The Blog that's not always wrong.

Friday, 26 November 2021

The Only Way Is Up.

 
I think it's time to stop digging.

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The JimmyG2 Column.

It's a well established rule of Spurs Musings that one should never blog when tired, hungry, angry, disappointed or drunk and, in such circumstance, wait 24 hrs before committing one's thoughts to paper.

Perhaps longer when you are all five simultaneously, but we have another game on Sunday, so I will have to risk it. I note with approval that Conte has the same philosophy and doesn't talk to the players when emotionally charged.

After Thursday, I wonder if he'll ever speak to them again. I think this was, and excuse me for getting technical, a clusterfuck of giant proportions. Defeated by the lowest ranked team in the Conference League and our worst performance in living memory.

Defeated by a team that have lost their last four games in the competition and languish mid-table in the Slovenian league. Defeated by a team ranked on a par with Accrington Stanley and Burton Albion in League 1.

When the team was announced, I thought, 'I like it', plenty of experience on the bench and opportunity for fringe players and youth who need game time to make their mark and stake a claim. 

With so many games imminent, 10 before the New Year, we certainly need some players to step up, but on this showing the first team squad will have to soldier on unaided until reinforcements arrive in the January window.

Gil didn't impress; Sess burnt his bridges by getting sent off after half-an- hour; Dele seems intent on a change of scenery; Sanchez beaten twice for the goals may get one whether he likes it or not; Doherty could easily join them.

Rodon could probably do with a loan spell; Gollini doesn't seem to have it; Davies lost the ball for the final goal with seconds to go and is well past his sell-by date; Ndombele given every chance to shine didn't pass muster.

And yet another addition to our impressive and growing collection  of first halves without a shot on target.

Positives? Desperately few. Harry scored and took his goal well; Skipp probably wasn't quite as awful as the rest: things improved after the quadruple substitution 10 minutes after half-time. Desperate times, desperate measures.

We are the only English team that lost in Europe this week and played, on paper, the weakest opponents.  Our hopes to progress depend on next week's fixtures and the best we can do is finish second which results in two more qualifying games.

It certainly didn't go according to plan unless the plan was to bomb out of this competition to free up space and time for the others. That is not what Conte indicated but he is beginning to realise the nature of the task he has taken on.

“After three weeks I am starting to understand the situation. It is not simple. At this moment the level at Tottenham is not so high.'' Masterly understatement but perhaps it lost a little in translation.

After Mura and his first loss no-one would be at all surprised or blame him if he tore up his contract and departed, but he's a proud and successful man and  he will stick with it. I hope.

Horvat scored a fine goal after 11 minutes and Sessegnon was sent off on the half-hour. Things looked increasingly bleak until Harry scored 15 minutes before the end. With Rennes and Vitesse level a draw would have kept our hopes alive.

But the hapless Sanchez beaten on the wing by Marosa desperately tried to make amends and diverted the ball over Gollini for the winning goal on 94 minutes. A shambolic end to a shambolic night.

The 200 Spurs fans that made the trip should have all their expenses paid and a letter of apology although they had been present at an historic occasion: Spurs worst performance certainly in Europe if not ever.

Next time on the 9th. December Spurs need to match Vitesse's result against Mura. If both sides win, then Spurs can only afford to win by one goal less than Vitesse to come 2nd. (Spurs Odyssey)

Spurs (3-4-3):- Gollini; Tanganga, Rodon (sub Dier, 54), Sanchez; Doherty (sub Davies, 53), Ndombele (sub Hojbjerg, 76), Skipp, Sessegnon; Gil (sub Lucas Moura, 54), Kane (Capt.), Dele (sub Son, 54)

Subs not used:- Lloris, Austin (GKs); Reguilon; Emerson Royal, Winks

Booked:- Sessegnon (foul on Karnicnik), Dele (unsporting conduct)

Sent off:- Sessegnon (second yellow for foul on Kous, 31)

Goals 

 Mura
Horvat, 11
Marosa, 90 (+4)

Spurs.
Kane, 72 

We had 2 players booked,  one of them twice and sent off. They had seven different players booked and wore their yellow cards as a badge of pride but never the same one twice. That takes a bit of organisation and planning or collusion.

