The phrase ‘one of those night’s has appeared once again on the club website and it’s been used a fair bit in connection with Tottenham’s recent games. After the loss against Everton, Harry said that he couldn’t understand it and against Stoke, we dominated possession once again.

Last season, Spurs were enjoying a great run up until the end of December and the reason for falling away was quite obvious. In the first half of the campaign, Tottenham relied heavily on goals from Gareth Bale and Rafael van der Vaart and as such, most of us didn’t notice that our main forwards weren’t really contributing.

However, as Bale and VDV started to struggle with injury, nobody stepped forward to score their goals for them and the campaign fell away.

This time round, the same two players have played their part again but there has been much more support in the scoring stakes throughout the rest of the side.

So what has happened over the last four games? Is our central defence in severe need of an overhaul? Can any blame be placed on the attack once again or is this just a blip? If so, what does Harry need to do to prevent our most promising season for years from ending in disappointment?

 

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50 COMMENTS

  1. We have fallen away because:

    1) We had a run of tough fixtures and that has now begun to undermine our confidence
    2) Ledley seems to have (sadly) reached the end of the road and has lost his pace. We have no one fit to replace him of the same quality to play alongside Kaboul
    3) With Lennon unfit we have no right hand side pace or width. Krancjar has not got the pace to do the job and that means that teams can concentrate on controlling just Bale. Losing Pienaar and so not having cover for Lennon was a very bad move.
    4) Saha has not got the required quality to replace Adebayor when he is unfit, which is why Everton offloaded him. He used to depend on his pace but that has now deserted him.
    5) Playing Saha, VDV and Krancjar in the same team as we did against Stoke was a very poor decision as they all lack pace and none of them contribute when we do not have the ball. We can cope with one, possibly two of them but not all three in the same team
    6) Harry is not as stupid as he claims and the above points are not rocket science. Has he simply taken his eye off of the ball since the England job has come up?

    • Point 1 mostly. In a nutshell. With a lot of point 3. As for point 2 – King has only lost Man U at home, and City, Arsenal & Everton away. All losable games, and not the reason for our perceived slump.

    • Recall Caulker, Kane and Naughton.
      Play Caulker and Naughton, latter at right back, move Walker forward to right side mid field and restore a balanced team with extraordinary pace left and right, also Walker better defensively than Lennon.
      Two years ago I suggested the move forward of Bale to midfield, that worked.

      • ive agree that would be a good move. i think when we bought both kyles the intention was never to buy 2 right backs. walker must easily be as quick as bale, so no harm in trying.

  2. This all stems from that Rednapp trial and the England job, Good luck to England if he takes over as spurs are going down the plughole rapidly and harry hasn’t got a clue.Perhaps his dog could do a better job as it seems it can run a bank account unlike it”s owner who can’t run a football team.Never wanted Rednapp and still dont, survives on bullshit and not a lot else. Got rid of the only striker we had who knew where the net was (Pavliachenko).

  3. Agree with all of the above. But what didn’t we do last January which meant no CL? Buy a right-sided forward with pace.
    One year on we hav done EXACTLY the same. Lennon needs competition or replacement and if that person could double as a goalscorer, which Lennon I’m sorry isn’t, we would be challenging for the title.
    Two years of great opportunity missed cos I am positive Arsenal, Chelski, Liverpool & Newcastle will come back stronger next season. Will we?????

    • I think that is a bit unfair on Lennon! How many times he lays off great balls.. for our strikers to miss sitters..
      the answer loads. As for Goals id rather him up front than our muppet strikers.

  4. Yet another disappointing game at the lane last night,, Spurs seem to have lost the confidence and the fight and guts they had a month or so ago and they want to fxxk around with the ball to much and need to be more direct,,, all this pretty football is great but its getting us no where ..
    Teams was scared to play us a while ago especially at the lane and now we are lucky to get a draw..
    Also Don`t help that we haven`t got a reliable goal scorer and think we rely on Bale to get the goals way to much.
    Saha and Kranjcar was shocking last night and i`ll never know why Harry started them ahead of defoe (our top goal scorer).
    Lets just hope Lennon stops being a tart and cames back for the chelsea game on sat before we become even more of a laughing stock to the gooner scum.

    Keep the faith. COYS COYS.

  5. We have been reliant on individual skills to win matches all season. We have often played badly and won with some luck. Occasionally we have played great football, but not as often as most people think.

