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

Tottenham Hotlinks & Football links

Supporter sites, message boards, podcasts

The long running and consistently readable spurs odyssey by longtime loyal Lilywhite

Cartilage free captain has become a must-visit Spurs site

fighting cock mb [also has podcast]

tottenhamhotspurs.tv forum

The Spurs show podcast

Glory glory forum

not 606 spurs message board, new link as of 2015

TV & radio

BBC radio five live homepage, audio, BBC radio five live podcasts

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 oct 2014

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.


Spurs' smashing Stateside tour

The Spurs tour in the USA got good TV ratings says cartilage free captain Spurs site.
Mauricio and Cap'n America
chuffed by US tour's TV numbers

Chicago Dire 0:2 Tottenham Hotspur
[July 26, 2014 at 5pm Pacific, live online & TV]
A somewhat routine outing for Spurs who capitalized with venom on some Chicago errors to cruise to a fairly comfortable win and another chance for the new manager, and us, to see some of the talent working its way through the ranks and more familiar squad members shaping up for the impending campaign.

Feel sorry for the Chicago fans. Very welcoming, yet seemingly in a state of depression about their club. And when you compare the turnout at Seattle, which admittedly is stupendous support, and Toronto, where there is a vibrancy and optimism about FC that is infectious, professional futbol in the Windy City looks wan and pale.

This bloke, Spuracuse, made great observations on cartilage-free captain about the way Spurs are shaping up:

"To me with this years squad is that instead of pressing high, Winning the ball back, and then passing between full backs and central defenders aimlessly until giving the ball away, we seem to be attacking at great pace as soon as the ball is won. This will lead to more dangerous, risky passes which will obviously result in lost possession. It will also lead to devastating counter attacks, which we seem to already be converting much better than last year. Lamelas graceful enthusiasm and willingness to attack with purpose and attempt those passes that unlock a defense is just what the team needs, as opposed to a player like Townsend, who has potential but every time he had the ball in space yesterday he just dribbled aimlessly before losing possession. So excited to see the player Lamela blossoms into this season. Will there be bad giveaways? Of course. To dare is to do."

Pre-match: The final fixture of this absorbing three match Stateside series as we get to see, once again, a big bunch of the Spurs squad, from star players to up 'n coming potential future first team prospects, in action.

And it's another good 'un pitting us against the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park, Bridgeview, Illinois.

"It's a chance to play another game, to work more on our style and to improve again," said Spurs' Argentine manager Mauricio Pochettino on the official THFC web-site.

Today's match features two teams with similar records.

The midwestern outfit takes a break from their MLS season this one. They have recently drawn with Kansas and Philadelphia, both ending 1:1. They beat Atlanta and New England. But their last match was a heavy loss at the Earthquakes in northern California. After today, Chicago take on the Whitecaps followed by Columbus and then New York.
Shameful Chicago offer cut price Fire v Spurs tix tohttp://cartilagefreecaptain.sbnation.com/2014/7/23/5930007/tottenham-hotspur-friendly-chicago-fire-chelsea-ticket-discount.... Chelsea fans, then renege. Click badge for link

Spurs in turn have recently performed well in three club friendly games. They beat Toronto and drew with the Sounders. Before that, we ended our Premier League season reasonably well, beating Stoke City and Aston Villa but falling to West Ham.

Tottenham's opening game in the Premier League season kicks off mid August with a match against West Ham. Then we face QPR.

Toronto vs Tottenham Hotspur 2:3
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 Eriksen, while Soldado, as usual, looking too peripheral as the nominal frontman.

Need to keep in mind that for Toronto this is 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 a sweet deal for MLS and the club's coffers from a marketing and financial perspective.

But no doubt his players played like their overriding concern is not getting injured, and not burning themselves out.

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

I had to bail in the 66th minute with Toronto having pulled one back. After I left for a meeting it seems the Canadians went on to equalize but Andros Townsend nabbed a winner.

