Standing in the freezing cold away end at Bolton on Sunday, a non- Spurs supporting friend who had come to the game with me, summed up our performance in one word. “Abject.”

Over 4500 fans (at least 1/3 of the match day attendance) had travelled from far and wide to support Spurs, but it seemed as though the team didn’t care about the match or the fans.

The first half performance lacked any fight, passion, pace or determination. It was as though the players thought that they just had to turn up to win. Thankfully, Michael Dawson realised the importance of the game and battled for every ball.

Unfortunately, this whimpering performance seems to form part of a worrying trend in recent months. Two 1-0 defeats to Wolves, a home defeat to Stoke, points dropped to Hull and Everton, a lacklustre performance at the home of the Scum and an awful display at Anfield all point to a lack of motivation and concentration.

This can seemingly only come from one place – the manager and his coaching staff. Whilst the progress of the team since Redknapp’s arrival cannot be understated, it seems as though our acceleration in the early part of the season has now stalled.

Admittedly, the second half performance at the Reebok was vastly improved. The fight, pace, passion and determination were there and the team should have won the game comfortably. However, it shouldn’t take a half time “rocket” for the team to perform as they should – Jermain Defoe even admitted that the team had an arse-kicking at half time.

Had the team performed this way during the entire match then I am sure that the game would have been won comfortably. When Heurelho Gomes said last week that the team “sometimes lose focus” in less important games, I nearly fell off my seat in amazement. The manager and coaches should be criticised for this as it is their jobs to have the players ready for kick off.

The core coaching staff of Redknapp, Kevin Bond, Joe Jordan and Clive Allen have the key roles of ensuring that the team perform to the best of their abilities. Too many times this season, they haven’t.

All Spurs fans have known that the team has lacked an on-field leader for years. Somebody to coach whilst on the field, to cajole and bollock when the time is right. Somebody who has been there and done it, somebody who the players look up to. For a brief time we had it with Edgar Davids, since then – nothing. Wilson Palacios cannot drive the team on his own. He needs support. Huddlestone, Jenas et al, do not do this and an experienced, reliable performer is required as soon as possible to help take the team to the next level.

Until this player is secured, and following his arrival, the management team must ensure that the team is ready for each game. The current side has undoubted potential and with a clinical edge we could finish in the top four. To achieve this they need to believe this themselves and it is the job of the coaching staff to put that belief there. It is also their jobs to ensure that the players are motivated and ready for each game.

We all know that Spurs are at their best when they play fast, attacking football. Unfortunately, in the games mentioned there were only glimpses of the Spurs that we all know exists. This must surely be down to belief and motivation.

Redknapp and his team need to make sure the players are firing on all cylinders for each game. If they don’t, we will remain where we have been for too long. On the outside looking in.

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12 COMMENTS

  1. Good article.

    I think Redknapp is a slightly better version of Keegan. ie he has his favourites and talks them up at every possible opportunity. If you’re in his favoured group then you’re very well looked after but unfortunately it appears (like Keegan) he isn’t that great at tactics and if a game isn’t going our way (wolves, stoke etc…) don’t expect any Mourinho or Ferguson type subs or tactical changes to improve our performance. He should work on his PUBLIC management of players too – Pav, Bentley, Bale, Bent, Gomes amongst others have all been subject to slight remarks in the press which (though they probably deserved it) should be kept on the training ground or in ‘Arry’s office. Gomes has managed to come out smelling of roses and is now being rated as one of the best keepers in the league but I suspect this is more to do with Levy’s reluctance to sign David James at the start of the season – otherwise, Gomes would be number 2 and looking for a way out.
    I’m not an ‘Arry hater, I think he’s done a pretty good so far – but he does do some odd things and it’s about time he stopped telling us fans how lucky we are to watch his team. Surely it is he who is lucky to be managing our great squad and being backed 100% by a chairman who will do anything to bring a bit of success to the club he loves. We have a great squad – ‘Arry doesn’t need to tell us that and he doesn’t need to use us as his own PR machine or ego-enhancer, he needs to concentrate on making the most of his fantstic situation and sustaining a proper challenge for europe/silverware before Levy has enough and pulls the rug from under his feet.

