Date: 13th May 2018 at 6:22pm
Written by:

Now that the sun has set on the 17-18 season and we’ve all had time to evaluate what transpired, the season can be realistically assessed (with the aid of hindsight) to determine if any of our pre-season expectations were achieved. Defining the 17/18 season isn’t strictly possible. There will be as many different views as there are people connected to THFC. It will depend on comparisons to previous seasons, what individual expectations were when the season started, and the meaning of progress.

My expectations, from memory, were to finish the season in the top four and have a decent run in the Champions League and at least one of the cups. I also expected to enjoy the football we produced on the park, see some memorable games, and that we would be competitive whenever and wherever we played. And I thought it would be nice if our new stadium stayed on track to open for the 18/19 season.

Now the question I am faced with is …. were my expectations met?

Probably the most important expectation was to retain our position in the top four. We exceeded that expectation by ending the season in third place. By doing this we have overtaken Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool …. at least temporarily. The money generated by finishing in a higher league position (36m), and qualification for the CL, is crucial in terms of competing with our rivals in attracting new players.

As far as the cups are concerned, we made an early exit in the League Cup and reached the semi-final of the FA Cup. Although the run in the FA Cup satisfied the ‘decent-run-in-one-of-the-cups’ expectation, to come so close before failing at the penultimate game was disappointing.

The Champions League journey resulted in some memorable games and topping such a difficult group was a worthy endeavour and should have instilled a sense of pride in all of us. Playing well but losing to Juve over the two legs was disappointing but our overall performances enhanced our growing profile and reputation on the European stage. The achievement of three consecutive years in the Champions League cannot be overstated.

In terms of our league performance, by finishing in third place on the table we have demonstrated consistency throughout the season …. both at home (?) and away. Throughout the season, we have been able to maintain the two points per game average that normally results in CL football. Comparative results in terms of win/lose/draw, and goal difference, suggest we were on a par with the teams at the top …. apart from City. There were many great performances to enjoy along the way, including the crazy final game of the season. There was also the odd disappointing result, which most clubs experience at some point of the season, but we recovered from them well. And the mantle of being the top London club feels rather comfortable.

Only twice before in our history have Tottenham achieved three top four finishes in consecutive seasons …. they were achieved by the great team of the early fifties and the even greater team of the early sixties (which managed four in a row)! I suspect that it was even harder to achieve this time around than it was on both previous occasions. Certainly, no-one expected us to do it.

The progress of our new stadium is, according to latest reports, pretty much on track although there is provision to play the first games of the season away from home should any last minute issues arise. Some things are beyond our control and can’t be helped.

Have we progressed from last season? We went further in the CL. We reached the FA Cup semi-final. We finished in the top four again. If that is not progress, it’s certainly not going backward. Perhaps it could be viewed as consolidation. Of course, there are many other variables which affect the definition of progress, and supporters will no doubt employ them.
The choice every supporter has to make is whether to be satisfied with the positives of the season, or be disgruntled by any perceived negatives …. such as the failure to win silverware. We can be viewed as a ‘nearly-team’ or an ‘improving-team’, either of which is better than being the ‘not-even-close-team’ that we were for so long. Looking ahead, there is every reason to feel optimistic Although nothing in football is guaranteed, by remaining in the mix we increase our chance of trophy success in the future.

All things considered, and taking into account my pre-season expectations, I have to say that, for me, 17/18 was another roller-coaster ride of emotions …. resulting in a truly satisfying and enjoyable season. What about you?

 

50 Replies to “The Sun Sets On Tottenham’s 17/18 Season.”

  • Top 4 finish was all I expected so expectation met.

    Would still hope for substantial improvement in our consistency and playing style next season.

  • geofspurs….another great article, I loved the read.

    As yourself at start of season, making CL again was the most important thing, we did it and played all our games away from home, excellent season for me.

    Ending season on a high with a party time football match, does me.

    Now for next season and the new WHL. COYS

  • How I envy those lucky enough to have been there today. There was of course no pressure on, except of course the pressure of winning for it’s own sake which should be there in every single game, but a 9 goal thriller is the perfect way to end a decent if unspectacular season. The task now is to resume the “continuous improvement” project to strive to move to the next level and to ward off our challengers. This will mean some shrewd business in the transfer market, and with more urgency than we usually display, due to the shortened transfer window. We need to keep our gems, move 1 or 2 on, and to bring in 2 or 3 to improve our squad, and provide more selection options.