I was not surprised to see it continued to be a game of two halves. The first Spurs line-up was in total control. The second version struggled but just about survived thanks to the first half's two goal lead.

It was another entertaining match and this has been a stand-out tour of North America so far, let's hope the remaining Chicago game lives up to the other two.

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.

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.


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.



Goodison Park: the final frontier
Spurs finally not dull as moments of skill hurt Hull

Amazingly, Spurs rallied impressively after a sluggish start to consign Hull to a 2:0 defeat leaving the visitors a need to win their final match against Man Utd to have a chance of avoiding relegation, which I reckon makes them the team most likely to join QPR and Burnley for the drop.

Meanwhile Liverpool lost home to Palace so the Europa league "battle" [whether to get in it, or whether battling to stay out of it, is a whole other story] whimpers on.

So on to our last game which is at Everton's Goodison Park ground this upcoming Sunday May 24 at 7am pacific time.

Either Spurs are deliberately trying to avoid the punishment of a Europa league spot, and I can't blame anyone for that course of action, or we really do have serious problems for next season, but the whimpering capitulation at Stoke pointed to one of those two scenarios.

Southampton don't seem keen to compete for the Europa either, so we're not the only ones. Up and at 'em, Liverpool!

Well the supporters really appreciated the Spurs players' commitment to the very end, with those occasional flashes of combined brilliance that promise so much for the club's future but which have never been sufficiently realized to get us back into the big time. In the end Manchester City's Kun Aguero was the difference, as he so often is against the Lilywhites, securing the visitors' win by the only, and brilliantly taken, goal.

It was our penultimate home game of the Prem campaign and, perhaps surprisingly at this stage of the season with City having already lost their crown to Chelsea earlier in the day, and Spurs ambiguous about a Europa league spot, it turned out be an exciting, fast paced affair where both teams played some compelling, action-packed football.

A 2:2 draw at Southampton. I had to miss the entire weekend of football unfortunately but I was pleasantly surprised to see a big underdog upset as the Toffees dispatched Man United, and this Spurs result against a usually very decent Saints side isn't bad. Seemed like a good 'un.

What a super solo goal, around the half hour mark, from Nacer Chadli to give Spurs an only goal lead at glum Newcastle who look like us on our recent off days.

Now can we go on to win it? Could go either way, not much in it except the goal that warmed our cockerals, and mussels, alive alive ho.

Within moments of the second half, the Geordies equalize, but step up to the free kick a certain Danish dude popularly known as Eriksen-sen-sen around these parts.

Harry Kane is supposed to be out of form but that doesn't stop him putting the icing on the cake with the final goal of the game, from a classic counter attacking breakaway. Athletic, forward surging Harry rarely misses from chances like this, giving Tottenham Hotspur a decent win at St James Park.

A loss at home to Aston Villa by the only goal, scored in the first half.

We know there's not much point to the rest of the Spurs season, but the lack of any spark, any tactical nous, any signs of a squad moving in the right direction, is disturbing. We are very low mid-table stuff at best, despite England's newest star, Harry Kane, triple tagged for much of this game, in the side. We should be mindful of what happens to "big" clubs that go on auto-pilot: Newcastle, West Ham, and, uh, Villa [until Sherwood worked his magic!].

Spurs did not fizzle out, in fact they showed some real fight towards the end, in a brutal battle to pull one back, but it was ultimately another disappointing THFC day at the Lane, with two away games to follow.

Previously, a very pedestrian Spurs performance, constantly closed down by Burnley and lacking any creativity in build-up. The groan inducing sight of Paulinho kicking the ball in a straight line over the Burnley touch line instead of either passing or shooting summed up Tottenham's dismally uninspiring toddle to Turf Moor.

Full time. It's all over. Late goal from Nugent gives Leicester little comfort in their drop fight, and this was the Harry Kane show.

