Contributor Lee Bradley looks at
the current state of play at the Lane ...
there it is; another question asked another emphatic answer from AVB
and his band of merry men. A nerve-wracking 97 minutes of
football yesterday proved in many ways how far we have come this
season even after such influential players left in the summer.
During the game it felt as though we were hanging on for large parts
but after the adrenaline and resting heart rate dropped to
acceptable levels (about the time MOTD2 appeared on telly) I was
able to watch and analyse the game rationally and to be honest we
were never really troubled by our deflated neighbours; all the
possession they had seemed to flit around the halfway line and third
quarter of the pitch.
In years gone by that game would
have been reversed and we would have had the more possession and
done most of the legwork only to be outdone by a couple of lapses in
concentration but it seems the tide has turned and that corner has
finally been negotiated, all that is left for us to do now is walk
along the corridor and not trip up.
Going back to our amazing run of form, it is wholly unfair to
attribute this to one player – namely Mr Bale, every player bar the
lethargic Adebayor should take a bow for Spurs being third as they
have all played their part. Benny has come back from a period
out and made the left back role his own again, Kyle Walker is
starting to step up after a faltering second full season in a Spurs
shirt. Hugo Lloris has been a revelation and will be up there with
Bale for player of the season if he keeps up his form, Dembele
continues to perform almost flawlessly after his seamless move from
Fulham and Michael Dawson just epitomises what we are all about, I
felt so proud watching him gee each player up individually and then
take the huddle just before kick off yesterday. Dawson’s
actions as captain on the pitch and AVB’s intelligence and passions
off it are a big reason why we are such a together team nowadays.
You can see everyone plays for each other.
when lazy pundits and annoying opposition fans label us a one man
team it really annoys me as we clearly are not. OK, we are about as
“one man team” as Barcelona are and I don’t see anyone banding that
label around !
Anyway, keep up the good work Andre, you have given us Spurs fans
the clearest hope yet that we are on the verge of something massive.
“Jim White Day” for us Spurs fans as the usual wait for frantic activity
at 10:35pm never materialised. The intrepid reporter stood outside the
training ground all day must have thought he was in for some action of
some sort, but the only action he got was his earpiece falling out on a
live feed with some over zealous fans !
transfer window itself, compared with previous last days, was a bit of a
non event overall with Sky Sports trying to sensationalise every piece
of activity that went on.
thought as a whole we did superbly on the outbound front; getting rid of
deadwood and loaning out youngsters to Premier League clubs for
invaluable first team experience. I just hope that the Andros Townsend
loan doesn’t end up being permanent, Simon Dawkins going to Villa was a
bit of a surprise but hopefully he won’t be too scarred by the
experience of a team in freefall …
there was the buying front with the infamous “Levy hour”… I thought the
weak offer for Leandro was embarrassing to be honest; this is a player
we have been linked with for what seems like three or four years and all
we can muster is a half assed bid on the last day of the transfer
window. We even have links with Internacional so that should surely give
us first tabs on any talent! The way Levy conducts business on deadline
day will either make him look like an extremely shrewd businessman or a
chump, unfortunately overall he was more like the latter yesterday.
knows? Maybe AVB genuinely thinks we can push on for third or fourth
with the front line we’ve got, maybe due to posting losses this year
Levy is tightening the purse strings? One thing is for sure though; it
will be the same rollercoaster ride to the end of the season as it
always is with us fans gnawing away at the stubs on our hands for the
remainder of the games we play out this season …
after the last instalment, it seems I can now say "what a difference one
or two wins makes"!
With the unceremonious boo's now silent our season is well and truly
under way. A less than convincing win against QPR but a win nonetheless,
an extremely competent display against tough European opposition in the
shape of Lazio in a game I thought we were very unlucky not to win
convincingly, a good display by some of the younger members of the squad
against Carlisle and of course the dramatic victory at Old Trafford have
set us on our way towards a nice unbeaten run. Add to that the unlucky
draw against Pana and a convincing win against a poor Villa and we are
well and truly cooking on gas.
