Fakkydoodledandy Spurs..

 

So here we are again, waiting for our hero’s to zero’s to take to the field again in a bid to turn around a run of eminently avoidable defeats, can we do it?

A day at the seaside normally means a fun day out, being mugged by the arcade slot machines, rotting our teeth with a stick of rock, and braving a not so scenic walk along a pebble strewn beach, marvelling at how brown and dirty the sea looks, but not today.

Today we take on a Brighton team buoyed by a sense of self belief (and some good results) and no end of ‘pride’… To get a result today I feel we will have to match their energy, and passion which we know they have, and show a level of confidence and clarity, if we are to walk away with all three points.

We have all had our say on what we’ve seen in the previous three games, unfamiliar formations, bizarre substitutions and a general lack of concentration, which to be fair is something we haven’t seen to much of in recent years.

Personally I would like to see Kane given a rest, he looks like he’s wading through treacle at the moment (saucy minx), struggling to keep up with play, when he get’s a chance he want’s too much time or an extra touch to make sure, that’s not the Kane we’ve come to know and love. Perhaps it’s time for Poch to give a front three of Son. Lamela and Moura a try, with Eriksen-sen-sen-sen playing just behind? A front three would mean we play a back four, am I bothered? No. To play a back three the wingbacks become integral to the system, and for me neither Trippier nor Davies have the pace to maximise that benefits of that formation. Some bright spark (bloody upstart!) on the ere bloeug suggested Trippier play in the middle, using his passing ability in the centre of the park, not a bad idea, and one I’ve also considered, I’m not sure, mainly because of his lack of height and ability to win arial duels.

This is all conjecture on my part, and whatever team Poch puts out will have my full support, if we approach this game with the right attitude, and look to set the tempo (and not dawdle) I see no reason why the cockerel shouldn’t be crowing LOUDLY this evening!

Come on you Fakkydoodledandy Spurs!!!!!

 

 

Danspurs’ ‘Never Mind the Seagulls’

Never mind seagulls – we head to Brighton on Saturday with an albatross around our necks in the shape of our first three-match losing streak since the dark days of Dimwood.

Returning to happier times, though, the last time we headed to the Amex was five months ago, on 17th April.  In the three games immediately preceding that one, we had finally won at Stamford Bridge – so were the best thing since sliced-bread – pipped a narrow squeak away to Stoke, then copped a pants down at home to City, proving that the round-earthers were right all along, and we never will thrive under Levy.

That run of results saw us third in the table after 33 games, two points behind Man U, three points ahead of the Dippers, and ten points ahead of Chelsea in the race for securing top-four.

For the football purist, though, the telling statistic is that we were twenty points behind Man City, and the seeds of that sorry state of affairs had perhaps already been sewn by this stage last season, where the equivalent round of fixtures saw us trailing the Cityzens by six points despite having just strolled into Stratford to beat West Ham 2-3.   However, we were also six points behind Man U and two points behind Chelsea, proving it’s too early to say a gap can’t be narrowed or that an early pace-setter won’t fall away as Chelsea did under Conte.

This time around, of course, and we’re in a pretty similar position, though it’s Liverpool and Chelsea six points ahead rather than the Manchester clubs.  And, of course, by the end of the weekend, we could be even further behind, because Brighton away won’t be easy, especially the way we’ve been playing:  I caught most of their second half performance against Southampton on Monday and thought they were unlucky to be two-nil down. Even so, they stuck to their game-plan of attacking down the flanks and getting numbers in the box, and although I didn’t see the end of the game I wasn’t surprised to learn they equalised at the death.

Their other results have been patchy, however, losing to Watford and the Dippers away while beating Man U and drawing with Fulham at home, while, trawling back through last season’s results, if you ignore another routine win over Man U the week after we paid them a visit, they haven’t tasted a Prem victory at the Amex since Arsenal were overcome 2-1 on 4th March.

Last season, we ended up coming away with a 1-1 draw, with Kane scoring on 48 minutes following good work from Son and Pascal Gross equalising from the spot two minutes later following an Aurier trip.  I remember watching the game but don’t remember much about it, except that on the blog I used to read back then (but was banned from contributing to) both the result and performance were taken as a sure sign we would get no points from our remaining four fixtures and drop out of the top four. Which, obviously, would serve Enic right and reveal Poch for the Levy-pet fraud that he is.

We actually won three of those games to finish third, although the FA Cup semi-final defeat to Man U which immediately followed the Brighton game soured that achievement and took the gloss off an otherwise excellent season, more in the limp manner of the defeat than the fact we had lost yet another FA Cup semi-final – plus it was yet another key game we lost after taking the lead.

This time around and, for some, we’re verging on crisis again, while, for others, we’re wallowing in it: No new stadium, no new signings, and no clue what Poch’s going on about with all his guff about cows.  His substitutions on Tuesday didn’t make a lot of sense either.  As far as I’m concerned, Watford could have been a blip but the performance against Liverpool was woeful, even though we should have been awarded a penalty at the death which would probably have seen us steal a point.  I don’t feel that performance was entirely out of character for a Poch team, though, as I felt we hit similar lows away to both Arsenal and Leicester last November, a month in which we also narrowly beat Crystal Palace and drew 1-1 against West Brom at Wembley, all of which followed our 3-1 trouncing of Real Madrid.

This, for me, has been the most frustrating aspect of the Poch era (on the pitch, anyway):  We seem to follow a great result such as the ones last season against Dippers and Madrid at home and Chelsea away or the recent win at Old Trafford with a run of shoddy performances which completely undo the milestone results.  I don’t know if it’s squad size, form, formation, or a Hoddle-like smugness that sees players and management sit back on their laurels after doing something special, but it’s something that Poch’s going to have to find an answer to if he wants to take himself to the next level without having to jump ship to a club that has oodles of cash to cover up this flaw in his teams.