Great supply from Paulinho to Eriksen haring forward with the keeper coming out, ball bounces off three players, finally rebounding off unlucky LCFC's Jeff Schlupp into his own net. 4:2.

Lotsa goals but oh dear, same old Spurs story, so easy to concede. We had a lot of luck in front of the visitor's goal, but also glimpses of the flair that, for example, Kane and Eriksen can show when they combine.

Maybe we'll get there when Poch has had time to really make an imprint on the side. Next season will tell.

Nacer Chadli would make a great American football place kicker or rugby converter, but the crossbar in fitba is somewhat lower, requiring a higher level of, uh, finesse.

Kane claims a hat-trick with a "get out of jail" penalty to save Spurs from overwhelming turnaround momentum from the visitors up to that point.

2nd half. Early Leicester equalizer from a poorly defended corner. "Spurs getting roughed up," says the commentator.

Half time. This could go either way at at 2:1. Spurs started in top gear, a nice change from last week, but our midfield as usual is easy to counter against, our high line "trap" is easy to break, and they have speed on the counter.

We are not creating enough opportunities, City have had more. But the key is to stop them overwhelming us on the break. We are actually in front, but it doesn't seem that it's going to hold unless we change things for the 2nd half.

Until the Foxes pulled one back, Tottenham Hotspur were bouncing back in style from the disappointment of Old Trafford, despite an early injury to Hugo Lloris, with a brace from Harry Kane punishing Leicester, and substitute keeper Vorm pulling off a terrific save from Nugent to signal safe hands at the back.

Against Manchester Utd and 3:0 down the commentator bemoaned the game's second half transition into a non-event, adding that at least for Spurs that was desirable as it hadn't got any worse. Wow, is this what the side we support has degenerated into?

Were Spurs on the lasagna again? The body language, even when the team walked out, and for the first 35 minutes, was that of a team that felt cowed and awed by being at Old Trafford. That makes us the last remaining visiting club on the globe to feel that way.

Against QPR, it's all over. A brace for Harry Kane, but when Rangers pulled one back it was the all too familiar edge of the seat neurotic home straight stuff. But in the end the brace from Harry Kane proved enough and despite ex-Spur Sandro getting one back, it was a crucial win for the Lilywhites.

So, with a nosebleed and a potentially damaged back among the war wounds, Spurs won a physical and mostly desperate clash that both sides felt they couldn't afford to lose.

Two ex-Spurs haunted us and made it a nail-biting finish: Zamora fed Sandro for a QPR goal. Then a very strong call for a Rangers penalty for Bentaleb handball, but not given. Lamela on.

About 22 minutes left to play when Ryan Mason lobs over QPR's high line to release Harry Kane, and the Chingford sharpshooter takes it confidently around keep Rob Green to slot it in for what surely is the wrap-up goal for Spurs, and his 26th of the season.

The first goal was a brave Kane header as the Rangers players awaited the goalkeeper's clearance, but by then the bollock was in the back of the net of what used to be the legendary old Loft terrace end goal.

Great Andros Townsend [Spurs fans rethinking their previous loss of faith in the former and probably future England international] cross from a free-kick earned by Kane himself, and Tottenham Hotspur go one up against QPR.

Let's not blow this lead lads. The typical Spurs script would have Bobby Zamora scoring a second half brace to win it..... no ...... doesn't bear even thinking about.

"When the ball hits row zed, that's Zamora...". Talking of strikers, would Rangers' Austin work for us? He hit the crossbar in the first half and looks to be the one who could spoil the party.

No let up yet in the avalanche of games on the fixture list, and days after a much needed win [remember those?] at home to the Swans, it's a short trip across the northwest quadrant of the capital as the exhausted Lilywhites take on QPR, who just lost to Arsenal at Loftus Road.

Against Swansea the Welsh side equalized an early THFC goal, a great cross from Danny Rose finding Nacer Chadli on target to put Spurs ahead.