  2. Thought the article was decent enough,myself. I agree with
    Sam on (Harry’s private members club)being a bit boring
    to watch now. I love Spurs not Harry to, he seems to lack
    the grace of a winner (xcuses/vaguedetails). He always
    reminded me of (that kid with no money to go on the trip,
    the harmless looking one who Id hide my pencil case from).This was when he was west ham and would shake hands with Frgie or Mourinho after (being battered)I would
    always think ‘thank fkcu he’s not our manager’.
    Won’t try and slate the bloke (wouldnt be fair)It’s not my
    choice or fault that he’s (somehow)in charge of spurs’s
    team. the fact he rates (Crouch and Defoe)really sais it
    all. this is just another false dawn…cos sadly (I know a
    Bullshi*** when I hear and see one) Ive seen one brushing
    his teeth every morning for nearly 30 years.
    As long as Defo makes a decent representation of us and
    himself for the country (theo bottles it)and Jenas gets
    loaned back to Forest. Then it would have capped a fine
    end to a decent chapter of my Spurs chron’s , for another
    season.
    COYS

  3. Harry is a wheeler dealer alright so maybe he should be selling second hand cars. He might,just might, be a football manager, but he isn’t a SPURS manager. The single reason I say this is his ridiculous treatment of Pav who is the most talented striker we’ve got,including the over rated Defoe.When is Crouch going to learn that to score you have to shoot to the goalies side and preferably low, not straight at him.

  4. Good to see that we’re standing up for tradition and demanding that we implode every 18 months. Glad that there’s so many football experts on the web as well who know more about managing FAPL teams than everyone.

    Burning torches and pitchforks in the High Rd, that’s how we like it. Bring back Jol so that we can sack him again… Get Maureen so that we can get him sacked for picking Jenas… After all, we know better than Jose, what’s he ever done in football?

    • The fans did not sack Graham, Hoddle, Jol and Ramos, Levy did. Rednap is simply not good enough neither is he better than his predecessors. Levy brought him in to keep us up and that he did but now he can’t hack it. Unfortunately, there is no point in sacking him now for obvious reasons but he needs to always play his strongest side which he did not do against Wolves. He also needs to show Pavalyuchenko some respect and play the guy who’s much more effective than Defoe. He talks about the squad needing someone who can score from mid field. Is that why he loaned out O’Hara and kept Jenas? Exactly,poor decision after poor decision and you expect us to take it on the chin.

  5. The manager’s job can’t be an easy one, especially in the modern era when you’ve got to deal with so much more than just getting the best out of your players. Back in the old days of small squads, if you were a player who’d been dropped from the team you’d knuckle down in the reserves and hope to push your way back into the side quite quickly. (It may have been a mistake to ditch our reserve side this year, at least it gives fringe players a game!)

    Today, the manager has to deal with massive egos in the dressing room from players earning huge salaries. That’s not all, you’ve got the players’ agents, interpreters and pop star girlfriends. The agent of a player that loses his place will often engineer a story into a newspaper about how unhappy the star is, with a view to jumping ship before the companies that sponsor his star go elsewhere.

    The best managers in today’s game aren’t necessarily the best ones tactically, but the ones who can get these multi-millionaire footballers to show some loyalty and actually want to play for him and their club. Look at Ferguson, as soon as Paul Ince, David Beckham and Ruud Van Nistelrooy started spouting off they were shown the door at Old Trafford. Mourinho also got rid of Gallas when he rocked the boat and Wenger did the same with Adebayor. No manager wants a player undermining him in the dressing room. They need the respect of every player, and even better if he’s got it from those players on the fringe. That’s why the likes of Ferguson and Mourinho have been so successful. The superstars love them and want to play for them.

    It was the same back in the days of Brian Clough. At Derby and Forest, the players worshipped him and feared him in equal measure. He won league titles and European Cups with them, but as soon as Clough went to Leeds and told greats like Johnny Giles and Bill Bremner that they were cheats and to throw their medals in the bin, they rebelled and got him kicked out.

