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

The Spur's Premier action
Cenk Tosun
flops in debut
for Toffees
Poch's magical Spurs
Harry breaks record as Spurs dismantle Toffees
Tottenham Hotspur 4, Everton 0 [Result]
Sat, January 13, 2018 (Ssn 2017/18)
Wembley, London
Rob F reacting, US TV NBC, online Fubo etc 9.30am US/Pac time

Early second-half brace for Harry Kane, the first a brilliant run and feed from Son, the second a bit lucky but a case of a striker being instinctively in the right place, and frankly it's game over for the Merseyside visitors with around half an hour still left.

Aurier, Son, Dele, combining superbly to tee up Eriksen for the fourth and really the best combined sequence of magic. Great for our goal difference because if we tie Liverpool on points, five would put us above them.

First half: Mostly Spurs, EFC finding their feet. OK here we go, here we go, here we go - the one we wanted for primetime NBC, the ever nimble Hueng-min Son finds the space, pops up, and taps in for Spurs with a lovely ball in from Aurier.

Other than that, Harry had a chance, but a rather plain first half. Gotta watch out in the second hald for the inevitable, you would think, burst of Toffee activity. So a second, preferably for Kane to equal top scorer club record [I thought this already happened against Wimbledon? OK, I get it, now we're talking about specifically the Premier League, when soccer was apparently invented.]

Commentator seems to agree with the estimate of people looking at ticket availability yesterday online of around 70,000 [actually 76,000+]. Not quite as a many as Liverpool, but way above average for Spurs at Wembley, and evidence that even with the new ground to be so much bigger than the old Lane, it still may be tough for many to get into the big games starting next season. Meanwhile, wait for Man Utd and Arsenal home at Wembers this season for some nice attendance figs!

Half time goals from the completed matches show West Ham ran riot [onfield] at Huddersfield. Moyes is turning them into a good side. Stop it already.

Pre-match: In the away version of this fixture earlier this season, in September, Tottenham Hotspur beat Everton 0:3 under the headline "Spurs do the biz" and yours truly noted "for all their spending Everton appear to be no better than they were before, whilst it seems like we are well in gear and, despite our dodgy early home form, one of the best sides in the league."

Since then what "seemed" to be true was pretty much right on the money.

Sam Allardyce has got Everton just about clear of the brutal relegation fight between about half the league below, whcih was his #1 priority of course, but "inspiring" is not a word one would associate with the Toffees' current incarnation.

He'll likely park the bus and hit on the counter. He's better than most at that, but it could be a grinder of a game, to be honest.

They have a new expensive 27m quid signing, a striker called Cenk Tosun [pictured above right, not easily confused with the bloke who hosts the Young Turks], born in Germany but plays for Turkey. He was bought from Besiktas and Sam says there's a good chance he might be a big flop, or, in his exact words: "it might not work". Oh kaaaay.... sounds like a deal, if not a steal.

Shady Spur lurks
always close to
the scene
Spurs beat Dons 3:0 in FA Cup, next: Toffees on Sat in the Prem

Major props to people like Chris Cowlin and "Wrsh98" for the highlights of the FA Cup match with Spurs home to AFC Wimbledon in the FA Cup 3rd round, which massively made up for the fact that this match was not televised live globally. Finally the official highlights went up on YouTube so the previous link is now to that.

The 4th round FA Cup draw sees two major David vs Goliath match-ups in the form of Yeovil Town hosting Man United, and our very own Tottenham Hotspur helping Newport County rake in the bucks. Cool little ground with a mix of old and new. Should be fun, and no worries about not being televised live on Sat, Jan 27th at 7am pacific USA time.

Brilliant Jan Vertonghen goal, Tottenham's third, the star turn of the afternoon, adding to Harry Kane's earlier brace.

By the way, what was televised and duly recorded on Fubo DVR [looking forward to settling in this evening and watching it] was Arsenal getting tonked at Nottingham Forest. Accidentally saw the score before watching, but actually, given the result, that now only adds to this being a great day.

Back to the THFC vs Dons match, the first goal featured a great cross from Moussa Sissoko combining with Kane's intuitive timing that so frequently puts him in exactly the right place at the right time to finally break the deadlock. Special mention to Kieran Trippier for a stellar pass to Sissoko that ultimately led to the breakthrough.

Jan's goal put the final seal on it but in-form Hueng-min Son, who came on in the 2nd half to rapturous applause, hit the woodwork with a deflected shot late in the game, as Spurs never called it a day until the final whistle.

So now it's back to our crucial Prem season this Saturday and the visit of Everton, who, as it happens, are also making plans for their own new stadium alongside the waterfront of the Liverpool dockland area. And thus does the world continue to turn....

Pre-Wimbledon match: Welcome to the New Year which means our new stadium is only months, not years away [hoped to be ready August 2018.]

Our visitors to Wembley this Sunday are in a similar situation. They got the fantastic news that after some fifteen years in exile, playing home games miles outside of their own borough, AFC Wimbledon recently got the green light to construct a new stadium, I think it'll be about 11,000 capacity, at their spiritual place of origin, Plough Lane.

I have a soft spot for them for several reasons, including that one of their long-time supporters has been a huge fan of this site for almost decades, and beseeched me to support AFC Wimbledon as they attempted to survive when they, the true Wimbledon fans, broke away from the cold corporate traitors who sold them out and moved to Milton Keynes.

I did indeed give them several shouts on this page way back at the time, but being a Spurs site I couldn't do continual coverage because, well, this is a Spurs site.

But it's great to be able to mention them again [we have played both them and MK **** during the intermittent years], especially as we currently share that same excitement of returning to our ancestral homes and in both cases to what will be brand sparkling new stadiums to replace the old grounds that once stood before.

They recently got promoted to League One but are struggling to avoid relegation this season. But when you think how amazingly they've risen through a bunch of levels in the football pyramid it's pretty impressive stuff, and either way they're likely to remain a permanent football league member for [we trust] ever.

I will love visiting their ground in due course. It's gotta be built first, but meanwhile the joy of visiting both the new THFC stadium and the new Plough Lane ground are two things to really relish in upcoming years.

Getting back to the FA Cup game today, it's not on TV/online even in the UK, never mind the rest of the world. However, with Spurs fans doing so many vlogs these days and digitally capturing a lot of the action for You Tube, it's likely that we'll see a lot of the play fairly quickly after it happens.

The Spur's Premiership
Global spotlight on Harry
Kane gets record breaking goal & hat-trick
December 26, 2017
Tottenham Hotspur 5
Southampton 2
by Rob Francis

This holiday period, with Harry Kane scoring consecutive hat-tricks and breaking a Premier league record of scoring the most goals in a calendar year, plus his unselfish style and ability to inspire his team-mates, has put Harry Kane in the global spotlight.

He seems very loyal to the Lilywhites but there's no question that the Real Madrids will be looking at him. True, Spurs will get a financial fortune if they part with him, but it would be a massive blow to our club's ambitions, because all the money in the world doesn't necessarily help unless you can either unearth the next Harry or Lionel Messi, and that's like searching for the holy grail, or lure an established world class striker to a club that doesn't have the carrots of Barcelona, City, Chelsea, United, or Real.

Second half: Oh wow, that's a golaso from Dele Alli, exchanging passes with Son Hueng-min and then unleashes a pinpoint scorcher, #3 for THFC, into the back of the net.

Only fair that Son, who's created so much for his team-mates, get his own golaso from an Alli feed, the move beginning with Harry Kane, for another sensational collectively created goal, the fourth for Spurs, and we can safely say a win for the Lilywhites.

Spurs taking it easy and allow Saints Sofiane Boufal to smash one back. With 25 minutes still to play, Tottenham need to stay focussed. And they did, Harry nabs another hat trick! Incredible, and great supply from.... you guessed it, Son Hueng-min.

More flapping from Hugo Lloris [what happened to this dude] and Southampton get two. Fair play to their fans, still raising a song despite the drubbing.

Alli sets up Lamela with a sitter but Erik skies it. Alli goes off to major applause.

First half: "Slight" delay in uploading on this Boxing Day and catching up with the game [recorded] some 7.5 hours after the match was played, but already celebrating a record breaking goal for Harry Kane, most Prem goals in a calendar month, as Spurs go ahead 2:0 towards the latter end of the first half.

