and within three minutes had set up Harry Kane. 79 minutes and game on. But apart from Erik getting the inevitable yellow and the missed chances that was it.
We need Hercule Poirot to investigate what Kane does to his striker rivals beverages in the canteen before games. Soldado, Janssen and now Llorente all falling to the Curse of Harry's Back-up.
Mauricio Pochettino lambasted the players for slow starts, lack of effort and poor attitude but surely most of that is his responsibility. We went through a similar dip last year but our marvelous home form is not likely to be repeated.
The Project seems to have temporarily stalled with Mauricio's magic not quite working. Injuries and loss of form are disrupting our stride and we need to get back it quickly or a relatively benign set of fixtures will be wasted.
Perhaps the defection of Walker and the thoughts of Danny Rose have unsettled the squad. The dropping of Son and continuing selection of Sissoko is puzzling too. We need to thrash someone.
Meanwhile the Manchesters stride ahead and even top four is looking a stretch. At this point I'd settle for the Europa and you can all laugh at me at the end of the season if it turns out better.
The Happy Clapper in me says it's all under control: the long-time Spurs fan that never likes to waste a good chance to panic is getting a little worried. The competition is fiercer this year and we still have Wembley and the CL to cope with.
Jimmy's Video Spòt:
Kyle Walker Peters (20) PL debut. The forgotten man's impressive start to his senior career. looks good to me but Mauricio must know better as 'Bad Boy' Serge and Kieran seems to have the right back sown up.
Could have saved ourselves 23 million if you ask me.