Posted by: Paul | January 22, 2010

Oh Spurs. Why do you always let me down?

Once again Tottenham fail to grasp a massive opportunity. The frequency of this is becoming alarming.

On Wednesday night, my favoured team – I hesitate to say team of choice, since I was born into a Tottenham family and so can do little about it – capitulated to an under-strength Liverpool side they were more than capable of beating. This is an important result for both clubs and could be a turning point in the season for both – the point at which Liverpool’s season began to recover from the so-called “crisis” which has beset the club, and the point at which Tottenham could no longer hide from their failings. Can they really raise their game enough to reach the Champions League for the first time, or is it beyond them? Will it always be beyond them?

This last is the $64000 question for all Spurs fans. Do the team have enough self belief to cross the line? On paper this is the strongest side we have had for some time, and is scoring liberally while also shoring things up with a makeshift defence which has often outperformed expectations in recent weeks, being without 3 of 4 of our first-choice defenders.

But the paper hides cracks. Ledley King is clearly not able to compete at the top level any more. Sorry Ledley, you’ve been an amazing influence and servant of the club, but us waiting for you to get better is holding us back. Time to go and help out with coaching the kids – use that presence and nobility to inspire them. We need a new brick wall in our back line.

We also don’t know what our best midfield is. I would automatically say Lennon – Palacios – Huddlestone – Modric, but then where does that leave the brilliant Niko Krancjar, who has done so well since joining us from Portsmouth? Or Jermaine Jenas? Or Jamie O’Hara, so promising last season? You can’t play everyone.

In short, I think it may be the start of an increasing period of self-doubt for us. I hope the players have the mental strength to say “OK, we took a blow this week. And to be honest, the week before. And against Wolves. And Bolton. But we can still do it – look where we are! Look at the result against Man City, our closest rivals!” With games coming up against Fulham, Birmingham and Villa, all chasing us for the Euro places, we need to be right on top of our game. Starting with beating Leeds and making R5 of the FA Cup. COYS!

Football post over.

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