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The Spur, Since 1999. "Spurs, a traditional transitional football club"

New season fever builds with Spurs Stateside

Preview 2014/5 coming soon as Ben Davies signs for the club

Pre-season warm-up in the USA
Toronto vs Tottenham Hotspur 1:2 [As of 66th minute]
Hardly squeaky bum time for either side as the super Spurs Norteamericano tour continues, but it's a lot more interesting than the usual run of the mill domestic or Euro based pre-season friendly warm ups.

And so to the Toronto match, which so far is turning out be an "Erik Lamela earns his spurs" story as he tucks a couple away, ably supported by Lennon and Ericksen, while Soldado, as usual, looking a bit too peripheral as the nominal front man.

Need to keep in mind that for Toronto this a chore they'd rather have avoided at this moment in their busy July fixture list, and their manager, ex-Spur Ryan Nelsen, barely suppressed his frustration and concern that injuries could be sustained in a match that doesn't count competitively, albeit for MLS and the club's coffers a sweet deal from a marketing and financial perspective.

But no doubt his players play like their overriding concern is not getting injured.

Spurs replaced the entire outfield side for the 2nd half: Walker, Dawson, Fryers, Rose, Holtby, Carroll, Ceballos, Townsend, Falque, Kane, only to concede.

Seattle Sounders vs Tottenham Hotspur 3:3
Fun match to watch. Keep 'em coming, Spurs.

Entertaining start to THFC's American tour with a string of Tottenham Hotspur players combining to eventually feed the ball to underrated 24 year old German midfielder Lewis Holtby who puts the visitors ahead with a superb early goal rivaling the best of the recent World Cup.

Great support from both the approximately 53,000 home fans and around 2,000 traveling or local Lilywhites, as Seattle, spearheaded by ex-Spur Clint Dempsey, responded quickly to going behind with constant pressure on the Londoners' goal, with Brad Friedel called into action numerous times.

The artificial turf tends to scare off prima-donna stars, which may partially explain why ThFC's galaxy of World Cup representatives were notably absent.

Spurs would have a hard time in the upcoming Prem by relinquishing possession way too often.

Michael Dawson, who gives away a lot of penalties, was punished for an infringement that would not, in a 'real' match, have merited such a harsh refereeing response, resulting in a successful Sounders spot-kick to equalize.

If Tottenham's opening goal was quality teamwork, the first Sounders goal from open play was a long range stunner from Osvaldo Alonso, the goal of the match.

Roberto Soldado makes it 2:2 from the penalty spot.

The third host goal came from a wide cross out of the reach of Spurs defenders but guided in by Seattle.

Spanish winger Iago Falque Silva, on as a sub, scored the game's third penalty to level at three apiece.

Spur of the Moment: Cristian Cebellos, attacking midfielder who came through the Barcelona youth system, looked like a potential gem.

Fun match, way better than the usual pre-season friendlies, and if the ones in Toronto and Chicago are as good, this North American tour will be a terrific springboard from which to leap into the main course: the upcoming 2014/5 Premier league campaign, now close enough to touch.

The season begins

After what has been an incredibly interesting World Cup [at time of writing USA just got knocked out by Belgium in an extra-time thriller], it's also time to look forward to a new season of inevitable roller coaster rides with Tottenham Hotspur.

It would be great to open the league season, involving the short trip over to east London to play West Ham, with a win against that 'orrible lot on August 16 at 7am pacific [dates and times of all matches updated to reflects TV dictates, but not guaranteed!]. Just the tonic for our footie-jaded palates, but a draw is predicted by this site.

Our home debut is the following week Sun Aug 24, 5.30am pacific, against another London opponent and newly promoted QPR which means a return to the Lane of the legendary 'Arry and all that that entails. Win.

A massive match at the Lane rounds off the August schedule on Sun 31, 5.30am pacific, with the visit of a Suarez-free Liverpool. Loss. Suarez related fact #782 courtesy of Snapple: the human jaw can generate a force of up to 200 pounds on the molars.

BBC fixture list for Tottenham Hotspur.

TOTTENHAM TURFIE RECKONS: Green light for the new big stadium - well chuffed. Now buy some top players like wot goons and blue meanies 'ave done.


The Spur's Premiership 2013/14
Spurs drown Geordies
AVB lost there last year, Tim took 'em to the cleaners
Wed, Feb 12, 2014 (Ssn 2013/14)
Newcastle United 0
Tottenham Hotspur 4
NUFC fan's forum

Full Time. Magnificent.

When you consider the diabolical weather conditions in the UK on the day [admittedly Tyneside was in somewhat better shape, meaning not underwater], to hear Spurs fans out-singing the home "support" was a joy to behear. They'll sing what, and when, they want. No doubt about that.

I couldn't make the first half online, but delighted to see us one up already thru Adebayor, and then Paulinho notched a second shortly after I tuned in. 'Spect.

