The Blog that's not always wrong.

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Essential Updates.

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The Jimmy G2 Column.

A heavily Spursocentric view of events. Well it is called 'Spurs Musing's after all. What do you expect?

Glenn Hoddle:
Back at work. Take it steady Glenn.

Stadium:
It's not quite April and its not quite open.  Local boy J'Neil Bennett  scores the first goal in an Under 18 win over Southampton at the test event in front of of a restricted not quite 30.000. awe struck fans.

Mauricio sneaked his son onto the pitch in the 79th. minute for the family album shots. Main talking point is the 5 second bottom filling  pints machines.

Next Test event.
The Veterans
Saturday 30th. against Inter Veterans. Jurgen Klinsmann will play for both clubs though not at the same time obviously. He's good but.......
Crowd restricted to 45.000.

First match:
Wednesday week (3rd. April) against Crystal Palace in the Premiership and then following Tuesday  (9th April) for the first leg in the Champions. league against City. Before then just Liverpool at Anfield.

97 weeks and counting. Mauricio says cried as we left the old WHL and nearly cried again at the first event at the new stadium. It's been a long wait but he pronounced it 'a dream come true' and the general opinion was mostly that it was worth the wait.

Now the football has to match up to the raised expectations which will be no easy task. At least it sounds as if he will be here to enjoy it with us next season.

It remains to be seen if the delayed stadium opening is a valid excuse for current poor form and whether it will inspire Christian and Toby to stay on. It could just be the inspirational factor to refocus and inspire the run in.

Or not.

England v Czech Republic
Harry Kane led the  England team to a crushing 5-0 victory in the 2020 qualifier. Raheem Sterling scored a hat-trick and Harry contributed in general play and scored a penalty.

Eric Dier was injured after 18 minutes and missed the Montenegro game; Dele played well; Trippier and Rose were unused subs. Youth was on display with Rice (20), Sancho (19) and Hudson-Odoi (18) all playing a part.

The future at Spurs and England looks bright.

England v Montenegro.
Spurs starters: Kane, Rose and Dele. Easy 5-1 victory after an early upset when Montenegro went ahead. Harry scored, Hudson-Odoi and Barkley were outstanding.

Only Danny completed the match but no more injuries. Racist chants rear their very ugly head again.

Brexit.
Let's not go there. Theresa May or possibly Theresa won't.

World Peace.
Or there. Daniel much too pre-occupied with the New Stadium and quite rightly so.

Jimmy's Video Spot:
Bet you didn't know I wrote Mauricio's speeches for him. Sounds like a man who is planning to stay.
Upbeat and positive, just like me but on much more money.

Monday, 11 March 2019

Stadium No Compensation

The Future is dazzlingly bright
But hasn't quite arrived yet.
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The JimmyG2 Column.
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I have a sign over my computer which reads: 'Do not blog when you are angry, tired, hungry, sad or drunk' and it has stood me in good stead over the years  and enhanced my well established reputation for balance and fairness.

Occasionally though for health and safety reasons it pays to explode in the white heat of  frustration, to get it out there early. Perspective can do funny things to the reality of now.

The question is when does a blip become an ongoing disaster?  When does a 'bad day at the office' become an application for bankruptcy? When does an occasional arrhythmic heartbeat turn a medical emergency, paramedics, ambulances, defibrillators and all?

You get the drift: if it looks like a crisis; sounds like a crisis; walks like a crisis it probably isn't a duck. The question is where are Spurs on this panorama at this moment after the loss to Southampton.

One point from twelve and Liverpool away up next is not a good place to be for a team that only  a month ago was being talked up, at last, as genuine contenders for everything except the Champions League.

Oh the irony: now that's all we have left after progressing to the quarter finals. Perversity thy name is Tottenham Hotspur. Simples: win it and our travails in the Premiership are sidestepped. However the cure is worse than the disease.

What do want me to say about the loss to Southampton? We were good in the first half especially with the return of Dele Alli. Harry scored one and missed three and it should have been wrapped up by half time.

Southampton were very poor but credit to them and their Manager in the second half they changed personnel, tactics and attitude. We  on the other hand were complacent bordering on arrogant and deserved what we got. Nothing.

Dele looked a class above but was totally spent before the hour mark but wasn't subbed until the 82nd.minute. Mauricio clearly testing him to destruction We held out until the 70 minute mark but then conceded an untidy goal which eventually bobbled its way into the net

Four defenders looked on as the ball found its way across  goal. Rose in a world of his own opted not to deal with it and Valery just about scored. coming in behind him. So the proverbial game of two halves.

The second was a scorching free kick by Ward-Prowse after a so called 'professional' foul by Kyle Walker Peters just outside the area. I so wanted KWP to take his chance and nail down his place but he couldn't find a hammer.