On Tuesday, in the second-half, and especially after our goal, I did feel there were signs we were playing ourselves back into some sort of form until Poch’s tactical changes handed the initiative back to Inter.  On Saturday, no matter what formation and team he sends out, it would be nice to see a performance which shows some evidence of our pressing game, a return to form for Christian Eriksen, signs of life from Harry Kane, signs that we have a functioning central midfield, and an end to Poch’s worst ever run as Tottenham manger:  The sort of performance, in short, his Spurs teams have been delivering for us more often than not.

But, it’s also got to be said, the sort of performance it feels we haven’t seen over ninety minutes in a while now from Tottenham.

SYD’s DEBUT

DON’T PANIC! I’m here to help if you need me Poch!

There is nothing wrong with Poch’s tactics. As a matter of fact he should win everything with the formation of 3 at the back, 2 attacking wing backs, a DM and a AM and 3 up front is fantastic. This is his preferred formation I believe.

With a strong wall in the back providing unyielding defence and feeding to either of 3 directions, one of the MF’s, one of the wing backs and then in turn either a diagonal ball, a ball down the line or a ball through the middle for the deeper lying runner behind the oppositions back 3 or 4.

So what’s wrong with Poch’s tactics – NOTHING. NOTHING AT ALL.

Well how come our displays in the last two weeks (some might say longer which I can understand) have been ‘tres ordinaire’?

Here comes the rub –

To carry these tactics out you need the right player for the right position. For example – you might say our best back 3 is Toby, Sanchez and Vert’s in which case I would agree, so let’s agree these 3 should be capable to perform the first part of our tactic’s.

This is most important if you chose to play out of the back as opposed to hoofing it which is what Poch is demanding at this point.

They need to fulfill the next requirement of getting the ball to our wing backs or link with either the AM or DM.

Let’s look at the qualities of a good wing back – I would suggest the following certainly come in handy:

Positioning

Calmness on the ball

Speed

Ability to control the ball and pass

Ability to cross accurately

Ability to get back

Well let’s look at our so called WB’s and see who has all of these – In my opinion only Trippier comes close. Davies is terrible and who knows if the old Rose will return. The only trouble with Trips is he is not very good at defending when required. Aurier is a hit and miss and fringe players don’t rate at the moment.

Now let’s look at the AM’s and DM’s. What qualities do they need:

Positioning

Calmness on the ball

Ability to pass

Ability to read the game

In our squad, the only real AM is Ericksen (who can either player AM or more up front but I believe this is where Poch wants him – just behind the front 3). Who else fits the bill? (fringe players are not there yet).

In the DM’s department, we have a plethora but I would suggest only the ageing Mousa plays this role with any aplomb and even he is erratic. Dier is out of position, terrible at passing and also at defending set pieces and seems to be regressing. Winks is not coming on like we hoped. Wanyama could provide hope but injury is slowing down his progress and Sissoko has a good engine but little else and that’s even if you place him in this category.

Again, none of the fringe players fit the bill – yet.

Playing 3 up front should work very well with this formation behind them ‘IF’ the players behind are decent at their individual roles.

I think in Sonny, Lucas, Lamela, Dele and Kane we have quality in abundance.

In theory – a terrific formation.

It may take time but we need to build 2 or 3 players each window to get where Poch’s tactics and formation show quality. We need fast, ball controlling, calm wing backs. We need another AM to back up Ericksen and we certainly need much better quality in the MF.

In summary (and thanks for reading if you got this far), we are reasonably well off at the back and at the front, however almost everything else in the middle of the sandwich needs more seasoning.

We simply do not have the quality to carry out Poch’s instructions.

Here is my one hope – ‘Juan Foyth’ to play in front of the back 3 (something to consider anyway).

Inter away

I don’t do predictions.  I’ve got a weird *It’ll jinx us* thing if I say we’re going to win…and I can’t bring myself to say we’re going to lose, or even draw.

As per all my rantings about the Watford and Liverpool games, I just want to see us pick it up A LOT.  This possession-based filopastry is killing our attacking intent.  What I’m witnessing over and again is that when we have possession in our half or the first 10m of the oppo’s half, all our Full backs, AMs and Kaneinho are in position, waiting for the ball to come forward or wide.  I think we’re meant to play it into feet and then have runners going past the ball to receive a clever flick or one-two but, more often than not, there’s nobody running past and/or the flick gets cut out.

What I see other teams do is some slick inter-passing at pace…cutting through midfields and defences.  We’re like Subbuteo players in comparison.

So are we going to be experimental and have our way with Inter, or are they going to royally……it doesn’t bear thinking about.

Team to play Inter: Vorm, Aurier, Sanchez, Vertonghen, Davies, Dier, Dembele, Lamela, Eriksen, Son, Kane

Subs: Gazzaniga, Rose, Walker-Peters, Wanyama, Winks, Lucas, Llorente

Pre-Match Blather

Pochettino has made a “technical decision” to omit defenders Toby Alderweireld and Kieran Trippier from his side’s Champions League opener against Inter Milan.

technical
adjective
1.
relating to a particular subject, art, or craft, or its techniques.
“technical terms”
2.
involving or concerned with applied and industrial sciences.
“an important technical achievement”
synonyms: practical, scientific, applied, applying science, non-theoretical; More
noun
1.
(in areas with guerrilla warfare) a small truck with a machine gun mounted on the back.
“the helicopters flew difficult night-time searches for technicals”

I’m assuming Poch isn’t referring to the noun in his description. Although on second thoughts it might be useful to bolster our leaky defence at dead ball situations.

In other news Dele Alli (hamstring) remains unavailable after missing Spurs’ defeat by Liverpool on Saturday, as does captain Hugo Lloris (thigh).

On the upside Moussa Sissoko (hamstring) is also absent for the match at the San Siro.

“You cannot bring 25 players and can only play 11,” said Pochettino.

“That is the reason. It was a technical decision. You can find it in the dictionary, maybe tactical also on the pitch – yes, it’s tactical too.”