These results could not have come at a better time; now AVB has
dispelled the huge pressure on him somewhat he can carry on his hands-on
management of the players with a little less spotlight inspection. He is
displaying the skills set we all crave in a manager – evolution. He has
had the foresight to change things mid-match to make the right impact
and in the end handled the Hugo Lloris situation better than I expected
him to. I enjoy watching his reactions to goals and decisions during the
match as you can see he is totally and utterly engrossed in play. This
may be some sort of honeymoon period but long may it continue as I am
really content with the squad we have at the moment even though we could
probably do with one more striker.
I have to say though, one of the real stars for me so far has been
Vertongen. He is slotting in like a dream and I can only reminisce what
it would have been like if he and King would have been partners...Some
of the tackles he has made so far have been outstanding and his
attacking presence is an added extra, he has transformed the shape of
the team since he has slotted on at Left back, giving Bale even more
confidence to push forward, much as I love Benny I can see Vertongen
making the position his own now and we will have a natural overlap on
each wing then.
So, as they say, while the sun is
shining let’s make all the friggin’ hay we can!!
What a difference a couple of wins make…
Hopefully this is what we will be saying soon, as the wheels on the AVB
bus look to have a couple of nuts loosening. It was all optimism and
hope mixed with a tinge of “transitional period” at the very start of
the season but the boo’s that seem to be resonating at half and full
time at the last two games have some reflection on how the general Spurs
public is feeling right now.
Like a few fans I have a frightening
figure bouncing round in my head that signified the last big change at
the club – two points from eight games. Obviously the club is in much
better shape now and has a lot more togetherness than under the Senor
Ramos regime although Huddlestone could probably do with a few weeks
locked in a room with him !
Looking at the cold hard facts – one
loss and two draws - it’s not the end of the world by any means. I
didn’t expect to get much change out of the result at St James’ Park on
the first day and if you really want to make excuses, then you could say
we have just played two teams that have new managers and are therefore
unknown quantities. I think what remains to be seen is if Dempsey and co
can make the difference now that Modric and VDV have departed.
All in all I am relatively happy with
our transfer dealings this summer albeit most of them done a little too
late on. I would have been ecstatic if we had completed the Moutinho
move as that would have completely replaced Modric, but I think Dembele
will go a long way towards replacing him and also chip in with a few
more goals than the creative Croatian used to contribute.
The only thing riling me is the Dawson
saga; this shouldn’t even be a saga ! Michael Dawson is a stalwart
of the club and a player that can be counted on time and time again,
once fit, to give blood for the cause. In my opinion he should be
captain, why he is being told he is down the central defensive pecking
order is beyond me as Gallas is starting to show the similar wobbly
signs that Ledley did last season. Vertongen looks to have settled in
well so far and should retain his place but Dawson should be at least
tested alongside him sooner rather than later.
I think a lot of what AVB tries to
convey is lost in translation somewhat though; a perfect example being
that he summed up Brad Freidel v Hugo Lloris for the number 1 spot by
saying “Hugo is one for the future”…
Whatever has been lost in translation
needs to be found though if we are to start making avenues into
Champions League qualifying territory…
The imminent appointment of Andres Villas-Boas to White Hart Lane has
been met with mixed opinions in the footballing world; largely negative
from the Redknapp-loving red-tops in contrast with an open-minded
optimism from a large number of Spurs fans - once the initial shock of
the name AVB arose and his doomed exploits at Chelski were wiped from
When AVB's name was first mentioned in conjunction with the vacant post
I instantly rejected the idea based upon his disastrous tenure at the
boys in blue and refused to consider the idea at any length, holding
onto some blind hope that Guardiola would wipe out his sabatical to take
the reigns. But the more I think about it the more optimistic I grow,
AVB is a real student of the game, a prodigy if you will. He is a
Mourinho in the making that just needs to be surrounded by the right
players and staff to make things work.