Conte was booked for over-enthusiasm on the touchline. A pity the team didn't show the same level of commitment especially in the first half.

Next Up: 

Premier League: Away to Burnley this Sunday 28th. November at 2pm.

Jimmy's Video Spot.

Last word to Antonio Conte. Top man almost lost for words at the horror of it all. It's alright Boss Spurs sometimes has that effect on you.

No magic, just work, time. patience, honesty and much more work and time.


Monday, 22 November 2021

Brace, Brace

 Emergency? 
I always watch Spurs in this position.

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The JimmyG2 Column

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 I thought I had fully recovered from Spurs Anxiety Syndrome but the arrival of a top class Manager and a stirring recovery yesterday brings forth Hope and its close companions Worry and Disappointment. But those are gratefully for another day

So ensure that your seat belts are fastened, your tables stowed, your seats upright and your window blinds open (and your pacemakers fully adjusted). We are about to take off. At half-time, I thought we had crashed landed without even leaving the ground.

But Captain Conte restored order, switched off the seat belt signs and led us to an unlikely first win of his regime, and I don't use the word lightly. This week's competition is to guess what Antonio threatened them with at half-time. 

Did Leeds run out of steam, or was our first half display a cunning plan to lull them into a false sense of security? This was a classic 'Game of two halves innit' as our chief football writer declared. This was the same eleven to start both halves physically but not mentally.

Both sides were missing regulars: Romero and Lo Celso injured in the Internationals, Skipp suspended and Ndombele on notice from Conte to become a team player or watch from the sidelines for all his acknowledged talent.

For the first 45 minutes we encountered turbulence  and headwinds from Leeds who pressed us to death  and I expected to hear the dreaded words 'Brace Brace'.  James and Harrison, constant threats, combined to score just on the stroke of half-time.

We were fortunate in some ways not to go in two down and the goal came just in time for Conte's half- time lecture. We came out with a different mentality and within minutes had created two opportunities which both struck the woodwork.

We pressed and defended higher and moved the ball more quickly as we played more on the front foot. Reguilón and Emerson got forward to pin the Leeds midfield. Dier repeatedly broke through the Leed's press with the ball.

The rest is History. Conte's first Premiership win in his first encounter with Bielsa who will be puzzled and disappointed with the result, Reguilón's first goal, and the welcome return of Sessengnon after a torrid time with injury. 

Even Dele made a fleeting appearance and contrived a third goal with Sess which was chalked off for off-side. Winks started and played the whole game and like most of his comrades played much better in the second half.

Lloris once again was sound, usually in the right place at the right time and handling safely. Dier in the absence of Romero took on responsibility for bringing the ball out of defence and was tremendous all round.

Hojbjerg scored the equaliser with a somewhat scuffed effort which found the corner of the net with Meslier wrong-footed. Sanchez came on late for Tanganga and impressed, especially in the air. Sessengnon showed more confidence.

Reguilón's winner was a reward for anticipation when Dier's free kick was deflected by the wall onto the post and he followed up joyfully to fire home before Meslier could recover. The young Frenchman would not be a bad understudy for Lloris.

Conte was a bit late with his substitutions but used them to have a wider look of his options and keep disruption when things were going well to a minimum. Tanganga was not having a good game and Sanchez was certainly  an upgrade.

They overran us in the first half, but only scored once. They had key players missing, Banford, Raphinha and Rodrigo but despite being the away side took the game to us in their usual style. 

We might have expected to win this, at home to a side flirting with relegation and with as bad a goal difference as ourselves (-7) and in the end we duly prevailed, but the flight was temporarily diverted en route.

Harry worked harder, but he has lost that vital split second instinct for finishing, which cost him at least one goal. Son was conspicuous by his absence. Harry may have scored 7 for England against much inferior opposition but needs to sharpen up in the Premier League.