Italian giants Inter Milan return to Champions League action following a six-year absence but suffered a 1-0 defeat by Parma on Saturday as their indifferent Serie A start continued.

Forward Mauro Icardi should return to Luciano Spalletti’s starting XI after the Argentine was a substitute in that match, but Danilo d’Ambrosio faces a late fitness test.

Dan’s Stat Attack

https://media3.giphy.com/media/34WTfu2vm52tq/giphy.gif

danspurs writes:

Stats, stats, stats.  We all have differing views on how useful they are, and we all know the vast majority of them can be skewed to fit the narrative of the person producing them.

As an example, off the top of my head: Spurs are shit-hot at corners because we scored from 50% of the two we won at Old Trafford; Spurs are utterly shit at corners because we gurned our way through all ten at Watford with zero end-product.

For me, the two things I think about ahead of every premier league game are pretty simple – how are we performing points-wise compared to the same stage last season, and what did we do in the same fixture last season, irrespective of when that fixture took place – so I asked Flatty if he’d mind me having a go at producing a weekly post ahead of each Premier League fixture reminding the good ship Flat Oeuf of these two things and any other random snippets of nonsense I can manage to cram in:  Just the same as my wife around midday on any given Valentines Day, he said ‘you have a go and we’ll take it from there.  Definitely no promises, though.’.

So here I am, having a go.  As it’s still pretty early on in the season, I thought I’d also look back at where we stood following the fourth round of fixtures in each of Poch’s seasons in charge to date, and whether or not our fabled slow starts really have cost us title-bids compared to the teams who eventually triumphed.  Putting this first one together has been a bit rushed, though, so apologies in advance if I’ve mucked up my research on any of the results, or, even, got my seasons mixed up.

In Poch’s first season, 2014-15, our fourth game ended in a 2-2 draw away at Sunderland which saw us in sixth with seven points, already five points off the pace of eventual champions Chelsea.  A welcome away win against the Spammers in Poch’s first game and a battering of Arry’s QPR saw us all dreaming of glory and a truly brave new dawn until the Dippers did us 0-3 at the Lane back in the day when the only titles we were dreaming of were the deeds to Archways premises.  Despite already having given us that battering, though, Liverpool ended that fourth round of fixtures two places and one point behind us.

In 2015-16, a slow start saw us with only three points from four games, wallowing in sixteenth, following three draws and a loss, again five points off eventual champions Leicester, who we had drawn away to, along with home draws against Stoke and Everton and a narrow defeat at Old Trafford on the opening day.   Our dippy mates from Scouse-land ended the same round of fixtures in 7th with seven points.  We followed that by winning a scrappy game against Sunderland one-nil away, with Ryan Mason getting injured in the process of scoring our winner and rarely featuring for us again.  Two games later, though, we took City apart 4-1 at the Lane.  When Liverpool turned up at the Lane two weeks later, in the 9th round of fixtures, Jurgen Klopp’s first game spent on a touchline worrying about his car tyres saw honours shared 0-0.

Following that flash-in-the-pan season where all the big-boys had a year off, we were widely tipped to slide back to our Europa League status again, but 16/17 saw us sitting pretty in fifth after four matches, having won two and drawn two, only two points off eventual champions Chelsea, though four points off early pace-setters Man City.  As in Mo Po’s first season, those pesky dippers were lurking a point behind us, having already visited the Lane for our second home-game, securing a 1-1 draw.   Despite the fact White Hart Lane’s missing corner would surely ruin our season and cause weird winds to disrupt the flow of our game, a single Kane strike on 59 minutes would see us extend our unbeaten start to the season against Sunderland at home in the next round of fixtures, and, of course, we finished our last ever season at The Lane unbeaten and with our highest ever Premiership finish, second.  Wembley would see us slide back to our Europa League status next time around, though, for sure.

So on to last season, and the dreaded Wembley curse.   Following a painfully narrow home defeat to defending champions, Chelsea (I was there, and it was narrow, and it was painful) and a home draw against Burnley, we were sitting fifth on seven points following away wins over Newcastle and Everton.   Liverpool were in seventh, on seven points, having just been torn a new one away at the Etihad.  Despite this, those pesky dippers picked themselves up, brushed themselves off, and took the footballing world by storm, proving once again that they truly are the greatest club-side in the world.  Well, if that’s how you want to spin being ripped another new one by us five weeks later, finishing below us for something like the eighth season in nine, and winning exactly the same number of trophies as we did.  And, rightly or wrongly, at least we stood by our goalkeeper when he started to act a bit drunk.

Which brings us to now, our zero spend zenith, the season when Levy’s chickens will surely come home to roost…

It’s obviously way too early to tell whether the summer’s (lack of) transfer shenanigans and our attempt to break the world-record for home venues in a single season are going to spur us or scupper us, but this is our best start under Poch with nine points from twelve.  However, the dippers have also had their best start over the same period, with a perfect return of twelve points, although neither side can be said to have really hit anything like their best form from last season yet, with our lapse against Watford leaving that bitter taste of Spursy in the back of the throat and Liverpool perhaps having to dig in more then they would have expected for results against Palace and Brighton and their expensive new keeper gifting Leicester the sort of joke goal Hugo likes to keep back for when he feels a world cup final has got a bit one-sided and someone really should do something to distract the world from what a tool Dejan Lovren is.

While it’s weird that their visits to us over Poch’s tenure have consistently come early, the tale so far is one trouncing each and a couple of very close draws, though it’s also (hopefully not) worth remembering that the last time they visited pre-Poch resulted in another pants-down for us and the sacking of AVB.

I’ve got the feeling with this one that it’s one of those games where either team’s capable of giving the other a right pasting, with both equally capable of producing an end-to-end nail-biting nil-nil, which probably means it’s all going to come down to how we do with our corners, and, as the stats show against Watford, we’re fricking awful at them.