Levy has impressed me the last few years by learning and evolving from
mistakes he has made, he can now learn and evolve from the mistakes made
by his counter-part at Chelsea by keeping the dressing room young and
hungry for success and development whilst also having more "well-heeled"
veterans such as Ledley King and Brad Friedel around rather than the
anarchiac John Terry and Didier Drogba. There will be no Old Guard to
rid at Tottenham.
From his time at Porto and then Chelsea it appears AVB favours a strict
formation and unwavering tactics, this does not mean one dimensional
football though as it is as fluid as it is strict and unwavering. He
simply wants his team to attack with width and speed when they have the
ball and then squeeze and play narrow when they don't have the ball. He
would have gone a long way to achieving this at Chelsea had he got his
hands on the missing jigsaw peice - Luka Modric. Obviously it looks like
we could be losing Modric but rumours are that we are signing the player
that AVB first worked with at Porto; Moutinho, who in my opinion will
bring everything that Modric brought to the table. With the securing of
Bale's services and hopefully a fit Lennon, these players will fit
perfectly into AVB's system. With Sandro and Moutinho in the middle and
Parker sweeping up behind, then Lennon and Bale pushed up on the wings
all we need is a striker in the middle that knows where the goal
is...step up Defoe, your time to shine if ever there was one!
Wether the Vertongen deals goes through remains to be seen but with
Dawson on the mend and Kaboul going from strength to strength not to
mention a great under study in Steven Caulker, the defense seems to be
on the right track especially with full backs as regular as they come in
BAE and Kyle Walker. Although Friedel is a calming influence on the
defense I would like to see this position secured for the future,
someone like Hugo Lloris or Michel Vorm.
Obviously the above paragraph only scratches the surface of our squad
and AVB may see something in certain players in training that push them
into the team.
All in all I get the impression that like me, a lot of Spurs fans are
warming to AVB being appointed because it means we will have tactical
nous. It IS all 'ifs and buts' at the moment but this could be the start
of something big for us and like everything it may need time to bed in.
I just hope he is given enough time to plump his pillow!
Just remember Brian Clough was sacked by Derby after 44 days, then went
to Forest and the rest they say is history...
spent the whole night walking around shaking my head in disbelief as I
watched the reputation of our great club dissolve as the words “BERBATOV
PASSES MEDICAL AT MANCHESTER UNITED, SPURS YET TO GIVE PERMISSION TO
TALKS” ran along the bottom of the Sky Sports News screen along with
Berbatov slinking about the corridors of the “Theatre of Dreams.”
In the back of my mind a little voice was saying, “Surely Levy will just
order him back and make him rot in the reserves for this”.
On went the
night, as expert after expert claimed he had texts from the cleaner at
Upton Park that Ronaldinho had just boarded a plane to Quebec ... sorry
that does seem a bit far fetched !! Anyway, I left the madness
that is the transfer window behind at about 20 minutes after midnight
safe in the knowledge that it had closed and as there was no statement
from White Hart Lane Berbatov and Fergie obviously hadn’t got their way
As soon as I awoke in the morning I was alarmed to see the headline
“BERBATOV SEALS £30.75M MOVE TO MAN UTD” coupled with “SPURS SECURE
FRAZIER-CAMPBELL ON SEASON LONG LOAN.” So now not only had we sold
our star player after blatantly witnessing him being driven around by
Fergie but we had been roped into giving one of their youngsters a
year's experience in the Premiership too !!! God knows what goes
through Levy’s head sometimes.
All I can
think is that he is looking out for the shareholders to keep sweet in
case someone comes in with an offer for the club. Why else would
he talk the talk and then hide away like a scared mouse ??
the farce at Old Trafford last night surely there will be repercussions
from the behaviour of the “executives” at Manchester United, an enquiry
needs to be started seeing as Daniel Levy seems to be forming an
annoying habit of forgiving people when he should be tightening the grip
on the situation. This sort of thing will keep on happening and the
‘top four’ will just pump a couple more million into the price to keep
people happy ...