    There is no organisation or patterns of play defined for the team so when things go wrong it is a bunch of individuals trying to correct it and it doesn’t work.

    Essentially we have been found out. With solid coaching we could recover but that isn’t going to happen so we will have to rely on our luck changing

    I heard a great quote in a film last night which was “Everything will be all-right in the end, and if it isn’t all-right then it’s not the end!”

    Let’s hope so.

  6. Where too start eh…………….

    Spurs have paid the price for over believing their own hype. We have grinded out results this season and been brilliant on other occassions. Scott Parker in the first few months carried us in breaking up the play of opponents, however as the season has gone on scotty has been 10-15% below that because he has been burnt out by Redknapp over use of him. The balance of the team has been destroyed by Gareth Bale being tried to turned into the next Ronaldo and Lennon being injured, the switching of play has stopped due to the unbalanced effect. Spurs also have had many changes to centre-back pairings in recent months, doesnt help when u need to grind out results. The fact the manager has tinkered too much with his team, playing far to open when he shouldn’t has left Spurs completley knackered out, Spurs make the pitch big the way they play and the lynch pin Scott Parker has been flogged to death, where as the others are starting to peak, Spurs are floundering. It also DOESNT help that the manager talks and talks and talks to the media and goes on about the england job, when your body is physically tired, the last thing you need is distractions to mentally drain u as well. There isnt enough of a gap in ability to the rest to counter these minor %. Spurs & Harry will be lucky to win 2-3 of their remianing games and the blame lies directly on tactics, so the managers door it is. Im not fickle but Harry must take full blame, including the transfer dealings in jan.

  7. Confidence is now low and that little difference between success and failure at this level is refelcted in the fact that our better players look jaded, and it appears we have no plan B.
    Also I am sure we must have the worst conversion rate from corners and free kicks in the league. This coupled with our sudden fragility at the back when the opposion have a set play is leading to a nervousness we did not have earlier in the season. We now look as though we will conceed at some point in the match so 1 goal will not be enough to win a game even when we dominate teritorially.

    Also is it just me or do we only shoot at goal when there is no other option. Parker who scored regularly for West Ham has yet to register for us and when in position to make a strike at goal tends to pass the responsibility.

    Oh well lets hope we get a bit of luck and don’t blow it completely
    COYS

  8. We didn’t play as bad as everyone was saying. We had a bit of bad luck and the referee wasn’t on our side. We should have easily won the game.

    Our players showed great fighting spirit. We can’t expect much more from them and Harry is the best man manager in the world so we shouldn’t worry.

    We already secured our Europa League spot which is our primary target anyway. If we can make it to the Champions League then it would be an extraordinary achievement but if not then we can enjoy our cosy Thursday evenings for another season.

    • The main point Sam is that we blew a 12 point lead, now the shitty goons are taking the piss. And no Europa, other wise we will loose our top players.

  9. How on earth did we get to be 3rd for so long if we are so shit? How do so many people think we have suddenly become such an awful side? Granted I think maybe the England talk is affecting Redknapp and the players and why Bale has been playing inside I don’t know but I can pretty pin point this poor run of form to Sagna’s header to make it 2-1, doubt suddenly crept in and King and Kaboul became strangers! From then confidence has taken a nose dive, but maybe grabbing a very, very late point, showing character right till the end will boost us! Chelsea game is massive! Avoiding defeat will keep us 5 points clear in 4th! Still think Arsenal will drop points! It ain’t over! COYS!!!!

  10. we did bad business for the second year in a row in the january window. we have the cash but although i respect levy’s business nous i think his and harry’s eye for a bargin really looks like costin us now. mid jan we were 10 points clear and should really brought quality reinforcements in. somehow we missed out on cahill and samba, two top class commanding centre halves avalible at a decent price and instead end up signing nelson. a 34 year old who had just been released by blackburn. a decent wide man with pace to take some of the burden off lennon and bale, hoillet springs to mind.missed out on krasnic and STILL let pinnear go???
    last off all a class striker who scores on a regular basis. ba, lorente, negredo and most of all damiao who will now most likley go to a much larger club in the summer. but no we sign saha, a once decent but injury prone striker. great.
    i think thats all that really seperates us from the top 4 clubs, a regular scorer.i.e. RVP, rooney, drogba, aguero

  11. How many times are we to loose silly games to set pieces.
    We can’t defend them.. we can’t score from corners and free kicks, all this = bad coaching and tactics.
    We got rid off corluka who would off been great cover for RB and CB, and who do we get instead ! Nelson ffs.. even Bassong is better. The problem is that Harry does not know how to rotate and keep the squad players happy, instead he over uses the likes of kyle walker, and who do we have for RB cover.. no one that does not effect our CB position.
    Harry time to get your head out off the clouds dreaming of England, and fu(ing sort it.