The trouble with OneOfOurOwn

Just seen this visual graph of HK10’s Premier League output before and after his injury at the end of last season. The work is by a certain @EFaroh (https://twitter.com/efaroh/status/1038879813157699584?s=21) on The Twitter. He admits himself that the long block between May and July which indicates the off season slightly throws the visual impact of the graph.

What it does seem to demonstrate is that his numbers have measurably changed since the injury in March. This does not even take into consideration any stats during the World Cup.

Our Harry scored a much vaunted 6 goals at Russia 2018, with an impressive 66.67% conversion rate…better than any other striker including MBappe at 60%. Only problem is, that 3 of Kane’s goals came from the penalty spot, which skews his ‘outfield’ data a bit.

There’s no doubt that over time Harry is up there with the very best. His stats are better that Ronaldo’s, for example, over the last 4 seasons, on several metrics:

All the same, as I regularly say, some stats can mask the realities of what you can see if you’re watching the games with your own eyes 👀.

It’s pretty clear that Kaneinho has not been firing on all cylinders despite confounding partisan critics with the way he keeps breaking records, winning awards (WC Golden Boot) and exorcising hoodoos (He does score in August!).

Historically, he’s been the sort of player who’s played himself back into form. Perhaps he’s been asked to change his game a little this term to work with Moura? Or to give defences who’ve had 4 PL seasons to work out a strategy for him/us?

To me, he looks a bit knackered. Or crocked. Hasn’t got the same snap about him. Hope I’m wrong.

danspur’s secret debut blog

Why it wasn’t always Tottenham for me

Just in case you’re not all bored enough by the interlull, I thought I’d bore you with how I came to not be a Tottenham supporter until I was fourteen years old.

Like most things, it wasn’t my fault: At the start of the 1976-1977 season my fourteen-year-old brother sat me down and informed me that, having just turned six, I was now old enough to choose a football team to support for the rest of my life.

Despite what was about to take place, I didn’t think this was going to be a difficult decision for me: I already knew I wanted to be a Tottenham fan. My brother was a Tottenham fan, after all, and so were the very cool family next door.

Plus, being six, I loved the name Hotspur, so even though we didn’t live anywhere near N17, I didn’t need to choose. I was already Spurs, me.

My brother had other ideas, though: I was already sharing (and therefore destroying) the cherished privacy of his own bedroom, running around like a demented little-me in all of his hand-me-down clothes, mucking around with all the toys he hadn’t quite finished mucking around with himself, and, even worse, starting to loiter on the fringes of everything he did with his mates.

I wasn’t ruining another element of his life by being a Tottenham fan as well.

“You can choose any team you like,” he said, producing one of those football league ladders you used to get in magazines like Shoot at the start of every season. “Except Arsenal or Spurs. I’m Spurs. And I’m not having an effing Gooner sharing my bedroom. You disgust me enough as it is.”

There being an eight-year age gap between us, and my brother always being prone to massive fits of rage if I didn’t do whatever he told me, I didn’t have much choice in this. Not having a clue who else to support, though, I couldn’t decide, so my brother made me read every team-name on the Shoot league ladder out-loud, which, at that time in my life – where I hadn’t completely mastered reading out-loud without spraying spit everywhere – proved an almost impossible task.

Finally, though, with my brother correcting every mispronunciation and reinforcing every syllable by administering a friendly little Chinese burn to either one of my wrists, I reached the last but one name on the ladder:

West Brom – (phlegm) – wich… West Brom – (phlegm) – wich… West Brom – (phlegm) – wich Albion.

And that was how my brother decided I was to be a West Brom fan. Because I couldn’t pronounce Bromwich without spraying massive volumes of spit everywhere.

I was always a Spurs fan at heart, though. The first football match I can clearly remember watching highlights of on TV was our 9-0 demolition of Bristol Rovers (back in the day when Division Two matches were sometimes featured prominently alongside Division One games on Match of the Day). I can also remember, as a seven-year-old, listening to match-commentary on a crackly old radio and then running around our back-garden with my brother and our next-door neighbours celebrating the fact we had secured promotion back to the First Division by drawing at The Dell. Surely acting on some sort of natural instinct every non-Gooner shares, I joyously celebrated Arsenal losing two FA cup finals and a European Cup Winners’ Cup final in the late seventies, and, of course, our own FA and EUFA cup triumphs of the early eighties. Also, when I was about twelve, our next-door-neighbour lent me a Jimmy Greaves autobiography (This One’s On Me), and I read that from cover to cover about five times, mesmerised by Jimmy’s sense of awe at the great double-winning side he joined, and his obvious reverence for Bill Nicholson, Dave Mackay, the Glory, Glory Nights at The Lane, the genius and tragedy of John White…

Although I always had to be shifty about it with my brother (who was still very territorial about his right to be the only Spurs fan in the house) I had properly fallen in love with the glorious Spurs by the time I was thirteen, and never paid anything more than lip-service towards my enforced support for West Brom.

Which was ironic, given I could now say their name without spraying spit everywhere.

The situation finally came to a head in late 1984, when I was fourteen. At my dad’s insistence, my brother, then in his early twenties but still living at home, had been taking me with him to games at White Hart Lane since the start of the 84-85 season. Given the age-gap between us and the fact we had virtually nothing in common, the two-hour-plus train and tube journey to and from the ground could be tortuous, but, the more often we went, the more the mutual distrust between us seemed to thaw, which had probably been my dad’s hope all along: Even so, despite my increasing whining about the situation, my brother still insisted I wasn’t anywhere near cool enough to be allowed to support his beloved Spurs.

I can’t remember how many games we’d been to by the time our home game against West Brom came around in early November, but more than enough for me to stand there on the terracing directly beneath The Shelf and realise I knew the name of every single Spurs player by sight but couldn’t name a single West Brom player lining up against us.

That was the day I finally stood up to the tyranny of my brother and told him – and, since then, anyone else who’s ever been bothered to ask – I don’t care what you say; I’m Spurs, me.

You’re still a little twat, though, my brother snapped back, and then got back to belting out Come On You Spurs… a song I finally felt able to legitimately join in with myself.