I have set
up an online petition regarding this and when enough people have joined
it I will make the FA aware, please take a minute to join if you will:
(after reading this article of course!)
I know that
most people think it will be pointless but with the power of the
internet and passionate football fans this could be big ...
At the moment we must
have the most talked about frontline since Prince Harry decided to try
his luck in Afganistan ! Linked with players as varied as Huntelaar to
Heskey (god no!) the board and Ramos seem to be quite happy hogging all
the column inches in the various web blogs and newspapers, I suppose to
act as a massive smokescreen so they can operate incognito and spring
surprises on us unsuspecting supporters.
Looking on various websites and SSN this morning it looks like we are
close to securing the services of one Roman Pavlyuchenko, this being the
same Roman Pavlyuchenko that Ramos stated he wasn't interested in a few
weeks ago... I have heard some worrying things about this player
over the past few days though - apparently he tends to disappear from
games as soon as he has scored a goal as if to say "I've done my bit
lads..." Also, a highly respected Russian sports writer (if there is
such a thing !!) has said he acts like a school boy at times and gets in
a mood when things aren't going his way - perfect replacement for Keano
There are other more
encouraging aspects such as he is the only player to score more than ten
goals in the last three consecutive seasons in Russia which apparently
is no mean feat. On the other hand he was also undecided about whether
he wanted to leave Russia due to his wife and young daughter not wanting
to go elsewhere. All these things seem to make the deal a bit of a
gamble but hey, Berbatov had a playboy reputation when he arrived at WHL
and he did/done alright for us. Only time will tell...
Anyway, with the imminent arrival of Roman and the omission of Berba
from the squad on Saturday, this obviously means that ManUre are set to
"get their man"...So with Pavlyuchenko replacing Berbatov we are still
one striker light. So the news that SCBC have got Pekhart on loan came
as something of a shock as I thought Pekhart could have been a player to
step up and prove himself in this difficult part of the season for us,
as the saying goes - cometh the hour, cometh the man ...
Anyhow, with Pekhart enjoying cream teas with the old duffers down on
the south coast we still need another striker.
So the search and
I reckon we should try our hand in the South American dept. I mean Gio
has been somewhat of a shining light in our dark start to the season so
I like the look of Radamel Falcao Garcia Zarate -
~ Commonly known as Falcao.
~ He plays for River Plate and sometimes goes by the nickname El Tigre.
~ He has a goals to games ratio of 25 to 65 respectively.
~ He scored seven times in his first seven games as a pro before tearing
a ligament from which he is fully recovered now.
~ Rumour has it that he could be persuaded to move for around 10
Obviously we all have many many opinions on who said striker should be
and Arshavin would be the logical partner for Pavlyuchenko as it looks
like he may have a problem settling in, plus he doesn't speak one word
of English. Arshavin has already played with him on many occasions for
the national side and in a way it would be a different version or
Berbatov and Keane.
So will it be another ice cool Russian counterpart or some samba heat to
melt the supporters hearts ... who comes ... YOU decide !!! (if only !!)
I still hanker for a bit of South American flair up front though ...
Sulker For A Sulker
As the start
of the season moves ever nearer and transfer rumours get ever desperate,
there seems to be two linked to Spurs that just won’t die, both equally
likely to fail or go ahead.
I’m talking about Berbatov’s long haul courting by Manchester United and
Andrei Arshavin’s slave like imprisonment at Zenit St. Petersburg.
Both players are talented strikers capable of turning a game on it’s
head and both players also have agents capable of selling ice to
My trail of
thoughts turn firstly to Berbatov’s behaviour and comments (regardless
of whether they were made through him or his agent) since he was made
aware of Man United’s interest in signing him just over a year ago; a
fact backed up recently by a Martin Jol interview on Talksport where he
candidly and openly stated that Berbatov has wanted to travel north
since as early as the first transfer window opened the January after he
signed for us.
