Date: 23rd August 2021 at 8:00pm
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Tottenham Hotspur’s start to the 2021/22 campaign has hardly been blistering, but you can certainly describe it as steady with two Premier League wins from two against Manchester City and Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Nuno Espirito Santo appears to be settling in well at White Hart Lane and we are undoubtedly more defensive in approach, but whether or not that changes when Harry Kane is back up to speed, is open for a bit of debate.

There’s still plenty to sort out off the pitch though and that’s not just limited to the ongoing Kane saga as few would think we are finished in the transfer market, particularly if we look at squad depth with an expectation that Nuno will continue to rotate wildly, ala the almost embarrassing no show against Pacos de Ferreira in the Europa Conference League.

And that is a pressing concern as we welcome them to home soil this Thursday and we already have a 1-0 deficit to overturn. Play as we did in the first leg, well, let’s just hope we don’t.

Pacos de Ferreira...







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123 Replies to “Match Thread – Spurs Take A Second Bite At The Pacos de Ferreira Cherry”

  • TQ2Spurs – training and matches are of course different, but I just thought it was interesting to hear the players’ take on it. It seems even they agree that they should have done better, and that despite the rotation, the quality in the 11 should have been enough.

    • BS …. I think every team that does not play well considers that they should have done better. At least, I hope so.

  • Stan Rosenthal – we’ll all have our opinions on how good Traoré is, which is fair enough.

    (For what it’s worth, my take: could he be better with better players around him? Perhaps. But I do see shades of Aaron Lennon in him, ie an ability to beat a man, but ultimately a very inconsistent end product.)

    But regardless of any of that, my biggest problem with the deal is that I feel there are far more pressing needs in the squad than buying another winger. You may feel Traoré is an upgrade on Bergwijn but Bergwijn is far from our biggest problem at the moment.

    If we’re going to spend 40 million on a player, I reckon we’d be far better off spending the money on a world class right back, another reliable centre back, a centre midfielder, or a striker to back up (or replace) Kane. These are far bigger areas of concern than upgrading on Bergwijn.

    • The problem with bringing in a striker to replace Kane is that a striker would not be able to replace Kane! Kane is far more than a striker.

      • I think there are other ways to replace Kane than looking for a like for like replacement. Replacing his contributions with 2 or 3 players if need be… But that point is moot now

  • Niall, I am just advocating that we should be rotating the squad in a way that doesn’t mean changing all 11 which leads to poor performances. Keeping a nucleus of say 5 players and playing 6 reserves plus 3 subs still gives a run out to 9 non first team starters while maintaining some continuity. The reserves will still have first team opportunities as subs, for rotation, and to cover for injuries.

    Re: the threesome, it’s clear that Ndombele has already been underplaying which is why he isn’t getting picked, for him to come out and suggest he only wants to go to RM, BM or Barca is nonsensical.

  • And…. The fact that Pacos at home only beat us by 1 solitary goal, doesn’t make our team of “strangers’ so desperately bad that they are not at all able to beat them at home.

    0-1 away from home to them is not the sign of a disaster and not at all as embarrassing as some are making out… And the way they just sat back after taking the lead, chopping us down at every opportunity, is pretty embarrassing for them I’d suggest. Given our line-up, lack of player fitness, 3 just back from injury and 3 just joined the club, and a bunch of kids on the bench etc., etc…

    I say look out Pacos! It won’t be so apparently easy, this time around… 😉 Will it?!

  • HT, I’m not sure the scoreline tels the whole story. I didn’t get to see the match as I couldn’t find a working stream but by all accounts it was a very poor performance, apparently without a single shot on goal. The after match reports persuaded me not to even bother watching the extended highlights.

    • TQ. We were very poor. Which is in fact why I wrote that. They couldn’t really take advantage of just how poor we were and resorted to kicking us to keep us at bay.

      I don’t think it’s a given that the same team or close to it, would be that poor again…

      Anyway, I think that Nuno will probably strengthen the team a bit more this time. Simply because we don’t have to travel and we are also at home on Sunday. He did make a strong point as to why all of our 1st team didn’t travel. He pointed to how tiring just the travel can be, let alone playing as well… We’ll see.

  • Traore has some pretty good players around him at Wolves. He had some good ones to play with at Barca. Spain are quite good too… But Barca sold him after just a handful of matches. Spain hasn’t played him much since a couple of years ago, and Villa sold him to Middlesborough after just a couple of seasons, and they sold him to Wolves after just a couple of seasons….

    And, even though he is still just 25, I reckon he was probably even faster when younger. 🙂 Faster, but not better!