And, obviously, bloody West Brom turned us over 3-2 that afternoon, the first time my brother and I ever saw us lose in the flesh, and yet another thing he’s always blamed me for since.

Simply the best or worse than all the rest.

Found this interesting article rating the 13 Tottenham managers that have been in charge since 1992,the start of the Premier League era. I’d forgotten that Doug Livermore and Ray Clemence were once in charge at the beginning of the era and were actually responsible for signing Teddy Sheringham. Controversially the have Hoddle only 8th best behind Sherwood in 5th! Is that possible or have we fallen into an alternative universe?
Pochettino is clearly the best we’ve had in this period but how do the others rate in terms of the order the article give them?
https://www.planetfootball.com/quick-reads/ranking-every-spurs-manager-in-the-premier-league-era-from-worst-to-best/

Palate Cleanser from McG

 

I’ve taken the liberty of posting McG’s comment as a starter for ten. I hope that’s alright.

So who thinks Dembele shouldn’t start vs dips? I think playing Sanchez & not Dier was the major issue on Sunday. He’s a big game player & does raise his game. I’d like to see some more of winks, but not until he’s fully up to speed, & against some lesser sides first. Dembele to start against dips for me, should be nicely rested too.

Harry Hotspur’s ‘Big Reveal’!

I:’m calling this piece ‘A’ Big Reveal because it isn’t ‘The’ Big Reveal many of us have been threatened and/or promised with for several weeks now.
The privilege of making the ‘Big Reveal’ belongs to Harry ‘The Boy’ Hotspur. I say ‘Big Reveal’ but the threat of exposure which started out as a ‘Big Reveal’, was recently downgraded to ‘more of a humiliation than a reveal’ (something about me and a mate of mine having small willies), and is now (if Harry Hotspur’s dismissive response to recent ‘reveal’ is anything to go by) not even a humiliation, but just something very, very funny. Stick around for a bit longer and you may be lucky enough to witness Harry Hotspur open an old jam jar and release a one of my old farts into the atmosphere.
Those of you unlucky enough to have actually been caught up in the crossfire of this (presumably, ongoing (if Harry Hotspur’s dismissive response to recent ‘reveal’ is anything to go by)) unseemly dispute ostensibly between Flat Oeuf, Fat Bertha and The Boy will have been sent an email explaining ‘everything’ with ‘evidence’ about the ‘dispute’.
Before I go any further I will say this: has acted with patience, dignity and down-right decency throughout, in the face of sometimes extreme provocation, and I really hope Harry Hotspur will now leave him alone to enjoy growing The Flat Oeuf Society.
I will also say that I’m ashamed that I did not stand up for in anything like the way I should have. I mean that. Genuinely ashamed. It was cowardice on my part.
I have invited Harry Hotspur on a number of occasions to (do us all a favour and) make his ‘Big Reveal’, even on this site. I opened up the comments section to him. He posted under about four different screen names (verifiable) even though the comments were opened up to him. Guess what he said? Well, suffice to say it wasn’t the ‘Big Reveal’.
I announced on theboyhotspur.com that I’d be taking the summer off commenting there, simply because I couldn’t face another summer of the kind of ugly sh*t commenting that had become commonplace. For good form I emailed Harry Hotspur with the same message. He replied in a perfectly friendly and mildly humorous manner (verifiable). I fully intended to go back when the new season had begun.
In the meantime, started a new blog for the original small group of TBH posters who had met and made friends. I was invited on as an admin (yes, me!). I stepped aboard the good ship Flat Oeuf but didn’t actually ‘leave’ TBH.
When our new home was leaked to Harry Hotspur, for leaked it was, his public abuse of us began in earnest. Who remembers his exhortation to any dissenter from his personal views to “… join these cunts … “, or his allowing to stand on his blog a comment made by Aussi in Switzerland to the affect that we were paedophiles? Both of these are verifiable by screenshots taken at the time.
Of course, these tactics backfired and more of ‘his’ crowd joined ‘us’. Huzzah! People aren’t stupid you know. Bring the publicity on!
As you know, and as we counselled, if you were caught posting here your days were numbered there. Furthermore some of you now posting here were targeted by Harry Hotspur and promised the ‘Big Reveal’.
Ah, the ‘Big Reveal’. Once upon a time it was a reveal about the lying and duplicitous Fatty and Flatty. Now it seems to be something “very, very funny” about just me! That’s if Harry Hotspur’s dismissive response to a certain other persons own recent ‘reveal’ is anything to go by.
Yes. That’s right. Even after yesterday’s free, frank and fearless ‘reveal’ by Flatty, which should have put this whole nonsense to bed, Harry Hotspur is *still* threatening to expose me!
So, brace yourselves, here goes for A Big Reveal: On the morning of the 15 July 2018 I received an email from Harry Hotspur demanding that I take down a Twitter account which he said was parodying him. Further, he informed me that my DAD would be suspended from TBH until I did so (all verifiable). I had no idea what he was talking about: NONE.
15 July is me skin and blisters birthday and this year (serendipitously) me farver would be in the UK to celebrate it with us. Yay! I told him the news. He wasn’t angry, he was just very, very disappointed.
As it happens, there was a parody account on Twitter. One of the other admins (not Flatty) had to show me what Harry Hotspur was ranting about (verifiable). I sniggered a bit and said whoever put it up DON’T take it down (verifiable). In fact, you may assume that, unless otherwise stated, everything I claim here is verifiable.
So, not knowing anything about this Twitter parody account and thinking whoda funk is this guy to tell me what to do AND drag me innocent ol’ farver into things? I decided to see how easy it would be set a parody account up. It’s very easy. Here’s mine Twitter.com/TheBoyHotspurr. From the moment I set it up on 15 July it has sat there unused and forlorn. I though, let me prick his pomposity a bit, he can’t demand things of me about which I have no knowledge: how dare he?
Unbeknownst to me the owner of the ‘other’ parody account ‘group followed’ Harry Hotspur’s Twitter contacts and wholly inadvertently and completely innocently ‘followed’ Harry Hotspur’s wife and it had understandably put the willies up him. Neither of nor I had any idea that this had happened.
I KNOW action was an innocent mistake because I pointed it out to him and I had his reaction first-hand.
When Harry Hotspur made his initial demands to me about the Twitter account I had no connection with and had the gall to draw me farver into things, and after I set up the new parody account, I decided to have a scootch about the t’internet and see if I could discover ‘anything’ about this obnoxious and largely anonymous, threat-making chap.
Well, I could. It’s actually very easy to find out stuff about people without using any special software, machines or subterfuge of any kind, and without spending any money. EVERYTHING I ‘found’ is in the public domain and entirely accessible to any interested party.
I spoke to the other admins and told them what I’d found, including that I’d found a name which probably belonged to Harry Hotspurs wife/partner, but that I would not divulge any of it to anyone, although we refused to take down the Twitters. We all agreed that we would not resort to dragging third parties into any dispute we had. Remember, no-one knew at this point what is was that had so upset him.
Then Harry Hotspur chose to escalate his threats to me culminating in a threat to ‘expose’ my ‘dark behaviour’ to my employer if I didn’t take the Twitters down. So, in true Churchilian spirit and with the words of the Rev Ian Paisley’s “Never, never, never… “ resounding in my soul I redoubled my efforts to see behind Harry Hotspur’s wall of anonymity.
Late last Sunday night it occurred to me that, as I now had a Twitter account, I could scootch about on there for stuff. So I looked for the name that I’d earlier found and guess what I discovered? Only that Rupert’s parody account was ‘following’ Harry Hotspur’s wife’s Twitter.
My Twitter follows , and vice versa. Apparently when you look at someone’s Twitter and you have contacts in common an indication of this is shown on one’s screen
Well, I nearly shat my pance! Both Twitters have almost exactly the same avatars, so when I first saw what I thought was my Twitter following Harry Hotspur’s wife I thought I’d clicked a wrong button or done something stupid I wasn’t aware of. Of course, it wasn’t my Twitter, it was !
I contacted and asked how he’d found and followed Harry Hotspur’s wife’s Twitter. He was bemused and oblivious as to what he’d done.
I was in stitches. Oh, the wicked irony. What had Harry Hotspur brought upon himself?! Actually, nothing, because neither the Fat one or the Flat one would ever have targeted this individual: NEVER! That ain’t how we roll, baby. But, oh! what did Harry Hotspur *think* he’d brought on himself? Well, what ever he did think wouldn’t have lasted long because as soon as realised what had happened he ‘unfollowed’ Harry Hotspur ‘s wife and subsequently wrote to Harry Hotspur extending an apology to his wife for the genuine mistake and any upset it had caused.
He’s a class act that .
Both parody accounts, albeit largely unused, are still ‘up’.
So, Harry Hotspur dragged me farver into a dispute about which me farver knew nothing and carried out an abusive vendetta against me over a Twitter account I initially had no knowledge of and at no time had any control over.
None of the above has anything to do with the campaign of abuse Harry Hotspur has waged against . It is simply my entirely verifiable account of the last few weeks I’ve spent caught up in Harry Hotspur’s madness.
The ‘Big Reveal’, my ‘dark behaviour’, I suspect, is that Harry Hotspur thinks I targeted his wife on Twitter! When actually, my knowing his wife’s name has/should have brought all of this nonsense to a conclusion!
I’ve no idea whether or not he carried out his threats, probably not. I’ve spoken to the police who will take a statement from me if I wish to make one. I don’t at the moment. I’m hoping he’ll fade away and let us all get on with the fun we’re having on THE FLAT OEUF!