  12. I agree with many of the points above. I also think that we, as a team, have relied too heavily on key players – especially offensively. When all of Luca, Bale, Ade (all of these three in particular), as well as Lennon (when fit) and VdV were able to produce the goods in the same games, it did not matter that we had no particular formation, style of play and plan, and were dreadful on set pieces. When only one or two produce, e.g. Luca IMO being the only one of the key players last night, the lack of strucure and plan starts to show. Ok, so we have lots of possession in most games regardless of whether we win or loose, but you cannot really argue that we produce enough clear cut chances to go with that possession (the second half at Everton may be an exception).

    My main concern is that we do not seem to try to change things for the better, we keep relying on individuals doing something great. So what can Harry do – position for position?

    Keeper/defence – Set pieces. The back-five from yesterday is our best – and should be good enough against all but the top two.

    Right wing – N/A when we do not have Lennon. Consider using Luca more often as he is way better defensively than the other potential drifters on the right, while Sandro is good to have in the middle. When Lennon’s fit he should play every game. What needs to change: attack the box when Bale/BAE is storming down the other side.

    Left wing (AND MOST IMPORTANTLY) – N/A these days. This free role of Bale is getting ridiculous now that he is not on top form. Stay on the wing for most of the game and do what you can best, which is to run with or after the ball past the fullback. Bale drifts inside way too often and, when on the flank, it seems that 9 of 10 times he would rather get the ball in his feet than run at the space behind the fullback (trust me, this is not due to there being no space, there is). Look at the last 4-5 games. How many times have Bale got do the byline after a through-pass as opposed to having dribled the fullback. Not many, if any. The performances of Bale lately remind me of Ronaldo at Man U for a period between his breakthrough and his peak. Too much focus on his own talent and performance and too little focus on what’s best for the team. Result: Sir Alex told him what to do instead of praising is undoubted talent even after games where he did not perform up to his own standard. For Bale, THIS REQUIRES MANAGEMENT, which he does not seem to get. Having said this, the performances of Bale have been good enough to make most players proud, but he was so much better – and was so much less prima donnaish – earlier in the season. And do not tell me we don’t have the players to give him the service on the left… One other thing, when Walker or whoever else gets down to the by-line on the right, Bale needs to attack the box. Every time. He doesn’t. Almost every time.

    Centre mid – Either Parker/Modric or Parker/Sandro when Modric on the right. We most often dominate games in the middle so this is not where the problem lies, although Parker is close to terrible offensively. If I have something to complain about in the middle, it is that we have too many “four-yard passes”. This was not a problem earlier – when we outplayed most teams despite our lack of system and plan, but these days it tends to hinder the play when we have the opportunity for counter-attacks.

    Forwards – Ade/VdV when Lennon’s fit, since we then have sufficient pace offensively. Ade and VdV or Saha or Defoe when Lennon’s not fit, which one of the latter three does not matter too much. What matters is that they have to turn up for each game. I liked it when Harry took off Ade at Everton – he was dreadful, while Defoe was not. Same for yesterday. Saha’s performance was awful and he seemed to lack commitment. We needed a goal, but it seemed it would not come from him. Taking him off in such a situation delivers a message: turn up next time you’re given the chance. The BIGGEST problem with our forwards is that they are either not clever enough or not hungry enough in the box (Defoe is hungry, but outside the box – which is also good of course). I assume that the latter is the explanation, which is simply not acceptable. Harry needs to tell the forwards that they must attack the box at every opportunity regardless of the fact that we very often seem to prefer small play outside the box as opposed to trying to create chances by winning a duel after a cross. If the forwards are more hungry they will more likely get more deliveries.

    In general:
    System/plan: Try to implement something on the training ground. We are a playing team, but a little more goal-oriented possession would not hurt. And more width, at least on one side (and both when Lennon is fit). A winger should be a winger first and foremost. We have too many gifted players for everyone to take up the space in the middle of the park. Bale can attack in the middle when there is space there, but he should not drift in just for the sake of drifting.

