The Blog that's not always wrong.

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Between a Rock and a Hard Place.

Thanks but no thanks Mauricio.
I think you might live to regret that folks.
The JimmyG2 Column.
Well this is going to be a tough gig and no mistake. Being a Spurs supporter and blogger after we lose our 8th consecutive Semi-Final but still loving Spurs and Mauricio is the ultimate rock and hard place venue.

I have followed my own advice and left it for several days because blogging when you are angry, tired disappointed, hungry or drunk  is rarely a good idea. 'Ommm' and breathe.

Of course there is sometimes truth in anger or alcohol but there is more in calm reflection. We mostly played the better football and but for the foul on Dembele by Pogba, Sanchez' nose and Lukaku's miscontrol we would have won.

'Gutted' seems to be the word not just for us, but for Pochettino himself who is clearly mightily tired by the negative press he gets in spite of all his achievements.

And achievements they are with progress on all fronts. League, Champions' League, domestic Cups with a younger team costing far less than all of our Premiership rivals. We are punching well above our weight.

Progress is always too slow for some but I am not one of the 'Now' generation. He has pushed the trophy room door ajar and quite soon we will walk through it with confidence and pride. Meanwhile enjoy the journey.

I'm with Pooh Bear:
“Well," said Pooh, "what I like best," and then he had to stop and think. Because although Eating Honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn't know what it was called.” ― A.A. Milne.

Sir Alex Ferguson took five years to win his first trophy and launch the Manchester United years. I hope that Mauricio gets as long or longer. Impatience is the  enemy of progress:
''Perhaps there is only one cardinal sin: impatience. Because of impatience we were driven out of Paradise, because of impatience we cannot return''
W. H. Auden.
Short cuts often lead to nowhere as GPS disasters showed. Sack the Manager; sack the Chairman; inject some money straight into the transfer vein; sell the club to some Russian rip-off oligarch, or some Eastern Potentate dripping with oil money.

The result is obscene levels of wages and transfer fees. We are competing on this uneven playing field with some success and the team is not only playing some decent football but is much more than the sum of its parts.

Yes yes I hear you and the insufferable pundits we haven't won anything yet. But why get off the train before it reaches its destination. Look out of the window, chat to your fellow passengers; go to the buffet car; relax, chill, believe.

Would selecting Lloris over Vorm or Toby over Sanchez have made a difference and shown that the Manager was serious about winning a trophy.Who knows. Both Davison and Michel played OK in any case.

On current form Vorm was arguably the sensible choice. Most top teams play their reserve keeper in this competition. Mourinho didn't have a decision to make because Romero was injured.

Davison is the future at Spurs and Toby currently an unsettling influence. I think it would have been a betrayal of club solidarity not to play Sanchez  and Vorm who has featured throughout the Cup run.

'Build it, don't buy' it is my slogan for the current Spurs era. Is Mauricio perfect? No. Does he make mistakes? Yes. Did he make any on Saturday? Very likely. Do I ever criticise the man? Often. But don't throw the baby out with the bathwater.

The bigger picture is the most important one. We have done well playing all 38 of our Premiership games away and assuming we get to the Champions' League for the third season running can feel optimistic about the future.

But other than that how was the play Mrs. Lincoln?
Dele and Cristian combined for a delightful early opener. Pogba's foul following the wrong turn by the World's Strongest Man in a Spurs shirt produced the equaliser.

Incidentally on anyone but Pogba the false turn might have worked. He is not only top class though disastrously handled by Jose but creative and very strong. His jaunty gait hides a serious player..

Dier's shot deflected by a defender's backside hit the post with De Gea stranded. Their bus park wall held because we insisted on trying to go through it rather then round it. Even Moura played too centrally.

The wing backs were timid. Trippier seems to have lost the confidence to cross. Kane flickered briefly and Christian Eriksen and Vertonghen were the pick of the rest. Eriksen had a good chance but didn't connect properly.

We lost our way after their equaliser on 25 minutes but had the better of the chances after our goal. We let them back in and once they got their 2nd. goal 'show cancelled' notices went up all over town.

Now to concentrate on the League and we sure better had. Third is still on offer; fourth is more likely and fifth unthinkable. Watford at Wembley next Monday is our next opportunity to secure three of the eight points we need assuming Chelsea win all their games.

Jimmy's Video Spot.
Sorry. But you learn more from your mistakes.
Perhaps there is only one cardinal sin: impatience. Because of impatience we were driven out of Paradise, because of impatience we cannot return. W. H. Auden
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Cheshuntboy said...

I suppose that Dembele's catastrophic error could be seen as a foul in an era where breathing too hard on an opponent 'entitles' him to collapse theatrically - I thought you were opposed to that sort of thing, but perhaps not.
As for Pochettino being fed up with all the criticism that's routinely heaped on him from all sides (which is what you're implying), he still gets a ridiculously easy ride from the media and a good proportion of the fanbase, despite being no closer to a trophy in 2018 than we were four years ago.
You've often made it clear that you despise Harry Redknapp, and say in this article that you 'love' Pochettino, but consider this: Redknapp got two top four finishes in three full seasons, lost a league cup final and two FA Cup semis in four - does that record remind you of someone else's? We've improved so much in six years!