    It’s not too different today. I can’t say that I’ve seen many, if any, managers make brilliant substitutions week in week out to win games. Tactics and picking the right team are one thing, but it’s worth bugger all if those eleven on the field aren’t fighting for the cause on the pitch.

    I agree Spurs need a leader on the field, but again, don’t think having one player clenching his fist and getting stuck in is going to see you games. You need 10 more! There used to be more of those type of players a few years ago, before money came into the game and gave them something else to think about, like their image and whether they’re going to look good in their next magazine shoot with a six-inch scare on nose and two missing teeth for getting stuck in where it hurts. Graham Roberts lost his front teeth helping us win the the FA Cup.

    Personally, I think Harry’s done a good job by actually getting the likes of Bentley to play well for him after leaving him out of the side. Going by Pav’s last outing, he too may be up for sticking around. It must be difficult keeping all these players happy, especially with no European football this season. It wasn’t too long ago that Defoe was on his bike when Berbatov and Keane were the obvious first choices.

    Harry’s done a good job, and hopefully, with a few choice words and some team bonding he’ll get them motivated again and Tottenham’s season might end up being a memorable one.

  6. ‘Burning torches and pitchforks’ …you been watching too
    many (eastender episodes)mate ! you either know how to
    put the oven back together again or…….u let someone
    do the bloody job properly. Maybe if everyone just sat at home watching (the rupert murdok enterprise), from the
    comfort and warnth (did i mention remote)of their own
    or mates home. Then we would’nt have the ignominous
    accounts of (some twat that spent his hard earned ,fell out with his misses and supported blindly his spiritual soul mate up and down the country for god knows how long).
    Tactics and other mental disciplines have always been a
    crucial part of any athlete/team who are achievers. harry
    isnt cut from that loaf……he should be doing alright.
    “With the players we got, barcelona are our model”. Sound familiar (Oct 09). (Jan 10) “Whats the point in passing it round all day, lot’s of teams do that and wher does it get
    them’. Does this sound like a proper engineer to you.
    COYS

  7. harry is too old and wont have enough years to get spurs into the top 4. he will be off soon and we will then be searching for a new manger, this means we will struggle again. We have to let redknapper go at the end of the season. Alex and arsehole took about 4-6 years to achieve glory, harry will probably retire in about 2 seasons.

  8. I think we are sometimes as much playing against ourselves. if we are not motivated enough to play to the best of out ability on the day then we are just giving the opposition free advantage. so even decent tactics, if we could muster them, would be less likely to make the difference.
    so ultimately, it’s gee-ing up that i think needs to be addressed.
    Fire in the belly!

  9. fucking shit at bolton.surely he relised that crouch was shit.should of been replaced by pav at halftime.hud taken off and replaced by krancjar.modric moved to the middle,fuck me how much is he being paid,it was obvious what needed doing.they were trying for the replay,another packed house at whl,another big payday.fuckem,ive had enough.

  10. SPURS HAVE THIS ORA ABOUT THEMSELVES THAT THEY JUST HAVE TO TURN UP ON MATCH DAY , THEY DON`T SEEM TO HAVE A PLAN UNTIL THEY ARE IN THE SHIT AND HARRY BOLLOCKS THEM AT HALF TIME , FOR OUR EYES ONLY EVERYONE KNEW CROUCH WAS CRAP WHAT WAS DONE ABOUT IT LEAVE IT HE MAY COME GOOD BUT THE CRAP KEPT COMING , WHY DID WE BUY GUDJOHNSEN WHY HAVE WE PAVLYUCHENKO ON THE BENCH ANYONE IS BETTER THAN CROUCH WE KNEW THIS BEFORE HARRY BECAME INTERESTED IN HIM , MODRIC IS BEING WASTED NO DOUBT BENTLEY IS SHIT WOULD RATHER PLAY GOMES AT OUTSIDE RIGHT , HARRY TALKS ABOUT NEEDING A MIDFIELDER LIKE HIS NEPHEW LAMPARD WHO SCORES 20 GOALS A SEASON HARRY WOULD PROBLY PLAY THAT MIDFIELDER AT LEFT BACK , WE NEED TO WAKEN UP HARRY HAS A TAXING THING ON HIS MIND AND NOT ON FOOTBALL AT WHL .

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