Date: 17th February 2017 at 5:43am
Written by:

I don’t know where to start with this. I’ll get straight to the point, we were crap. That too against a side sitting 8th in the Belgian league. Should I make it worse? It wasn’t even their first team. We just can’t do well in Europe can we? I must say I was expecting a much better performance than this. After the drubbing at Anfield, we ought to have responded in a better way. We were all laughing at Arsenal a night ago, thank God we weren’t playing the likes of Bayern yesterday.

The first half was rubbish. They completely owned us at every department. I don’t what kind of half-hearted pressing game was on yesterday. It’s a team effort, not individuals suddenly going on the boil. They won every second ball that was there for the taking, and that was just a result of sheer desire. We played 5 passes sideways and backwards before hoofing up the ball in no man’s land (at least a no Tottenham man’s land). And I specifically say hoofing up the ball and not playing it long, because really none of those passes had any kind of intent. Luckily for us, Gent themselves weren’t incisive enough to carve us open. Only Alli and Dembele seemed capable of making any sort of impact, that too with no benefit. The second half was slightly better, we shifted to 3 man defence and the players were imparted with their ability to pass again. When it seemed it like it was improving, they scored a goal. Walker, Alli, Dier, Winks; there were four men around the same man and none of them made any sort of move to stop him in any kind of form. Once the ball was played in the box we all knew where it was heading for. Son, GKN and Eriksen came on but hardly affected the game. We never looked like scoring, 1-0 was in fact a pretty good result.

Player Ratings

Lloris 7
Pulled of a great save to keep it at 1-0. Still needs to work on his distribution, especially when he catches the ball. He prefers to hoof it long, and I really don’t understand why. Never reaches a teammate.

Dier 5.5
Could be blamed for the goal, and was pretty average apart from that. Was so much better when we shifted to a 3 man defence. He needs to stop playing long passes, it’s almost a guarantee of losing possession.

Toby 6
Unusual day for Toby today, he wasn’t at he his best, the slick machine looked to have some rough rust today.

Walker 6
Again he was one those who didn’t have the best of days, but you could say that about every player. Was stupid at times in taking too many touches in offensive positions. Defensively also not his best games.

Davies 6
I’m sorry to say this, but he’s not a good Lb. He just doesn’t have the pace for it. He looks so much better at LCB. Average in the first half, positional change helped him out.

Wanyama 5.5
One of those days for Victor when he was pretty much bossed out of the game, hardly given any time on the ball. Tried tackling his way out, didn’t work.

Winks 7
This lad looks good, doesn’t he? He`s really good on the ball, and also impersonates Scotty Parker 5 times a game.

Dembele 6.5
For the first time that I’ve known, Moussa was beaten physically. The CAM role doesn’t suit him. And again it seems like he takes ages to pass. Bring him back to the middle and see him destroy souls.

Sissoko 4.5
I’m not going to waste any comment on someone as useless as him. And this has nothing to do with the fact that he cost 30m. That`s just adding salt to the wound.

Alli 7
He put in a lot of effort, but he couldn’t do anything special today. A long range effort and a few turns in the box was the best he could come up with.

Kane 5
He’s having that kind of a month again, nothing’s going right for him. He ran all day, but was second best at everything. Had he scored from the only chance he had, we would all be smiling now.


Manager Rating
Room for improvement.

None of three made any sort of impact, if anything Eriksen slowed down the game even more and GKN made Sissoko look better

To be honest I don’t think it’s a poor result, 1-0 away is something which can be overturned. But the lack of an away goal makes it difficult. If they score once, we`re looking at needing to score 3. But before that we need to get our confidence back at Fulham on Sunday. Poch needs to take a deep look at his tactics.

Huffed and puffed
We seem to be outplayed every time an opposite team tries to play football. English sides sit deep and let us play at our own pace, we get owned in Europe as their game is falsely branded as slow. It happened quite a lot last season and also this year in the Champions league. Also in the PL, City and Liverpool broke us down to shreds with quick incisive passing. Big teams learn from such defeats, we need to learn too. I see us turning this around at Wembley. But a lot of it would depend on the Fulham result. We don’t want to see our team out of both competitions in a space of 4 days. Poch needs to react strongly to this, the players need to put a stronger showing. We`re much better than this, and we need put that on display.