 

 

Whose Bad?

I’d be interested to hear others’ opinions on yesterday after a night’s sleep.

I came to the game at about 35 mins in and, scanning the blog, saw lots of comments about how we were spreading the ball about well, nice flow etc etc. The first half seemed to peter out a little and if anything Watford looked to be gaining a little energy.

Out we came for the second and, although predominantly on top, we didn’t really look like we were in full control…and this appeared to get even worse after we scored. Watford played a great spoiling game, scrapping for (and winning) everything. Suddenly we looked soft as a freshly laid turd. Our defending at the set pieces was unforgivable. Deeney unmarked for the first. No clear call for the second. Not good enough. Not by a long chalk.

Well before this game, the idea of Dembele as a solitary DM with a Back 3 had been discussed on this blog. The idea was that it could make us that bit more expansive or creative (Taff disagrees as we’re all aware) Dier does what he does so well but it’s often so completely unfussy that I find it a touch stifling. All the more so when it’s him and Dembele/Sissoko (!) next to each other. Seems it worked for 30 mins but then he dropped off and we lost control and bite in the middle there. It’s pretty clear now that Dembele can function at a great level for <30 mins to add control. He’s a bench player now.

So Poch didn’t rectify that developing deteriorating situation and it cost us.

On the other hand, too many others didn’t show up either. Watford fought hard to defend, but we should have scored 2 more and definitely not conceded more than 1.

We move on, but will we learn? It’s rather early in the season to have used up the ‘It was just an off-day’ card. Doesn’t leave us much room for manoeuvre when tired legs kick in after a big CL night.

On the plus side, nice to see Winks back and looking sharp, confident and like he wanted to play. I hope as he believes in his ankle more, he’ll begin to risk the 20-40 yard forward balls that made him look like he could be a starter for us. We all lose when he plays safe.

Finally, 2 points better off than at this point last season. So shoot me.

Match Day

No doubt plenty of you will have been at this game, ferrets in your overcoats, drinking real ale, adorned with flat caps, scarves and rattles.

Sadly, I was in my early teens and sniffing solvents in Churchyards was more appealing to me at the time than most things, including football. No more though.

These days, I prefer the crack of dawn and waking up dreaming of how we could be top of the League by the end of today, if we win by 3 clear goals.