It is fair
to say that this speculation created unrest at the club, mainly with the
supporters and board because you can’t argue the fact that Berbatov has
still chipped in with enough assists and goals to propel Tottenham
forward. With this speculation on our star striker’s future
hanging like a thunder cloud, along came the real strike of lightning
with the comparatively quick and shocking move of a certain Irishman to
a certain Scouse lot. This changed Berbatov’s future at board
level I believe as the club and Levy in particular realised that they
had a reputation to think about.
believe that the only way we will sell Berbatov is by securing the
services of Arshavin. Which brings me to my second trail of
thought; if we get rid of one sulker in Berbatov, are we buying arguably
a bigger sulker in Arshavin ?
Rewind to a
little over two years ago to when we were signing Berbatov from Bayer
Leverkusen and you would have been hard pushed to link Andrei Arshavin
to a European club of any standing let alone the likes of Barcelona.
is a different matter all together with eye catching performances in the
UEFA cup and Euro 2008 propelling Arshavin into the limelight and the
work of an ambitious agent not afraid to over hype things and hey presto
! You have the now essential commodity for any successful club
known as Andrei Arshavin.
rumblings of transfer rumours looked promising for a number of clubs
from Barcelona to Juventus, detouring to Arsenal, Spurs and Man United.
Then things fell silent for a little while as Arshavin’s agent
proclaimed the player’s ever lasting love for Barcelona but with the
asking price hiked up daily by Zenit, the deal slipped away. Enter
with Keane gone there was a hole to fill at the Lane. Rumours were rife
that Daniel Levy had flown to Russia to secure both Arshavin and his
international counter part Pavlyuchenko. True or not, Arshavin’s
agent suddenly started releasing little statements to the press that his
client would be interested in moving and that Tottenham were the only
club making a firm offer; which turned out to be a lot less than Zenit
had wished for. Talk was circulating that a gentleman’s agreement
had been reached for Arshavin’s wages, rumoured to be the highest in
Spurs’ history and all that had to be agreed was the fee between the
clubs. Spurs’ offered slightly higher, Zenit wanted slightly more
and being a Russian club bankrolled by billionaires that make Abramovic
look poor, they could pretty much do what they wanted as long as
Arshavin was under contract. So, out comes Arshavin’s agent with
cries of "Slave !! Slave !!" followed by the player’s decision to sit
out of a cup game against Sibir Novosibirsk supposedly
So here we
are present day and despite their agent’s admirable efforts, both
sulkers, er I mean strikers, still at their respective clubs, but for
how long ? The rest of the season, if my theory is correct,
because the rules seem to be different in Russia with the owners of the
club the possessing the power and not the players; which would mean no
Arshavin to Spurs hence no Berbatov to Man United.
be a blessing in disguise though; if Arshavin is willing to get a
transfer by playing hardball with Russian businessmen that take crap
from no one then I dread to think what he would do should he play a
blinder for us this coming season and then Barcelona/Real Madrid come
calling next season.
“sit out the odd friendly or two” Berbatov over that any day !!
The press conference of David Bentley was a
very interesting affair indeed.
Scheduled for 10am to achieve maximum exposure, us Spurs fans with the
internet at work or the lucky ones watching Sky Sports News from the
comfort of their own homes waited to see what this ambitious young
winger had to say.
Just past 10am in strolled Ramos with Bentley wearing this season's dark
strip but the customary facial hair nowhere to be seen (Ramos' strict
regime showing in him already ??). He answered each question in a
focused, calm manner and I can't help but think he looked like one of
your mates that had just signed for his boyhood club (deja vu ?!).
He said all the right things with regards to pushing on and performing
for Spurs, being impressed with the rising fitness levels and brushing
aside his history at Woolwich FC whilst generally creating a buzz with
his fresh and enthusiastic approach to his new life at Tottenham.