I expect to see a much improved performance and of course, a win next week. COYS!


18 Replies to “Match Review: Gent 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur”

  • I waited for team news before I put my first goal scorer bets on… after seeing we had put a strong team out I wasted a score on alli, kane and the Belgian duo.. not sure why but I am suprised with how we played.. maybe there were planning to bring the excitement back to Wembley. I think we will still progress but gent look decent and we didn’t so not sure. COYS

  • Also I think you are over reacting about sissoko. He was no worse than the rest.. he’s a good player and will be better next season.

  • We must be masochists to have this article after the match thread moans and groans! Winks looks good though.

  • My tin helmet is firmly on Geof. I’m waiting for the moans to come crashing down and deservedly so. Must admit though that any negative comments will be justified. Even i’m feeling *****ed off at the moment.

  • CJ …. The match thread was full of the frustration and disappointment we all felt but I was able to smile my way through the maze of emotional posts thanks to your comments!

  • Before the game a commentator congratulated Pochettino for putting out a “strong team”. Yet again our strong team lost. Playing your best players in these midweek games is like a death of a thousand cuts. We’ll pay the price towards the end of the season just like last year.

  • jod …. I know. Cunning little buggers, those football Gods. They just love to chuck the form book out the window and mess with our heads. What can ya do?

  • Interesting how we each view players. Lloris’s distribution at the back is suicidal, his floated passes to wide men an invitation to the opposition defence and at least his hoofs upfield do not put us back under immediate danger. Needs a brain transplant. GKN made Sissoko look what he is i.e.: someone with no ball control who cannot beat a player and put in a decent cross. GKN was never given quick ball during his brief appearance which he needs to run at defenders before they are set. When Eriksen came on he found space and moved the ball well, although wasted a couple of good opportunities. Dembele was targeted and unable to make a pass. I love his skills but his contributions to attack have been virtually non-existent all season. Playing Alli wide left with a back 4 leaves him isolated and the FB exposed. He is much more effective in CM. Kane needs help to be effective and can’t play effectively as a single striker. At Wembley’s wide open spaces I can only see a Gent win if we continue to use the same ‘tactics’ and unless Poch steps up to the plate instead of blaming esoteric mental problems I won’t be surprised to lose to Fulham either.

  • I agree, Jod, thought yesterday was perfect time to rotate more players, and rest a few more players, but it seems MP wants Europa more than the FA Cup.

  • I didn’t watch the last 2 games, so I can only give a general view of what may be going on. When I saw that Eriksen & Son were the only 2 to be rested, I got concerned. Our usual attacking 3 midfielders (including Alli) work because when not all play well, one or two play well to make a difference. And they all bring something to the attack: Eriksen: creativity, assists, Alli: goals, runs into the box, Son: running, pace, goals with either foot. They all played vs Liverpool, and didn’t get a sniff. Our alternatives have failed to make impact: Janssen, N’Koudou, Sissoko, Onomah. But should we be surprised that they haven’t made impact? N’Koudou has only started 2 games in all comps. Onomah 4 games. Sissoko 10 games…. Janssen 12. Eriksen has started 31, and it could be argued that he was not firing on all cylinders during much of them. We really need to start the back ups more. Sure, we will risk points in doing that. But we will also gain the ability to field players that can genuinely provide effective back up as opposed to just filling a shirt. They also can become effective sub options, and this could regain the lost points and more. N’Koudou may have lots to learn, but he would learn faster on the job. If he hasn’t learnt enough now that we are in the second half of the season, when will he ever learn enough to start…? I can only assume that Janssen is being saved to start against Fulham. But he surely cannot be tired. He surely will want to play as many games as he can. We really should have out and out strikers on the bench to try and nick goals late on.

  • Same players same formation, same subs, same ******, more less same performance. Can’t understand why we struggle in EL. Well it cud be our only way to CL if we bottle top 4. Also remember no so long ago we beat chelsea 2-0

  • Let’s not go overboard though. At least we did not lose 5-1…. We started without first teamers: Vertonghen, Rose, Eriksen, Son. So it was a weakened side. We have lot’s to do in the second leg. We must basically win by 2 goals or more. Go all out for goals early on with a strong side, and we should be ok.. The only problem is that it isn’t at ‘home’…

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