    Set pieces: Practice something on the training ground. Harry, I’m sure the players will accept this given our lack-lustre set pieces this season.

    More hunger and less prima donna: I don’t care how you do it as long as you deliver the end product. We have through the season relied on individuals delivering, which they have done uptil now. Now that it doesn’t go so well, each player should focus more on getting the ball or himself into the box and less on how he does it. I think our goal against Stoke is a good example. Bale is a blessed footballer, one of his assets being his left foot. When he had to, he delivered a perfect cross from way out. Had it been 30 mins earlier he would most likely not had the same kind of urgency and tried to step on the ball, take on the defender (which is most often ok) or gone in the middle (which is most often not ok).

    AND ATTACK THE BOX. Look at Man U for the last 15 seasons. There is no particular players at Man U, now or previously, that you would say implied an advantage for Man U compared to other opponents when crosses are delivered. Still, they are – and have been for a long time – the team that produces most goals after crosses. We have the best and fastest wingers in the league (and almost the same can be said of our fullbacks). We have Ade, and now Saha on top. And we have Bale – who is decent in the air when he chooses. We should score WAY MORE when using are main asset, our wing play.

    It is about what you are instructed to do – and the hunger and will to do as instructed. Thus, the players need to be instructed. And we need more urgency to our game. Kill the game as early as possible. When done, be as playful as you like.

    LexS

    PS: sorry for the way too long response. Apparently I needed to get this of my chest.

  13. One more thing: Sam, I completely disagree that reaching CL would be an extraordinary achievement. Look at our squad and compare it to the teams we are competing with. Seriously, on paper we have the third, or perhaps the second best squad in the league (not to mention the first eleven). Until recently we were up there with the best in each position except for the striker department, where Arsenal, City and United are better than us. I am sure that Harry is great at man-management, and I am sincerely greatful for the job he has done with this club. But honestly, if we do not reach CL, that is IMO underachievment on the part of the manager and the team.

    Not to take anything away from Harry, but do you not think that we would have been way out of sight for Chelsea and Arsenal had Sir Alex been at our helm? I mean, there are very few from our first eleven that would not have had an important part to play had they been at United. If you look at this season I honestly think, and it can at the very least be reasonably argued, that all of Walker, Kaboul, Bale, Luca, Parker and Ade would have started most of the games for United. Even Friedel would have played after the start they had. And Benny has been better than Evra this year. That is at least 50% of United’s starting eleven, most likely more.

    Not everyone can have the best manager, but CL an extraordinary achievement with the players we have? I think not. Too bad that we will loose half the team if we do not qualify for CL.

    LexS

  14. What I think has gone wrong with Tottenham is Harry Redknapp not saying no hes not interested in England job so players have the uncertainty plus hes transfer dealings,why did he let Pienaar go as well as Corluka and Bassong is surely better than Nelsen so Is Caulker as was Pav better than Saha,but he never gave Pav a run,also Lennon is injured so where is Bentley? all these questions add up to one thing Redknapp isnt as good a manager as he thinks,hes record speaks for itself only 1 honour as a manager and Spurs are too big a club for him,I personally cant wait to see him at England,sack him now before we finish 6th

  15. Agree with a lot of the points raised above but I also think lack of a plan B is costing us dear. We just cannot win ugly or hang on as some other teams do when they are not at their best. Harry has been found out when it comes to tactical nous, you know just maybe there’s more to it than “just kick it about a bit”.
    I would settle for 4th place now but if I’m honest with myself I know its going to be 5th.

    • very good boy , at least u understand the situation….good to admit that and i agree 100% with u ….5th with a bit of luck….

  16. I think Harry has already agreed to take the England job at the end of the season. The players know this and are no longer playing for him. levy must offer him a new contract. If Harry leaves at the end of the season, we get top dollar. If Harry refuses to sign a new contract, we sack him and bring in some one who is committed to the cause before the Chelsea game. let’s not mess about. This is a make or break season in that not only will we prospectively lose our top talent but we will be unable to attract top class players or a top class manager.