It was Kane's first goal that broke the record, headed in from an Eriksen free kick, but the second goal was a team inspired peach as well with Son, Alli, and Kane combining like clockwork to disorient the back pedaling Saints.

Southampton started as one of the better sides I've seen so far, playing an unusually high line which has its attendant dangers, but they're lacking the flair players and unable to defend against a team that's suddenly rediscovered their form. After the second goal, the south coast side's morale visibly sank. They only had one shot on target in the first half, although Danny Rose, otherwise playing well, almost contrived to score an own goal.
Harry Kane's record breaking day  
The Spur

Seeming penalty for foul on Son Hueng-min denied, could have been Harry's hat trick. All the same, losing at home last time in the league against Chelscum seems a long way away.

Pre-match: In the corresponding match last season Spurs triumphed 2:1 with The Spur's headlines reading "Eriksen & Alli a touch too much for stubborn Saints" as "1st half burst edges out Southampton".

Top of that match's highlight picks was the first goal with world class control and vision from both the provider Dembele and the sublime Eriksen finish. There is an understanding developing amongst players in this squad that sometimes dazzles and delights, as this moment of glorious brilliance demonstrated.

As of now it's only glimpses of an even higher plane of excellence that could be attained with greater individual and team consistency. Both those above mentioned players are known for roller coaster fluctuations in form, but when they're "on", they really are "on".

The Spur's Premiership
MCFC waltzing to the title & sheikin' all over
Sat., December 16, 2017 [Season 2017/18]
Manchester City 4
Tottenham Hotspur 1
Full time result
by Rob Francis

As The Spur anticipated, City are too much for anyone else in England right now. De Bruyne and crowd are simply on fire. God may not be on their side, as Jesus fluffed a penalty, but equally no Messiah descended to lend a helping hand to the lost Lilywhites.

Of course it helps if your side marks the opposing players when defending corners, but we've got time to learn that kind of stuff in Enfield at practice. Rome wasn't built in a day. Neither was Lazio.

Here'a a technical analysis from Kyan1te. One thing he mentions is that Spurs tried too hard to take the game to City leaving themselves stranded, as opposed to the Manchester derby where United were too negative. Both City's opponents paid the price for their respective mishandling of the league leaders.

We didn't capitulate, actually we kinda did, but a very late Eriksen goal restored some semblance of respectability. But we have a decent shot at top four which is critical for our progress to a shiny new stadium where we need to retain our many quality players by dangling the Euro Champs carrot. Without that we've got a talent retention problem from manager through to the squad.

The world isn't a fair place. Some kingdoms were located on oil and some places were not. If the former, then toys like a major English football club can be bought.

Meanwhile, Burnley next Saturday.

Pre-match: Man City are making a mockery of financial fair play and all the fake efforts to stabilize the league to prevent zillionaires from buying the title, which leaves the two Manchester clubs and Chelsea as the only candidates in the foreseeable future, other than a freak but well deserved blip when Leicester took the title. It took a while for the Citizens to buy their way to the top but, after years of massive, obscene financial injections, it has happened, as it surely must do over time.

They've got the title but we need top four and we've not gained sufficient points against lesser sides to be able to ride the losses to these super-sized opponents that we usually endure.
Last season
Son shone
again on TV

That said, City are the only supposedly bigger, read wealthier, side that we've tamed in recent years. But few people would bet big money on us winning this one. If we somehow get a draw that would be miracle. Looking forward to seeing how we do in the stiffest test of the season so far. City are on a hugely impressive winning streak and, although we've bounced back in the last couple of games, they are by far the form side that nobody has been able to knock over for quite a while.

Last season's corresponding fixture at the Etihad was a rollicking big fun affair ending in 2:2 and as a Mancunian caller said on Talksport after the match, "football was the winner today". the Spur's headline was "Spurs spurvive City onslaught".

Two goals down and outclassed by a City side dramatically superior on the day, Spurs nonetheless bounced back to ultimately take a point with a beautiful second equalizing goal, this time pummeled in by Hueng-min Son, deliciously set up by Christian Ericksen by way of a magically deft redirection from the ever alert Harry Kane.

Moments earlier the visitors benefited from the ref's crowd-stopping denial of a blatant penalty foul by Walker, one of many "curious" decisions, thought that was not the adjective being employed in Citizen circles.

The ref was not the only one feeling kindly towards the Lilywhites. Fate itself conspired some wonderful results elsewhere, notably Liverpool losing at home to Swansea [eat your heart out Bob Bradley], and United held to a draw at Stoke.

Tottenham Hotlinks & Football links

Recent links

Spurs supporter Chris Cowlin's must-see Youtube channel with stadium updates, match days, away days etc.

NBC Premier league channel and their top Premier moments

200% farewell tribute to "White Hart Lane the ground", to be replaced by "White Hart Lane the stadium" [and to be renamed for $$$]

Matchlight replays, highlights, etc.

BBC fixture list for Tottenham Hotspur

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

Scroll down this column for more Links

The Spur's Premiership
Ole Aurier, Spurs Serge ahead
Spurs 2:0 Brighton [Full Time]
Dec 13, 2017 (Ssn 2017/18)
Tottenham Hotspur 2
vs Brighton & HA 0
Wembley, London HA9
US live online: NBC Sports gold premier pass Rob Francis reacting.

2nd Half: Eriksen cross to Son whose header is deflected into the goal. Nice. We didn't get Spursy. Gotta run, lunch break is over, catch you soon.

1st Half: Oyez, ovey, ole -- at long distance THFC right back Serge Aurier floats the ball, kicked from between the fouling legs of a Brighton defender, towards the Albion goal, it sails over the keeper's despairing leap, and descends dramatically into the net. Flukey goal maybe, but impressive nonetheless, and the desperately needed breakthrough is achieved deep into the embers of the first half.

Tottenham Hotspur, who really need to win this one to stay competitive in the league, gratefully trot off with the lead. Half time.

Pre-match: Can Spurs follow up Doug Jones' magnificent win for the Democrats last night. The Londoners will need to beat a decent Brighton side, but one that may not park the bus like most other visitors.

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs annihilate Stoke
Sublime Spurs Stoke'd by tsunami soccer
Dec 09, 2017 (Ssn 2017/18)
Tottenham Hotspur 5
Stoke City 1
Wembley, London HA9
US live online: Fubo. Rob Francis reacting.

Second half: Standing ovation for Son Hueng-min as THFC cruising to a triumphant, dominating victory.

Even Hugo Lloris' lack of form and flapping off his line to concede doesn't much spoil the party as the outfielders bask in the glory of the most emphatic Spurs win of the league season. Didn't stop the Potters fans singing "Five nil and you ****** it up," for want of anything else to express. Their side had all but given up by the final whistle.

Hey even Christian Eriksen getting into the scoring act from another fast and flowing Spurs counter attack. Stoke shellshocked.

Another big round of applause for Harry Winks subbed for Sissoko.

Erik Lamela comes on, with THFC four goals up, to rapturous applause from the fans, Alli goes off but this win may well see him returning to form from the confidence gained by such an amazing and strong team performance.

The fourth shows Son and Kane once again combining with a cross and finish respectively of the highest caliber, and a brace for the Spurs striker.

Two goals in two minutes scored by Son and Kane and the glory days are back! Crisis over.

The second perfectly described by Mark Schwarzer on the BBC match tracker: "That's exactly what Tottenham needed. For the second, it was a really good ball from Winks onto Alli, and then his ball through was even better. Son looked like he'd made the task more difficult for himself when his touch took him away from goal, but his finish at the near post was excellent."

The third surely clinches the game with Ben Davies delivering a beaut of a center to find Harry Kane's towering header.

Spurs showing they can break and score like the best of them. Also, these are team created goals combined with individual talent, the best combination.

First half: Brilliant start to the game with a goal and almost complete control throughout. Of course, a second would really get the champagne corks popping -- still a bit too close for comfort.

Joy from the left in the form of a marauding run from Heung-min Son and a pinpoint cross that found Harry Kane and a Stoke defender equally positioned to bundle it over the line, either deliberately or accidentally. Given to Ryan Shawcross [pictured], own goal. They all count. One nil to the Tottenham.