    Football supporters are so often deceived by a players speed. And even certain skills they may have…. But if he was as good as he can indeed look on occasion, he’d be amazing, And, who ever he played with…

    Having said all this and we do actually buy the man, I will of course insist that he is the best thing since Georgie Best was slicing it up like he did!

    But, unlike in Best’s day, he will also have to do a bit more team work like stuff and with a bit of defending thrown in, and a little less sprinting… And I don’t think he will some how…

    And my point about his bulky muscle mass was serious. He is not designed like most footballs that can run. Or any other footballers for that matter. I think he will run out of steam and/or suffer a bad injury soon enough… I hope not. But i wouldn’t be surprised…

    Anyway… I do think Bergwijn is better. Nobody mentions his amazing bit of wing-trickery v Wolves.Or his pace. Or his effort on goal that needed a fine save… I think he can give us much more as the season progresses… More than Adama can… I think!

    • HT, so it’s ok that Bergwijn can’t score for toffees but not so ok for Traore who panics defences most times I’ve seen him play. And certainly in Sunday’s game he was generally producing cutting passes to players is promising positions at the end of his runs who should have done more with them. Much more than what our attacking guys were doing.

      • We obviously see it differently Stan. But I haven’t said anything about the lack of goals scored by either player. (Others have). I just don’t rate the guy as highly as yourself.

        I know that after watching Traore since he was at Villa 6 years or so ago, that I have never once said to myself; “I’d love to see that guy at Spurs”.

        If he does come though, then I will support him all the way… Until he drops! 🙂

  • I’m with ya there HT, Traore actually reminds me of a, “Rugby League” player in his stature, as I said at times he can be a handful and indeed can keep maybe two players busy and again if we had the luxury may actually be a decent squad aqusition, but there are other areas in our team that need desperate attention.
    TQ I just want to see the youngsters redeem themselves and get a few minutes in a Spurs shirt.
    People on this site are banging on about how, we don’t bring academy players through, we’ll if we don’t let em play games like this, gain some minutes and indeed confidence, when are they going to play, what a two minute cameo in the League Cup against the likes of Lincoln.
    Give em a chance, that’s, what I say, there really wasn’t much in it, yes we were poor but they weren’t great either.
    But you have your thoughts, which may be right, I have mine on the subject.
    I just hope our best 11 isn’t knackered come early 2022 trying to win a 3rd tier Euro Cup.

  • The talk of Traore is a bit like City spending £100m on Grealish when they needed a centre forward and a left back, they already had a better player in De Bruyne so the question is why. What we need above all if Kane is going is a replacement centre forward. If he’s staying then whatever we need its not more pace out wide or a 1 in 10 goalscorer. “Buy somebody, anybody” isn’t a viable transfer policy for any club with limited funds.

  • Geof,

    does every team that does not play we think that they should have done better?

    It depends on how the players are feeling about playing and how they feel about being on that team. It’s possible to be on a team where one does not want to be, playing for a manager for whom one does not want to play, and to be quite satisfied with a poor performance. It’s one match closer to forcing either one’s self out of the club or the unwanted manager out of the club.

    This is not merely something that happens in football clubs. One can have a job for the government or for a private corporation and hate the employer with such intensity that what one likes best is to sabotage the employer.

    There are plenty of people working for Amazon who would like nothing better than to harm Amazon, and lots of Uber drivers who hate Uber. Unhappy workers tell us more about the places that have produced the unhappiness than it does about the unhappy worker.

    Plenty of armies have gone into battle with their lives on the line and put in far less than a full effort. Why should we expect more from 11 men in short pants chasing around with a ball on a pitch? If someone is demoralized, then they are apt to think that half hearted is half a heart more than was required.

    Complex matter, this matter of being demoralized while working. Not just working. How many demoralized husbands, wives and children are there who are plodding daily through the motions? How many good-morning kisses are the front face of a demoralized life? How many “I love you”utterances are masks in front of “I hope you drop dead today”?

    Sometimes a good performance is just a divorce away.

    If Ndombele or Aurier are on our roster in November and on the pitch, do you think they will have the best interest of THFC front and foremost in their hearts? One can raise the same question about HK.

    Of course, some bad performances are simply a matter of lack of ability.

  • By the way, winning this Euro competition won’t thrill me in the least. Winning a loser’s cup isn’t a thrill. It’s closer to an embarrassment.

    It is a good chance to vet some young players, though, and the youth ought to be motivated to show that they belong at our club. If the up-and-coming aren’t motivated, then they won’t stay up-and-coming. They’ll move to being down-and-out. And that ought to provide some motivation.

