Date: 23rd February 2021 at 8:00am
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Tottenham Hotspur put Premier League woes on the backburner again this midweek, and although we have a significant advantage over RZ Pellets WAC in our Europa League Round of 32 double header, the question on everyone’s lips is will we turn up and put in a performance that shows a reaction to our current woeful run of form.

For some, Wednesday’s early evening clash at White Hart Lane is about far more than simply the result and fans will be looking at manager Jose Mourinho to ‘fix’ the problems he claims he ‘cannot resolve’ as our first team haven’t suddenly become that bad overnight, even if the form guide shows five defeats in our last six league games.

Whilst performances were hardly perfect, the wheels on the early season optimism bus have well and truly fallen off and more and more fans will soon start looking behind us, as opposed to up the table, particularly if we don’t pick up some points sharpish.

Holding a 4-1 advantage from the first leg, our route to the next round shouldn’t be in question, but the reaction of the players and the performance they put in, could be very telling in terms of how the rest of the campaign will now go.

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157 Replies to “Match Thread – Advantage Spurs, But Do We Turn Up This Time”

  • Haha 1st post, I think, normally lag behind.

    Thanks again Danny for the thread.

    Easy for me, Wolfsburger for evening meal, 5+ goals scored by us. COYS

  • TQ2spurs – I go straight onto Sky sports on my phone first thing every morning to see if he’s been sacked yet. so far I have been disappointed.

  • There has been much comment about the lack of quality defenders in our squad, to me this begs the question – why do we set up so defensively and invite teams to attack us knowing that our defence isn’t good enough? While doing so we are largely ignoring the area where we have the most quality, which is in attack. It seems to me we might do better to concentrate on our area of strength and aim to outscore our opposition if our defence is unable to keep clean sheets.

    • You’re behind the curve again TQ2. As I’ve said a number of times here, in the last few games we have played a mainly attacking game, trying to do exactly what you say we should do- with mixed results but much more exciting to watch. No one else has acknowledged this for some strange reason. Can it be that it just doesn’t fit your own narratives regarding the players and the manager?

  • Hi Danny,
    Thanks for the thread, probably just in time,
    Hoping HT’s prediction comes true, after all we put 4 past em away so at home 6 isn’t impossible..
    And Wednesday nite football..

  • TQ2Spurs – I think the obvious answer to your question about defending is: if you can’t trust defenders to win duels one on one, an alternative is to pack the 11 with defensive-minded players, hoping that quantity will compensate the lack of quality.

    I am not saying that this is a particularly joyful conclusion, but it is an explanation.

    If we indeed concentrate on our perceived area of strength, and put out a very attacking side, this will obviously leave less bodies to defend, and will probably cost us goals. In other words, we then have to be certain that even if we fail to keep a clean sheet, we are going to outscore the opposition.

    And that is where the risk comes in. If our strikers have an off day, and we fail to score, we’ll have both an incompetent back 4 with no protection, and a misfiring attack. This is worst case scenario, but what it comes down to is: how much do you trust our attacking players to take the chances they are presented with?

    As for the game, I think the tie is already out of reach for Wolfsberger. I am expecting a rather dull game, with the result already in the bag and nothing to play for.

  • BS….it surely can’t be much worse than we are currently seeing, we are asking our attackers to assist the defenders and we are still conceding. We might as well give the other option a go! :- )

    As far as the game goes, let’s hope for an early goal or two then we can give some playing time to squad players and hopefully a couple of academy players as well.

    • Just to say….I’m not advocating leaving out more defensive minded players in favour of extra attackers, I just want to see us giving our front 4 a bit more freedom to do what they do best. Let’s face it, Kane is the exception to the rule and defends almost as well as he attacks, you can’t say the same for Sonny, Bale, Moura, or Bergwijn so why employ them to do something they’re not so good at rather than something they are generally better at?

  • A lot has been focused on our defence but the fact is that we have scored only 14 goals in our last 13 premier league games despite all the attacking talent we have. With better attacking play and more efficient finishing, maybe the defensive issues wouldn’t be highlighted so much. Over to you Jose

  • Just for the record.

    To BS; My early morning post on the WHU thread wasn’t specifically directed at you, which is why I didn’t address it to you. And my request for us not to be telling each other how to feel, was just a general statement to all…

    And so to tomorrow…

    6-1 to the mighty Spurs.

    Bale 1, Dele 1, Lamela 1 and a hat trick from Vinicius….

  • Our defence never seems to be the same for two matches running. In personnel or its formation. Or even from one half to the next. (As with Tanganga being replaced by Doherty at half time vs WHU). Maybe therein lies part of the problem ?

    I don’t think we have such bad defenders…. Or indeed, bad midfielders or attackers. Playing poor football and losing so frequently, is not proof of this. Liverpool are having similar woes are thy not? (They haven’t suddenly got a bad squad have they?)

    Spurs defended brilliantly in a few tough matches, earlier in the season. And our attack was doing rather well too….

    I’m not sure what has gone wrong since December. Unfortunately, I’m not certain that Jose himself even knows…

    What’s the game-plan, man?! Have we got one?

    • It is so reassuring that in spite of our current relegation form and terrible performances we actually have “the world’s best coach”. One thing Mourinho doesn’t suffer from is lack of self belief.

    • HT….I think any defence is going to be the poorer for losing VVD for a prolonged period but ‘pool have lost pretty much all of their first and second choice central defenders to injury so no, they haven’t suddenly got a bad squad, just a badly depleted squad defence wise.