From what he was saying he has quite a few mates that follow Tottenham
and they helped urge him to sign but it was the fact that he stated "As
soon as I knew Spurs were in for me I didn't want to go anywhere else"
that started my brain thinking ...
Now David Bentley is known as a switched on, driven young man; you can
tell by the way he conducts himself and the lessons he has learnt from
the episode regarding the England Under-21s refusal. He has stated
on record quite a few times his desire to play regularly for the England
first team and that Capello has said to the players that to secure a
regular England place they need to be playing Champions League football,
at the moment sadly we are not. Anyone looking at Bentley's character in
this respect would put him down for a move to Man Utd, Liverpool or
Chelsea (Arse being out of the question as they sold him originally).
But for him to come out with the statement about always wanting to join
Spurs either signals that none of the above made bids for him or that he
has seen special times ahead for Spurs and wants to be join the party.
Also that he has seen the departure of Robbie Keane, noticed the "hero"
tag is vacant and has carefully chosen the right words to say to impress
and lay the foundations for him to take over where Robbie left.
I hope this is the case and not the former as I remember being blown
away by some of Bentley's goals last season. His distribution is
of a very high standard; I can see Bent & Co receiving a sterling
service from Bentley and I get a strange feeling that he will take great
pleasure in setting up/scoring against his old club down the road when
the time comes.
Messiah or not I think he is an excellent addition to the squad and
softens the blow somewhat of Robbie's departure, of which this is the
last time I am mentioning the Irishman.
Stunned, disappointed, angered, betrayed ...
Just a few of the feelings running through me the moment it flashed up
on the screen "Liverpool complete Keane transfer". I
sat and stared at the screen for a good few minutes at the picture of
Keane's grinning face, an almost knowing glint in his eye that his
decision to leave would rip the heart out of most Spurs fans. Obviously
there will be a great divide between indifference to his transfer and
"the Sol thing - as in Judas".
One thing that is different about Robbie to Sol though is that spurs
fans have been on a journey with him. When he arrived after his nomadic
years from the obscurity of the Midlands and the glamour of Serie
A, there was an opinion floating around that he would last one season
and then bugger off once more to lay his hat elsewhere but the passion
and drive slowly developed along with each and every Spurs fan's love
and recognition of a fine player and it's safe to say one that got finer
with every season after all, Sol was just there and played well enough
to be loved for a few years (even though he is probably the most hated
figure at WHL now, it's hard to swallow he was once the most adored).
So, will Robbie be hated, tolerated or applauded for his service ?? My
thoughts are at first he will be hated, then he will be tolerated,
followed by maybe not applause but acknowledgement of his services to
the furtherment of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club. It may take time and
will also depend if Keano makes any silly comments or parting shots,
which I really hope he doesn't result to, but Robbie will still be a
legend of the lane to some extent.
On to Levy, that's another matter...He has shown he has no balls to
back his words. Fergie has now seen Levy back down after an "apology"
from Liverpool - so if I slap your grandmother in the face and then
apologise, that makes it okay ??? - he will surely be laughing at
Levy's case against him.
How Levy can come out with such rubbish as "I don't regard it as a
transfer deal - that is something which happens between two clubs when
they both agree to trade - this is very much an enforced sale". Are we
Tottenham Hotspur or Luton Town ?!?! All he had to say was NO, Robbie
Keane's not stupid as I have said previously, he had the adoration of
the fans and he certainly wouldn't of thrown that away. He must have
known that Levy was going to be spineless over this deal.
Last week I wrote a letter to the Public Relations officer at Spurs
addressed FAO Daniel Levy encouraging him to carry on his hard-line
stance against Liverpool and Man Utd and how if he carried this on he
would earn respect no end from the Spurs faithful for not giving in. I
didn't even get a reply for my efforts ...
All I can say is there better be a mighty fine signing to replace Keane
otherwise there will be major trouble !!!
With Ramos seemingly obsessed with bringing
talented youngsters to White Hart Lane, I can see a few of a our present
stars-in-waiting getting more than a fair chance this season, here's a
few lads to ponder ...