Awesome save from Lloris from Yoan Gouffran in the 74th minute keeps the cushion. Spurs digging in however and that's allowing NUFC to take it to us.

Tim decides to replace the pace of Lennon with the "quick feet" of Belgian international Chadli.

GOOOOOOOL for Fulham, 2:1 up at home to the 'Pukes. Official. Kieran Richardson is God. Brilliant so far: ManUre 0:0 at Scum.

GOOOOOOOL for Tottenham Effing Hotspur as Adebayor blasts into the ground from a parried Tottenham shot and the ball bounces obligingly over the Newcy keeper into his goal for Ade's brace. Free-nil.

Bentaleb enjoying his game, probing and passing, and even having a pop at goal. Worra player for the future.

GOOOOOOOL for Tottenham, #4, an absolute b-e-a-u-t from Nacer Chadli. What a player, what a goal. Tim's all smiles.

Sooner or later, as it turned out later, we all knew somebody was going to get tonked by the "new" Spurs -- we'd been on the receiving end for too may times as we build up to the future -- and it turned out be the barcodes, having sold their best player in the transfer window, and fallen flat ever since.

Pre-match: Spurs hope to avenge the defeat to Newcastle at White Hart Lane earlier this season, and recently I recall us not faring well against these guys, a bogey team probably by now.

They are ravaged with injury which doesn't hurt. [-Ed.] BBC reports "Tottenham's Andros Townsend could make his first start for eight weeks after returning from a hamstring injury as a substitute against Everton on Sunday."

They go on: "The sale of Yohan Cabaye and a lack of goals amidst a drop in form has seen them fall away."

More buil-up soon and match progress reactions after kick-off coming up in what is now a matter of minutes.


The Spur's Premiership 2013/14
Emmanuel 1, Everton 0
He's done it again, Ade scores in style
Feb 09, 2014
Tottenham Hotspur 1
Everton 0
WHL, London N17
5.30am pacific time

> They think it's all over, and now it is. Spurs held on after the goal. Everton's immediate response was tame, but in stoppage time they finally found the kitchen sink, which Tottenham stoutly resisted, to leapfrog their opponents and wedge themselves in fifth place between the two Merseyside clubs. Good win. Not a stellar performance but Ade, like Bale last season, was once again the crucial difference when we meet sides that are hard to unlock.

Courtesy of The Guardian. The Spur agrees.
Thanks JD, legend. But Spurs, why now?
> Tottenham's two shots on target was even less than the visitors, and we seem perpetually dependent on a Bale or an Ade to keep us up in the running for top four. At some point, this teams needs to gell. In the meantime, nicking games is another feature a successful club needs on these occasions, many as they are for us, when top gear seems to be jammed.

> Time to put the kettle on again and let's get behind Fulham at Old Trafford.

^ The man, frozen out by AVB's frigid and unfathomable philosophy, strikes again. Another magnificently taken goal by Adebayor breaks the deadlock. Tim celebrates like a fan, life is good, poor Everton have nothing to show right now for their work at the Lane. We'll take it. We need it. Now can we secure the desperately important three points?

^ SECOND HALF. Rollercoaster fitba. Looks like one goal might be enough to nick this. EFC doing more with possession and build-up. Spurs, deep into the season, still not properly gelling. Still bags of potential but little end product. Walker determined and proactive but his crosses wasteful.

^ Spurs need to break faster and with more vision. That's how other teams hurt us, and EFC are better than us at that. It would help take us to the next level.

^ As the first half progresses thru the 1/2 hour mark we see Spurs gradually in the ascendancy but in truth this match is finely poised. Both teams playing decent football, and playing with the confidence that they can win this. As expected, both teams are at a similar level, not among the very top "super-league" sides of the Citys and CFCs, but a cut above the bulk of the Prem. But highly watchable so far, especially for the neutral who enjoys the sometimes crazy haphazardness that will lose managers years off their lives.

^ First half in progress, about halfway thru the first half, very good game to watch. Everton in particular looking threatening with incisive passing and vision, Coleman a gem, but Spurs also showing intent and flow with Eriksen and Dembele looking sharp. Great cross from Danny Rose across the face of goal and Adebayor a hair's breadth away from the slightest of contact for a guaranteed score.

Pre-match: A big game for Spurs and Everton alike as both clubs attempt to stay in touch with the ever more elusive looking, yet coveted, fourth place. The Toffees, one place and one point ahead of us going into this game, are themselves five points shy of their fourth placed Merseyside rivals, the Reds having tonked Arsenal.

Perhaps Arsenal, knowing that they are not in the two team super-league of City and Chelsea who are the only credible candidates to win the title, are now focussing on keeping us out of the top four places, with or without lasagna.