  • Personally we had a better session than I expected. I thought top 4 would be hard and braced myself if we didn’t achieve if but silently hoped we did and if we did that to me would be deemed as a good season. We got 3rd so well done. We did better in CL and had some good results, impressed Even if it was disappointing going out the way we did, same with FA CC cups. I think we had mixed bag of performances this season some dodgy ones and some points dropped when we ought night have done hut over all I think the team have faired better than expected, I was concerned about Wembley factor. I think player positives, Kane scoring lots of goals, consistent again. Lamela back for injury even though I don’t rate him but to see the lad back is humanly a decent thing to wish him well, if he could score and assist like today then I’m happy he stays but to otrsn he has been in effective but maybe we can’t be harsh with him he was out for so long. Dele although jot his best seasonnge has still got goals and assists. Eriksen probably best season so far, much more dominating and more consistency throughout season. Herts best season he has had so reliable and solid. Sanchez first great season, Davies consistent and reliable and improved. Lloris some dodgy moments but has shown his worth as a top class GK. Dier another consistent season as a utility player. Son although inconsistent has brought vital goals and worked his socks off. Negatives with regards to players. Llorente, Aurier neither made muchnof an impact. Dembele flases but too many injuiry jiggles and inconsistency, still notbprovidingvhoals or assists. Toby, Rose, Wanyama injuries hindered their season. Moura difficult to assess but looked better today. Triple neither good for bad. Sissoko, good, bad, ok, he has been a mixture. MP some dodgy selections but overall another consistent season who will improve as time goes on. KWP looked decent at times today. Foyth one for future looked good in cups. Overall very happy with season but do think we need changes.

  • Got to be honest and say around Xmas did not expect us to get top 4 again but to do it is superb. To finish above Liverpool who have got to the CL final and also Chelsea and Arsenal is once again excellent from the manager and players. Taking into account playing away from home and injuries to crucial players aswell as losing Walker last summer just shows how well we have done and also how good we actually are. There’s definitely room for improvement as we are let alone with any quality addition’s so here’s to another top 4 finish and maybe even pushing further next season.

  • As the season began there were reasons to have doubts. No home matches (Wembly hoodoo, remember?). No Right side FB. KWP started first match and last matches only. So I expected slip from the previous season. Hoped for top 4 so we can start next season in new WHL with CL. Achieved that. So expectations met. Nonetheless, we slipped from the previous year. Fewer points. Not good.

    All of that being said, let me five thanks to Tottenham Hotspurs for the 2017-2018 season. Frustrating season at times, but we accomplished something that we hadn’t in years: consistent finishing among the top clubs in PL and we are now mentioned as a top team in Europe. Beat Real Madrid. Came in first in the group of death.

    I won’t be satisfied in the next couple of seasons if we don’t get better yet. Want a championship in PL. Want at least a final in CL. We need a better back four, the FBs aren’t good enough. We need another attacker so that Harry isn’t burned out in another two seasons. We need replacement at least for Dembele and Wanyama. Sissoko, Aurier, a couple of those out on loans, must go. Delle must stabilize and find himself.

    But for this season, thanks to my club for keeping up the standards to which I am now accustomed. Top 4 now an expectation, unlike Scum or Arse in hole, who clearly are lucky to get into Euro. Smiley face emoji here, please. Best club in London. Best club in England per pound sterling, by far. And for someone who hates the exploitation of capitalism and the arrogant manipulations of the rich, winning without selling our souls is worth more than all the cups that can be bought by the money of an oligarch. Yes, I know ENIC is another stinking corporation, but we have the best team in the world without turning ourselves into a play toy for some rich b@st@ard.

    All the best to my chat mates for a good summer. Until the transfer season. LOL. and onto the new season in the new stadium.

  • Have a good summer mates. Let’s see Llorente and Janssen’s contracts sold before next season. Free the non attackers.

  • Loz …. That’s a pretty fair assessment. I have the feeling that Sanchez has the ‘legend’ potential for Spurs.