Tall, quick, powerful striker that scored plenty of reserve and academy
goals last season. Accompanied the first team squad on the Spanish Boot
Camp trip and promptly scored a couple of goals in the first friendly.
Gus Poyet has also spoken in the press about Pekhart breaking through
into the first team ranks. Tomas is also held in high regard for his
performances for the Czech National teams at under 19's and 18's.
Large imposing Centre Back bought from Lille in 2006. Scores a few
goals for such a large defensive player. Marked Teddy Sheringham in his
first game for the reserves against West Ham a couple of years ago and
ended up scoring a powerful header. Ruled out with a serious injury for
a while but could make a few appearances this year due to our first team
Centre Backs being quite injury prone at times.
Very stylish player that was brought on last season when we needed a
goal/ were cruising a couple of goals ahead. From the moment I saw this
guy play for the first team I've thought his touch was special. When he
first arrived at Spurs he was hailed as the "New Zidane", now he has
shaken that label from around his neck he should be able to start
stamping his own style onto games more often this season, fans will
fondly remember his bursting runs and long powerful shots forcing saves
from Petr Cech and the like in the dying minutes of a few games last
Extremely young and talented player, bought from Leeds in much the same
manner as Lennon - under protest from the Leeds Utd
faithful ... Will maybe go out on loan but will come back with the
experience to maybe warm the bench after his one sitting against
Sunderland last season and can maybe feature in an extended Carling Cup
Central Defender who improved significantly enough in last season's
reserves to earn the captains armband. I can imagine the papers
having a field day with a name like that !!!
So, the future's bright ... the future's ...
Reports from "The Newspapers" (I use this
term loosely as lately they should be called the
"make-things-up-for-the-good-of-ManUtd-and-Liverpool" papers) suggest
that Juande Ramos is willing to sell Berbatov and Keane...
If the papers read what Ramos ACTUALLY stated, they would realise that
he was basically saying "I know that two of the top clubs in the world
are after our players, I take this as a compliment but I am not worried
because whatever happens, at the start of the season we will have a
squad strong enough to mount a challenge for success, so chill out
Call it blind faith if you will but I have
not heard a bad or wrong word from Ramos since he has been at the helm
of our club. I trust him completely and it feels slightly strange
to say such a thing considering we've had Ossie and Christian Gross in
recent times!!! You cannot fault his training methods so far, after all,
it was our improved fitness levels that proved instrumental in beating
Arsenal and Chelsea on the way to cup glory last season, Spurs teams of
the past would have given up and been huffing and puffing round the
pitch lobbing wasteful passes anything past the seventy minute mark.
I believe with the fitness levels reaching the levels they have we will
not see many "defeats grabbed from the jaws of victory" this season that
dogged us so badly last season.
I always look forward to the start of a new season but especially
this year as I have a certain inner calm and assurance with Ramos in
charge. I feel he is The Special One that walks the walk without
talking too much of the talk.
He seems to advocate a style of play that will suit Spurs down to the
ground and is reflected in his signings made - basically he plays a
direct style of football with the full backs overlapping and getting
balls in the box for a skilful lone striker to finish. Recent(ish)
acquisitions Hutton and Bale fit this system perfectly and with Berbatov
or Bent on the end of these crosses and Robbie playing just behind the
lone striker working his magic at breakneck speed we will see some
impressive ball play I feel. Not to mention that he has shored up
the leaky defence in one foul swoop with Woody and Ledders creating a
formidable defensive wall (Ledley will benefit from the Ramos regime I
believe and will start to rediscover his form that helped take us to
fifth for two seasons).
Briefly on the Keane saga, I have just watched a video of the Carling
Cup Final, at the end when the players are walking around the pitch you
can see the tears and passion flooding out of Keane's face and for that
moment he looks like any other success starved Spurs fan. Is that
really the actions of a player who supposedly wants to transfer to
Liverpool. I think not ...
Fingers crossed anyway ...