Since then THFC maintaining control for a while but as the first hald unwinds the visitors from the north Midlands have been creating some dangerous chances.

The commentator just gave away the West Ham vs Chelsea result which I had DVR'd on my Fubo online dashboard to watch later, but that's okay, I can still handle watching the launderers getting beaten, albeit by the spammers. Great goal for Bournemouth at Palace from ex-Spur Jermain Defoe in a riveting game including an incorrectly awarded penalty fluffed by Christian Benteke.

OK that's it for now, time to watch the game that's just starting, Newcastle vs Leicester.

SPUR OF THE MOMENT: Son Heung-min. Great goal, provided sublime crosses, never stops fighting, never stops creating.

Pre-match: Cast, if you will, your mind back to December 29, 2013 in the season 2013/14 and it was Tim Sherwood's first home win as manager of the legendary Tottenham Hotspur, to none other than Stoke City.

Spurs of course had been struggling under the negative tactics of Andre Villas-Boas. Remember him? AVB must have died inside watching Tottenham's tactics after Soldado scored the penalty. "Back in your shell, back in your shell" he may have been muttering, fantasizing about drafting in a phalanx of defensive midfielders. How he pined for the 0:0 that was the result in his last home game against the Potters.

So AVB's demise precipitated the installation of the Shermeister and rapidly the club's fortunes began to bloom. A new manager that believed in the Tottenham way, and allowed the players to express themselves, even got Soldado onto the scoresheet, albeit from the penalty spot.

We always knew our players had talent and Tim brought it out of them. Spurs had something in the range of 20 times the number of shots on goal that glorious day, and resulted in two more goals for a 3:0 win.

Dembele was certainly not lacking confidence, created his own chance and took it, helping Spurs on their way to a resounding victory.

Did I mention Aaron Lennon's wonderful goal? It was a brilliant collective build-up in which Adebayor was the prime creative force, producing one of the best Lilywhite goals at the Lane of that season -- not that there was a embarrassment of riches to choose from.

How we thanked Spurs for the Xmas gift of a manager that believed in the Tottenham way, and, as mentioned, allowed those players to express themselves. We knew they had the talent.

"Super Tim", known as the "Messiah" to his friends, even allowed Lamela to come onto the pitch. At that point, if AVB was watching, he probably broke the television. Remember TV's?

So can we bring back, or rather emulate, those heady days of 2013 for this match today [Saturday]? Spurs extravagantly expressing themselves in the Premier league and bombarding the Stoke goal to run away with a convincing home win against a "lesser" team?

Only time and the match will tell.

European Champions League 2017/18
Spurs best in the Champs League
In Europe, Spurs can do no wrong, so far...
Tottenham Hotspur 3
vs. Apoel Nicosia 0
December 06, 2017 by Gerry Attrick

Three-nil again against Apoel. Here's Chris Cowlin 's coverage. The Guardian notes that after 17 matches "Fernando Llorente is up and running as a Tottenham Hotspur goalscorer" to bag the first.

Guardian poster MCB efffuses: "16 points! we've won the champions league! ... that is how leagues work right?" Answer: should be, mate, but in the real world they haven't screwed enough money out of the punters yet. Besides, I wanna see THFC in the KO stages. That will be edge of the seat drama from beginning to end, no matter what happens on the pitch.

BBC: "Son Heung-min added a second before the break, curling in from the edge of the box after playing a one-two with Llorente.

"Cypriots Apoel, who needed to avoid defeat to have a chance of claiming a Europa League spot ahead of Borussia Dortmund, offered very little throughout."

Reportedly 42,000 showed up which is actually amazing that for a dead rubber game we got a significantly larger crowd than the capacity of our recently demolished ground. Which is another reason to be so ecstatic about our new stadium. We had way more supporters than capacity. That problem will be dramatically eased come August.

Looking forward to see the delayed online TV match this evening [one of those rare Spurs matches this season that I didn't find legally live].

Well we're masters of the Champions League so far. Shame about the Prem, but roll on Stoke this weekend.

BBC: "Tottenham, who finished with the highest points tally in this season's Champions League group stage with 16, can now look forward to Monday's last 16 draw, which takes place at Uefa's headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland at 11:00 GMT."

Who will we draw? At worst I reckon Bayern, then Juve, at best Basel, Porto, or Shakhtar, but could also be one of Porto or Sevilla.

Pre-match: In the away match of this group stage encounter with Apoel Nicosia The Spur concluded "Harry & Co too much for Nicosia" as Harry scored a hat trick for a 0:3 win.

The Guardian noted that "Tottenham were troubled by Apoel but the home side had no answer for Harry Kane's brilliant ruthlessness."

On a more general note Wikipedia reveals: "Apoel FC is a professional football club based in Nicosia, Cyprus. Apoel is the most popular football team in Cyprus and they are the most successful with an overall tally of 26 championships, 21 cups and 13 super cups."

And so a dead rubber match reflects just how phenomenal Spurs have been so far in this season's top European competition, and it's clearly the one contest that towers over all else for our manager, and if we go all the way it would be the biggest equal moment in the club's history along with winning "The Double" in black and white.

That's a long shot, but the players and gaffer have delivered spectacularly in Europe so far, and the impending knockout stage is likely going to be the pinnacle of the season for us, game by game. Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, let's get this one chalked up and then back to the bread and butter of the Prem with Stoke and Brighton both at home, and then Man City away.

European Champions League 2017/18
Goal down, Spurs strike back
Alli assists twice
B. Dortmund vs Tottenham H. 1:2 [Full time]
November 21, 2017
Fubo and other online providers
Match song: "Spacer" by Sheila & B Dortmund

Three quality goals including Harry Kane's early second half equalizer and Hueng-min Son's clincher, with Dele Alli providing both. Son was lethal with his finish, perfect placement and pace. 1:2 up.

Previously, early after the interval, it was a Harry classic, controlling the received pass and firing so unexpectedly and quickly that the keeper has no time to react, and fed superbly by Dele Alli.

These were moments of modern day Spurs at their finest.

Both clubs conjured some real magic to create and dispatch their respective goals, yet neither club can currently produce consistently at that level as both strain to get out of their respective mini-wobbles.

But this goes a long long way to getting the Lilywhites back into the driver's seat and a win over WBA on Saturday will see them restore their recently acquired status as one of the globe's top sides, capable of winning most of the big games, but also picking up wins against so-called lesser status sides.

Pre-match: Spurs won a pulsating Euro opener against Borussia Dortmund at Wembley and now it's the return leg in Germany. Spurs have handled their "group of death" with almost unbelievable confidence and skill so far.

With the London club already through to the knockout stages the pressure to qualify is off -- it's now just a question of trying to finish top of the group to supposedly getter a better match-up in the next round. Strangely, this should have made them more able to excel in the Prem but the recent struggle to finally overcome Crystal Palace and the toothless display at Arsenal show that, even as the "new Real Madrid" life doesn't always pan out as planned.

Manager Pochettino summed it up with a square jawed "we need to keep going" and various players have dropped in the "need to bounce back" phrase at all the right moments in media interviews.

And that's really what this game is all about when it come right down to it. In a grueling season with winter upon them, at one of Europe's most atmospheric arenas, are Spurs still on their steady trajectory to the top of the pile, or is it all too much for a squad that, despite its numerous talents, doesn't yet have the depth needed to take this tidal wave of football in stride without burning out?

Anyway it's Thanksgiving week in the States so in theory a lot of people have time to relax over lunch today and watch the lovable Lilywhites in action, or then again, maybe they hit the freeways early and are glancing down at their Androids to catch the action.

Main thing is to keep clear of the Russian radiation.

Countdown to debut of brand new Spurs stadium

Roll on August 2018. Exciting times as the countdown begins because soon it will no longer be years, but just months, before the grand old club of Tottenham Hotspur will be in an equally grand but also brand new stadium, partly sitting on, but going well beyond, the site of the White Hart Lane we have known and loved.

Major respect to the current visionaries at the club who are doing so many things so well, including the plan to provide rail terracing for a section of the vocal home support. The era of the old fashioned Park Lane End, Paxton, and Shelf terracing may be long over, but it's a tribute to the vision of the club and the way that the leadership and fans are able to work together to provide an authentic, atmospheric supporting experience, and a true sense that the club is as much part of the supporters, who pay a big chunk of the expenses, as it is to those who have a more direct financial business interest.