      • That’s true TQ… But that doesn’t in itself explain why they have also struggled to score goals in some recent matches , given the many chances that they still create…

        But it does tell me just how difficult it is for even a great team such as Liverpool have been in these past two or three seasons, it is for a club to have a squad that is just as capable as it has been, when a few good players are missing.

        And yet we often hear from supporters how Spurs should be having a squad that has at least two great players for every position. But that’s not how it works. It’s not that simple… Not when players are not featuring regularly, or the team keeps chopping and changing. As we have seen with Spurs this season.

        If we look at the Spurs bench on Sunday, we can’t say it was a particularly weak one. But, it can ‘t be easy for players such as Bale or Dele for instance, to just suddenly appear and be expected to come to the rescue, after being left out in the cold, so often. (Even so, by all accounts, they both gave it their best shot vs West Ham)…

        The only PL team that has really consistently shined with some top players out and missing, is Man City. But this shouldn’t be a surprise when looking at their bench and the skills and tactical shrewdness of their manager… Even if they did have a slow start to the season….

  • Ref attacking play . Interesting to see that when Bale came on vs West Ham it appeared to give the team a lift . He displayed skill and class and not only created opportunities but gave Doherty room to play ( although his crossing was very poor )
    So with Bale and Regilon in the team I am in the camp of out scoring the opposition . It will also make for more enjoyable watching .

  • I of the opinion that with Doh it’s perhaps a confidence issue, new club firs, season.
    Just like HT said and I have been banging on about nearly all season, we “need” a settled defence, that’s currently our problem and to a degree currently Liverpools.
    Why we couldn’t see the likes of Godfrey from Norwich along with Aaron’s at RB.
    Probably would’ve gotten both for 40 ish mil.
    It would’ve settled our defensive issues, with premiership experienced players.
    There is something wrong either with our scouts or most likely our offers for players, buy cheap buy twice”,.
    Let’s just get a settled back 5 for the rest of the season.
    Would love to actually start a game with the personnel we had on the pitch for the end of the W/Ham match, with the exception of Dave.

  • Reading through this thread, two things have been highlighted, conceding goals, not scoring enough.

    For me the game is about scoring goals, simple eh!
    Right then, if you score more goals than you concede, guess what your always going to win, again simple!

    A defender or the gk makes a mistake, costly, a goal against, fans then come down on them like a ton of bricks, crap, useless etc.

    Now then a striker misses a sitta, its ah well bad luck, he is only human after all, humans make mistakes, try again etc, but be brutally truly honest that miss might just have cost you/us 1 or 2 or 3 pts, whatever the situation we find ourselves in.

    So for me when we lose its down to everybody in the team/side, its every bodies fault! after all it is a team game, whether its that defender making a costly mistake or the star striker who missed a sitta, also a costly mistake.

    So I will repeat, score more goals than the opposition = A WIN, every bloody time. COYS

    • We obviously can all get behind your theory of “scoring more than the opposition”, PY. However, that also implies that we have to be fairly certain that our attacking players are going to score frequently and regularly.

      There are no doubts about Kane, who was born to score goals.

      Son is usually quite reliable these days WHEN Kane is on the pitch. When Kane is absent and he becomes the focal point, his production drops massively. He clearly benefits from having Kane in the team, as Kane will occupy defenders and leave space for Son.

      But the main issue is, beyond those 2, who is a reliable source of goals?

      Lamela has never stayed fit long enough to be one. Moura has never been consistent enough to be one. Bergwijn’s finishing is suspect at best. Who knows what’s wrong with Dele. Bale has the quality, but does he still have the desire? Have I missed anyone?

      I personally would not bet any money on any of those players consistently scoring when a good opportunity falls to them. And that is probably a statement in itself.

      And that’s really the problem. Right now, only 2 of our players are really giving the opposition something to worry about.

      If our opponents know that all they have to do is contain 2 players, and the rest is relatively harmless, we become hugely predictable and easy to defend against. It then becomes very hard to outscore the opposition with any sort of regularity.

  • Off topic…The malise we are experiencing in PL games is due to jose and players on singing from different hymn sheets, since mid december. Due to lose’s attitudes mostly. Again we see a downward spiral (poch had) and jose is vastly more experienced than poch, and therefore has gravitas, he has been giving levy coded messages in his media statements, its not me at fault its players not top quality, and board of directors / owner, not buying top quality players… So he will either survive and Joe Lewis / board will input funds / leave in sales funds of players, to give £200m + transfer kitty, (levy will get best transfer value for this ! ) or will carry on as before.

    THFC has been unlucky that the half of last season all of this has been totally disrupted by covid-19, and the financial recovery plans of Levy / Enic on the stadium build has been shattered…same applies to other clubs plans around the world of course. So as we are stuck with ENIC I hope this 2nd malaise of the squad / team, opens up Levy’s / Joe eyes that football is about winning titles / cups AND infrastructures of training grounds stadiums as both are co-dependent. Its not really possible with just a stadium & Training grounds.

  • Block dream on !
    Levy’s track record is second to none ,for ineptitude ,self importance and poor management decisions which have resulted in poor silver ware returns but a brilliant stadium since their helming of the good ship THFC .
    He and Enid are the main reason for the club’s present predicament and unless “ the chosen one “ can produce any respectable results before the end of the season I will be amazed and we will have yet again to start all over again !,,

  • I quite like listening to Jamie O’Hara on TalkSport but apparently he said that Sanchez and Dier were such a poor centre back pairing we should play Davies and Tanganga there with Aurier and Reguilon at full back. He may be right about the former pairing but his suggestion is just laughable IMHO.

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