but did he tell his players?
Most fans were happy that Jose picked a full strength side to face Middlesbrough in their third round F.A. Cup tie, showing more commitment to the competition than they felt Poch did.
The happiness didn’t last long as the players showed their commitment to the wasn’t quite on the save level and was more like that shown in the struggles of previous years under Poch, before the previous manager called on his big guns to bail them out.
Of course when you start with the big guns, where do you turn for the bailing?
Jose’s honeymoon is well and truly over after the festive period which has seen the team look more like those dog days of Poch’s reign. The big guns aren’t exactly firing, hell they hardly turned up for the away trip to Smogville.
Spurs were playing with at least three fewer than Boro. Son was back after his three game suspension, you wouldn’t know. You’d think that rest would have done him good. You didn’t know he was playing. Winks was his usual waste of space. Gets ball, has no clue what’s about him, panics, passes back. Gets ball, before panic sets in, passes sideways, pads those stats.
Eriksen. Eriksen played the whole game. No one knows why. Well, the transfer window is open and Eriksen put in the kind of performance that makes sure that all those teams that haven’t made a bid for will continue to not make a bid for him.
Eight crosses attempted. Eight Middlesbrough players found. Eriksen found a new level with his hitting the first defender from set pieces. That’s when he actually found anyone and didn’t just kick the corner out of play on the other side of the pitch.
The players that needed to be cleared out of the club to keep things going under Poch, need to be cleared out under Jose.
Highlighted by Toby and Jan and another lack of a clean sheet, for the opening goal. The Dutch pair a re too slow to play that high a line. They never get back when an attacker gets past them. Toby, since he signed his new deal – that he wouldn’t under Poch – showed why the former manager had moved to other options and more relevantly why no club showed any real interest when the player was available for the bargain price during the summer.
Against Norwich, Toby not only backed off the scorer of the opening goal but he backed sideways opening up the goal for an easy shot. Here just a chip over the top and him, Jan and Dier were out of the game and the striker was straight throw on goal.
It’s time to move on. Eriksen, Rose, Winks, Wanyama, Jan and Toby. The first name and the last two have been a huge part of Spurs under Poch and what was achieved but their time has gone, it’s passed, it’s done, things aren’t gonna get better with them there.
Spurs were clueless in attack. With no Kane as a focal point and Son not turning up, along with very little service from deep. Dele’s brother was doing useless flicks Moura was running into cul-de-sacs.
It called for Jose style changes at half-time or even sooner. Unfortunately we got Poch style subs, though it was slightly before the hour mark. Thankfully Winks departed, Sessegnon went as well, I thought this was a mistake as it meant Jan, who should have gone, moved to left-back. Sess wasn’t at his best a number of times he had the chance for a one-two-triangle to get behind the massed defence but after passing the ball inside just stood there and did nothing.
Lo Celso and Lamela came and made an instant impact by just simple looking, running and passing forward.
Where Winks turns and then plays the ball sideways, Lo Celso turned, ran forward and then played a perfect, forward, ball through to Aurier. He put in the perfect cross right onto Moura for the equaliser.
Moura had a good shot palmed away by the keeper and Aurier totally Sissoko’d a good chance later on. But Spurs just looked clueless and fans who were happy at Jose picking first teamers in the starting XI were calling out for the kids. With only two subs used I don’t know why he didn’t bring Parrott just to give them that striker to target.
The first two games of 2020 have shown not much change from what went in 2019. Their still in the Cup. Jose can still deliver silverware but the way they’re playing now it looks as far away as before his arrival.