BBC's Steve Wilson: "Spurs have spent 100m but still look four or five players short of the top teams. It's as though there's a glass ceiling over London N17 through which the club just cannot break.

Maybe Tim Sherwood's more aggressively attacking style is the answer? Or maybe it will just expose their weaknesses? As usual at Spurs, nothing is straightforward."

Crackerjack Man: "I have just looked at our fixtures until the end of the season and being completely realistic I can't see us dropping any more points. Everton are in big trouble tomorrow to start with. I have a feeling a Soldado hat trick is on the cards. You would be crazy to bet against it."

Check back for post-match updates and reactions. Hope to watch match live if I get up early enough.


The Spur's Premiership
Jacks 1 Spurs 3
Swans sunk by confident Spurs
Jan 19, 2014 (Ssn 2013/14)
Swansea City 1
Tottenham Hotspur 3
US TV & online live @ 5.30am

Excellent win for Spurs as Tim's reign goes from strength to strength.

The man AVB shunned has been resurrected by Sherwood to become, dare we say it already, the heir apparent to Gareth Galactico.

OK that's going too far but Manny Adebayor is doing the business and we now have a bona fide striker that, shocking by our standards, scores regularly. Rather helps.

And it looks like, with the three top spots clearly reserved for City, CFC, and L'arse, our own Spurs are in reality competing with the two scouse-gits for the final Euro Champs place, while ManUre and Newcastle, both potentially strong sides, are visibly not yet ready for prime time.

United are still in transitional mode, attempting to break opponents' legs along the way, and Newcastle seem as unpredictable as we were under our previous boss.

More reactions soon.

Pre-match: Early start for viewers on the west coast of north America.

In the corresponding fixture last season the same text applied: "Tottenham Hotspur travel to Wales this weekend to take on Swansea as we continue the quest to ensure a top four spot to secure a champions league berth next season." The Spurs mantra.

The Swans had just been beaten at home 0:2 by Arsenal.

On that fateful day of March 30th 2013 Spurs went two up from players not around to help us this time, namely Vertonghen [injured], assisted by Bale, and a goal from the Great Welsh One himself, with Verts returning the favour of the assist. Quite the dynamic duo for this one.

Back then Gareth Bale almost WAS Tottenham Hotspur and we are still struggling to right the ship after he "baled". In the long run it's better to not be so heavily dependent on one super star but this will require the side to be firing on all cylinders and that hasn't happened yet.

The amazing thing is we are in the top six with everything to play for, and if we do gell, we are only a few points shy of a great finale to the season.
Must win this as the other top six sides will cruise theirs   
otlen

On the other hand, the other top teams are winning consistently and nobody above us looks like wavering. So even if we kick in, we need at least two other clubs to stumble. Meanwhile just below us the David Moyes behemoth appears to be stirring!

Anyway, two up at half time but Sung-Yong Ki assisted Michu to claw one back for the Liberty Stadium dwellers to finish 1:2 to the Tottenham.

Swansea, like their Welsh rivals down the road, have tremendous support and on their day they can play some good flowing, exciting football. But in recent encounters I recall them creating a lot fewer chances than Spurs and, like us sometimes, they occasionally seem bereft of guile and changing their tactics to suit the situation.

Even with the support of their North Bank behind them, I predict our own vociferous traveling fans will spur us on to a narrow away win by a one goal margin.

Swansea blog pierre91 was a good read for previous encounters but seems it dried up in November.

On a personal wish list I'd like to see up and coming French midfielder Nabil Bentaleb get more time, really excited about him as a Spur, and of course a huge wish for Erik Lamela to be part of the action. Still, there's lot of potential talent for relatively few spots, the key is getting the people that play to work together and set this side on fire.

More build up and post-match reactions still to come here at The Spur. Please check back soon.


The Spur's Premiership
Swan song for AVB?
Slaughtered by the scouse
Sun Dec 15, 2013 (Ssn 20013/14)
Tottenham H. 0
Liverpool 5
by Rob Francis

USA: various online [and TV for those still watching that way]

I can't upload fast enough to keep up with Liverpool's goals. It's finally over. Our worst home league defeat to Liverpool in history, said one of the commentators, but even if he was mistaken, it was certainly a landslide disaster. Clipboard man strikes again.

I predict AVB will be gone by the time we play West Ham in the league cup.

Surely we're not gonna wait to be done by them yet again, and risk getting tonked at Southampton in a match that we just must win to stay in touch with top four, still having done nothing to indicate we mean business? Folks, we are deep into the season, and deep in the you know what.

Barely had time to sip on me cuppa and we're already into damage control. But wait, this is Spurs, it's gonna get worse. It did get worse. Damage control didn't work, either. We can't even do that.

We joked about it being a game of two halves -- let's hope it's actually true because we were totally embarrassed in the first half by an injury ravaged visitor. [It was. Awful to diabolical -- Ed.]

