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What’s wrong with my Spurs?

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    How many Spurs’ fans are having a great 2012? Hands up, anybody? Raise your voice loudly and proudly.

    I know you’re all saying, “how good was that 5-0 win over Newcastle?” in February. Definitely a good game. I’ll remember it for a couple of years I’m sure. But what else, what else have we done to be able to call 2012 a good year? I can’t really think of anything. We were up 2-0 against those petty Gunners at the Emirates but uhh…. I’ll just stop talking now.

    It’s been a rough second half of the season for us Hotspur fans. We have only one win from our last seven. I’d like to take a minute or two to debate the reasons of where it’s all gone wrong, where it can be fixed…If it can indeed be fixed.

    The first and most obvious reason for our problems comes in the form of Harry Redknapp. He has been linked with the English top job for the upcoming Euro 2012 tournament. In order to do the job, he (apparently) must leave Tottenham.

    Now Harry has denied reports that his indecision over the job has hurt his side, but it’s clear that our form has dropped ever since the reports linking him to the job came through. It may not be a sole reason for our issues, but it’s a contributing one.

    Another big issue: Harry’s tactics. It’s been hard to find a balance in our team in all sorts of positions since our bad run started. Who should we put up front? How many should we put up front? What formation should we pick today? What do we do about those pesky defenders?

    I’m not a coach, far from it. I’m a disgruntled Tottenham supporter, who sits in his bedroom and 3:46 in the morning dealing out his opinions as opposed to sleeping. But I have a theory or two for where we’ve gone wrong.

    Don’t agree? Tell me by all means. We need more depth in many positions. Yes, we have one of the biggest Premier League squads this year, but our cover isn’t necessarily up to the task in my opinion.

    Harry really messed up the January transfer window. He left us short in a big way when it comes to defence. Firstly, William Gallas (the ex-gooner) isn’t good enough in my opinion. He’s getting older and is pretty slow when attackers are coming from in-behind. He is not that great in corners either.

    Ledley King can only play once a week, which leaves us short in a big way for centre backs due to Michael Dawson’s season ending injury.

    Walker, BAE and Kaboul have carried us all year and it’s exhausting for those three guys. They have succeeded admirably but if one has an off day, which does happen, our choices aren’t great. I don’t feel we should have loaned out Vedran Corluka as it has left us without a defender who has been at the club a long time and knows the Spurs’ way.

    Ryan Nelson was a bad purchase. I’ve watched his career closely and I’m afraid to say as much I like the lad he’s past his best and should never have been bought in the first place. I’ll be stunned if he’s still here by the end of next season, I have a feeling he’ll make his way back to the A-League to captain the Wellington Phoenix.

    That leaves us with young Danny Rose. Ledley King is injury prone and Danny is too young to handle the responsibility. Danny is a winger who can play at the back, but only on the sides, not in the centre.

    Harry was right not to pay the money Gary Cahill was after in January, but I think he should have negotiated harder for Christopher Samba. A genuinely decent tried and tested defender who’s been in the EPL for years. A more than adequate replacement for Ledley in mid-week games and coming off the bench. I think Gallas would be used very sparingly should Samba have made his way over from Blackburn.

    In the midfield, there aren’t as many problems. There are some great players in all positions. My issue is with Sandro and Jake Livermore. These two would be great for any EPL side playing 30 games a season. But we want to have a European quality side, a side that can make the Champions League and compete.

    Sandro is very hot and cold and I can never understand why Harry pushes Modric wide for Sandro to play centrally in midfield. Does Sandro make assists and steer the team around or does he play it back to the defence? Livermore is a great kid but I think he’s been told to do too much too soon. My only issue with him is the amount of times we’ve looked to him to change a match from the bench when someone else with experience could be more effective. Livermore is too much of a straight passer. A good midfielder but has no flair to speak of.

    Why does Harry never use Kranjcar? He’s a good midfielder with a bit of flair. He loves to blast it over the bar, but if you’re looking for someone who can add to your attacking structure in the centre Kranjcar is your man. I genuinely feel sorry for how long he’s spent on the bench.

    The poor lad still feels White Hart Lane is where he is meant to be. I disagree if Harry stays. He just doesn’t use him. Why didn’t Harry just give Dos Santos a go when Lennon got injured for seven weeks. He’s a speedy £10million winger from Barcelona! We had a crucial few weeks there when the bad rot started against Chelsea, Manchester United and Arsenal. Instead of giving this very talented kid who is worth a lot of money a chance, we changed our formation and structure pushing Modric out wide.

    Now I’m one of those rare Spurs supporters that doesn’t mind Bale coming into the middle of the field. The kid’s got skill, people! He carries us. Let him do what he wants.

    Our attack has been frustrating to watch this season. Defoe or Adebayor, Defoe or Van Der Vaart. We might as well flip a coin because Harry has changed who he picks more times than he’s changes his undies. They are all fantastic.

    I would pick Rafael Van Der Vaart and Adebayor to start in a 4-1-1, and if it’s not going great with Adebayor that day (believe me you can tell when Adebayor is having an off day) you bring on Defoe to get a poacher’s goal. Pick and stay with it, Harry. It’s not hard. I like Saha and I think he has his place much like Pavlyenchenko did. I’m just not sure what to do with that one.