He was in good company though and this was a dispiriting loss after I have tried so hard to talk up our chances to keep everybody's spirits up on here and in the world generally. The three week gap does us, the fans, no favours before the Liverpool game.

The squad are all going for some intensive and yet relaxing warmish weather training in Spain. It may allow wounds to heal and minds to refocus wherever their minds are currently. We are now in a dog fight for 4th. and we have only ourselves to blame.

 Moura started but apart from pace gives us little. He seems to have little awareness of the players around him. Eriksen showed some nice touches in the first half but went AWOL later.

Sanchez was nervy and Vertonghen seemed unworried whether we won or lost. Without Winks the midfield was ponderous and Sissoko is in danger of lapsing into his former pantomime villain's role.
'Oh yes he is'

Mauricio banished to the stands for two matches looked down in dismay but his substitutions were too late to affect the game and afterwards he seemed more put out than me.

With Chelsea forcing a draw in extra time  and Arsenal halting Man. Utd progress things are not as bad as they might have been. Beat Liverpool in three weeks and the world would look much brighter. But it's not looking likely at the moment.

It's all getting a little claustrophobic below City and Liverpool with four points covering the next four places between us and Chelsea with Arsenal now just a point behind us in 4th after puncturing Ole Gunnar Solskjær's balloon.

At least the three week gap gives us a little breathing space and only Harry Kane should turn out for England with Dier, Dele, Trippier and Winks all recovering or recently returned from injury. Some hopes.

I am downgrading my 3rd. place forecast from probable to possible. But if the fact that it is now Arsenal in 4th having cut our lead from 10 points to 1 doesn't focus our minds and inspire us then I don't know what will.

Our brand new state of the art stadium and the Europa on Thursdays would be a disappointing combination but it's not too late to do something about it. We are still the top London team with 8 to go.

Good football without a state of the art stadium is acceptable but without good football a spanking new stadium is no compensation.

Some Good News.
Zidane has returned to Real Madrid and Ole is a shoo in at Man.Utd so Mauricio is safe with us for another season.

New Stadium:
From the Official Site:

If the two scheduled test events are successful then the following applies.

If Brighton win their FA Cup quarter-final match on Sunday 17th March we shall play Crystal Palace on Wednesday 3rd April and Brighton on 23rd/24th April.

If Brighton lose their FA Cup quarter-final match on Sunday 17th March we shall play Brighton on 6th/7th April (subject to Champions League scheduling) and Crystal Palace on 23rd/24th April.

Told you, it's April, fingers crossed.Sill a few 'ifs', 'subject to's' and 'buts' in there but looking good. Another inspirational factor? How many do we need? Champion's league; new stadium, finishing above Arsenal Chelsea and Man.Utd

Jimmy's Video Spot.
'Lest we forget'. Stadiums, Schmadiums. Takes your mind off the football anyway. Come on you Spurs, please.


Wednesday, 6 March 2019

Spurs Build 'Beautiful' Wall.


We built a beautiful wall
and Mexico are going to pay for it.
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 The JimmyG2 Column. 
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Straight out of the Donald Trump playbook on Tuesday night. We built a wall, a beautiful wall and Mexico are going to pay for it. Well not the last part obviously but we built one, and it was beautiful and Borussia couldn't find a way through it, over it or round it.

Who knew we had such artisanal skills. With Mauricio the Architect and Jan and Hugo the Master Builders we withstood the Dortmund siege and repelled whatever they threw at us.

And they threw some stuff  in the first half it must be admitted. But the wall stood firm and every brick played its part. Even Serge's section didn't crumble. I fully expect us to receive the 'Wall of the Year Award' ahead of The Donald.

We came out from behind the ramparts only occasionally especially in the first half when Dortmund pressed and we defended deep. Son had one sortie but it came to nothing after a push from behind by Wolfe.

However Kane set up by an incisive through ball by Sissoko had his one chance and took it in style just after half time. The foreign hordes crumbled and even Sancho a star in the first leg was rarely seen.

Sometimes our defensive walls are more like sandcastles struggling against the incoming tide. But not on Tuesday night. This one and Spurs are built of sterner stuff. The writing on the wall said ' Do your damnedest'.

And the moving finger having writ moves on to the next round. The draw will be made on March 15 after the last 16 games are completed. The wall, or 'barrier' may be needed again but has been put into storage for now.

Anything Pink Floyd can do we can do better and we can build it again if necessary now the prototype has proved so successful. An unexpected night of pride after the first 3 games of the early stages when we had one point from the first 3 games.

A lot of fuss was made of the Dortmund yellow wall terrace which we are adopting for the new stadium but it was blown away by the Lillywhite version. As they discovered scaling walls is very tiring.