Anonymous said...

we only really need 7 points - WWDL since we have far superior goal average than chelski

JimmyG2 said...

Dembele was pushed off the ball with a straight arm. It's a foul in any era.
Poch. does not get an easy ride in the Press or amongst fans on the websites that I frequent especially this week.
I despise Harry the man not the coach. I use the term lightly.
As he would have said 'with that team he should have won the World cup'
I think things have got tougher in the past six years with the excess of financial doping.
I like the way we are developing under him and his approach and dignity.

Thanks yes that's true.I hope we get the points early and that it doesn't come down to goal difference.

c b waters said...

Redknapp's crime (and he was loved until then) was to take his eye off the Spurs ball just after his court case in Feb 2012 (for which he got full support from the Tottenham hierarchy) and switch it to the England job (from which Capello had just resigned). Because Harry therefore lost focus at the wrong moment (and he did, from late Feb to May, there's no doubt) we went from having a nailed on 3rd at least (or better, as we were just 2 or 3 points behind City and United, and 11 ahead of Arsenal and the rest) to a floundering 4th, ending up behind Arsenal yet again, and where we even missed out on a CL place because of 6th placed Chelsea winning the damn thing. Harry's hubris/pride/ambition cost us, and him, although I still wish England had said 'no chance, Harry' straight after Capello resigned. It might have spared us the desparate end to that season (where even Fergie thought we played the best football up until March), a time that set us back horribly, and even though we'd probably have lost Modric and Bale anyway, the following two seasons could have been vastly different to what they were! I'm glad we ended up with Poch, and I wouldn't have missed these last 3 seasons for the world, but THAT is why most of us are thoroughly cheesed off with Harry, and his lack of loyalty to a club, that had been loyal to him, at a crucial time! So, for me, just 'one' meaningful 4th and a QF in the CL, and a League Cup Final. Good ..but it could have been so much better in the end. Oh, and, JimmyG2, Dembele may have been fouled, but it would have been soft if called. Matches would be stopped every few seconds if challenges like that were whistled. If the tables had been reversed we'd be lauding Dembele for robbing Pogba. Dembele made the wrong decision and was caught off balance. He had a poor game on Saturday, and that incident typified it. At his best, his hold up play and strength on the ball allows team-mates to function far more freely. On Saturday, he held up our momentum, and often resembled an old water buffalo being surrounded by and pounced on by a pack of hyenas. I love him, but if two or three of our big players are off form, we get 'done' in the bigger games!

WokingSpur said...

I'm absolutely with you to enjoy the ride - as you say we are consistently better than the sum of our parts and that's because of honest player motivation and good coaching - yes on another day we could have won that game, but we didn't because of a combination of bad luck and lapses.
I also couldn't agree more about the fickle, self serving pundits, but I think Posh has had an easy ride til now.
I love Mousa, but he wasn't fouled and was also napping for the second.
I'm afraid Vorm also could have done better on both their goals - he wasn't set for either and I think should have expected the ball across him for the first.
I think you still need a few more days :)

JimmyG2 said...

c b waters.

Always disliked Harry, crooked cockney chancer who like Mourinho made everything about him.Head turned by his mates in the Press, he was one of their own.
Agree with most of the rest. Never been a great fan of Dembele but he was fouled which is why I included that particular video as it shows the incident clearly.

Woking Spur
Thanks, getting better by th day
See comments above re foul on Dembele. Tend to agree about Vorm but it was right that he played.

Cheshuntboy said...

You're probably right about Dembele by the letter of the law, but his stupidity in turning into trouble deserved punishment - I'd have been happy to see the lumbering wage-thief dumped on his large rear and shown up in front of his deluded admirers rather than Spurs concede a wholly avoidable goal which probably turned the match United's way, but there it is - we can all agree that Dembele's lucrative move to China won't be much of a loss after all.
I've rehearsed my reservations about Pochettino far too often to bore you with them again; he's obviously a good coach, but is he a good manager? Surely a team as good as Spurs have apparently been for the past three years could have managed one trophy from the four per year available, but we've conspicuously failed, while Arsenal, United and even Leicester have succeeded - surely Pochettino has to shoulder the responsibility or blame if the best Spurs side for fifty years (according to some) can't even manage a semi-final win, let alone an actual trophy?

JimmyG2 said...

Not sure we are far apart on any of this except I rate Pogba very highly.Better coach than Manager certainly but has done well with the restrictions he is working under.Trophies are not the only touchstone.

WokingSpur said...

OK it does look like he pushed rather than just blocking him - ref unsighted :( - bring on Monday and back to business

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