The midfield imbalance of power is shocking. Liverpool have had a mediocre away season but we are making them look like Barcelona on tour.

Second half: Lots of amazingly fast running by Lennon but no end product. Soldado has decided to help the midfield leaving us with no striker.

Paulinho sent off. For him, it's total frustration. The players are, once again, totally confused as to what they are supposed to be doing. It's already damage control but now it's a case of.... I dunno, like AVB, I'm out of workable ideas. But we need someone who has some.

We may have to get Harry in again to save what's heading in a Ramos or Santini direction.

First half: This is the story of a manager you hire -- enter Brendan Rodgers, and in the other corner a manager, lost in his notes and theories on high lines, that should be at an esteemed academy of calcio, but not on the touchline of the premier league with a club in desperate need to justify one of the costliest squads in the world.

Look at the difference. Reds flowing, hunting, closing down, marauding, scoring. And with a player called Luis Saurez. He bites and he scores. Choose your poison. Lilywhites: kicking aimlessly over the touchline, afraid of the ball, running at our own goal in a panic, goalkeeper trying to be a defender and a keeper at the same time.

Rodgers knows where AVB has it wrong, and adjusts his tactics accordingly. Let Spurs come at you, and then rip their high line a new one. Over and over again.

He knows that Spurs in possession means Spurs making fatal errors.

This loss will be pivotal. The title race, if we were ever in it, is over. Now we are hanging onto hopes of fourth spot by a very thin unraveling thread.

Pre-match: "It will be a game of two halves, the lads will give 110% and at the end of the day football will be the real winner." -- 90291 spur

We have a great recent home league record against the 'Pukes, including a bunch of consecutive home wins with my dodgy memory conjuring up a 2:1 win in last year's corresponding match, a 4:0 the previous year, and another 2:1 win the year before that. OK I cheated and looked up the last one. Three years is too long, bro.

The only one I really remember quite well was the 4:0 drubbing we gave them a couple of seasons back, as this site crowed: "Spurs sink rubbish Reds". Modric played a blinder.
TOP SIXPGDPTS
Prior to weekend
1. Arsenal15+1935
2. Liverpool15+1630
3. Chelsea15+1330
4. Man C.15+2629
5. Everton15+928
6.THFC15-127

It was early in the season after we'd been hammered by the two Manchester teams, then gone to Wolves and won, and then came the surprise walloping of the Reds to get our goal difference column finally into positive territory at +1.

After that we went on to achieve a kick-ass eleven game unbeaten run in the league with all but one of those being wins, including 2:1 over the gooners. Oh 'Arry, what a season that was.

Back to that magnificent four-niller, what seems surprising now is that Adebayor scored a brace, with Modric and Defoe also getting onto the score-sheet.

"Every pass applauded by the crowd as if it was an exhibition match," said the commentator that day.

In injury time we got the final goal as this site trumpeted "Adebayor, it's four!" -- a dashed good volley I think it was.


Tottenham Hotspur: line-up


Lloris

Walker Dawson Vertonghen Rose

Paulinho Capoue Dembele

Townsend Chadli

Soldado


Pride of London
as vs. Swansea [H] season 13/14


Glory days: Jurgen Klinsmann enjoyed two spells at Spurs in the 1990s

'Tottenham is a way of life and I didn't know that until I got there,' he said. 'I signed my first contract and thought, "It's cool to be in London". And then after two weeks I said to myself "Oh my gosh, what is this here?"

'The supporters are very special. They live and breathe for that club. You go to White Hart Lane and there are 36,000 people singing. It's not just one section. It's the whole stadium singing. You go there and think "Wow".'


The Beautiful Game: Remember when

"Yer havin' a laff......."

"if you get the chance to go to Arsenal, you go. But the deal fell through and Tottenham came in." -- Michael Carrick

Ah the good old days. From a 60's edition of the Daily Mail: "A police officer kicked a man so hard in the face that the sole of his boot came off, it was claimed in Leeds County Court. The man, Mr John Marshall, was accussed of criminal damage to a police boot."

"I don't think Manchester city is a big enough job for Sam Allardyce. There is no club in this area - other than United - who are on the same footing as Bolton." -- Wanderers chairman Phil Gartside

"When you're watching tv and your replacement scores three, that's Zamora!" -- CP, GMB, Fulham vs Wolves prem 2011/12 season.



The Spur's Premiership
Prem is back, starting at West Ham
THFC crumble against WHU since Gareth departure
Sat, August 16, 2014, 7am Pacific (Ssn 2014/15)
West Ham Utd vs
Tottenham Hotspur
USA: live on tv and internet

The season before last Spurs were actually winning games against West Ham, I think we did the double over them.

But we had Gareth Bale back then, with his high-speed runs and deadly left foot, and he scored a brace at the Boleyn Ground in that amazing encounter in February of 2013.