    For all his apparent talent, Ndombele Tanguy looks to be satisfied putting in partial effort and ending up in a lesser league playing half heartedly. Hope my assessment is wrong. Hey, I’m talented, so that’s enough, is rarely enough. You need some hunger in your step.

  • Not a lot of joy expressed in Harry’s statement. Not quite a Robbie Keane moment but I wonder if he will ever feel the same love from the fans now. One of our own sounds a bit hollow.

  • If I’m Kane I’m not upset at Spurs, I’m upset with Man City who basically hung Harry out to dry. What does it do for Kane to know they valued Grealish more than him ? As far as Spurs goes it gives us another year, which gives Nuno some time to rebuild the team. Kane is too professional to let his standards drop and if they do he knows he can forget a transfer to a top team. As far as City goes, with no centre forward I wonder how their fans will react if Chelsea win the title with Lukaku making a major contribution ?

  • Traore, my opinion, built like a “Brick outhouse” can run fast, with no result, not regular in that department, and as an ex-Powerlifter, he is sustainable to and will get muscle injuries on a regular basis, simple as that, esp as you get older, so for me NO! but as HT said if we sign him he will be the best thing since sliced bread, lol!

    Man City it appears offered £75m + player add ons (£122m), who they are I have no idea, but you can bet they weren’t who we would want, so Mr Levy told them to stick it where the sun doesn’t shine.
    It is them, MC, that’s pissed Spurs, Mr Levy and Harry about, thus him Tweeting that he is staying.

  • When TK arises in the morning, and his partner (who is apparently young enough to be his Great, Great Granddaughter) say’s to him cheerily., “Good Morning, Gramps….. (I mean lover-boy)”. I wonder what his reply might be?

    Could it be something like this?

    “You may consider this morning to be a great morning, but think on this. Alexander the Great woke up one morning, after a long night of jollity and wine, only to find the morning for him was not so good as the night before. He had a fever. He felt weak and very sickly. He knew his end was nigh. “I’ve been poisoned!” So, not so good that morning, for The Great, eh?

    And as his teacher, the great Greek philosopher Aristotle once said; “Good is only for the bad. And the bad know that no good morning can be better than a bad, good morning. But, only the good know that bad is only good if you are bad. And that mornings don’t last all day… And the day’s are soon gone, and never to be truly good again…

    …Good is Evil. Evil is good. But only if you are bad. I morn good mornings. And I pray for the poor”…

    “Okay darling”. Says TK’s partner. (I mean Gramps) (I mean grumps)! What would you like for breakfast?”

    “Breakfast!” Exclaims TK. “Break Fast? Are we talking Spurs or Traore here?!” blah blah blah, ad infinitum.

  • I can’t say Kane staying really comes as a surprise. To me City have never really seemed that bothered about Harry, its like the days when Man U would table a lowball offer for him every summer even though it was obvious it stood no chance of being accepted.

  • TK whilst I love ya man, HT just about nailed it 😂🤣🤣🤣
    Re Kane well he has “committed” him self to Spurs to at least January. I suppose.
    Not really over the moon by his actions lately.

  • Sorry folks called away at my last post,
    Re HK, I still think his heart isn’t in it, time will tell, however on a positive note, there was very little, wrong with our goal scoring last season, it was conceding goals after taking a lead which was much of our issue, that, and being too defensive and pedestrian in our buildup.
    So again on a positive, this let’s us focus on getting WW’s list of players out, plus we now only need truly focus on defence and midfield general.
    On a minus where do we now get the dosh for a rebuild… 🙄

    • Even if KAne stays, we’res till short of strikers. It’s the reason why we loaned Vinicius last year.

      Who plays when Kane inevitably gets injured?

      Buying a striker remains a need whether HK stays or not.

  • Let’s see HK play vs. Paços de Ferreira amanha and send us to the next round of that strange cup contest. Harry can use tomorrow’s match to get rounded into shape to play some real matches for us.

    I’m curious to see how Harry’s return will influence the choice of formations by NES. 433? who’ll be up front with HK? Son and Lucas? Or will Harry be part of a midfield allignment? Perhaps that possibility would be too strange a place to take the conversation.

    By the way, I’m the same age as my “partner’s” mother, not her grandmother. As to my partner, she greets me in the morning by asking me to read what she’s writing. She’s getting a doctorate in linguistics. Perhaps I’m sufficiently intellectual for her, but maybe not. She thinks I’m mad to spend time on VS, but her son understands why I’m here. He, by the way, he does call me Gramps, but in Portuguese. Bom dia, vovô.

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