Even the most veteran fans are feeling a buzz and sense of excitement similar to when we experienced our first live game at the Lane, all those years ago. The phrase "exciting times" is much more than cliche as a new season begins.

Of course, we've gotta make it through a season at a substitute "home" first, not regarded as ideal by many fans, not least they sense that it will be every visitor's Cup Final to play at Wembley stadium this season [another factor being the difference in the dimensions of the Wembley and WHL pitches unless it's made the same].

And now for some big pre-season friendlies coming up.

More links

Supporter sites, message boards, podcasts

the hotspur podcast appears to have become sporadic but always a worthwhile listen

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

Cartilage free captain

fighting cock mb

Unofficial forum, formerly shelfside spurs, previously

Glory glory forum

not 606 spurs message board, new link as of 2015

New York City: New York Spurs Supporters Club meet regularly to watch games.

Los Angeles: LA Spurs

TV & radio

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

BBC radio london with frequent Spurs match commentaries


General footie

At a glance premier league fixtures and results

All time worst goalkeeper

football grounds guide great ground and stadium site, updated link as of 2017

Britain's most atmospheric derby is in glasgow


The futbol pulse

Nice timing portland coach [now ex-coach]

Football ramble blog -- link updated sept 13


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

Alan Gilzean along with Big Match music

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".'

Next up.... 2018 starts strong so far

02: Watford (a) 1:1 draw
06: Apoel Nicosia (h) 3:0 won [Euro Champs]
09: Stoke (h) 5:1 won
13: Brighton (h) 2:0 won
16: Manchester City (a) 4:1 lost
23: Burnley (a) 0:3 won
26: Southampton (h) 5:2 won

January 2018
02: Swansea (a) 0:2 won
04: West Ham (h) 1:1 draw
07: Wimbledon (h) [FA Cup R3] 3:0 won
13: Everton (h) 4:0 won
21: Southampton (a)
27: Newport (a) [FA Cup R4]
31: Manchester United (h)

Originally scheduled dates. Some fixtures get moved owing to TV rescheduling.

[Highlights of Spurs vs Palace earlier this season. Check that channel for other Prem highlights etc.]

The Spur's Prem
Spurs 1:1 West Ham
Spurs late equalizer saves blushes
January 04, 2018
Tottenham Hotspur 1
West Ham Utd 1
USA live tv/web. Latest update on new stadium.

Two brilliant high energy strikers' drives into the top corners of each goal, first from West Ham [albeit a midfielder] and then fourteen minutes later from Hueng-min Son, also a crackerjack video reel golazo, illuminated a scrappy, frenetic derby in rain-soaked north-west London.

West Ham parked the bus and for them it worked: one shot on goal and only 29% possession. David Moyes' anti-football left Spurs to try to do the entertaining, but we don't yet have the knack of our London neighbours Chelsea and Arsenal who can usually pull out a squeaked victory against negative visitors when really needed.

But for West Ham, unbeaten in three away league matches now apparently, Moyes has stopped the rot and they seem set more for mid-table than relegation since his arrival as manager.

Pre-match: In our previous home encounter with the Spam this season, for a League Cup fixture, we blew a two-nil lead to get taken down 2:3. "They won their Cup Final" was our headline and now it's time for them to try win another. Two cup finals in one season for them, eh? Our generosity knows no bounds. Or hopefully it does, because it's never pleasant to lose to the knuckle draggers.

But with only one day off between matches, the gods conspired to make life tough for Tottenham Hotspur. Some bleat on about how rotation solves that problem. I don't think anybody needs to explain why that theory is a load of bollocks.

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs take liberties at Swansea
More reactions as the night unfolds
NBCSN TV, various online
Jan 02, 2018 (Ssn 2017/18)
Swansea City 0
Tottenham Hotspur 2
Highlights of Swansea's visit to Watford on Sat.

Tough night for the Swans when, from an Eriksen free kick, Llorente scores what seems like a great goal but for the glaring offside position he was in.

Add to that Tottenham's Davinson Sanchez being insanely lucky to stay on the pitch after a blatant cardable offence which would have been his 2nd yellow, but the ref gives him a verbal instead.

No wonder their manager was beside himself at the diabolical officiating, but that said, Tottenham were clearly the superior side and the Welshmen will need to dramatically raise their game to avoid relegation. That's unlikely to happen given the poor decision making of their American owned club management. To make matters worse, their arch rivals Cardiff are top of the playoff spots in the Championship, albeit in a slump themselves currently.
Very happy to see Victor back  
Portlander, GMB

Swansea's few chances came around the middle of the second half with a spell of serious pressure but a sublime Spurs second goal, with a laser guided cross dug out by Harry Kane served, as if on a plate, to Dele Alli, whose second attempt to capitalize found the Swansea net. The vociferous travelling Tottenham fans behind that goal, having endured monsoon-like conditions along with the locals, erupted in delight.

We've got a great record against The Swans and that continues. One issue of concern was the inability of some of the Spurs players to stay onside at crucial moments.

But when you win with such a classy second goal in such lousy weather, it's not a time to be overly critical.

Planet Swans forum

The Spur's Premiership
Harry the hat trick
Final at Turf Moor
Dec 23, 2017
Burnley 0
Tottenham H. 3
Rob Francis reacting.

Second half:Ball from Dele Alli and Harry Kane, in sensational form, scores his hat trick.

Spurs dominating and Harry Kane, one on one with the home keeper, takes his chance and nabs his second. One goal up was a precarious position for THFC so massive relief.

First half: So it's like the old days of the early internet -- radio feed, and Talksport has the goods today, or at least, "Premier league live" via Talksport. Used to be Talksport was way behind the times providing overseas internet programming and match commentaries, but seems like now they are the leaders. Better late than never. Cheers.

I could find a liberated video feed if I had the time and my main computer, but I'm multi-tasking today and that ain't gonna happen.

Thankfully the Spurs vs Southampton match on Tuesday is available online in glorious technicolor and high definition so normal service will soon be restored and I'll be watching Fubo's online feed.

I did get to watch Everton vs Chelsea out of the corner of my eye, while working on a property upgrade even so close to Xmas, the joys of being self-employed, and somehow the Toffees managed to hold Chelsea to a no score draw.

Yesterday's Arsenal vs Liverpool match was one of the best of the season so far. I settled in to watch Liverpool hopefully sink the gooners and it was a rollercoaster ride of amazing proportions. Good advert for the game.

Spurs are a goal up and Burnley haven't been a threat so far. Dele Alli fouled and a "soft" penalty, according to Talksport, converted by Harry Kane.

Pre-match: First time this season that there's no officially available online video feed of the match where I am today. In other parts of North America today there are both English and Spanish language TV/online feeds. So it's all down to local "rights".

The Spur's Premiership 2017/18
Spurs still struggling
Sanchez red carded
Sat, Dec 1, 2017
Watford 1
Tottenham Hotspur 1

Tottenham's travails continue as the 2nd half unfolds with one goal apiece and down to ten players.

BBC Football match tracker: "Straight red card. Richarlison looks to skip past Davinson Sanchez, who catches the Brazilian with his elbow. Martin Atkinson is in the headlines again, and Spurs are down to 10 men."

It was so unnecessary and it's Davinson's weak link, a combination perhaps of youth and temperament, to petulantly put his side at a totally avoidable disadvantage.
"The thing
I like
most is..."

A scrappy match that doesn't particularly help either side to draw, though given our lack of form and the red card, a bit of a relief to be honest.

A Dier handball fails to bring Watford a spot kick and Spurs end up surviving with a point. It's all over. Please check back for more reactions.

Pre-match: Last season's corresponding fixture, played on New Year's Day, ended in a convincing 1:4 Lilywhite triumph under The Spur's headline "Spurs whack wobbly Watford" and rejoiced at how we were "more than keeping up with rivals". Those were the days, eh? Here's the report....

"Another one-four win to add to the Saints victory is perhaps the most satisfying result of the season because we have just seen Spurs not bottle it, not be Spursy, at a pivotal juncture in their season when they just had to win, both from a points tally and a psychological perspective.

