Posted by: Paul | October 23, 2010

A despatch from Row Z

Being seated in Row 26 of the Upper North Stand today we were literally in Row Z for Spurs v Everton, my first live match of the new season. We were about as far away from the pitch as it was possible to be while still being in the ground! We couldn’t even see the Jumbotrons = no replays for us. The trouble with following Spurs at the moment is (a) it’s so damn expensive (second highest ticket prices in the league) and (b) with us being fairly successful and popular again it’s hard to get tickets as the ground only holds just over 36000. We thought we had it sussed – get a membership for one of us and take advantage of the priority booking period. But no dice – as I’m not a member myself, we have to wait until ‘Members Guest Day’ if we want to sit together – just one day before General Sale – so it’s still just as hard to get seats as it ever was.

Ho hum. At least I’m not throwing money down the drain watching frustrating draws like today. Once again we started slowly, and again had to come from behind after going a goal down to a freakishly good free kick from Leighton Baines. Three minutes later the fabulous Dutch wizard Rafael Van Der Vaart was there to capitalise on a rare mistake from Everton keeper Tim Howard. Howard made no more such mistakes for the rest of the game, unfortunately.

It was a fairly open, even game, but Everton defended incredibly well and man marked Gareth Bale out of the game, with Phil Neville assigned to him and in 90% of cases with two men chasing him down whenever he made one of his runs down the left. This frustrated Redknapp to the extent that he switched him to the right towards the end of the second half, just to mix things up, but we still couldn’t break them down.

So the game ended 1-1, with us looking toothless and a bit tired after the exertions against Inter Milan at the San Siro on Wednesday night. But some things are clear:

Peter Crouch should be sold while he is still in the international squad and worth something. His first touch is appalling, and he could neither head nor shoot today. What sort of centre forward do you call that?

Younes Kaboul is an able deputy at centre back. He worked hard and made many important saving tackles today, without getting himself booked into the bargain. He is also capable of making runs from deep. He needs more games.

Luka Modric is still outstanding. He worked so hard today, he made things happen when Van Der Vaart couldn’t. Man of the match for me.

We need to pick up more points at home. Today was a big missed opportunity, with Man City and the Arse playing each other tomorrow. We currently sit in third, but the Gooners will go above us on goal difference if they get a draw. I think a win is unlikely.

And I never thought I’d see the day…William Gallas on the cover of a Spurs programme? Really?


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