Second half and Spurs seem reinvigorated. Beautiful run by Christian Eriksen to feed Ryan Mason who slams the ball into the Paxton net. Can our defence hold it together this time?

Maybe they don't have to worry too much because Andros Townsend, the butt of a lot of the crowd's frustration, single handedly took the ball forward from deep, rounded a Swan or two, and absolutely hammered in the third goal. He doesn't score much, but this one was well worth the wait.

Former Spur fave Gylfi Sigurdsson pulled back a second for Swansea in a well worked goal, and only a top shelf save by Lloris in the final few seconds saved Spurs from giving up two points.

Prior to this was our loss to Chelsea in the League Cup Final [see below], and before that, hopelessly wedged between a crucial Premier league London derby and an actual bona fide Cup bloody Final, Spurs sank without trace in the 2nd leg of the "Round of 32" Euro tie at Fiorentina.

The downside of course is that a credible chance at Euro Champs entry, although a long shot even via this route, is up in smoke.

The upside is that we do have a better chance of vying for a a Euro Champs spot via the Prem. It's still highly unlikely because our competitors for those places are mostly on fire in the league currently and have greater consistency in league performance.

One of Spurs' problems that shone through in this loss, but we've seen it before in many other matches, is that the regular first team players we have cannot cover all the domestic cups, our Euro involvement, and the Prem. It's too much for what we're committed to in a busy season like this, especially where hugely pivotal games have popped up, in triplicate, just a few days away from each other.

Add to that our second tier talent, including the likes of Soldado and Lamela who were just two of the also-rans purchased with the Bale money, are really just that, second tier talent, much as we kidded ourselves that they would come good and be world class. They're not.

We need more strength in depth to cover all the important matches we have on the menu. Not just a bunch more players, quantity has never been the issue [except that we have too many whom we now know won't cut it], but two dynamite starting elevens, or at least enough players to be rotated in a way that doesn't compromise our chances of winning. That's what constitutes a "big" club these days. We're not even close to meeting that minimum requirement.

Poch cannot be blamed for that. He's working with what he's got. We don't own oil fields in the Arabian desert or Russia. Having the chance to flog a few townhouses in the new stadium development, or even Joe Lewis' $$$, isn't even close to par.

One weekend prior to the League Cup Final but it's the ever crucial Prem that holds sway as Spurs left it really late to claw back a two goal deficit at home to West Ham.

Based on the MOTD2 highlights, we looked proper awful throughout this game except for the valiant comeback which showed a resilience in short supply in recent decades of the club's history.

But with a defence as shaky as ours on this performance, you have to wonder how we keep it from becoming a cricket score against Chelsea at Wembley, 8am Pacific time Sunday morning [4pm UK time].

In the first leg at home, THFC went ahead thru Soldado, but Spurs conceded an equalizer to the Italians, and that makes them favourites to wrap it up in the 2nd leg, but this is football and it's far from done and dusted as yet.


League Cup final
in the pouring rain
The Spur's League Cup
Spurs 0:2 Chelsea
Quality bought by riches wins out
Sun, March 1, 2015 (Ssn 20014/15)
Tottenham Hotspur 0
Chelsea 2
Check back for more reactions

It was all too routine for the Blue Racists as the wealthiest club with a world class squad was simply too much for a somewhat better than average Premiership side [that's us by the way].

They allowed Spurs precious few opportunities, and we couldn't seem to find a way around their system. It was just a matter of time for them to nab a goal or two and call it a day.

At least we fought to the bitter end, Lamela eventually actually passed to one of his own players towards the end, but if even Lloris is having a bad day, and all we did up front for most of the game is take ultra low-percentage long distant shots, you knew it was going to be a tough day at the office.

Onto the next one, Swansea at home.

Perhaps a bit unkind to concede that a club's season is over by March the first. Please let's have a crack at the highest possible finish, just to keep it interesting.

Reason to be cheerful: Bentaleb.