"Kane and Trippier and Kane and Alli combining to become dynamic duos to create goals that the injury ravaged home side simply had no answer, except at the end when it was much too late."

The Spur's Big Match
Foxes feast on Cockerals
Strong Spurs away support as Lamela & Kane combine to pull 1 back
Congrats England women 5:0 over Kazakhstan in WC qualifier
Tues, November 28, 2017 (Ssn 20017/18)
Leicester City 2
Tottenham Hotspur 1
Full time
Rob Francis watching on Fubo online stream

Erik Lamela's long awaited introduction raised this game to fever pitch as Spurs finally kicked in and started playing some quality football, but it was too little too late.

Are we too good to go down? Seriously, though, this was another bad day at the Prem office.

Erik Lamela's on! Will he score a hat trick, or will North Korea nuke Hawaii instead? Well he immediately feeds a peach to Harry who puts it away with a world class finish to a sensational Spurs build-up.

The Foxes were left in charge of the hen coop and ate up the opportunity. This is a long way from the six-one walloping Spurs dished out at the King Power stadium last Spring.

Mahrez and Vardy are back to their title winning best for Leicester City who, against most other opponents so far this season, have looked well below their potential.

By contrast, Spurs were outplayed by a hungrier side and are failing to successfully press the opposition -- the Foxes broke loose too easily and Spurs may think they're too good to make the effort to keep it 100%. After all, they're superstars now, right?

The Foxes are closing down most of Tottenham's efforts to construct anything useful -- good thing we've got the new stadium to show off some creativity.

Eriksen seems to have disappointingly reverted to aiming set pieces to the opponents' first man defending, which won't help, but the player does have a great way of releasing teammates for opportunities in open play, but none were capitalized on so far.

The only encouraging thing for THFC is our away support remains loyal and vociferous, but at home the moaners rarely sleep and if they hold sway that adds another layer of difficulty for a London side fighting to stay relevant in the Top 4 race of the Prem.

Elsewhere Man Utd are looking like the Devils of old, which doesn't help us, and the other big clubs are also mostly winning their games this holiday season, usually convincingly.

Eriksen misses a sitter, the Dane not quite up the skills he's shown recently for his national side.

Oh well there's always the Stade Rennais and Las Palmas games coming up, tho' it won't salve this defeat much.

Pre-match: Tottenham Hotspur aim to finish one of the most tumultuous roller coaster months that I can recall from the club on the field, with massive and memorable Euro Champs highs even as we saw our hopes of domestic glory take some big hits. We're out of the count now for the title and it's gonna be a battle royal to finish in the all-important top four.

The Lilywhites romped to a 1:6 away victory in the corresponding league match last season played in May earlier this year, causing this site to conclude that "any doubts that Spurs under Poch aren't the real thing after the shock loss at West Ham were blown away by a breathtakingly dominant performance by north London's finest."

Word is that Erik Lamela may be gracing the field after a long injury spell, and it would be great to welcome him back and see if he's really still able to turn on the magic.

By the way, good luck to the England women's team too in their big World Cup qualifier.

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs "Throssled"
Kane equalizer saves Spurs blushes
Sat., November 25, 2017 (Ssn 20017/18)
Tottenham H. 1
West Bromwich Alb. 1
Live online Fubo, Sling etc.

It'a all over. The embarrassment of a home loss to glorious Gary, returning as if from the dead to lead the Throstles in their "Cup final" at Wembley, was avoided. But invaluable points were dropped and Wembley just isn't a good place to be against bus parkers.

Extra time and a draw at Wembley will get Gary Megson's "freedom of West Brom" bus pass extended another five years, maybe even extended into Birmingham. Meanwhile ManUre finally break down Brighton. Geordies getting pasted at home to Watford.

Ben Foster finally carded for time wasting. Took a while, no matter Kieran Dier's constant recommendations to do so much earlier.

It took our two biggest England superstars to pull even with Dele Alli feeding Harry Kane's nutmeg equalizer.

At 21 mins to go Trippier connects to send a high bouncing cricket-style googlie into the box and Alli is just millimeters away from poking it in. That was so close, but ultimately another frustrating moment of many.

Second half: Dembele and Llorente coming on, Winks and Verts off. Will that shake it up for struggling Spurs?

Can we get anything off Gary Megson's blue [OK, green] and white warriors? Not so far by the first few minutes.

First half: Icons were ripped apart like rag dolls right off the bat, Alli got dispossessed, Lloris and Sanchez were made to look like lame asses, leading to an easy WBA slow-roller goal from Salomon Condom within minutes of kick-off. Most of THFC looking gormless, Trippier, Son, and Kane excluded. Diabolical start.

Following that, desperate long shots and ragged build-ups going nowhere. WBA can defend and Spurs are fairly sad at breaking sides like this down. Bad so far. Even with 70% of possession after 15 mins nothing created by Spurs, even Harry reduced to desperate 30+ yard shots.

Could this finally be the moment that Sissoko comes on and stuns the stadium with a late hat trick? The ghost of AVB is lurking at Wembley, though Son puts the ball on a platter with a cross from the left that just needs a Spurs boot to tap it in -- chance missed and the best and only real threat so far with only minutes to go before the interval. Moments later, a sizzling Son shot is deflected onto the crossbar, nice cross from Trippier, but the half time whistle only moments away.

It's half time. Watford thrashing True Geordie's team on their patch, Brighton holding ManUre to a nil-nil draw at OT so far. Not many goals all round.

Meanwhile in the New York City fan zone the Tottenham supporters are doing the best Palace fan impersonations by cheering wildly and going suitably crazy irrespective of the 45 mins of rubbish they've just watched. Inspirational.

Pre-match: Already through to the KO stage of the Euro Champs means the Borussia game on Tuesday isn't really the next "big one", that belongs to the pressing issue of winning points in the Prem to defend a Top 4 spot. To achieve that Tottenham Hotspur simply must win against struggling West Bromwich Albion at Wembley on Saturday, not just for the gold-dust of three points but to restore our faltering momentum in an unforgiving battle against 'Pool, Arsenal, Chelsea, ManUre, etc.

One challenge was that WBA manager Tony Pulis needed something from this game to hold on to his job, and everyone knows the west Midlands side have the talent to be doing much better. But since writing this, he's been fired.

Still, summat's wrong with the Albion but we know this is a classic Spursy scenario wherein a team that should be doing better may suddenly gel against..... us. It's been a familiar script in the recent past.

MAN OF THE MATCH: On as a sub, Mousa Dembele helped turn it around by his mere presence and guiding light cool under pressure. Trippier and Son also stood out.

Better memory...
Harry scores
against AFC
in final
WHL derby
Same old Arsenal...
...always cheating
Arsenal 2:0 Tottenham Hotspur, Rob F. reacts

Arsenal got a free kick for a non-existent shirt pull "seen" by the ref that our Sanchez never did. From that free-kick they scored with an offside goal. That's all you need to know about those cheating *****, just like American Republicans. **** 'em.

No wonder the chant of "Same old Arsenal, always cheating!" rings out at every stadium in the Premier league where the slime play.

Harry was clearly not fully ready for this early return but he did manage a decent on-target header. Other Spurs players were also below par. Had our #3 keeper played instead of Lloris I think both goals would have been stopped.

However, amazingly enough, I think there were positives to be noted from this deeply disappointing result. The overall level of play from the current squad, even on a bad day, is still higher and more consistently good in these last three seasons than at any time in at least a decade or so before Poch.

New players like Davinson Sanchez are fitting in really well and I think against a struggling West Brom side next up we could see our side bounce back and continuing to flourish in the Prem.

Former Spur Micky Hazard: "Best team won today full stop, we weren't anywhere near our best but still poor decisions by ref and linesmen gave the game to them, we move on to the next game with lessons learned. COYS."

Former Spur Dimitar Berbatov: "They are building a great stadium, they have a great squad, a great coach, the training ground is fantastic. They have everything to be a great team. Footballers speak with each other constantly and everybody is telling me Pochettino is a great manager. A great man-manager."

Pre-match: The days of Arsenal regularly bossing the north London derby have been over for a while, but the Emirates is arguably one of the four toughest places for us to go to along with Stamford Bridge and the two Manchester clubs' homes.