Moura ran headlong into plenty of trouble as usual, but it was his persistence that eventually paid dividends. He was the only one of our front 3 that performed anywhere close to their usual level.

We outran Leeds in the second half, a rare occurrence for them and though they dominated all the usual statistics we topped them with the only one that really matters. Conte's enthusiasm affected players and fans alike.

Not only did the front 3 not score but even Davies in nose bleed territory was thwarted by Meslier from close range, midfielders scored the goals and Hojbjerg is ahead of Harry Kane for goals scored. We go back up to 7th. level with Wolves and a point behind Arsenal in 5th. 

Conspiracy Theory Alert. The story is that we deliberately threw the game against Utd. so that we could sack Nuno (with a handsome pay-off) keep Ole in a job in order to have a second go at Conte. 

I think the previous appointment of Paratici was key but Levy got cold feet first time around. I'm more of a cock-up man myself, but this particular conspiracy is working out fine. So far.

Spurs (3-4-3):- Lloris (Capt.); Tanganga (sub Sanchez, 68), Dier, Davies; Emerson Royal, Hojbjerg, Winks, Reguilon (sub Sessegnon, 79); Lucas Moura (sub Dele, 88), Kane, Son

Subs not used:- Gollini; Doherty, Rodon; Gil, Ndombele, Bergwijn

Booked:- Emerson Royal (foul on James)

Goals

Hojbjerg, 58 Reguilon, 69

Leeds scorer:-
James, 44  

Attendance:- 58,989

Next Up.

UEFA Conference. Away to NS Mura this Thursday 25th. November at 5.45 pm.

Premier League. Away to Burnley next Sunday 28th. November at 2pm

 Jimmy's Video Spot.

Highlights and goals.The view from Leeds probably a fairer assessment than some of the Spurs videos which ignore the first half.

 Pleased for Reguilón who looked more like the player we thought we had bought after a barren spell. Another half without a shot on target but we made up for it.


Monday, 8 November 2021

Ch-ch- ch- ch- Changes

 

 
  But it will have to do for now.
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The Jimmy G2 column
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 Actually I've seen worse  but that was long ago when I used to play and watch over Hackney Marshes.  Antonio talked it up but then that's part of his job. Clean sheet, away point, almost snatched it at the death but there was little nourishing meat on the bones.

Two moderate mid-table teams shadow boxing in the dusk. We stay in 9th and Everton in 11th. Not so much the New Manager Bounce more of a Hopeful Hop. We failed to get a shot on target once again though Lo Celso came close with a  late effort that hit the post. Does that count?

Signs of hope? The back three did OK, Skipp and Romero played well but Reguilón, Son, Moura and Kane, especially Kane were awful and the match displayed few signs of joined up thinking. Substitutions could have been made earlier to impact the game.

We were fortunate to survive a penalty call, overruled by VAR for a foul on Richarlison by Lloris. The game was niggly and disjointed and nobody seemed too bothered. Conte on the touchline showed more passion than the rest put together.

Again that's his job but it makes a pleasant change from Nuno. Conte's only been here minutes so I'm not expecting a great impact on the team's performance yet but the mere arrival of a world class manager might have galvanised the players approach and attitude more.

The arrival of Romero and Emerson has put Dier on notice already and he has responded. Only Skipp seems to be actually enjoying himself and playing with any zest with his rueful smile and banter with the referee. 

Am I expecting too much too soon? Probably. Am I disappointed with the players response? Definitely. Do I think we will challenge for top four? Almost certainly not. After the break I expect some changes  in personnel to accompany the bold move to 3.4.3.

Lo Celso for Moura is an obvious one. Doherty a right back playing at left wing back was bold and he did better than most expected. Big changes are planned for the January window if Paratici can come up with goods and DL the money.

Dele is being talked up for inclusion, Winks has already semi- impressed; Lo Celso has staked a claim. We have, on paper, a benign run of games with no top four opponents until Liverpool just before Xmas, Cheers Santa. Everton with key players missing was the start and a missed opportunity.