  • The FA cup result did seem very disappointing, especially when the ‘8 semi finals lost’ stat was rolled out as well. When you isolate that game by itself however, there was no logical reason to suggest that we SHOULD win that game – ‘home’ advantage was negligible and Man U’s squad and manager were considerably more experienced at trophy winning and considerably more expensive.

  • Well done HARRY KANE!!

    He didn’t win the Golden Boot, but he did score more PL goals in the PL than he’d ever scored before. And that’s what counts. That should lessen any disappointment he might be feeling. Awesome performance from him all season.

  • Overall, a good season, consolidation of the top 3 is a good achievement. 2018/2019, MP, if reports are true(IF) has asked for the board to take a risk, therefore to move up to the next level. Personally, you have to agree, yes, we must keep our restraints in order, but, with the increase of revenue then we could raise it by a few % for wage and transfers. lets get rid of some of the players whom are not good enough.

  • Tottenham Hotspur finish the 2017-18 season as the 3rd highest scorers in the EPL and, 3rd with the least goals against. 3rd highest number of wins, joint 3rd for matches lost and, of course, 3rd in the table…

    If I had made 3 wishes at the start of the season; It would’ve been to finish in the top 4 and do well in both the CL and FA cup.

    I didn’t make these wishes as such but, I did believe that were capable of doing well to challenge strongly in all 3 of those competitions.

    In my best case scenario, I hoped for another PL title challenge and to win the FA cup. As well as a good, stand out performance in the Champions League.

    However, I was also realistic enough to accept that playing without a home, at Wembley, could prove to be a tough challenge for the players and that it may take a good while for the team to settle there and perform to the best of their abilities. I didn’t put a timescale on that but was confident that they would adjust well enough not to hamper the seasons overall results, too much. (I see them all as quick learners as well as confident and adaptable players). I think they have shown this to be so, and for the 3rd season running.

    And so I offer the players, the manager and coaches 3 Cheers!

    Hooray, Hooray, Hooray!

    Rise up this mornin,
    Smiled with the risin sun,
    Three little birds
    Pitch by my doorstep
    Singin sweet songs
    Of melodies pure and true,
    Sayin, (this is my message to you-ou-ou:)

    Singin: don’t worry bout a thing,
    Cause every little thing gonna be all right.
    Singin: don’t worry (dont worry) bout a thing,
    Cause every little thing gonna be all right!

    (Bob Marley, Spurs supporter)…

  • HT/PY et al …. Looks like some of us had very similar expectations/hopes for the season. I’m off to practice my ‘happy-clapping’ now. I’m getting really good at it now!

  • I would have settled for this at the start of the season. We basically started and finished the season poorly but played well for the rest of it. Getting used to Wembley did cost us points in the early stages, maybe cost us second place ? There have always been questions about how well Pochettino’s teams last the season and that hasn’t changed. The value of qualifying for the Champions league every season was shown in our improvement compared to the previous year. Beating Madrid showed how much we’d learned, losing to Juventus showed we still had more to learn. Madrid beating Juve still baffles me. This was always an interim season which we’ve got through pretty well. Next season is the start of a new era and we’ll see what that brings.

  • At the beginning of the season, my expectations weren’t so different to Geof’s. Top four, decent run in the cups, and be competitive in all games, although anything about the stadium was not an objective for me. It’ll be ready when it’s ready, and the completion of a stadium doesn’t count towards the club’s sporting success, for me.

    In the league, it was always going to be hard to improve on last year, so some degree of regression was expected, but I thought finishing 3rd is very good league performance. Of course, saying that we’ve overtaken Liverpool and Chelsea may be true in the league, but considering those 2 teams may yet win trophies this year, it really depends what one considers “overtaking”. Certainly when looking at Liverpool, I’d gladly swap our position with theirs.

    Which leads us to my expectations in cups, and how we fared. First of all, I thought we approached domestic cups with the wrong mindset. MP clearly decided that the LC was not worth pursuing, when I believe this is our most winnable trophy right now. MP has decided to shoot for the stars and focus on the big trophies immediately. I believe it’s too much too soon, and I’d love to see the club focus on different objectives next year. I believe a top 4 finish and a LC would be exceptional performance in 2019, come what may in the CL and FAC. I’d prefer winning a more modest trophy, rather than progress in all 3 cup competitions and win none.

