Date: 12th September 2021 at 8:00pm
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It was a very bright and promising start to the 2021/22 campaign for Tottenham Hotspur – if we ignore the Pacos de Ferreira no show – , but the September international break well and truly stunted our momentum with a woeful showing at the weekend against Crystal Palace.

Reduced to ten men, on the wrong end of a 3-0 defeat and we only mustered one shot on target from a total of two attempts – for the first time ever, Harry Kane failed to register even an effort and I don’t believe he had a touch in their half across the 90 either.

But we take a Premier League break again this midweek as we are in Group G Europa Conference League action once more, making the trip to French Ligue 1 side, Rennes.

I have no idea what to expect from Rennes, and after the Palace showing, I’ve no idea what to expect from Spurs either, especially if Nuno Espirito Santo makes numerous changes again which I think we all expect.

With six league games played in their season, it seems Rennes have only won once with a 2-0 defeat to Reims earlier on Sunday, so you’d like to think form wise we are favourites and there has to be a strong reaction from the players to Saturday’s nonsense.

There has to be…







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82 Replies to “Match Thread – Spurs Get A European Distraction Following Palace Woes”

  • We are going to be a bit light in the centre back department, maybe we could play Kane there, at least he might get a few more touches of the ball than he has been getting in the opposition box! :- )

  • There were several comments on the previous thread that confuse me. Okay, at my age I confuse easily!

    I’m having real trouble trying to understand the many negative comments about Kane. Is it time to shoot the big poppy down? Is that what happens on VS now. The way some of you are putting the boot in and writing his Spurs career off would result in a red card on the pitch. Nice one, lads.

    Spurs were a shambles against Palace but Kane seems to cop most of the blame. Not long ago Spurs were playing well and Kane was banging in the goals. That’s what happens for strikers when the team plays well. Now the team is not playing well and Kane is not banging in the goals. That’s what happens for strikers when the team is not playing well. They do not get the opportunities.

    It is a squad team game, not a one-man-team game. England is a better team than Spurs and Kane looks sharper playing for them. I wonder why! We don’t need to imagine how Kane can perform in a functioning team. We already know. Forget the goal tally, Kane’s passing remains the best in the squad. It’s difficult to explain that one. The concept that a footballer could have the occasional poor game also seems to be a mystery to many.

    It seems that many on VS are looking for reasons to down Kane. Look hard enough for a reason to bag someone and you will find it. Likewise, look hard enough for a reason to applaud someone and you will find that too. Which way we go says a lot about us as people. Suddenly his body language is poor, his attitude is poor, his head has gone missing, he is somewhere else, and VS mental health experts are making all kinds of assumptions on his mental state. WTF!

    I did not want Kane to leave in the window but if VS is any indication of fan loyalty and nous, I think he should go as soon as possible. We don’t deserve him.

  • so, this is it: Suddenly his body language is poor, his attitude is poor, his head has gone missing, he is somewhere else, and VS mental health experts are making all kinds of assumptions on his mental state. WTF!

    Geof, I couldn’t have summarized his recent play better! And if he keeps playing like this, then what happened to his spurs? They’ve gone cold, that’s what. Harry ColdSpur.

    I kept my eyes on him the whole match today when the camera angles allowed, and my eyes told me that he looked uninvolved. I felt jilted.

    Harry Coldspur. That’s the ticket. As you said: WTF!

  • TK … I agree. Kane is just a very poor player in a very good team. Get rid of him and I’m sure we’ll be up for the title.

  • Kane is out of form, he’s had runs of games like this before and will probably have them again. By the end of the season though he’ll have scored plenty. Which doesn’t help us now. Currently there is only Son scoring goals so with him injured our firepower is down almost to zero. Add all the other players injured or holidaying in Croatia and Nuno has a real problem. Playing Chelsea is tough at the best of times. Playing Chelsea with players missing, nobody scoring goals and a game mid week is a nightmare.

  • Jod – Difficult to argue that Kane is out of form when he ‘s just scored 3 goals in 3 games oin the space of a week for England.

    I think Geof’s take is far more on point. Play him in a functioning team and he will perform.

  • I am no big fan if the Europa Conference League, and I hope we rotate heavily for it. Whatever happens, happens.