Are we moving the ball more quickly? Possibly. Are we playing more incisively? Barely. The changes are glacial although with global warming that is not quite as effective a metaphor as it once was. Welcome changes are afoot and needed if we are to progress.

Rodon and Tanganga seemed to have been eased out although the Europa Conference offers opportunities to explore the wider squad. It is understandable that Conte is using a limited range of players to build teamwork and cohesiveness but picking the exactly same team was another missed chance to see what he's got.

But again he's barely arrived. and I was perhaps carried away by the hype and expecting too much too soon. Two games unbeaten, a clean sheet, a new system and the renewal of optimism is perhaps progress enough for now with big changes on the horizon.

Everton coming off three losses will be happier with the point than we will coming off two even though playing away. The Conte project ended its first Premiership game here with a whimper rather than a bang. The VAR episode and the Lo Celso shot were the high spots.

A couple of good passages of play ended with a fine Kane cross and a wild Reguilón miss; and the other with a measured   Reguilón cross and a header over the bar by his fellow wing back Emerson. But on the whole it was Slim Pickens.

Richarlison is always fun to watch, auditioning with a scowl for the Pantomime Villain role though he had a case and Romero added another yellow to his growing collection. Introducing Tanguy for a five minute cameo was a waste of time but he still managed to get a yellow card.

Conte claimed he had discerned the heart, the passion and the will of his players but it escaped me in the main. We may played with a little more energy and commitment but barely enough to register on the Richter Scale. Two and a half games without a shot on target is a continuing worry. The Holgate red card for a dangerous follow through on Hojbjerg came too late to affect the game.

Chelsea, West Ham and Arsenal are clear above us in the top five but we have current problems to fix before we look up and worry about them.We drew a game we might have lost. Thanks Antonio that will have to do for now.

Curious factoid. We are 9th. in the Premier League league the same as Barcelona in La Liga. It must mean something

Goals. Zilch, Nada, Nix, Blank, Nowt. 

Spurs shots on target. Same

Spurs (3-4-3):- Lloris (Capt.); Romero, Dier, Davies; Emerson Royal, Hojbjerg, Skipp, Reguilon (sub Doherty, 71); Lucas Moura (sub Lo Celso, 71), Kane, Son (sub Ndombele, 85)

Subs not used:- Gollini; Sanchez, Tanganga; Winks, Dele; Bergwijn

Booked:- Reguilon (foul on Townsend), Romero (unsporting conduct), Ndombele (time), Skipp (foul on Townsend)

 

Next Up. After the break.

Premier League. Home to Leeds on Sunday 21a7 November at 4.30pm.

Europa Conference. Away to NS Mura on Thursday 25th. November at 5.45 pm.

 

Jimmy's Video Spot.

Bowie or Dylan? Bowie's Lyrics are a bit a bit cataclysmic here's Bobby D.

And you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone     

For the loser now
Will be later to win 

And the first one now
Will later be last
For the times they are a-changin'

Players and rivals duly warned. 

 

Bobby D. Any


Friday, 5 November 2021

Spurs Take A Walk On The Wild Side.

 

Ah Signor Conte; another Candidate
 for the Tottenham Wheel.
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The JimmyG2 Column 

. 'Tottenham cling on for vital win in 5 goal, 3 red card thriller to take second place in their European Conference group in Antonio Conte's first game in charge' as the tabloids, which obviously I never read, might have put Thursday night's performance.

Hang on to your hats friends it just might be a bumpy ride. When your goalkeeper is your best player it usually tells a story and three red cards tells another. 3 goals up in 28 minutes we needed the intervention of the referee to blunt the comeback by Vitesse.

Vitesse a somewhat rough and histrionic side but with some decent players and capable of bright football at times scored an OG.(Rasmussen)  and had their captain (Doehki) and their goalkeeper sent off in the second half thanks to a most bizarre refereeing performance.

Still it's an ill wind,,,,fortunately there was no VAR to check his decisions especially the red card for handling outside the area by Schubert. The fact that he was a fellow countryman of our new Manager is entirely circumstantial.. 'Grazie mille' Signor Di Bello and your Italian compatriots.