Harry Kane's goal made him Tottenham's leading European goalscorer (24) .I'm not sure now why I was so worried, we were 3-0 up at effectively half time and that's our 4th. consecutive win over Dortmund.

Can we play you every week? (Editor. Don't push it Jimmy.)

Kane is only the second Englishman to score at least five goals in multiple Champions' League campaigns after Steven Gerrard, who did so in 2007-08 and 2008-09. (BBC)

But I was worried and so were you: admit it. An early goal for which they strove would have seen me behind the sofa again. On the half hour mark and again on the hour they pressed hard.

But once again we didn't 'bottle' it  and we go through to the last 8. Last time we went out to Real Madrid but they lost to Ajax so history won't repeat itself.

We have nothing to prove to ourselves or to others so I really don't mind who we draw. There's no easy teams at this stage including us. Bring it on whoever you are.

Walls generally have had a very bad press, bridges fare much better but as the Chinese found they can be useful in certain situations and last night was one of them.

Robert Frost wrote: 'Something there is that doesn't love a wall,' and you can add Borussia Dortmand fans to that whatever they might say. 

Two Match Ban for Mauricio for improper conduct. Lost it, apologised and behaved with dignity afterwards. Daniel is going to pay the 10.000 pound fine. I'm joking, I'm joking.


Injuries
Dier back and looking well. No information about Winks but didn't seem too bad. Just need Dele back now.

Jimmy's Video Spot.
Harry Kane. Well why not? The Golden Age continues. left foot; right foot, headers; ricochets; tap-ins; shots from distance and a newly found skill assists at every level.

Will we ever see his like again?

Monday, 4 March 2019

Important Announcement.

The End Of the World.
Postponed until further notice.
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The JimmyG2 Column.
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There follows an important public announcement for all Spurs supporters: ''The End of the World has been postponed; Armageddon is hereby cancelled; mass suicide is now deemed unnecessary. It is safe to come out onto the streets again.''

We didn't lose three in a row this week; we are still 4 points ahead of Arsenal in third place. The title race is over, but you knew that after Burnley or even before. But what an eventful afternoon.

Man.Utd snuck into fourth, 3 points back but with an inferior goal average and Chelsea will be two points back if they win both their games in hand. A loss against Arsenal would have been a devastating blow.

We have kept out heads above water and only went down twice and not for the fatal third time. We were, at the end, waving not drowning. Every game will play out to this same scenario until the end of the season. Happy Days!.       

We were lucky overall although Arsenal didn't play that well and relief was my main reaction at the end. Some draws feel like a loss: this one felt like a win.

The game hinged on two penalties and two errors by Davison Sanchez, though Aubameyang bought Arsenal's penalty in he last minute which Lloris saved.

So who are the bottlers here? We were 'resilient' and came back a little fortunately having been behind to a self inflicted goal for over an hour. Kane was offside when he was fouled but he certainly didn't bottle his penalty.

Lacazette missed two good chances and Leno made two brilliant saves in close succession to deny Eriksen and then Sissoko. So if there were any 'bottlers' it certainly wasn't us.. We hung in and live to fight another day.

The whole game lacked consistent quality and without Winks and Dele and with Eriksen subdued once again we were increasingly reliant on long balls easily repelled  even  by Arsenal's somewhat doubtful defence.

A simple error by Sanchez had allowed Lacazette to open up the whole of the green space in our half to Ramsey early in the game, there was no cover and he scored with 'aplomb' as all the best sports writers say. The rest of the game was catch up.

Trippier got forward and gave us width but little resulted from his possession. Rose thought he was Roy of the Rovers especially when he moved into the midfield in the second half. Unfortunately
we found out he wasn't. 

With Wanyama clearly struggling it was left to Sissoko to step up. And he certainly did. What a transformation from the player of last season. Much more confident on the ball and playing to his strengths.

Apart from Sanchez errors, the defence came under little sustained pressure. Son seems disorientated by the return of Harry Kane but in the end the boys did just enough to avoid the devastation that a loss would have produced.

A goalless draw or narrow defeat against BVB on tomorrow will mean progress in the Champions' League and then we can compose ourselves for Southampton next weekend and the Merry-Go-Round begins again.

An early goal tomorrow will either settle the nerves or cause panic on the streets and cause the cancellation of the announcement above. Only nine more Premiership games to go. Can you stand the heat?

If Eriksen can locate his current whereabouts; if Dele, Dier and and Winks are fit we might see the return of proper football. It's long overdue.

Jimmy's Video Spot.
Man of the Moment, stepping up when we really need someone. Most recent video I could find from just before Xmas. Moussa Sissoko.

Sorry man for all the criticism I heaped on you last year and the year before. You came good and done good.