Pre-match: It's about to kick off. Here on the West Coast of the USA to be honest it's tea and coffee ruling the morning roost rather than any London brew, and the computer is ready to display the match and reveal whether we can repeat our magnificent 5:3 win over CFC that happened at the Lane not so long ago.

It's a long shot, lightning never strikes twice, but hey, Spurs are on the up, and it's Up The Spurs.

Previously in the League Cup...........

The League Cup
The Spur's League Cup
Spurs 2nd XI turn it around
Ryan Mason reporting for duty
Wed, Sept 24, 2014 (Ssn 20014/15)
Tottenham Hotspur 3
Nottingham Forest 1
Check back for more reactions

It looked for a while like Spurs would join Arsenal in a banana-skin home exit, to lesser opponents, from the league cup.

But the 2nd XI showed their mettle and didn't fizzle and fade as their seniors did against WBA, and the Lilywhites move on to host Brighton in the next round by consigning Forest to their first loss of the season.

Ryan Mason, who's been around for yonks, mostly on loan, made his name known to the fans with the equalizer. Then Soldado redirected a wayward Townsend effort into the goal, a signal seemingly for Spurs to gain a new level of confidence, and by the time of Lamela's terrific through pass to Harry Kane who buried it like a star, it seemed like this feisty mob was ready to graduate to a north London derby and have a pop at the Arse.

Just how many of them convinced Poch to give them the nod remains to be seen, and we all know that whatever happens, egos could be shaken on Saturday no matter how many of these Spurs make it onto the Emirates pitch.

A great relief to get this in the bag. We all want to believe that Mauricio can be the man. A loss in this one prior to some massive league matches was something nobody wanted to endure.

Pre-match: Just like so many others managers before him, Poch is, to use Glenn Hoddle's famous phrase, scratching his head over why Spurs are so conspicuously underperforming.
Join the
club mate!

Dude, if we knew how to fix that, we'd all look 20 years younger. Join the club, mate.

Meanwhile there is a chance for our second string to stake a claim and move themselves up the pecking order as the Cockerels host lower league outfit Nottingham Forest today.

Slight problem is that the Trentsiders are top of the second division and are actually quite good, setting up a second banana skin in as many days for the wobbly fortunes of north London's "elite" professional footballing clubs, who meet each other in just three days.

Stay tuned for more build-up and reactions to the intriguing Spurs v Forest encounter about to unfold before our very eyes.

It could be a riveting game, which would make a nice change from the previous two Tottenham brain rotters.


King Harry
supremely
confident
Goons kaned by Harry brace
"Spurs are the real thing"

2:1 to Spurs after falling a goal behind and being one down at the break. "Spurs are the real thing" crowed the match day commentator, and on this performance he is right. We've gelled. Now relax and have a great day, US based THFC addicts, and let's enjoy Atletico Madrid and Everton winning their own respective derbies!

The second Tottenham Hotspur goal was the peach. What a way to win a game like this. Bentaleb sent an epic cross in, though seemingly a bit on the high side for even Harry to reach, but up he went and somehow steered the ball high and looping into the far corner of the net. Magic. Spurs go above AFC and into the top four, at least for now.

Earlier in the second half, Kane had notched the equalizer. Talksport describes how "Mousa Dembele rose highest to meet Eriksen's corner and Ospina was only able to slap the ball into the path of the 21-year-old, who calmly stroked the ball home."

"The spirits are high," said Kane in the post-match interview, "we've got a great bunch of lads", and went on to praise the atmospheric support created by the Lilywhite faithful.

Nabil Bentaleb tweet: "Fantastic performance by the team ! Fans were unbelievable."

Stats are sometimes misleading, but it's telling that shots on target were 8:3 in home favour, while Arse picked up 5 yellows over our 3, and we had 10 corners to their three. Just one indication of what was there to see: we were the superior side. Canna be denied.