Conte had clearly tapped into the the recently re- discovered DNA, which was not a bad reward for 48hrs work but it only lasted 28 minutes. Perhaps if his Work Permit had come through earlier it might have got us through until half-time.

Even during the 30 minute opening blitzkrieg Vitesse were not entirely on the defensive and the match was more even than that first period suggested. Overall they shared possession (53/ 47%) but had more shots (12/ 16) and more corners (2/9) than we did.

Politely put, they were uncompromising in their approach and this was the beginning of their failure to equalise as the sendings off weakened their resolve and allowed us to survive despite playing 20 minutes with a man down.

Sanchez who was kicked in the head and played on with bandaged up will have impressed Antonio with his resolve. Neither Skipp nor Hojbjerg made much impression and Winks did well again when he replaced Skipp.

 Romerio who continually courts the yellow card, he has 6 so far to his' credit', will have to curb his enthusiasm if he is to get the same accolades (best defender) as he did in Italy. We conceded the first to another set piece header when Dier was out-jumped by Rasmusson.

Emerson had a good game down the left, Kane looked a little more involved staying further forward; Son and Moura were lively and scored well taken goals and pressure from Kane forced the error from Rasmusson who had the honour to score for both sides.

 Lo Celso on for Hojbjerg should have scored and Ndombele, on for Son for made some telling crosses from the left. Otherwise it was a game of 1/3rd to 2/3rds. and we scraped over the line to give the team, the manager, and the club a welcome boost.

Conte in after match interviews with no hint of irony suggested "In my opinion and my mind there is a lot of space for improvement for this team, in every single player," 

Over to you Mr.Conte now earn the rest of your many millions. He was well received by the home crowd and responded to all four corners of the circle. The team for Everton on Sunday will be interesting.

Could Dele or Winks start? The prospects for youngster will be few and far between. It is not part of Conte's USP. Winning trophies and not taking nonsense from anyone is.

What started as a Stroll in the Park became something of a Walk on the Wild-side but with the referee's help we kept our early advantage. Conte will have been pleased with the result but perhaps not so much the manner in which it was achieved.

However this was a good indication of the task ahead until he can upgrade one or two or even three or four positions though not in one window, and perhaps bring out the best in half a dozen others.

  “When there is a possibility to kill the opposition you must kill. I don’t like these crazy games.” Welcome to Tottenham Antonio. An exciting game for the neutrals, whoever they are.

Goals: 

Spurs:Son, 14 Lucas Moura, 22 Rasmussen (o.g.), 28

Vitesse: Rasmussen 32 Bero 39 

 Red Cards: Romero, 59 (second yellow )

Spurs (3-4-3):- Lloris (Capt.); Romero, Dier, Davies; Emerson Royal, Hojbjerg (sub Lo Celso, 87), Skipp (sub Winks, 73), Reguilon; Lucas Moura (sub Sanchez, 73), Kane, Son (sub Ndombele, 72)

Subs not used:- Gollini, Austin; Tanganga, Rodon, Doherty; Dele; Bergwijn, Scarlett

Sent off: Spurs Romero, 59 (second yellow)

Vitesse: Doekhi, 80 (second yellow), Schubert, 84 (handball outside his are

 Next Up:

Premier League: Away to Everton this Sunday 7th. November at 2pm.

International break then

Premier League. Home to Leeds on Sunday 21st, November at 4.30 pm.

Jimmy's Video Spot: 

Straight to the Horse's Mouth. Bloody control freak. I don't think he will be broken on the Tottenham wheel like other lesser men before him.


Monday, 1 November 2021

Just Another Manic Monday.

  Friends, fans and Tottenham Supporters

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The JimmyG2 Column.

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 It's been a slow news day but even so we've been overtaken by events. We will proceed in an orderly fashion with the game against United before we move on to the managerial situation, You've got my attention Tottenham. Now deliver.