Imagine that. Tottenham Hotspur FC, perennial slow starters who historically have virtually surrendered the league title by the time September is done, have actually started like they mean pwopa business this season. Win 0-3 today lads and the Premier League Cup is in our hands!

In a winning season, every team has a wobble (City last season not so much). We seem to have started each of our CL qualifying seasons under Poch with poor draws and losses during the first quarter or third of the campaign followed by a fantastic run of form throughout the winter that has propelled us to 2nd or 3rd place, but still some way short of actually winning the blimmin’ thing.

We all know the reasons why: Lesta’s dubious fairytale; Chelski’s season out of Europe; Citeh’s 100 point haul. On paper, this season should be even more difficult. Liverpooh strengthened by the pricey keeper with the fancy footwork; Citeh imperious with a winning mentality; Chelski and Ars53nal with renewed energy, new managers and a good pre-season; Yanited with Mourin…oh, wait that doesn’t quite work.

So what about poor old Spurs who DIDN’T SIGN ANYONE?

What we have got is a bunch of fierce, loyal, battle-hardened soldiers. We’ve got a load of players coming back from the World Cup, buzzing at having gone deep into the competition (if not a little disappointed int the Belgian lads’ case). We’ve got familiarity, which in our case seems to breed respect. And we’ve got Lucas Moura, who was bought with this season in mind, whatever anyone says about his ‘slow start’.

Citeh will be fully focussed on the CL, the Holy Grail for them. I can see that affecting their PL results, and with a few slip-ups that veneer of camaraderie could begin to slip away. We’ve seen with Chelski what a bunch of expensive superstars can look like when they’re not playing like a team. Not saying anything as drastic will happen to Citeh, but they could drop off.

As Noel Gallagher beautifully put it: “Liverpool fans are deluded…it’s great watching the meltdowns around about March…”. Again, they have a big shot at the title this year, but will their doubts creep in again when they get close to the summit? They’ve almost become as practised as us at not winning stuff in recent years.

Chelski and the Arse are not going to enjoy those long trips on Thursdays at all. Will the new manager bounce carry either of these far enough? Sarri, maybe. Dick? Not for me fanks…not that there’s anything wrong with it.

In summary, I’m saying we’ve got a good shot at it this year, even if it might look as though it could be tougher than last time out.

But first, let’s do Elton’s lot.

COYS!

ENIC OUT BLAH BLAH

An introductory guest bloeug by Elyid aka El Cid

ENIC OUT BLAH BLAH BLAH

As a way of introduction to the blog.

I have been a supporter of the chicken badge for over 50 years now, it hasn’t always been easy but maybe that is what being a supporter is, enjoying the emotions of the roller coaster ride. I think right now is as good a time for our club as I can remember, we have a great manager who has put together an exciting team, they are giving us something to cheer and something to be proud of but most of all they are giving us a real belief that probably hasn’t been there for a long time.

To win trophies would of course make the whole experience of being a Spurs supporter even more special but if we do not lift a trophy this year I will still love our club next year.

I have long ago accepted that winning in any major sport has just as much to do with the opposition as it has to do with what our team is doing, that may sound strikingly obvious to most but it does seem to bypass the thoughts of many of the ENIC out brigade. For example, Man City have riches beyond our wildest dreams, as a result they have one of the most successful managers of the modern era. Pep is effectively playing fantasy football and has amassed a squad of world class, highly talented individuals, who, on their day and when playing as a team are capable of beating anyone. Should they play to their full potential in every game it is not inconceivable that they would win everything, a bit like Barcelona in their pomp. We, IMO, are as good as any other team in the chasing pack so were they to slip up at any time then we have as good a chance as anyone else of taking advantage.

That for me is how modern sport works, Formula One is the same, should evrything go to plan on the day, either Mercedes or Ferrari will win, everyone else on the grid is simply waiting and hoping that they will slip up. The direct correlation between extreme wealth and sporting success may be distasteful but it is reality.

The anti ENIC brigade like nothing more than to trawl the internet looking for any negative information on any subject that might open another door to heap yet more vulgar critisism upon our owners and further their own cause to insist on the removal of ENIC. Personally I know precious little regarding the decision makers that run our club but then who really does know? We can all respond to the latest rumours and the oh so reliable ITK but the fact is that this is the way most big businesses operate, behind closed doors. What I do know is that they put their money where their mouth is at the appropriate time and they now own the club, like it or loathe it that is how it is. If the Notspurs of this world truly are sooo much smarter than our current owners then how is it that Joe owns the club and not them? Slightly faceciuos I know but he who pays the piper etc etc.

These are indeed interesting times for the Notspurs, the what if’s are looking dangerously ominous. What if in the same year ENIC provide the club with one of the best stadiums in Europe we actually lift a trophy and what if they manage to do this without spending the hundreds of millions that we supposedly needed to do in order to simply keep up? Where does that leave the Notspurs?

I hope every year that we will win something, I also hope each year that we qualify for the CL as this is also a modern measure of success but most of all at this time I hope that we keep this manager and that he in turn continues to steer this great club in the right direction because if he does then surely we can all begin to believe… can’t we?

John P’s CL Bloeug

A debut from John P:

“Cast your minds back to 2010/11, In that CL draw we were in Pot 3, and drew the top-ranked side and reigning champs from Pot 1, Inter Milan. As if that were not bad enough, we also drew the top-ranked team from Pot 2: Werder Bremen. Some relief was obtained when we managed to also get Twente, In spite of the tough draw, we went on to win the group.

Our next attempt was 2016/17. The draw looked a lot kinder to us. Dortmund? Well we knew they were one of the top sides in Europe, but we also had Monaco, who Lamela had personally buried the previous season in the EL, and CSKA. Surely second place looked good! But no! We were relegated to the EL and then dumped out of that comp by Genk.