As so often, he proved the key ingredient in the victory, his second goal being the one that sank the Hammers as Spurs left east London with a 2:3 triumph. This despite WHU coming out of the traps in full flight, inspired by the tribute to Bobby Moore taking place that day.

But with Bale gone, our ability to get anything off the Claret & Blues has since vanished.

Will our new manager be able to turn it around? This one has draw written on it.

More build up soon as a brand new season kicks off.


The World Cup, Brazil
Germany Uber Alles
Teutonic Titans tear up South America
July 2014

Well it was a truly absorbing World Cup and man am I glad that attacking and entertaining Germany beat boring cynical Argentina. Watching the 'ave-a-go teams like Deutschland, USA, and Costa Rica playing like national heroes for their causes contributed greatly to the rip roaring success of an amazing World Cup 2014.

Once again we see what great strides Germany have made over the years whilst England flounders to ever new depths of ineptitude.

It all seems to be part of the German footballing vision. Clubs answerable and largely run by their fans, a league which sees itself as integral to its national team's success, and a system of coaching and nurturing domestic talent that leaves England in the dust.

And finally Statesiders can see that fitba isn't about hooligans rampaging through the streets and professional players rolling around in faked agony.

Although 'soccer' has a long way to go to get anywhere close to NFL in the public psyche, my experience traveling around northern and central California is that the profile of the beautiful game has risen dramatically even since the last World Cup, and Brazil 2014 was another significant, perhaps the most profound ever, upward bump for the sport in the national consciousness.

Jermaine Jones levels for USA against Portugal in World Cup 2014.


Tottenham Hotlinks & Football links

Supporter sites, message boards, podcasts

The long running and consistently readable spurs odyssey

fighting cock mb [also has podcast]

tottenhamhotspurs.tv forum

The Spurs show podcast

Glory glory forum

not 606 spurs message board

TV & radio

BBC radio five live

BBC radio london with frequent Spurs match commentaries

Talksport

General footie

At a glance premier league fixtures and results

All time worst goalkeeper

football grounds guide great ground and stadia site

Britain's most atmospheric derby is in glasgow

Misc.

girl warns guy not to go to tottenham

Canada's version of the park lane boys re-added yet again in nov 2013

Nice timing portland coach [now ex-coach]

Football ramble blog -- link updated sept 13

Clips

That match against Arsenal, also on u tube

Spurs v Man City 1969 classic footage shows glimpses of the magic of greaves & gilzean, and pat jennings, despite the loss to manchester city

Links to Official Spurs USA Supporters Clubs:

New York City: New York Spurs Supporters Club meet regularly to watch games. Ian Harris at the helm.

Los Angeles: LA Spurs

These official Spurs supporters clubs took over from CAATS, part of The Spur. The CAATS page still exists and will stay on the web for posterity but The Spur -- this page -- is where future updates will occur from this US based Spurs webzine.


The Spur's Premiership
Tottenham vote to stay in Europe
Tim brings Spurs safely to anchor
May 11, 2014 (Ssn 2013/14)
Tottenham Hotspur 3
Aston Villa 0
WHL, London N17
By Roberto Francisco.

In a match which ensured Tottenham Hotspur's re-entry into the Europa league, Tim Sherwood ended his reign as club gaffer on a solidly high note, showing humour and passion in equal measure, and above all a more relaxed bloke.

He had done what he could under the circumstances and, for all the gasping for air inevitable when someone jumps into the managerial deep end from the end of a pirate's plank, with no-one on board willing to lend a hand, he earned his honorary Spurs plus the doff of a Tottenham beanie hat.

Now, with the ship righted, we all sail into the future not knowing exactly which way the wind will be blowing, but anticipating little calm before the storm of a new season.

Personally I would have no problem, in fact would be chuffed, with Tim retaining the helm if no other better candidate is out there. But there will be, indeed there is, and if Levy did not take advantage of alternatives with more experience and track record, like the suspects already in the spotlight including Ajax's De Boer, Saints' Poch, and Rafael Benitez, he would be the first to be saddled with the blame if THFC did not come of the gates in full pursuit come the start of the new campaign.

I am delighted we finished comfortably above United in the end, that Chelsea flopped out of the European champions league, that Vincent Tan got a dose of karma that has left him seemingly at least a little more humble and respectful to his club's traditions, and that Palace zoomed up the table to easily avoid the drop.

I am sorry to see Bristol Rovers drop out of the football league, but the writing was on the wall for many a moon, even as they were seasonally picked as one of the teams to go up. Really? Never on the cards. I thought that the oft heralded "crisis at Arsenal" trumpeted monthly by The Guardian would actually come true, but it never did. I am happy that Sunderland survived.

Now it's time for the World Cup and even more exciting, all the off-season comings and goings which, egged on by the media and wild speculation on message boards, had become almost as entertaining, or at least absorbing, as being in season.