I said after Burnley that the 'Wake' had been postponed, well it's on now and you're all welcome. Things are a bit stretched so bring a bottle or six. A selection of Petit Fours, Croissants and Chocolate Eclairs will be provided.

The demise of a once great team, if you an remember that far back should be celebrated with due deference but in style.The background noise you can hear is of the assessments and predictions being rapidly re-calibrated as the season progresses.

Like Mark Anthony I come to bury Tottenham not to praise them . The Pundits say, and they are all honourable men, that we lacked ambition but it was targeted investment that was lacking on players rather than infrastructure. But they are all honourable men.

When two drowning men struggle together to survive the flood tragedy is inevitable. In this case United. live to fight another day and Spurs drop to 8th. behind Arsenal and West Ham and a top half finish looks like is the limits of our ambition.

We were struggling against a re-vamped opposition whose strike force have a combined age of 70. Ronaldo scored with  a fine strike from a very narrow angle  and then set up Cavani for a clever dinked finish over a sprawling Hugo Lloris . We did not have a shot on target again.

Romero and Dier coped reasonably well until Davies lost Ronaldo at the far post. Meanwhile Cavani  cruised in the open spaces. Rashford  scored a third goal just before the end for luck with the defence wide open. until then we kept them at bay

 That's a bit like saying that the Continental coach tour went really well until the coach unfortunately plunged over a precipice on a winding mountain road killing everyone on board. The postcards are still in the post.

Once again we dominated possession ( 58/42%) and had 10 corners to their 2. but had little to show for it. Romero actually scored but was ruled offside, but then so was Ronaldo for a powerful second. 

Harry Kane seems to be on a technical strike: turning up for work  in his overalls with just his lunch-box and no tools.

Nuno took the heat but he was the human shield for Levy and ENIC. All three were called out during the game but Nuno will go first, it's just a matter of when. And the answer is today.

Change is necessary: formation, personnel, attitude, Manager whatever. I would rather watch some youngsters actually trying and failing  than what we are currently enduring. 

The 2nd. eleven is vastly inferior to the 1st eleven so we need to skip a level and try some promising youngsters. We have scored only 9 goals in 10 games and our goal difference is superior only to the bottom three sides.

Nothing that Nuno tried worked. Bergwijn for Moura made little sense and was roundly booed; Dele for Lo Celso smacked of desperation. Skipp who was beaten in mid-field in the build-up to the second goal was replaced by Ndombele but he made little impression.

Emerson emerges with some credit for a persistent display, but the midfield was unprogressive; the attack was completely subdued;  the defence eventually overwhelmed and the manager devoid of effective solutions. Plenty to do then Nuno. 

''Spurs were my friend, faithful and just to me: 

 We all did love them once, not without cause;

I speak not to disprove what Pundits say, for they are all honourable men

But here  to speak of what I do know.

 My heart is in the coffin there with Spurs

 and I must pause 'til it come back to me'' (Julius Caesar.)

Hopefully soon. 

Spurs (4-2-3-1):- Lloris (Capt.); Emerson Royal, Romero, Dier, Davies; Hojbjerg, Skipp (sub Ndombele, 66); Lucas Moura (sub Bergwijn, 54), Lo Celso (sub Dele, 73), Son; Kane

Subs not used:- Gollini; Doherty, Reguilon, Sanchez, Rodon, Tanganga

Booked:- Davies (foul on McTominay), Romero (foul on Rashford)

Goals. Tottenham none.

 United: Ronaldo 39; Cavani 64: Rashford 86.

Attendance 60,000+

Next Up;

Conference League: Home to Vitesse this Thursday 4th. November at 8pm.

Premier League: Away to Aston Villa Next Sunday 7th. November at 2pm.

Manager watch:

Nuno gone and his coaching staff. 'Dead man walking' I'm afraid. Crisis meeting after the defeat between Levy, Nuno and Paratici. 'Conte in advance talks and a deal more likely this time'. it says here.

He is flying to London as we speak and it's not for the weather, or the food.. Announcement later? But let's not Conte our chickens. this is Daniel Levy remember.