    I don’t have all the answers. It’s four in the morning, people!

    Can we win the F.A Cup and finish in the top 4? Absolutely, we can, but I think third is beyond us now. This is the first time this season I’ve been worried about our top 4 ambitions all year. Chelsea isn’t our rival for fourth, that’s definitely Newcastle, and no-one can stop them scoring at the moment. If only we’d purchased in January.

    If you know Harry feel free to pass on this article to him. He might get an idea or two.

    P.S lets make this a Gooner free zone please. No need to make us Spurs fans feel worse.

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    The Crowd Says (8)

    • April 10th 2012 @ 9:34am
      Matt F said | April 10th 2012 @ 9:34am | ! Report

      What’s wrong with Tottenham? That’s easy. They’re not Newcastle! Toon Army!!

      Seriously, they’re a good team going through a bad spell of form and their confidence is clearly down as a result. Redknapp has usually always been able to pull his players out of these situations very quickly. Maybe the great big elephant in the room, the England job, is what’s really hurting them. Generally if a player continues to play poorly he knows that his manager will probably either drop him or sell him. Given that Redknapp would appear unlikely to remain at Spurs after this season, maybe his players are struggling to find the motivation to play for him? You’d imagine that with a Champions League spot on the line this wouldn’t be an issue but stranger things have happened….

      Oh and they also don’t have Cisse or Ben Arfa 😉

    • April 10th 2012 @ 10:15am
      Mattay said | April 10th 2012 @ 10:15am | ! Report

      Feel free to dismiss this with facts and stats, but anecdotally Spurs form has slid ever since Capello vacated the England job. Harry’s head has been turned and there’s no turning it back. The whole debacle has been handled poorly from a Spurs point of view. Harry has been his usual media-darling self and quite jovial when the topic comes up in press conference.

      Can you imagine Ferguson having a laugh about the Scotland manager job while Man U were in the cusp of an arm wrestle for the league? No, he’d kick a shoe at the reporter and explain that his sole focus and priority is Man U. Shame but it appears for Redknapp, he hasn’t been focussed on Spurs.

      I’ll never forget what he has achieved for us and the Champs League run, with some nights that will go down in folklore, but if he doesn’t want the job, I don’t want him in the job.

    • April 10th 2012 @ 12:39pm
      hawker said | April 10th 2012 @ 12:39pm | ! Report

      they can still pull a champions league spot out the fire the last five games are all very winnable. Sandro was very good last season , not sure it was injury at the start of this season that has held him back. Yes they need to look for a new CB in the summer and a new striker.

    • April 10th 2012 @ 1:05pm
      Matt F said | April 10th 2012 @ 1:05pm | ! Report

      I’ve just had a look at the tun home for Tottenham, Newcastle and Chelsea. I’ve assumed that Arsenal, due to their current gap and great form will wrap up 3rd.


      QPR (A)
      Blackburn (H)
      Bolton (A)
      Villa (A)
      Fulham (H)


      Stoke (H)
      Wigan (A)
      Chelsea (A)
      Man City (H)
      Everton (A)


      Arsenal (A)
      QPR (A)
      Newcastle (H)
      Liverpool (A)
      Blackburn (H)

      Other things to keep in mind are that Spurs/Chelsea play in the FA Cup semi this weekend so one of them will have a Final to distract them as well. Chelsea’s match against Arsenal is also sandwiched between their CL semi against Barcelona which makes it a crowded schedule. Newcastle on the other hand only have the league to focus on.

      If Spurs can turn their form around, they should make it given their draw. None of those are particularly threatening, though away games to relegation sides are never easy (QPR away has “banana skin” written all over it) and you would have thought that Norwich at home would have been easy last night. Regardless, Spurs have to be favourites given the draw.

      Newcastle are in great form and have a few very winnable matches coming up so could get a jump on the other two, but their last 3 matches are all extremely tough. Hopefully for us the title race is mathematically over, which is looking likely, before City visit so they’ll have less to play for.

      A combination of Arsenal’s good form and the fact that this match is sandwiched between their CL semi makes it hard to believe that Chelsea could win that one. Games against relagation battling sides like QPR are never easy at this time of the season and when you add in that they are local rivals, it could be a very tough match as well. On Liverpool’s current form, Chelsea should stroll through them, but an FA Cup semi against Everton might be the spark that Liverpool need to regain form which could make that match very tough as well.

      Chelsea v Newcastle is obviously extremely crucial, if not for 4th, definately for 5th.

    • Roar Pro

      April 10th 2012 @ 5:04pm
      Phil Coorey said | April 10th 2012 @ 5:04pm | ! Report

      I’m a West Ham fan – sure you will live.

    • April 11th 2012 @ 8:33am
      Disco said | April 11th 2012 @ 8:33am | ! Report

      Could it not be that Spurs fans got ahead of themselves somewhat after a good first half to the season with such features as very few injuries and some decent form from a flaky, on-loan frontman?

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