So for me a draw would be brilliant, especially with Toby Alderweireld out of commission. But even among us easily hoodoo'd Spurs fans there's a sense that if we're firing on all cylinders there's no reason why we can't get all three points, but at the time of writing no concrete word on Harry Kane's availabilty, and he's been key to our success against the gooners in recent years.

But Arsenal can also be brilliant when they're in top gear, so this really is one which could go any way. Moreover, Arsenal have very strong home form in the Prem currently enjoying a record-breaking string of consecutive home league wins.

So that said, let's see what the internet has to say about predicting the outcome.

BBC's University of Liverpool "SAM" computer plumps for a 1:1 draw while their human predictor, Jonathan Pearce, takes my tack and won't commit.

True Geordie says 1:2 to Spurs as does his sidekick.

So anyway this is on in the wee pre-dawn morning hours in California so I'm gonna use my online recorder to save it and should be around for 3.15pm UK time to watch and react.

Tha talk is over for now, apart from these guys, but check back soon.

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs survive Palace
Spurs get another winning streak going
November 5, 2017
Tottenham Hotspur 1
Crystal Palace 0
Wembley stadium, NW London
Sling, Fubo etc.

Spurs survived thanks to a missed open goal from Zaha, a series of superb saves from Tottenham's #3 keeper, brave and professional defending from Kieran Dier, the introduction of Dembele, and a brilliant goal from Son Hueng-min.

But this is the kind of game, after the exhausting glory of the Real Madrid victory during the week, that you have grind out to be at or near the top of the table.

"Woy" has done a top job getting Palace organized and it was hard to believe that we were watching, statistically, a side guilty of the fourth worst season start in Premiership history, almost challenging their own previous worst record.

For us Spurs aficianados, this lot kept us on tenterhooks for the entire ninety minutes plus, even when the south London outfit's players looked mostly knackered by the end, not to mention our own, but Spurs were able to control enough possession to see out an exhaustive week in a professional and admirable way.

A lot more to come but it will be another delayed response because of so much other stuff going on at The Spur, but reactions from the press, other Spurs sites, visitor sites, and beyond, will be on the way. Then, among the massive items still on the fixture menu, a north London derby looms.

Pre-match: Another ultra early morning awakening for US Pacific coasters. Bloody early, but just about doable if you jack up with oxycontin early Sat night and get the speed pills ready for the pre-dawn Sunday action.

Alternatively, thanks to Fubo raising online viewing to a new level, you could use their DVR feature, timeshift, and view it, say, a few hours later. Brilliant. Then ditch Sling Blue 'coz their feeble lip-service efforts to provide a practical service for us cord-cutters are no longer needed.

The mood is sky high for north London's top club right now and thanks to the win over Real Madrid it's odds-on to be "instant bounce back time" after a couple of deflating losses.

Check back for more, plus build up for this usually interesting London derby. Meanwhile, the Christian Benteke song. He's injured.

The Independent "Tottenham are without Hugo Lloris and Toby Alderweireld for Premier League return against Crystal Palace."

European Champions League 2017/18
Glory Glory night
3:1 to Spurs, who go thru to KO stage
Tottenham H. vs Real Madrid 3:1
November 1, 2017
Live on SlingTV, Fubo, etc.

Second Half: It's all over. We beat the world's greatest team, or at least they were, 'til Poch-powered Tottenham arrived on the scene.

Now let's not lose at home to Palace this weekend. Seriously though, it's great to be able to focus on the Prem without the pressure of the Euro Champs league temporarily off. But there's not much time to recuperate and with Toby hamstrung that doesn't help.

But for now, and forever, it's a massive result and the real edge of the seat stuff begins when we trot out for the knockout stage knowing that from then onward it's do or die, in a competition where we could actually get to the final -- on present form.

Uh oh. Ronaldo gets one back, 10 mins to go. Nail-biter special as of now.

On a plate for Alli to get his hat trick but couldn't get the right head to it, but the classic old "Grand old team to play for" song goes up.

Amazing third goal, Kane unselfishly feeds Eriksen who blasts in the third. Spurs on the way to qualifying for the KO stages tonight. Almost done and dusted, lads....

Dare I ask it? #1 team in the world? To do is to dare and to dare is to do, and the Lilywhites dared to.... well.... do.

Alli nabs his brace, and a lucky deflection doesn't lessen the fact that's Alli ducking and diving between the Madrid defence was a world class player in full poetic motion.

First Half: Oh what a nice goal. Winks with a great long ball to find Trippier, marauding along the right hand side, who centers to Alli who prods home despite being flanked on either side by Real defenders. There were probable offsides by Tripper and Alli when Winks launched upfield, bound to be a talking point especially by Madrid fans.

Meanwhile at the other end the Spanish megaclub have had some chances to prize open the THFC defence, and no question Real will create plenty more danger as the game unfolds [looks like they're trying to replicate the Man Utd winner last weekend] but so far the sometimes breathtaking talents of Ronaldo, Karim Benzema & Co, whilst evident, have not yet been enough to beat Hugo Lloris.

It's mesmerizing stuff, this one. This is oppo that doesn't mess around, but Spurs look well up for it.

Pre-match: Drawing at THFC and then tonking 'Pool got us all flying but it's been unfruitful after that with elimination from the League Cup at home to West Ham, and then a narrow league loss at ManUre.

But Real Madrid at Wembley is a match to get the excitement and adrenalin flowing again and this is not a multi-tasker appointment, this is glued to the screen stuff.

A draw at the Bernabeu was a fantastic achievement. It was a test of where we're at currently when it comes to really big ones, and we now know that there's no reason to think that we can't mix it with the best of them.

As the Guardian points out: "While it's true that Tottenham just need three more points [to go thru to the KO stage], the first opportunity to get them comes against the European champions. These are the occasions that the champions of Spain live for."

And don't forget.... we've got Sissoko.

The Spur's Premiership
Martial lore
Spurs denied a result at Old Trafford
Sat, Oct 28, 2017 (Ssn 20017/18)
Manchester United 1
Tottenham Hotspur 0
Old Trafford

Tottenham Hotspur will be accused of over dependence on Harry Kane after this one, but as The Guardian points out "Even without Harry Kane, Tottenham held the upper hand for much of this closely contested game, though Manchester United are no mugs under Jose Mourinho and they stuck grimly to their task to pick up an important win" and "in the nick of time United came up with a textbook route-one winner to confound their opponents."

It was a jammy one at that, as the BBC tells of Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho referring to Anthony Martial's winner as a "bad shot that was genius". Martial may be entering Red Devils folklore labeled as the luckiest sod in soccer.

After the West Ham game it leaves Spurs on a rollercoaster from the previous high roll of results to what we hope is now the lowest depths of this cycle with losses to West Ham in the League Cup after being two ahead, and now this one, destined to be a creditable away draw at Old Trafford, never to be sniffed at, but crashing and burning at the last.

To be honest it's well tiresome losing at Old Trafford. On the plus side, last year in this fixture we were outplayed and outclassed in the one-nil loss. We were not this time. But boxing points aren't awarded for this improvement. Had I been there, I would have started a chant "if it wasn't for Harry Kane you'd be dead" but like many chants it's not necessarily a completely accurate reflection of reality.

Pre-match: Writing this about five hours before kick-off with the possibility, nay certitude if the UK media ain't BS-ing, of Harry Kane not yet match fit.

Excerpt from The Guardian's preview of today's game: "The loss of Harry Kane is a blow for Tottenham and a huge boost for Manchester United. As Manchester City are five points ahead of United and Spurs, second and third respectively, a draw is surely undesirable and given the loss of Spurs' star striker the onus is on Jose Mourinho's men to go for the win. Considering Mourinho's use of cat-and-mouse tactics it remains to be seen if he will instruct his side to do so."

In the corresponding fixture last season The Spur wrote: "I gotta hand it to Mourinho -- I was wrong. He may be the right person for United. They only waited for this game to kick in, and in the process made Spurs look decidedly second best. What looks on paper like a narrow one-nil home victory was in fact a clinical outmaneuvering. I dread to think of life without Alderweireld.