The following year, it was not so much a draw, as an invitation to a crucifixion. RM, top seeds and reigning champs, as well as Dortmund again. Oh well! Apoel should at least give us an entry into the EL again. But somehow, we failed to follow the script, and not only won our group but had the most points of any team from group games including 10 pts from BD and RM combined.

And so we turn to this years draw. Both Barca and Inter are the top rated sides from their pots with the blow only being softened by drawing PSV.

It may be that there is insufficient evidence to point to any real pattern, but i have noticed that the tougher the draw we get, the better we perform. Conversely, an easy draw tends to make fools of us.

Maybe this was the best possible draw for us?”

Unapologetic gush

Is winning one solitary piece of silverware all it will take to placate the ENIC out brigade?

Everyone wants us to start winning pots. Some think this is the ONLY THING THAT MATTERS. Others believe it is part of a bigger picture in enjoying supporting a club. Do most Chelski and Yanited supporters seem contented to you? They’ve won recently yet moan constantly. It’s never enough. The buzz subsides and they’re left complaining about the manager, the players, the board.

I value what is being built with Poch. Did you see us at the end of that game? Hugo’s hug. Toby’s tweet. Rose’s words. Despite the bumps, this unity is really special. And progress is being made, piece by piece. Win at OT (again): ✔️

I know we’ve had some barren years under ENIC; they’ve taken an age to get us here whilst we’ve had to watch our rivals win and endure the ‘no trophies’ taunts all the while. But these days, those words hardly register because of how proud I am to be Spurs.

We are becoming the envy of the football world, day by day. Our entire XI the other night cost less than Pogba ffs. We’re building a winning team, mentality and stadium brick by brick. We will get there, and soon.

I’m enjoying the ride, with all the ups and downs. COYS! TTID.

Scrap Heap Challenge

 

After reading recent comments I decided it was time to peruse the Exchange and Mart to see whether it was time to trade in our prized vintage Daimler, or is it a knackered broken down Trabant, I’m really not sure. So, I decided a closer examination of our Tobes service history was in order.

So what exactly is it we have in the garage? The refined furnishings that can only be found in a luxury vintage automobile that continues to appreciate in value? Or, maybe it really is an unreliable scrapper with one working door, broken springs, and a bonnet that’s rarely closed?

It would seem the populous are somewhat divided when it comes to our Tobes. Has he run his race, behaved like a scoundrel, or has he remained professional throughout, ready to now to perform as he has in the past, with distinction?

Injuries have been cited as one reason to upgrade, he’s injury prone, has a dodgy hammy, it won’t get better because he’s too old. Personally I’m not too sure, I don’t hear the same things said about Vert’s, he’s two years older than Tobes and looks as good, if not better than ever. Before last season’s hammytastrophe, (and let’s be fair a bad injury can happen to any player), Tobes injury record was better than our Vert’s. Since signing in 2015 Tobes had only missed 9 games, whereas Vert’s had missed 16. So what about our Tobes, is he a true disciple of the Hammy house of Horrors, can we expect more gory tales from the physio room? According to Tranfermarket.co.uk, Tobes has only had one bad hammy prior to last season (2014/15), which put him out of action for 6 weeks.

I know Sanchez will be an excellent defender, but I’m not sure he’s quite the finished article yet, Tobes I believe still has much to offer, both for the team and in helping Sanchez to realise his potential. Last season we conceded more goals (36) than the year before (26), I appreciate stats don’t tell the whole story, but when Tobes and Vert’s play together I feel they read the game better, and spot potential danger earlier. Since Tobes arrival, Spurs have averaged 2.1 points per game, and only conceded an average of 0.82 goals per game.

Before last seasons injury and subsequent contract demands (the facts of which none of us are privy to), he was destined to go into the history books as a Spurs legend. Whatever dispute or falling out with Poch our Tobes had, I have never heard or read anything from Tobes other than support for the team, so if Poch is willing to clean the slate and start afresh then that’s good enough for me, you never know, maybe Tobes will have a change of heart and sign a new deal? I know I would certainly welcome news of that ilk.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is the Future Bright or Dystopian Black?

I came across this article recently concerning the future of football and with the imminent move by La Liga to host one match a year in America and huge conglomerates like Amazon and Facebook beginning to jostle to get some of the action the future landscape it seems is likely to change significantly in the coming years. According to the article the £1 billion yearly turnover is more than likely by 2030 for the big boys. This would almost certainly mean the £1 million per week wage would not be far behind.
The European Superleague still rears its head from time to time. Is it inevitable or just a figmentary (is that word real or a figment of my imagination? ) tool that will only ever be used to scare UEFA?
On the advertising front the perimeter advertising, with future new technology just around the corner, will be country specific irrespective of what country your viewing the match from. For example if you’re viewing from India it will be Indian sponsors showing, viewing from the UK, UK sponsors etc. Personally I find perimeter advertising an affront to my enjoyment of the beautiful game but I can see the day when any delay in the game, say for an injury, will produce advertising graphics displayed on the pitch, as they do to show the scores in Rugby and NFL.
In terms of TV viewing I think the future is more likely to be internet based rather than supplied by the current major TV companies, Sky, BT etc. Recently a new Internet based company, Eleven TV, streamed the PGA championship (one of the Majors) for free on Facebook which was the only way UK viewers could see it. This was a freeby to encourage sign up to the service for a monthly /annual fee but inevitably that will cost in the future I suspect. I can see companies like this plus Amazon and possibly Facebook and even Google carving up the PL match rights possibly taking the majority of the rights away from Sky and BT. Of course illegal streaming will probably always be there but legally viewing from a couple of TV stations as at present looks likely to be a thing of the past.
There’s a lot more in the article here: https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2662102-200-million-players-1-billion-clubs-and-the-future-of-football-business if you fancy a browse however it’s heavily opined by the infamous Ridsdale so his input should, I suggest, be taken with a pinch of salt.
So how do you see the future of the glorious game? Are you positive and see the increase in revenue, wages as a good thing or do you wish for the days when players worked in’t mines and were only allowed up for matches at weekends?