"Everywhere we goooh
Everywhere we goooooh
Everywhere we gooooooooh!
It's the Tottenham boys
Making all the noise
Everywhere we goooooooh.....!
"

Pre-match: It's the big one coming up at [KO time now correct] 4:45am Pacific with Arsenal coming to the Lane. What could have been a big advantage for us in Sanchez being out injured, appears to have been a Wenger ruse.

One advantage of an old fashioned ground like ours is that the fans can really be the difference -- just a few feet away -- and whatever you may say about Lilywhites in general, they are the most gesticulating and passionate bunch at big home games when I've watched online, I especially noticed the front rows of the East Stand [changed from West Stand, sorry for howling error, writing hi speed with limited time available originally] -- some of their arms are all over the place at the bottom of the screen, and it adds to the fun, to be honest. Gooner players aren't used to having fans, and Spurs at that, that much in their face!

Arsenal tore Villa to shreds last Sunday rather dampening our impressive, but less one sided, win at The Hawthorns. They also recently forced Man City to a draw at the City of Man stadium. They are, in short, on a roll.

Our hope lies in that we are the home side, and we've got guys who are also, like theirs, in their stride. They do play better as a unit. We are working on that, but will it come together well enough to win?

We beat Chel53a convincingly, it's possible we could get what would still be a surprise result this weekend.


Had to wait for MOTD to watch the visit to West Bromwich as if live, and we looked quite impressive, I was taken aback. Have we gelled for good? Probably not quite the finished article yet, but as the preview alluded to, we've got some star players in very good form, and the players seem to have finally combined to form an actual unit. And with a goalkeeper who is surely one of the top handful in the world currently, it added up to something altogether too much for WBA as we romped to a three-nil win, the hosts coming unstuck for the first time since their new manager took over.

Pre-game: Back to the Prem after a fortnight effing around in the Cups with a League Cup final in the bag. With the likes of Christian Eriksen and Harry Kane in good form you expect to beat, no disrespect, even away from home, but a new manager for them, that puts a hex on Spurs even at the best of times. Not to mention Tony Pulis, Messsiah of turnarounds, is of course their new manager.

He's made an immediate impact since his arrival at The Hawthorns, including their FA Cup victory at Birmingham City, and I believe they are unbeaten in January, reversing a calamitous last month of 2014.

We've got to stop being everybody's "return from the dead" victims. These are sides we must beat. Poch has done well overall so far. Not pretty very often, to be sure, but we'll take another grinder if that's what keeps us up the league table.

So the third successive Cup match in the fortnight away from the Prem, sees the League Cup semi away to Sheffield Utd end with an aggregate 3:2 Spurs win after a 2:2 draw.

A typically brilliant free-kick by "Cristiano" Eriksen seemed to have sealed it for Spurs as the clock ticked away, but the Blades responded with two replies in short order leaving us THFC fans shocked, yet at the same time not surprised, if that's possible. You know the feeling.

But Eriksen ensured a Cup Final appearance with a second. Massive relief. Chelsea in the final. Woh.

Lots of Prem sides took a tumble in the FA Cup 4th round and their representatives tried their best to look crestfallen, including Poch and the Tottenham players as their wimpy 1:2 loss to Leicester at the Lane sent them packing.

League Cup semi-final first leg is another Spurs grinder and the Lilywhites' fourth consecutive home win with an Andros Townsend penalty following a rare moment of skill from Roberto Soldado against Sheffield Utd.

Yes it had to happen: they didn't replace their ex-Spur manager but Sunderland did hire Jermain Defoe who made his debut for the Wearsiders against us at the Lane. So many times our former players have come back to bite us, but this time THFC ground out another of our increasingly familiar, uh, "less than poetic" wins. [He means ugly. -- Ed.]