"I can only recall one real chance for us, when Wanyama failed to convert. Other than that, United closed us down, meanwhile playing a convincing passing game with an understanding, cohesion, energy and penetration that by contrast was glaringly lacking in Poch's crew."

Meanwile, in a thriller last weekend a global audience watched Huddersfield defeat Man Utd, but now the Devils have the home advantage and will relish a pop at Spurs with Kane out of the picture.

The Spur's Premiership
Reds overwhelmed by supreme Spurs
4-1 final score
Sun, Oct 22, 2017 (Ssn 20017/18)
Tottenham H. 4
Liverpool 1
Wembley stadium, NW London
Match highlights
Spurs new stadium update with Chris Cowlin

by Rob Francis

You're all part of history! 80,827 a new Prem record crowd, which included Diego Maradona and Martin Chivers, watched as Harry Kane got his brace and his Wembley league scoring issues are now over. It was especially a glorious moment for THFC manager Mauricio Pochettino because after three years of rapid on-pitch improvement there's a feeling, after this win, and the impressive draw at Real Madrid, that he's now elevated Tottenham Hotspur into the upper echelon of the world's top clubs.

Combine that with what will be one of the world's very finest football stadiums and it's no exaggeration to say that we're on the cusp of the greatest era in the club's history.

Pool's keeper Simon Mignolet was overwhelmed by the Spurs onslaught and the Reds' defensive wobbles had the 'Pool support almost continually burying faces in hands, while Lloris at the other end pulled off a world class save to deny Liverpool's Coutinho with, in front of Hugo, a defensive tightness that is so un-Spursy but truly, very impressive.

It was a master class performance by Tottenham, bur beyond that the players are working for each other in a way that makes it difficult for less bonded opponents to stay with them, a point actually admitted by Juergen Klopp [at least the Spurs bit].

As the final whistle blew the Lilywhites claimed joint second in the league but the insane schedule continues with more imminent heavyweight matches in both the Prem and the Euro Champs including of course Real, Borussia, Man Utd and Arsenal, with a League Cup tie thrown in for good measure this upcoming Wednesday at Wembley against WHU.

Klopp got klipped. A day earlier City and Chelscum won but ManUre lost to the Terriers so this became a must win for both sides, and Spurs were rampant, dominating the visitors almost throughout. So the Londoners stay in touch with the league leaders City whilst Liverpool's chance of winning the Prem effectively died.

Pre-match: BBC Football: "Three of the last four top-flight meetings have ended in draws, including the two most recent games in London."

Spurs are on a decent unbeaten run, while Liverpool are a side that can go either way on any particular day, but THFC must fancy their chances, and if it doesn't end up a hat trick of league draws in these home fixtures against LFC, it's more likely to go Tottenham's way than the visitors. That's a good thing because this is potentially a "six-pointer" with Liverpool one of our closest rivals for a top four spot and/or to chase Man City for the ultimate prize.

Possible Spurs line-up: Lloris; Alderweireld, Sanchez, Vertonghen; Trippier, Dier, Winks, Davies; Eriksen, Alli; Kane.

In Saturday's matches this round so far, City continue to dominate the League in performance with another easy win. Chelsea won at home but still not firing on all cylinders. In a thrilling atmospheric match Huddersfield stunned visitors Manchester Utd, the kind of game that reminds us why we watch English league football [Prem included].

Last season's corresponding match ended 1:1 under the headline "Vorm saves Spurs blushes"....

We saw again the new resilience Spurs had shown under Poch. Just because THFC go one-nil down, doesn't mean they're gonna lose the match. But in this case the home side benefited from a controversial offside call that nullified a second Liverpool "goal" that would have been a bridge too far.

That said, the earlier penalty decision against Lamela seemed harsh but then again Erik's decision making was poor in that moment.

You could see how much Liverpool's potential has increased since Klopp made his debut as their manager at WHL last season. This was a much more impressive showing by them.

Another hideously ill-timed international break hurt Spurs more than most other clubs.

"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

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs 1:0 Bournemouth
Prem Wembley hoodoo ends
"They only
got in
once and
they scored"
-- B'mth mgr

Tottenham Hotspur 1 AFC Bournemouth 0

Sat, Oct 14, 2017 (Ssn 20017/18)
Spurs stabilize Wembley wobble
US TV & online: includes Sling Blue

Watching double-screen as THFC see off the Cherry challenge with Christian Eriksen scoring another master goal, albeit a struggle for Spurs to get the points, Lloris called upon to make a couple of top shelf saves, while Palace beat beat Chelsea [highlights], in the electric atmosphere at Selhurst Park. Time to put away the "I scored against Crystal Palace" t-shirts.

OK now it's time for the Watford vs Arsenal game and as always it's the icing on the cake if the gooners lose. Unlikely, but hey, Palace beat Chelsea so sometimes dreams do come true. Watford win highlights.

Pre-match: Usually an interesting fixture, even a not too distant 0:0 at their place had me watching fairly intently all the way through to see if Spurs could puncture AFC Bournemouth but in that match it didn't happen.

But here we are with another London/S.Coast tussle live online in the USA. BBC Football's Steve Wilson: "Spurs are third in the table despite having failed to win a home game. A period of adjustment to Wembley was always likely - and I'm not in the 'hoodoo' camp - but there's no way Tottenham can lift the Premier League trophy with one hand tied behind their back.

"Losing at home to Chelsea can happen, drawing to both Burnley and Swansea should not - but Eddie Howe will be saying 'if they can do it, why shouldn't we?'

"But what on earth has happened to the Cherries? Last season they played with such fearless style and panache, but now they look stale in comparison. Signing Begovic, Ake and Defoe should have lifted them to a higher plane, instead they appear to have sunk into a worrying rut."

NBC Sports predicts 3:1 to THFC

Spurs{XY} preview

View from the Up the Cherries forum anticipating their visit to the Cockerals in only their second visit To Wembley in the south coast club's history:

After a game dominated by the Cherries at home against Leicester which only brought 1 point in a goalless draw, the team travel to Wembley Stadium for the second time in the club's history to play Tottenham Hotspur in a Premier League game, Wembley being the Spurs home for one season while their new stadium is being built.

The last time AFC Bournemouth (AFCB) visited Wembley (the old stadium with the twin towers) was back on Sunday 19th April 1998 against Grimsby Town in the Autowindscreens Shield Trophy Final. The Cherries took 32,000 fans that day and had the biggest following in the stadium, it was the time of the 'dreaded' Golden Goal, Grimsby scored the Golden Goal in extra time and Wembley Stadium all of a sudden had an eerie silence, very strange moment for the Cherries fans with the game coming to a sudden end.

This time AFCB will be visiting the New Wembley Stadium with only an allocation of 3,000 tickets for away fans in this ground that has a capacity of 90,000. So far it hasn't been a very good 'home' ground for Spurs in the three games played there they have only yielded two points.

Spurs have brought in five new players during the Summer, the highest paid being 38.4 million for Ajax centre-back Davinson Sanchez. Other signings, Fernando Llorente 12.1 million from Swansea, Serge Aurier 23 million from PSG, Juan Foyth for an undisclosed fee from Estudiantes and Paulo Gazzaniga from Southampton for an undisclosed fee. One player going out of the club was Kyle Walker the right-back moving to Manchester City for 50 million.

This season so far Spurs have done better away from home, winning all four games. They came out 2-0 winners against Newcastle, went one better against Everton winning 3-0, beat West Ham 3-2 and in their last game beat Huddersfield 4-0. At Wembley they lost 1-2 to Chelsea and drew 1-1 with Burnley and 0-0 against Swansea. After 7 games Spurs are in 3rd place in the table with 14 points, 10 points above AFCB who are in 19th place.

The Cherries so far have found it hard to finish off chances and only found the net four times, last season it was six after 7 games. With our strike force this season you would probably have expected more, but after 7 games last season Josh King had only scored twice, this season after the same number of games he has scored one goal. Jermain Defoe after 7 games, 5 starting and sub twice has also scored once (hit the woodwork twice). Last season after 7 games for Sunderland he had scored four times. Josh King finished the season with 16 Premier League goals and Jermain Defoe scored 15, the same number he finished the previous season with and after 7 games in the same season he had scored twice. So both players given the service hopefully will be there or thereabouts at the end of this season.