Busy and interesting times ahead.

Pre-match: In this corresponding fixture last season Spurs ground out a 2:0 win with a starting line-up consisting of:

Lloris; Walker, Gallas, Caulker, Vertonghen; Dembele, Sandro; Lennon, Dempsey, Bale; Defoe

At the time Spurs were 7th and Villa 15th, with a six point gap between them.


The Spur's Premiership 20013/14
Spurs' 3rd loss to WHU this season
Hammers burst losing bubble
May 3, 2014 (Ssn 2013/14)
West Ham Utd 2
Tottenham Hotspur 0
USA live online & tv, various

Had to wait for Match o' the Day to watch footage of this one, and it was over for Spurs early doors with Kaboul sent off and not the slightest sign of getting anything out of this game, and predictably it looked like a one-sided defeat.

West Ham's second goal summed it up as the Tottenham players in the wall actually got out of the way to avoid getting touched by the ball. There's not much hope for a side with that demonstrable absence of grit or fighting spirit for a greater cause.

Poor Hugo Lloris, superb between the sticks for sorry Spurs, must surely be off to a new club where the outfield players have the sort of commitment and top shelf qualities to match his own.

West Ham had been on a significant losing streak, but how often do opponents' losing streaks come to end when they beat Spurs? Often.

Pre-match: In the corresponding fixture at Upton Park last season, played in February of 2013, our headlines trumpeted the breathtaking brilliance of Bale who scored a winning goal and super brace for THFC as we ran out 2:3 winners in a thrilling match.


The Spur's Premiership
Rose heads Spurs to victory
THFC and Stoke slug it out at the Potteries
April 26, 2014 (Ssn 2013/14)
Stoke City 0
Tottenham Hotspur 1
Stoke-upon-Trent, England
US live TV and online: various, 7am Pacific.

THFC Lineup Lloris; Naughton, Rose, Chadli, Dawson, Kaboul, Lennon, Paulinho, Adebayor, Kane, Eriksen. Subs used: Fryers, Sig, Townsend

Spurs don't score a whole helluva lot, but when they do, they're usually good 'uns at the minute.

Such was the case when Emmanuel Adebayor cut back a centre from the endline for Danny Rose to head robustly into the net, not to mention the ball.

It proved to be the only goal of the match.

Joke went down to ten men but Spurs made a meal of coping with their numerical advantage.

Many of Stoke's fans seem to have already departed on their epic trek to the nearest Butlin's as an ocean of red plastic seats washed around the identikit stadium. Only the Spurs section looked well attended.
"We done 'em"

Those that could be bovvered to show up seemed to enjoy the pantomimic rituals of howling abuse at Rose and Adebayor. Rose wisely taken off by Sherwood as he was well out of control.

Bodies flying all over the shop, the referee missed a penalty decision for Stoke, and THFC looking like they were the side short of men on the park.

The whistle could not blow too soon to end this hurly burly hackfest. It's was not like watching Brazil, even in their current incarnation.

"One nil to the referee" and all that. Up the Spurs, and up yours Stoke, 'til next time.


The Spur's Premiership 20013/14
Spurs in control
Kane and Lennon among two enjoying a late season flourish
April 19, 2014
Tottenham Hotspur 3
Fulham 1
The Lane, N17
Various online

Match
Tottenham Hotspur do the double over hapless Fulham with a 3:1 win. The home side were in control and sure enough new boss Tim Sherwood, despite some major blips and antics before he settled in, has steadied the ship and even kept the glimmer of a 4th spot alive.

Hey, if we finish above ManUre that's a result in itself.

Paulinho's opener was answered by Fulham's Steve Sidwell to level the half-time score at one apiece, but the Lilywhites quickly asserted themselves after the break thanks to a terrifically executed Harry Kane header with perhaps the goal of the game as Aaron Lennon, experiencing a renaissance on the wing, provided.

And Christian Eriksen continues his rise to stardom at the club with another creative contribution to a positive result, admittedly ensured by top shelf goalkeeping by Hugo Lloris and a solid defensive display from Danny Rose apart from the almost-penalty.

The one player still conspicuously struggling out there is Roberto Soldado. It just ain't happening. You do wonder if Soldado had clicked and Erik Lamela had come good, whether we would have pipped Arsenal and/or the Toffees for fourth spot, or better? Of course venturing into the world of make believe isn't particularly productive, but it is technically possible, if they stick around, next season.

Younes Kaboul gave the visitors little chance of bouncing back with a 63rd minute goal to secure a two goal cushion for Tim Sherwood, who since he has settled down to his reality as caretaker boss, is now enjoying a team that finally is settling into a side that looks like a winning proposition for the future. Ironic, but letting go is sometimes the best path to success.