We always said we should learn how to do that, so no complaints there. However when you look at the incredible team understanding and telepathic ease with which Arsenal dismantled City at the Etihad, the ground where Lilywhite dreams go to die, it seems like such a massive gap between us and all the sides above us, with the exception of the Saints whom we seem capable of taming most times.

So a prime banana skin scenario did not play out, and we shoulda won 3:1 except for the diabolical offside decision against our late breakaway winner. Did really none of the officials know the rule about offside and being in your own half? This is staggeringly bad officiating. It is so disrespectful to the fans who expect at least a certain minimum standard. Even that minimum standard seems far, far, out of reach of many of the current excuses for refs and officials. Horrible. Incredibly lame.

I wonder if the Prem realizes that the horrific officiating has reached a crisis level of ineptitude? It's really turned too many matches into lotteries, even though in this case it did not affect our win, but we could have used that joyfully swashbuckling third to boost our very slender positive goal differential. That could come back to haunt us.

Two goals down in the FA Cup 3rd round replay at home to Burnley and, mainly thanks to two Soldado assists, Spurs go through by bouncing back in style.

What was more remarkable for Lilywhite fans used to watching every Spurs match online for the last couple of seasons, is that this was not televised. Shock, horror.

But props to Talksport as they covered the match during the 2nd half. Apparently Radio London covered the whole match, but when I tuned in it was not on, so must have been on a separate online feed which I did not notice.

Whatever, it makes me, and many thousands of others, realize how much we take for granted that everything is online, all the time, whenever we want it. Only this time it wasn't. Toys out of the pram time.

BBC fixture list for Tottenham Hotspur.

World Soccer Talk fixture list for US times of UK football shedule and official outlets.


Spurs stem Premier stumble

AVFC's Holte End
watches Spurs
win last season
Sun, Nov 1, 2014
Aston Villa 1 Tottenham Hotspur 2 [Premier]
Live online via various. 8am Pacific. Rob Francis comments

Good to see the result. Away from home, coming from a goal down. Nacer Chadli and Lamela combining to score from a corner. Whatever next. I was away all day so missed it completely. Now that's what you call a match reaction, eh?

Pre-match: I won't be able to watch this match unfortunately as I will on the road about 10 minutes in, after watching the Manc derby if I'm early and prepared, and I won't be around for MOTD2, so I'm well effed.

I just hope the lads do as well as they did last season.

"0:2 -- Soldado gets his Spurs" crowed The Spur headlines along with "Andros and Soldado seal it for Spurs" in the corresponding fixture last season.

Soldado added a precision goal, his first for the Lilywhites in open play, from a perfect Paulinho pass, added to Townsend's somewhat jammy opener which was intended as a cross but floated into the far corner.

This was a case of job to do, job done for THFC, a case of getting back onto an even keel after being torpedoed by West Ham at home just before a long international break.

Rarely when watching our team, there was never the fear, after we went one up, that we were in any serious danger of losing this. AVFC have some young talent and clear potential, but the good news is that they simply weren't at the same level as the visitors.

This is what top teams do, and need to do, because the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea, Man City and Everton were also cruising to maximum points this weekend, with slip-ups of course at Old Trafford, and perhaps the best news for Spurs in the form of Liverpool's failure to win at Newcastle.

Spurs enjoyed more possession, though as usual a lot of it was not particularly dangerous looking, but most impressive was the accurate passing and the sense that the team is, to wheel out the usual cliche, gelling.

Man of the match was officially and rightfully awarded to Andros Townsend who is enjoying the week of his life with accolades for his England performance and tremendous speed and creativity that makes him, dare it be said, "the new Bale", with the same mental soundness and strong self-belief. He's making better decisions on when to pass and when to shoot that augurs a fantastic future. And all this without shelling out 30 mill and instead running around a bit at QPR on loan!

And how about a song for Erik Lamela. That's him in the middle with Verts on the left.

Villa's previous match saw them going to Hull and playing what some have described as the most boring Premiership match ever played. But 0:0 beats losing three nil at home.