…with a win.
AVB needs to do something about his 80 minute men. He also needs to get one of his ‘keepers and one of his central defenders to spend some time together so they can understand each other in the future. Then the future could be a lot brighter.
He also needs to sort out his substitutions.
Away to Everton was always going to be the hardest game of the Spurs faced during those crammed in over the festive period. To come away with the three points would have started things off so well, we have to hope coming home with nothing after leading going into the last minute makes sure they don’t rest on any laurels with the easier ones.
It’s something that they can be accused of in the past.
Those final 10 to 15 minutes. They are killing the good that goes before. Stop the game after 80 and Spurs are 14 points better off than if you go on and play that final 10 – if you have to. Most of it is self inflected, which makes it even worse. The high line that has been working slowly drops deeper and deeper, pressure is invited and the pressure usually tells.
The thing about this last 10 minute stuff is it’s nothing new. Been happening at Spurs on and off for ages now. Happened under Martin, happened under ‘Arry, it’s not exclusively an AVB thing that the media will make it out to be.
Though as said he could help himself and us out with the substitutions – which was also a problem under those two named above. Bringing on Huddlestone doesn’t work. Lost count of the amount of goals Spurs have conceded this term while Hudd has been stood in the box. I Tweeted that I didn’t understand the substitution at the time. Now I know Lennon hadn’t been that much involved but replacing him with a guy who just kept giving the ball away and isn’t mobile in any way seemed odd especially as it moved Dembele out to Lennon’s position wide right and away from his area of greatest influence.
It is a problem with AVB in that he’s a foreign coach and it’s natural for them to go defensive in such a situation, it’s the done thing for them, it’s just not something Spurs – even though they are full of foreign players – can do.
Tweeted before the sub that I’d like to have seen Falque on, for either of the strikers, would have given us a bit more life and guile. Somebody running at them would have given them something to think about. And probably would have brought free-kicks. Huddlestone on the other hand just gave the ball away 42% of the time. Falque did eventually come on for Defoe but of course saw very little of the ball.
That Dembele hobbling off shortly after didn’t help. Neither did the lack of communication between centre-back and ‘keeper. Either Caulker needs a copy of “French for Dummies” or Lloris needs the English version. Twice in the space of a fortnight the defender has either not heard or chose to ignore the ‘keeper when it’s been an easy take for the latter and put in a weak clearance. Both times it’s resulted in an easy goal. Against West Ham it didn’t matter here it led to the loss.
Lloris takes the ball, takes up some vital seconds and then launches the ball away from danger. They don’t score. Scoring pretty much led to the winner as they were right in it, in such a way that another petered out attack wouldn’t have provided. Simple individual errors.
Of course this all came just a few minutes after Gylfi Sigurdsson hit the woodwork. Again I’ve lost count of the number of times Spurs have conceded shortly after a shot has bounced off bar or post. Two up then it’s game over… well it’s at least a draw.
And a draw would have been about fair no matter what David Moyes said. Neither ‘keeper had much to do, in the end the possession was equal but during most of the first half Spurs dominated the ball. They did so without creating much though. Not helped by the “striking pair”. You can bang on all you want about Defoe’s goal record but when he doesn’t score you get this which amounts pretty much like playing with 10 men as he stood there castigating others in little temper tantrums. But then this was more like 9 men as Adebayor was equally inept. That useless first touch was joined, useless second – son’t know if he got past two – and by a “really can’t be arsed” manner. Honestly a quality striker is required once the transfer window opens in the New Year.
Moyes was right in that their best stuff came on their right. Dempsey coming narrow meant Vertonghen didn’t have as much cover or help as he maybe wanted but then even with Bale there he probably wouldn’t have had it anyway. But Bale would have kept the Everton pair in check with his attacks. Dempsey provided the goal and was one of the better Spurs players on the day, along with Dembele and Sandro who negated Fellaini – one immense tackle early on especially.
For the winner, well waiting all game for the real Gallas howler. Had put in some decent blocks earlier but was caught out a few times and just looks like an accident waiting to happen these days.
Only thing that makes this all worse is the number of people out there that think Scott Parker will make things better.
From now until the last week of January there’s six games in the league, all very winnable, need to be at least unbeaten in those games and only a couple of draws at most.