    As for the cup performances themselves, in all 3 cases, the manner in which we bowed out leaves lots to be desired. In all 3 instances we threw away winning positions. In the LC, we were 2-0 up at half time against a poor West Ham team, and lost 2-3. Against Juve in the CL, carrying an away goals advantage and being up 1-0 in London with 30 minutes to go. Against Man U in the FAC, being up 1-0.

    The LC performance was poor overall, bowing out early to an inferior opponent. In the CL, the manner in which we collapsed in the return leg against Juve is very disappointing, but mitigating circumstances somewhat offset this. We’d topped our group and we were up against a very experienced opponent. Not a great campaign for me, but not a catastrophic one either.

    In the FAC, again taken in isolation, reaching the semi isn’t a horrible campaign. But in a competition which was eminently winnable, the failure to do so is disappointing.

    Finally, as for being competitive against everyone, we were thoroughly outplayed on a few occasions (both City games come to mind), but those games were the exception rather than the rule. Our failure to break down inferior opponents remains a worry though.

    I’d give our performance in the League an 8 (10 is for winning, and I would have given it a 9 is if we’d done as well as well as last season). I’d give our LC performance a 2, our CL performance a 6 and our FAC performance a 7. I’m not going to give those marks the same weight as our league performance, but I’ll lump all 3 in a “cup performance category” which averages out to a 5.

    I’d rate our “competitiveness” an 8.

    Averaging all 3 marks makes this season a 7. Solid performance, but not spectacular. Geof calls it “consolidation” and I agree for now. However, if we’re still here in 2-3 years, I believe “stagnation” will be more appropriate.

  • If we look at the start of the season and at the first 10 matches of it, It really wasn’t that bad. It was just at Wembley where we stuttered a wee bit in losing our 1st match there to reigning PL Champions, Chelsea and drawing with Burnley and Swansea.

    However, having played our first 10 matches in the PL and CL combined, our record (home and away), was W 7, D 2 and L1…

    We followed those 1st 10 games with an away draw in Madrid and the 4-1 Wembley win v Liverpool… Which was unfortunately followed by 2 losses against WHU (Carabao cup) and Man United (PL).

    I’ll not go any further with this…. But just to say:

    Our start to the season really wasn’t that bad, in the grand scheme of a full season and our Wembley period of adjustment…

  • Now is the time to take the next step:

    Keep: Toby
    Out: Rose, Sissoko, Aurier
    In: Bale, Kovacic, Sessegnon, Sidibe

    I don’t think Davies or Trippier are good enough for starting roles in Poch’s formation. Fullbacks/wingbacks need to be dynamic and getting up and down the pitch.

    Lloris

    Sidibe Alderweireld Vertonghen Sessegnon

    Dier Kovacic

    Dele Eriksen Bale

    Kane

    Sonny will play regularly and could be back-up striker. Dembele, Wanyama and Winks offering cover in midfield.

  • At the start of the past season, when I expressed caution on here about the team possibly needing a period of adjustment at Wembley and that it may hinder us a bit, I also looked further forward and to our moving into the new stadium. I expressed the same sober thought that the team could find it a similar experience and that it may well take a while to settle into our new home. I have no reason to change my mind…

    … For now though, I defer my THFC footballing pleasures and look forward the World Cup for my summertime football fix.

    I wish all the Spurs players well, whichever country they represent. But, most of all, being an Englishman, my energies and hopes will mainly be focussed on those that make the England squad for Russia. I expect that will be Harry, Dele, Eric, Kieran and Danny… Good luck lads!

  • Kane has scored 105 pl goals in 4 seasons. In my opinion Kane has out grown projects and his numbers show he should be the top earner in the Pl and play for and be managed by a trophy winning manager. Bale left at about the same age and has 3 cl medals and a host of other trophies and the money to prove he made the right move. Walker left because he didn’t believe Botch would win anything and he has been proved right. Kane, Ce, Verts, toby and dembele could all leave spurs and walk into teams that have winning managers. After lester season i said i doubted Botch would win a trophy and i stand by that his team selection is still as poor now as it was then.

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