  17. I heard that man u wants to trade berba for luca, don’t do it luca is worth 40million, berba 10, it’s just man u up to their tricks. For what it’s worth I’m an Arsenal fan but I’d rather see Tottenham in the top 4 than the arrogant ****’s at Chelsea, Tottenham deserve it

  18. We don’t deserve anything. The table doesn’t lie and we will get what we deserve at the end of the season. Not sure how so many think our squad is comparable with city, united and arsenal.

  19. Hi all
    Wow, I can feel the shared concern today. I agree with so much of the comments and in particular, I have wondered why Walker hasn’t been used as a straight replacement for Lennon, even when we need a plan B to chase a game that isn’t going well. I don’t see what others do about Kaboul either because as far as I’m concerned a lot of the set piece or crosses that have lead to us conceding have seen kaboul at fault. He is infinitely better than during his first stint but I honestly think he believes he is Paulo Maldini who can just waltz around with the ball at his feet but doesn’t need to do the hard stuff at the back. I personally am gutted that Daws is injured and never understood him being dropped for Kaboul earlier-on. I felt we needed commitment at the back and Daws has that in spades and can hit a pass, by the way.
    Nuff said about letting Peinnaar go and taking Saha. I also thought Nelson was appalling the other night and just don’t get it. Surely our younger lads can do a better job. Surely?
    Having said all this and accepting the excellent points made already, I do want to remind myself of how many goals we’ve had disallowed for false offside plus some appalling decisions against us and how Arsenal have had some good fortune in their recent run. This isn’t my attempt to state the obvious that there’s been some unfortunate luck [the place all fed-up fans go] but moreover to remind myself of a statement I once heard an Asian cricket pundit say….”misfortune gallops-in on horseback but leaves on foot.” We’ve hit a patch but remember it was against the best of our competitors before the Stoke game. Stoke came after an incredibly tough weekend. The test of our mettle comes at Chelski and if we can come through that then we’ll pull away again. I hope to God we turn-up.
    Mark

  20. Right, Parker has been our worst performer for the past month. He has tried but he just ain’t the same at the moment, boy needs a rest! My team vs Chelsea would be, Friedel, Walker, Kaboul, King, BAE, Giovani, Bale, Sandro, Modric, VdV and Adebayor. if Adebayor is not fit, has to be Defoe. all this malarky about he can’t play with Rafa, if you play the ball on the floor OF COURSE HE CAN!! Through balls. I just know it. If we lose to Chelsea, will be 5th place and an FA Cup semi final. Tha in my eyes in a POOR season to where we were 6 weeks ago!! Also Harry has been affected by this speculation about the England job. Fuck England, I care more about my club, I support Spurs 9 months out of the year, when England? for 2 weeks every 2 years then 5 times a year after that? Pointless. Thanks FA for fucking our season up.

  21. It’s hard to support white. We are the most enduring fans in the world. 1pt!? Stoke was the wrong team to play. They sat back just played kick ball, our worst kind of opponent. I think we have a great spurs squad, best it’s been in forever and we deserve to finish atleast 4th. However I am not naive to think we will finish in CL every year like ManU, goons and blues. We just don’t have that kind of pull with the best players in Europe. Like everybody, I’m high on Hazard, but look who he’s linked to already… ManU, ManCity and Arsenal! Yes, lets challenge for CL every year, win FA or League Cup but be realistic. Highlights include Milan, CL last year, and challenging this year again, but overall, in our history, we are not consistent enough, and the best club not yet elite. We are still an aspiring club, and anybody who expects more is silly.

  22. You Sp*rs fans are seriously deluded if you think your thoroughly mediocre team is on paper up there with Arsenal, United, City or even Chelsea.

    You’re on par with Liverpool, perhaps slightly better. Neither of you deserve Champions League football, and the table will justify this come the end of the season.

    Still, your ‘Are Sp*rs Now Better Than Arsenal’ article was quality. You overachieved earlier this season, capitalising on Arsenal and Chelsea’s temporary implosion. Next season you will be without tax dodger, Bale, Adebayor will be off, and you’ll descend rapidly back to mid-league, where you belong.

    Also, Bale is highly, highly overrated. Hoof and run, no real technical ability, no vision, just hoof and run. Lennon is shite too. Modric is also overrated, how much assists does this ‘playmaker’ actually get? Scott Parker is getting old, a hard worker but pretty mediocre player. VDV is the only player who comes close to being world class, and he’s highly inconsistent.

    Still, can’t wait for the Spurs 2012 Season DVD (covering only half the season).

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