    However, regardless of team selection, I would just like to see a lot more endeavour in our play. As I just posted on the Palace thread, if Nuno is to be judged on how we set up against the smaller teams, there is reason for concern. We’ve played 3 relatively small teams (out of 4 games) in the PL so far and we have looked quite cautious in all of those games.

    The ECL should be a sandbox for Nuno to experiment, with little consequence if things backfire. Why not treat it as such?

  • While there has been some questioning of Kane’s commitment due to the summer shenanigans, and he has looked disinterested at times, I also believe that his ‘lack of form’ is a result of our complete lack of creativity in midfield. I think the difference when Son plays is that he creates many of his own chances whereas Kane relies more on crosses and through balls to get his goals and he just ‘aint getting the service, especially when Son isn’t playing.

    To be fair to Harry his apparent disinterest at times is just as likely to be down to the lack of service as it is to his disappointment of not getting a summer move.

  • Geof….I hadn’t realised until yesterday that we allowed Alanna Kennedy to move to City over the summer. Very disappointed that we lost one of our best players but then after last night’s result she must be wondering if she made the right move! :- )

  • BelgianSpur – You seem to be assuming club and country form are the same. They clearly aren’t, just think about Raheem Sterling last season. A really poor season for City but an excellent one for England. Why that happens I’ve no idea, different players, different systems maybe. But it does happen. In Kane’s case I would also draw a distinction between penalties and goals from open play. Even when he’s struggling Kane will usually put penalties into the back of the net.

  • TQ …. What a win that was. City had not lost at home for three and a half years (apparently). Bit lucky with the handball but, hey, it’s football. Not sure why Kennedy left. I think she decided to become a free agent and then City approached her, but I’m not sure. Kerr will never get an easier goal than her first against Everton.

  • jod – that’s the point I was making. The term “form” is often misused.

    People often cite “lack of form” for a player’s struggles but that is often a blanket statement. If a player struggles, it could be form, or it could be a number of other reasons.

    If a player is truly suffering from loss of form, he’ll struggle in any team. If a player shines in a certain context but struggles in another, the problem isn’t form, it is very often the fit within a team and its tactics.

    Sterling was a formidable example of that last year.

    Nuno’s tactics are new to Kane and it seems like Nuno and Kane are still trying to work out how to get the best out of each other. Kane probably still needs to better grasp what Nuno wants him to do, and maybe Nuno needs to adapt his tactics to maximise Kane’s qualities. It’s a work in progress.

    There’s been no preseason to iron out the issues, not to mention the transfer window distraction probably being a hurdle as well. If Kane really thought he was leaving, I can see why he wouldn’t have really put the time and effort in to build a relationship with Nuno at first.

    Kane only settled his future on Aug 25, so he has realistically only had about 20 days of “committed” work with Nuno.

    However, going back to Kane’s current form, on the evidence of his fantastic strike against Poland, Harry is not exactly struggling to find the net from open play…

  • Hi Geoff,
    Many of those comments you alluded to were mine, however I am entitled to them.
    I said in an earlier statement that I’d hoped that Kanes head wasn’t turned, and also hoped that he didn’t down tools, now it wasn’t me who said that HK wasn’t himself on Saturday but Jermaine Janus.
    What I don’t want is Harry spoiling his illustrious career with us by downing tools to get a move.
    He didn’t appear for training, didn’t start matches for us because of this.
    He hasn’t been setting the world alight since his return.
    I don’t know the back story, but to me as a punter, I feel he could’ve done better in his statements, his approach to training, and his on pitch performance.
    That’s not putting the boot in that’s saying it how I see it, currently,.
    I hope as I said in earlier statements that he gets his head right, but at the moment it doesn’t look right with him and I for one think I’m entitled to call it out if I think it.
    You obviously think differently you’re entitled but I can’t see that argument currently.
    If he was appearing to put in a shift in a bad team I’d take it but just now (for me) he isn’t, hence my comments.

  • ND …. To be honest I don’t know who made specific comments regarding Kane. I was just commenting on the sense I was getting from VS. Of course he didn’t appear for training until later. He’d been rather busy. Did he not deserve a much needed break with his family …. no surprise there, surely. I do agree that he could have been clearer about his intentions but any negotiations concerning his future were probably not for the public domain at the time. It was between him and THFC. Not sure if you are saying he is downing his tools or if you are predicting him to down his tools. Not even sure why downing tools comes into it …. until he actually refuses to play. I’d prefer to consider the idea that Spurs performance improves in general and Kane is a happy little vegemite. But then I’m a dreamer. It seems unfair to make assumptions and draw conclusions ‘as a punter’ without knowing the back story. Of course we are both entitled to our opinions. Simply, ours differ.