If Spurs keep on winning -- or bouncing back to nick points away from home like at Albion -- who knows? If LVG is poached by ManUre perhaps Tim may yet tee off with Spurs come August for another season. Stranger things have happened on the High Road.

Pre-match
In the league match at Craven Cottage back in early December 2013, Tottenham Hotspur beat Fulham 1:2 with goals from Vlad and Lewis Holtby, the latter assisted by Erik Lamela.

All three goals were notched in the second half with FFC going ahead and playing better under their new manager but still a side that Spurs should have beaten, but we almost came unstuck.

In the end two tremendous strikes gave the Lilywhites victory in a match that saw them still look unconvincing as a unit and seemingly baffled by what their roles in the team are supposed to be, and how they should be linking up. It was not clicking, despite 60% possession, and the teams around us were mostly winning consistently.

Spurs lost possession coming forward and Fulham score a quality goal with a long Berbatov pass to their unmarked man Ashkan Dejagah moving in from the other side to oceans of space at the far post. If only we could play with that speed, precision, and cutting edge. We seemed lost in the first half but managed the turnaround to win from being down.

Vlad Chiriches turned a muffed Walker corner into a sublime individual half volley, in off the post.


The Spur's Premiership
Six goals shared at the Albion
From 3 down, Spurs find a higher gear
April 12, 2014 (Ssn 20013/14)
West Bromwich Alb. 3
Tottenham H. 3
Live online various.

Well at least it makes a refreshing change from the dull days of AVB. A six goal action packed event that neutrals probably enjoyed more than either set of supporters because one point for Albion's survival bid and for Tottenham's outside glimmer of a Euro Champs spot is not enough.

But for Spurs to bounce back from three down, and a missed Ade penalty, felt like a happy ending for the Londoners.

A terrific cross from Aaron Lennon which was guided into the WBA net by Harry Kane for THFC's second and from that moment it looked like something was on. It was also great to see these two players, often questioned as to whether they are good enough, combining so brilliantly.

The propensity for Spurs to begin most of their matches looking so frail and wobbly remains a mystery. Is it something the head coach is doing, or are individual errors largely to blame, therefore, short of fielding different players, there's not much Tim can do?

That's Tottenham's version of the chicken and the egg conundrum.

Contrast that with the way Liverpool usually come flying out of the gate leaving opponents reeling from the start. [I didn't yet see their result today, so hopefully they didn't get too badly damaged by City to weaken my argument!]

Tim maintaining the previous manager's "high line" concept is identified as a issue if a team and players can't make it work.

"Our season was already over so I'm glad at least we got a somewhat memorable game." -- rhonkt, thtv board

More reactions soon, even as we roar on Wigan in their Cup Final against Arsenal.

Not a dull Saturday to be sure.

Pre-match: Well it's a bigger deal for Albion who are just above the drop zone and very much involved in what for them is a familiar fight to stay in the top flight.

But technically the Lilywhites still could get into Europe even at coveted Champs League level, but it ain't gonna happen, and clubs like Spurs have deeply ambivalent feelings about the much maligned Europa League, which can do more harm than good for a club like ours with loftier ambitions.

But the real reason for us to win is plain old fashioned pride and the belief that we have good players, for the all the stick the new ones have received for failing to set the league on fire.

We want to see our possible future stars gel, not just once in a while, but on a regular basis.

To build on our thrashing of Sunderland by adding WBA to our current very sparse portfolio of domestic matches won convincingly will help the players, supporters, and the outside world, to continue to take us seriously and bolster the belief that we really can be a big club, not just an also-ran outfit that used to have Gareth Bale.

We'd like that.

MAN OF THE MATCH: Hung jury. [Vietnamese player, is he? --Ed.]



The Spur's Premiership
Spurs sweep sad Sunderland aside
Glorious win by Everton over Arsenal on Sunday
April 07, 2014 (Ssn 2013/14)
Tottenham Hotspur 5
Sunderland 1
Rob Francis to react

No time to react in detail on this match, but after going a goal down, Spurs rebounded to boast a resounding 5:1 win, a massive tonic to the club even though it won't change much -- we are thankfully out of Europa and with potentially a chance to have a pop at top four next season.

Great that our fans, who are still sticking by the club in the twilight zone of this year's Prem with nothing riding but pride, could see this side doing what we all know they can do: win matches and show great potential.

Pre-match
Monday lunchtime viewing for west coast supporters in norf America.

Spurs supporters are glowing from Everton's convincing 3:0 trouncing of the gooners on Sunday, and amazingly, even though we are out of the running for fourth, the Toffees are now in a reasonably strong position to eliminate L'arse from next year's champions league.

At the time of writing a top bookie is giving odds of 8 to 13 against AFC getting into the champs league. Klopp or Bergkamp buzzed as next goon boss.

Good weekend so far.

Talksport radio notes: "Tottenham have won five and lost none of the last seven Barclays Premier League games against Sunderland.

