Tomorrow night we play host to Manchester City, with both sides in need of a win to reignite their chances of qualifying for the Champions League.
I’ve spoken to Ric Turner from the City site Bluemoon-MCFC to get his take on their season so far and what he expects from the match.
Ric, welcome to TottenhamBlog. How long have you been supporting City and how did you end up supporting them, rather than becoming a glory hunting United fan?
I’ve been a City fan all my life, as my father is a Blue. It’s a family tradition. Supporting United was simply never an option, thank God.
City have only lost once in the Premier League this season, but their progress has been hampered by an abnormal amount of draws. What’s been holding you back from converting these draws into wins?
Going forward we’re as good as anyone in the league. Unfortunately, we still look vulnerable at the back and the new Toure/Lescott centre half pairing is taking longer than expected to gel.
If we continue throwing away points against so called lesser teams we will struggle to break into the top four this season.
You’re in the semi-finals of the Carling Cup and still in the mix to qualify for the Champions League. What do you think that you’ll achieve this season?
Most City fans would be more than happy with a trophy. Our paucity of success means that I’ve never seen us win a trophy, and I’m 32 years of age.
In fact, this is the first time I’ve even seen us get to a semi final (I was too young to remember ’81). For a club of our size, that’s a pretty depressing statistic. However, given the investment over the last year or so, then we really should be aspiring to a top four finish this season.
If you fail in your ambitions, how long would you expect to see Mark Hughes stay on as your manager? Do you think that he’s up to the job?
I think Hughes will be replaced if we finish outside the top four. I’m firmly on the fence at the moment – obviously it would be rash to get rid of the manager at the moment, but he’s been given time and considerable money to mould a team in his image. If we fail to break into the top four he only has himself to blame.
Has Hughes been accepted by the City faithful, considering that he was a United legend?
Hughes polarises fans in a way no other recent City manager has done. This is partly due to his status as a United legend (although I think that’s less of an issue now, certainly since his verbal jousting with Ferguson in the press – you get the feeling he has no great love for United), but also because many fans simply feel he isn’t up to the job in hand.
Who has been your outstanding performer so far this season?
Shay Given has been excellent, and is the best keeper in the league in my opinion. At £5m he was a relative bargain.
Of late, Carlos Tevez has come to the fore and is in outstanding form.
What positions still need improving in your squad? Do you expect more major purchases in January?
We still look vulnerable at the back, and two new full-backs are required. I don’t think we’ll see any other major additions arrive in the transfer window.
What has been your perception of Tottenham this season and where do you see us finishing in the league?
Tottenham are a good side with real strength in depth. They have as good a chance as anyone of breaking into the top four.
If you could buy one Tottenham player, who would it be?
Luka Modric. A mercurial playmaker who’d grace any side in the division.
And finally, what’s your verdict for the match on Wednesday?
Our record against Spurs is dire, so my heart says 1-1, but my head says 2-1 to Spurs.
Let’s hope that Ric’s head is right and we do record a 2-1 win and remember to check out his site here.