  • Kane is playing like he doesn’t want to be playing here. I don’t see how that can be denied. I saw Crouchie saying this last night. IF Kane is playing like he doesn’t want to be here, let him sit a bit until he decides he wants to play. Playing like he doesn’t really care doesn’t do the club any good nor Kane any good. His value will drop. He needs to decide to play like he’s capable of playing.

    Look, I’ve had several times in my career when I was fed up with various aspects of where I was working. I still showed up and put in a best effort I could, whether it was delivering lectures to students or running my laboratory. I had a responsibility to those who were depending on me to teach them as best I could and those whose careers depended on what we produced in our research. The fact I was fed up at one time or another with the “higher authorities” in the institution (a university) wasn’t reason to cheat the other people who were counting on me.

    Where is the professionalism in playing without caring? I know I’m not alone in seeing Kane playing on the pitch without enthusiasm in the last match or two. I expect better of him, and I think the team should expect better of him.

    Snap out of it, Harry. Your brother/agent led you to expect things that weren’t going to happen. Get irritated with him. If Citeh thought you were worth what you thought you were worth, they would have paid more for you. For God’s sake, they splashed out over 100 million for an unproved Grealish, but they weren’t going to pay much more than that for you. They were the one’s who let you down.

    The supporters at THFC didn’t let you down and never have. Wake up and don’t let us down. If you’re really unhappy take an unpaid leave.

    I expect to see you show up and put it a full effort starting the next time the manager selects you to play. If you want another team to pay absurd money to buy your contract, don’t demonstrate to them that your cannot be counted on to put it a full effort come hell or high water.In

    I hope I’m being clear enough. But my eyes tell me that HK is not putting in a real effort these days, and that’s not acceptable. He’s still being paid a King’s ransom while billions on this planet struggle to get by on not enough to eat properly or to take care of their children adequately.

    Don’t stumble about looking morose. Sullen and gloomy doesn’t favor you. Inspire you mates on the pitch. We know you have the ability.

  • Why are we so poor/clueless/lost/crossing/decision making etc in the final 3rd.

    Yes you could say we miss the eriksen type but, none of the teams outside the top 6 has one. With the pace and talent we have in attackers we should be a lot more ruthless.

    Can’t see where the goals are going to come from besides kane and son, wingers? Midfielders? Even defenders?

    • 123…..How can you say none of the teams outside the top 6 have an Eriksen type player? Palace are only in 11th even after their comfortable win over us on Saturday. They have in their ranks a young lad (of just 20 or 21 I think) on loan from Chelsea who ran the game in Eriksen style against us, he demonstrated exactly what we are missing.

  • Good fair points TK and I like idea not happy playing, take unpaid leave, we can’t have any bad apple on the field it will just spread

  • TK – “Kane is playing like he doesn’t want to be playing here. I don’t see how that can be denied.” With all due respect, says who?

    I think the point Geof is making is that we’re not seeing what you and Niall are seeing. That’s the way you (and others) might see it, but it doesn’t make it a universal truth.

    The mere fact that we are discussing it proves that it can in fact quite easily be denied!

    I personally haven’t seen a lack of effort from Kane. I have seen underwhelming performances like we all have – but I don’t think it has been for lack of trying.

    I am leaning far more towards Geof’s opinion that if Kane has been less of a factor recently, it’s because he has been left badly isolated. He is struggling because the whole team is struggling to create chances.

    If the only thing a back 4 has to worry about is Harry Kane, they can double team him and make him a non factor. The only way you can keep defenses honest is by having another (or several other) goal threat(s) in the team.

    Who was that other goal threat on Saturday? Moura has never scored consistently, Alli hasn’t scored in 2.5 years, and I won’t even talk about Winks/Hojbjerg/Skipp. We were very predictable on Saturday, and even good players can’t work miracles.

    We are all entitled to our opinions but they’re just that – opinions. Personally I think that we probably shouldn’t speculate on why Kane isn’t putting the appropriate amount of effort in, when we can’t even agree on the fact that Kane is in fact lacking in effort in the first place.

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