"Sunderland have scored a league-high 46.4% of their Barclays Premier League goals from set pieces this season."

Please check back as the story of Tottenham's final few matches of the season unfolds and more specifically home to bottom of the table [but with games in hand] Sunderland just a few hours away.


The Spur's Premiership
Magnificent Spurs
Sherwood's blue & white army just 2 shy of 4th spot
Wed, Jan 01, 2014 (Ssn 20013/14)
Manchester United 1
Tottenham Hotspur 2
Check back for more reactions

Now just two points and two places behind fourth spot, Tottenham Hotspur move up to sixth place leapfrogging Manchester United by beating them 1:2 in a thrilling encounter where time seemed to stop, as the Rags, desperate to equalize after having pulled one back, threw the kitchen sink at the visitors with Lloris escaping a penalty shout from referee Howard Webb who, refreshingly, came down heavy on simulators, and boy did United put the scuba gear on for this one.

It's pathetic to see ManUre stooping to dives and simulations at every opportunity because they don't feel they can compete in any other way.

However, props to the United fan who came on to Talksport to congratulate Spurs on their win. It's hard to hate ManUre when a bloke like that shows his class.

One thing about United is how heavily they depended on feeding Valencia down the right. In the past they had many different options and you never knew what they would do next.

Now they are more predictable and easier to cope with.

Both Lilywhite goals were a combination of teamwork and individual brilliance, with Christian Eriksen instrumental in both.

Eriksen's quick running off the ball was the reason why, ultimately, Adebayor was to score a superb header into the far post. United's Smalling lived up to his name and was nowhere near preventing Tottenham's Togolese talent, later worryingly injured, from continuing his scoring ways since being brought in from the cold by Tim Sherwood.

Again Eriksen's terrific ability to run tirelessly into the right spaces as he streaked forward, leaving his marker stranded, as he swept home Spurs' second.

United immediately pulled one back within seconds of Eriksen's goal.

This was a more convincing win than AVB's success at Old Trafford last season, but there's no doubt that the Cockerels made it the longest half hour of my life -- I haver never experienced time slow down to an almost complete stop before -- and I hope that we learn to retain possession, in my lifetime, to make it more difficult for opponents to run us ragged at those crucial times when victory is on the line.

But we won, and what a win it was. I had other good news today, so with this briliant result, it's a Day One of a new year that's almost too good to be true.

Am I dreaming? No. It's just that 2014 is looking very good right now, and so are THFC.

Pre-match: At the time of writing Sandro will not be fit enough to replace Paulinho. Bummer.

It also looks like they will have Rooney fit enough but with RVP still out. That's good because if we do it right we have a chance to keep Rooney relatively quiet, but RVP was always too hot for us to handle and with him out, we're in with a shout for a point here.

Spurs starting over and our chance to see just how good we do in our first of two matches against "the big four", which I still classify without any doubt as Man City and Chelsea [the guys with the dosh], Arsenal [the club with the manager], and Man Utd [the global brand selling the merchandise]. Liverpool are doing well at the minute but they're wannabes like us, Everton, and Newcastle, and we, the "shadow four" if you like, can no longer rest on our historical laurels, we have to prove ourselves capable of mixing it with the real big four, consistently.

We may have drawn with Chelsea and Man Utd at home this term but nobody in their right mind would say we are where we need to be in the big games after being tonked by City and Liverpool, disasters that contributed to yet another managerial change at THFC.

AVB may have won at Old Trafford in last season Prem in the corresponding fixture but a draw under Tim would be hailed a big success as the Red Devils have found some form after a wobbly start under David Moyes, and are motoring up the table as expected.

However our recent track record is as good as theirs and going into this round we're level on points. If we beat them eight-nil we will be level on goal difference.

The players have done Tottenham Hotspur proud in recent clashes with United, recently we have been up for this one, and I think most Spurs fans just want to see us really have a pop at them and show that we have, at the moment, players who are at least as good, and a team that has at least the same potential.

We just don't want any more embarrassments like the awful game at home to 'Pool.

I don't think will look punch drunk like that, ever, under Tim. Even if we a get well beaten in either this or the Arsenal match I sense we will be up and at 'em and not "befuddled" -- the word could have been invented by AVB.

I can't help but reprint one sober reaction to our win at OT last term: "We may have fluked an undeserved win again a very poor and depleted Manchester United side on Saturday, but seasoned observers will not be fooled by this remarkable slice of good fortune. AVB is still a hopeless manager, staggeringly naive, woefully out-of-touch, tactically inept, appalling arrogant and destined to fail." spurs vitalfootball.co.uk

Christian Eriksen: "The coach is saying to play more free. We have seen that in the games. He said it looked like we were a little bit afraid. We shouldn't be afraid, just play and now you see we are good. If we dare, we have a really good team and really good chances."