The Blog that's not always wrong.

Monday, 28 January 2019

No Signings to Shield Pochettino from the Heat.

Mauricio, not yesterday, but in happier times.
We're going to concentrate on the League.
Makes good sense considering.
The JimmyG2 column.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Not one of my favourite poets but his lines will act as a summary of  our our recent performances.:

And when Spurs were good, they were very, very good,
But when they were bad, they were horrid.
(With thanks to the HWL estate for permission to publish this version of his poem)

He died in 1882 funnily enough. At least he had rhythm, rhyme and reason which is a lot more than we did on Sunday against Crystal Palace in the FA Cup.

This diversion into the byways of 19th. Century poetry is just a way of putting off the depressing, evil moment when I have to turn to our weekend performance.

The Crystal Palace blazed and burned in 1936. nearly a hundred years after it was built for the Great Exhibition of 1851. Nearly a hundred years later  Tottenham burned too but not in a blaze of Glory.

OK,OK I'm getting there. We were horrid. They didn't even have to play that well to beat us.The 'Bring Back Andros, All Is Forgiven' Campaign gathers pace.

We played as if we were defending a two goal lead from the start. Unfortunately we hadn't got one. Three at the back and two defensive midfielders was total mega overkill and predictably killed the game especially ours.

The build up from the back was painful to watch with Sanchez the main offender. Without Winks and Eriksen or even Sissoko all rested or recovering there was no semblance of co-ordinated positive play.

Even so we had a score of shots but only 4 on target and a dozen corners but failed to capitalise on any of them. Palace defended stoutly and were not drawn out by our retaining the ball in defence.

Pochettino's priorities were clear and his after match comments confirmed it. In our current situation with more troops in the Field Hospital than available for the Front Line cups are not at the forefront of his mind.
Mauricio's version of the 'concentrate on the league' cliche. Not that we have much choice and his words may well come back to haunt him. He says he prefers a small squad and the Fates have handed him just that.

Qualification for the Champions League is our focus and I don't disagree. It's not so much losing it's the manner in which we lose that hurts.  With a depleted squad, fighting on four fronts was a couple of fronts too far.

To lose one cup game in four days may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose two looks like carelessness, as Oscar Wilde nearly said. We were horrid. Positives? Very few I'm afraid and I've got International Awards for digging positives out.

 Foyth at least looked like a footballer most of the time when few others managed it.. Lamela made a difference when he came on at half time. Skipp tried hard to fan the positive flames but single-handed he was fighting a losing battle.

 At least he showed for the ball and tried to make things happen, not always very successfully but very few others stood up to be counted. 

KWP playing on his wrong side gave away the silly penalty which undid much of his good work. But he cut back onto his good (only?) foot every time and didn't give Llorente a single cross to make a hash of. 

Moura and N'Koudou? Least said soonest mended. Sanchez and Vertonghen were painfully slow in the build up and Sanchez at fault for the opening goal. Gazza is proving to be as hopeless at penalties as his mentor and could have done better for the first goal.

Trippier, ah Keiran. Our first penalty miss apart from shootouts for a while. Actually he played OK, got forward consistently and even put in a couple of crosses. The penalty just before half time forever defines his contribution though.

Why did he take it? Well Dier and Moura failed on Thursday; Eriksen and Lamela who scored weren't on the pitch. Still a good question in the light of the attempt. Anyone but Trippier from now on.

There was no link up between midfield and the so called 'attack' until Lamela arrived. You see now exactly what Dele and Eriksen do. Our injuries finally crippled us and on this occasion too many back-ups failed. 

We had chances apart from the penalty which N'Koudou and Llorente shunned but in no way did we deserve other than what we got. Zilch. We don't often fail to score but we did on Sunday.

Slack defending gifted an early goal to Conor Wickham who has hardly played for over two years let alone scored and Kyle Walker Peters' handball completed the job.

So what does it all mean? Let's not go into full wrist slash mode. With Eriksen, Winks, Sissoko and Lamela and possibly Rose and Wanyama  all available to start on Wednesday against Watford our top three challenge is still on track.

Especially if Toby and Jan start at the back. Goal scoring is the problem. We can't always depend on Harry Winks can we. Son too has returned and could play a part. The fixture list is kind for the next three games all at home at least.

Of course it's possible it might all fall apart and that the much bemoaned failure to buy in some fresh blood will come back to bite us in the rear. I don't think so as long as no more injuries occur to key players and injured players make good progress.

Plenty of room in there for optimism to be thwarted and hopes to fall between the cracks but let's not go there yet.

Transfer Nonsense.
Our only two hot predictions aren't coming. Malcolm now wants to sign for Arsenal and Rabiot for Liverpool. But that's from The Sun so don't despair yet.

Jimmy's Video spot.
The Debate. Always liked J.J. They don't call me 'The Lame Ducks Helpline' for nothing. Mauricio's 'Project' is under pressure but with Daniel's support will certainlysurvive. Mauricio's face tells all.

He's feeling the heat but staying in the kitchen.

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