What a complete waste of time and money it has been. Nuno lasted 17 matches and survived only slightly longer than it took to appoint him.

Is Conte the man? If he comes he just might be but at least now we have some hope to clutch at. Bloody 'Hope'. Alright already, I'm clutching I'm clutching.

One thing about Conte he doesn't mess around, calls a spade 'una vanga' and will give short shrift to those who don't fall in line. Bring it on.

Jimmy's Video Spot 

Nuno's last interview as Tottenham Manager. Now ex-Manager 'We have to stick together'. I think that one's gone Nuno.

Lovely man in the wrong place at the wrong time.


Thursday, 28 October 2021

Reports of Our Death...

Tottenham in Recovery Mode.

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The JimmyG2 Column

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Spurs agree with Mark Twain that 'the reports of our  deaths are greatly exaggerated'. We are still on life support and the 'Wake' has been postponed until at least Saturday night. Burnley gave us the kiss of life and while there's life there's hope, so they say.

Can we do it on a wet Wednesday night in Burnley? 'Yes' we can!' as my kids favourite character used to say. Only just maybe. If the West Ham highlights were only worth 2 minutes,30 seconds should suffice for this one.

Moura got his first goal since February, also against Burnley, from  Emerson's first cross in Tottenham colours. Now he's got the hang of it I'm hoping he tries it again with similar success, Moura's downward header in the 78th. minute was a text book example. 

Gollini made his first save with just 6 minutes to go and neither side had a shot on target in the first hour though Kane had a couple of chances set up by Lo Celso who was clear candidate for MOM. Lo Celso himself was foiled by Pope when sent through by Kane .

The defence especially Emerson, Sanchez and Romero played well with some strong interventions. The hamstring injury that saw Gil replaced by Moura on 25 minutes worked in our favour because Moura added some zest and was the goalscorer. 

Any big guns not on at the start came on later (Son and Ndombele on 66 minutes) and Spurs perked up for the first half hour of the second half. As soon as we scored we went worryingly into 'hold what we have ' mode The Mourinho game plan

I don't want to wax too lyrical: the performance and the opponents don't merit it and on Saturday we may hit another brick wall. But there were glimmers from the defence and from Lo Celso. Captain Kane and Bergwijn misfired much of the time. 

Young Oliver Skipp as a key player was taken off just before the goal to conserve him for Saturday. Neither Dele nor Winks were in the squad at all. Must mean something though Nuno wouldn't be drawn. The transfusion worked anyway

In so far as we stumbled across the ideal opponents to breath some life into out fading season so Manchester United may have found the same to refresh the parts other teams don't reach: The Battle of the Fading Giants enjoins on Saturday.

What are the chaes that Kane will be dropped for Saturday and Son up front? He has scored once in 10 outings in the league. no nor me neither though there are rumours he has an ankle injury.

Spurs (4-2-3-1):- Gollini; Emerson Royal, Romero, Sanchez, Davies; Hojbjerg, Skipp (sub Ndombele, 66); Gil (sub Lucas Moura, 25), Lo Celso (sub Rodon, 89), Bergwijn (sub Son, 66); Kane (Capt.)

Subs not used:- Austin; Doherty, Dier, Reguilon, Tanganga

Booked:- Son (time wasting) 

Goal: Moura 68 minutes. Assist Emerson

Next Up:

Premier League:Home to Manchester Utd. this Saturday 30th. Oct. at 5.30 pm-

Europa conference League:Home to Vitesse this Thursday 4th. November at 8pm.

The Quarter Final draw is on Saturday morning and I haven't decided yet who my preferred opponents are now that City are out.The game will be played in the week before Christmas.Three wins and a trophy is ours.

Jimmy's Video Spot.

In case we don't win again soon I'm going to spoil you with nearly 10 minutes of Highlights. Doesn't look as dull and dreary as the commentary I listened to made it sound. Well not quite.

Monday, 25 October 2021

Pride of London

  Not this year.

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The JimmyG2 Column.

