You know, he really hasn’t been the same since he’s come back has he? His confidence has gone. The sooner we flog him to Celtic the better.
The Robbie-haters have been silenced (at least temporarily) as he scored four of Spurs’ five goals. I must admit that I rose a quizzical eyebrow when I heard the news that Crouch wasn’t starting after his hat-trick against Preston, but Redknapp’s reasoning proved to be right, as Burnley’s big lumps at the back struggled with the movement and pace of Defoe and Keane.
As 5-0 victories go, it was a puzzling one. Normally you have to play really well to achieve such a scoreline, but you never really got the impression that we’d hit top gear. Instead we simply dished out the same harsh lesson to Burnley that we have to Hull, Doncaster and Preston. Give us enough chances and we will score a bucketload of goals.
Burnley played a very open game against us, as they tried to play football, but they may come to be more pragmatic when making away visits as the season progresses. Their limited defence needed more protection than they got.
Equally as surprising as the inclusion of R.Keane on the teamsheet, was the sight of Tom Huddlestone in central defence, when Michael Dawson had played in midweek. Maybe Dawson wasn’t fully fit, or perhaps Harry just didn’t want to drop the Hudd, so he could accommodate Jenas. Whatever his reasoning, it worked. Jenas scored with a long-range effort and Huddletone was arguably our most impressive performer, though I still wonder how well he’d fare at centre back against a side with more attacking teeth than Burnley.
The one decision made where Harry wasn’t fully vindicated, was his preference for Cudicini over Gomes between the sticks. Cudicini just looks like an accident waiting to happen and it surely says something when Gomes seems like a more reliable and stable pair of hands.
Such was the ease with which we dispensed with Burnley, that towards the end the crowd became bored of the game and turned their attention to other distractions. In the first half I had pointed out to my mate a steward who had one of these dopey sub-Hollyoakes haircuts that young males feel that is their right to sport these days.
Sure enough the crowd turned on him in the second half. “Tony and Guy, you’re having a laugh… Tony and Guy, you’re having a laugh…” Such wit is the reason you have to get up out of the armchair and attend games. After barracking the poor lad for a good ten minutes, he was relieved when the crowd turned their attention towards paying tribute to Chas and Dave. Hopefully it will have taught him a valuable lesson and he will have a less ridiculous hairstyle for our next home game.
All in all it was a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon. Scoring five goals in successive games suggests that we have very firmly bounced back from our recent defeats, regardless of the quality of the opposition. Next up is Bolton away, which is traditionally the sort of fixture that we struggle with. Surprise us again Harry…