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 In the 9 games since the start of the Season we have lost to Chelsea, Arsenal, Crystal Palace and now West Ham. We only need to lose the Watford to complete an ignominious set.  It's now 10 games in all competitions without a clean sheet.

We slip with this loss from level 5th with Brighton back down to 6th and this could well mark our high-water mark for the time being. Possibly for a long time.

Nuno has seemingly over achieved to get us to the borders of Top four and we were by no means second best at West Ham, except for the result of course. With the failed attempt to cope in midweek and our loss this weekend you feel that the situation is starting to unravel.

He has clearly taken on a task for which he is unsuited and the pressure will only build from here. The betting odds  surprisingly put Nuno only 4th favourite to be sacked (20/1) with Ole clear favourite at 3/1 on with Daniel Farke and Dean Smith ahead of Nuno.

 Perhaps Conté was the man after all 'to boldly go' and all that. Anyway Mrs Lincoln 'how did you enjoy the Game? Well I only asked for a draw which would have been enough to keep us ahead of West Ham and up clear into 4th ahead of Brighton.

I didn't even ask them to blow the bloody doors off. but though as Nuno rightly asserted we 'controlled the game we did little with our 62%  possession. West Ham lay in wait and when our attacks increasingly broke down they pounced though with little success.

Romera had a rough afternoon with Antonio but bore up well. Antonio had the last laugh when he turned a corner into the net whilst being marked inexplicably by Kane. Chances were infrequent and both keepers dealt with them.

Lloris saved very well from Fornals early on, Tanguy might have better with an early header and Fabiansky saved very well from a Kane header from a Reguilón cross. It was thin gruel on the excitement front. Romero provoked Fornals, otherwise for a Hammers game it was all sweetness and light.

Our build-up was painfully slow with most passes being lateral ones. Tanguy attempted some incisive efforts but apart from one to set up Son most were intercepted. He was our main threat but inconsistent and intermittent. Neither Kane nor Son  exerted much pressure.

The West Ham defence was well organised and strong. Skipp had a good game making one or two enterprising forward runs but ran into trouble every time; Moura was in head down mode again.We were very poor in the final third and succumbed to a 72nd. minute sucker punch..

They gave us the pitch for the last 20 minutes but we had neither the wit nor the guile to make use of it. Many fans are angry at Nuno, Levy, Kane and the world in general. I am sad and disappointed that we have let things get i to this pretty mess.

There is something about Right Backs at Spurs. We let our last decent ones, Trippier and KWP leave and seem to have replaced them with a curious set of characters, Serge for example. Emerson Aparecido Leite de Souza Junior might prove no better. He gets forward but won't cross if he can help it. Early days.

The solution is not quick nor simple. Nuno will go soon enough , Levy not so soon. But a journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step and whatever it is needs taking before things get out of hand. 

It's sad after the relative glories under Pochettino, no trophies I Know but relative success. If there is a move to get him, perhaps the Manager after next then the tensions that led to his exit are still there and need resolving if his return is to be a success

If we can beat Burnley in midweek and Utd next Saturday then much might forgiven if not forgotten. Give it a go you Spurs.

Spurs (4-2-3-1):- Lloris (Capt.); Emerson Royal, Romero, Dier, Reguilon (sub Gil, 84) ; Hojbjerg, Skipp; Lucas Moura (sub Bergwijn (90+1), Ndombele (sub Lo Celso, 84), Son; Kane

Subs not used:- Gollini; Sanchez, Rodon, Tanganga, Davies; Dele

Booked:- Romero (Unsporting conduct) 

Only two subs on 84 minutes and Bergwijn just before the whistle. None made any impression.

But don't forget friends things could be much worse. We could be Manchester United supporters. Not sue whether its a good moment to play them or not.

Next Up:

Carabao Cup Away to Burnley on Wednesday 27th. October  at 7.45 pm.

Premier League: Home to Man.Utd. on Saturday 30th. October at 5.30 pm.

Jimmy's Video Spot

2 minutes highlights is about enough.