In our two games against Spurs at White Hart Lane, we lost both of them, 2016-17 season 4-0 and 2015-16 season 3-0. At Dean Court last season we drew 0-0 and in 2015-16 lost 1-5. The only time we have beaten Spurs was back in 1956-57 season in the 5th round of the FA Cup, we were comfortable 3-1 winners.

The Spur's Premiership
Cockerals muzzle Terriers
Amazing away form keep THFC flying
September 30, 2017 [Season 2017/18]
Huddersfield Town 0
Tottenham Hotspur 4
Sling blue etc.
John Smith stadium

Very convincing win for Spurs whose away form keeps on jammin', so far on a par with our league winning season back in the 60's under Bill Nicholson.

Harry Kane continues his dazzling form with a brace.

Away day at Huddersfield.

Pre-match: Huddersfield Town vs Tottenham Hotspur is the extremely early morning kick-off for USA's beleaguered Pacific time viewers, but who knows, maybe the pot of tea will prevent returning to get a few hour's extra kip.

A first time ever visit by Spurs to Town's current stadium. Shame many of us missed seeing their old Leeds Road ground when it existed.

Prior to this weekend's action Huddersfield are a lofty 8th in the league, only a couple of points behind us, and only one point shy of Arsenal, with HTFC actually enjoying a better goal difference than the Gooners, albeit a modest +2.
Mousa Dembele is out with an ankle injury, and Serge Aurier is suspended after his red card at West Ham.
BBC Football

Not 606: Our last trip to Huddersfield was in 1972, when the club played their home games at Leeds Road and featured a line-up of Pat Jennings, Joe Kinnear, Cyril Knowles, Terry Naylor, Mike England, Steve Perryman, Ralph Coates, Jimmy Pearce [scorer], Martin Peters, John Pratt, Alan Gilzean, and Alan Mullery was out injured. It finished 1:1. HTFC's manager David Wagner's journey to the Premier League has been rather unorthodox. Born in West Germany to American parents, he spent his whole career as a striker in the country of his birth. Despite this and despite having played for German youth sides, he chose to play for his parents' country. His coaching career started in the land of good beer and sausages, then rumours of a move to England emerged. He spent four years as Borussia Dortmund's reserve manager, before leaving for pastures new.

Shelfside Spurs: "Rather do a 4-2-3-1 in this one TBH. Include Son as an extra attacking option and Dier can shift back in between our center backs when need be."

Cartilage Free Captain: "Spurs kick off the weekend's slate of games with a visit to newly promoted Huddersfield. With Chelsea or City certain to drop points and with Liverpool having a tricky fixture to navigate on Sunday, this could be a big weekend for Spurs to pick up some points on their fellow Champions League contenders. And, of course, a draw or defeat would be a major set back."

Why do we keep landing the early morning game on Saturdays? Is that the "just outside the top four, could be an outside contender" team timeslot? And anyway, prior to this week's round of games, we are/were #4.

The Spur's Premiership 20017/18
Spurs win at West Ham
Ultra early morning West Coast viewing
Sept 23, 2016 (Ssn 2017/18)
West Ham Utd 2
Tottenham Hotspur 3
USA live online & tv

Eventful match with Eriksen and Kane among the shining lights as the game threatened to get out of control towards the end which helped the visitors because West Ham, playing ten men by then Tottenham, were pushing for the equalizer after being 1-3 down until the on-field fracas derailed their momentum.

West Ham, still 17th after this [before the other matches were played], go on to meet Swansea in an early season relegation battle, as Spurs temporarily move up to third, with their Euro Champs match away to Apoel Nicosia looming on Tuesday.

More reactions soon.

Pre-match: Spurs have not only struggled at Wembley, as a temporary home patch, but based on memory we haven't done that well in recent years at either the Boleyn ground or at West Ham's new base the Olympics throwback stadium, but, to put a positive spin on it, we have the talent to break through these psychological barriers but we're gonna need the rub of the green too.

Going into this weekend Spurs have double the points tally of West Ham, 8 to 4, resulting in Tottenham at fifth place in contrast to the Hammer's position only one spot above the relegation zone.

We lost in the corresponding fixture last season, but won 3-2 in the home encounter.

Not 606 forum: "West Ham's first victory in the league came against Huddersfield and it was then followed by a draw with West Brom. Not exactly grabbing the headlines with those results, but it's given the manager some breathing room. A result here could be a massive boost and he knows how much it means to their fans, too."

Fighting Cock forum: "We will win 2-0 and go on a 12 game unbeaten run."

BBC Football's Guy Mowbray: "Forget all the Wembley nonsense - it's West Ham away that is the real Spurs curse."

Check back as the north-east London derby approaches.

The Spur's Premiership
Park the bus, Jacks
All aboard the
special to Wembley
for another
home match

Premier hoodoo woes continue for Spurs
Tottenham Hotspur 0
Swansea City 0
Live on NBC
Sat, Sept 16, 2017

Rob Francis got to understand a little Portuguese but was multi-tasking, as from early doors the game had nil-nil written all over it. A bunch of Welshman known collectively as the Jacks used Wembley to park their bus for a weekend in London. And they didn't even need a jack to change the tyres. It gave us something to do.

I thought it would be, every time at home, that the visitors would play as if it was their Cup final, a chance to shine. That notion was a little too romantic and totally underestimated the esteem in which Tottenham's current side are held by the likes of Swansea. Apart from the lavishly funded "super-clubs" of ill-gotten gain and fame, like Chelsea for example, the rest will be using the national stadium as a bus park.

Meanwhile Spurs remain the Premiership hoodoo gurus of the home turf.

I'll watch the day's prem highlights when BBC's Match of the day comes on, but I'm guessing they'll shift thru this one as quickly and painlessly as possible, but maybe I missed some exciting moments that might have translated better in Englgish, sorry, English, than they did in Portuguese. The program will have added interest for me because I only know one other result so far -- watched a bit of Burnley nabbing a point at Liverpool -- so that gives me hope that maybe some other upsets may have happened too.


The Guardian: "Tottenham are flying after burying their Wembley jinx in the Champions League win over Borussia Dortmund while Swansea City have been gripped by introspection following their failure to perform against Newcastle United. Paul Clement can take heart from how his team have played away from home of late. He knows he needs something special."

Cartilage Free Captain: "The smart money is on Spurs, but there's a bit of hope for Swansea. It will come to nothing. 2-0 Spurs." "Victory against a talented but profligate Dortmund side, courtesy of a couple of Kane strikes and one from Son Heung-min to open the scoring, was just the second the Lilywhites have claimed at Wembley in 12 attempts stretching back nearly a decade since it opened.

"They must now prove that they can perform in the vast bowl when it comes to league matches as, after losing late on to rivals Chelsea and somehow throwing away two points against Burnley, they cannot afford to slip up in any more of their winnable home games."

Swansea fans forum.

The Spur's Premier action
Wembley hoodoo haunts Spurs
Chelsea are capable of being disliked
Aug 20, 2017 (Ssn 2017/18)
Tottenham Hotspur 1
Blue Racists 2
Wembley stadium, London
US online live: Sling, etc. Rob Francis pens the column.

I had to take off seven or eight minutes before regulation time.... the joys of my strange schedule, eh.... and leaving on a high from the own-goal that got us level, but perhaps inevitably two errors led to the concession of a second goal moments from injury time and down we went to the dreaded winless at home streak that we trust will not be a ongoing Excedrin sized haedache.

First half underway for the Prem's first ever game at Wembley to open the curtains for Tottenham Hotspur's home campaign for Spurs vs Chelsea, and a free-kick from former Bolton Wanderers player Marcos Alonso, for a Dele Alli foul, finds the net.

Seems talk of a crisis at Chelsea after just one game was media gun jumping.

Pre-match: As the traditionally second biggest game of the home season approaches [for many Spurs fans like myself Chelsea are actually my most disliked opponents, partly for historical terrace mayhem reasons but even more so for being synonymous with the old school pre-alt-right National Front] and, along with Man Utd and West Ham, the Blue launderers rank only behind Arsenal in anticipated home fixtures of the season.

This one emerges with three notable things going on at the minute. It's our "gap" season with Wembley as the home venue so there'll be a lot more home and away fans gathered this time; Chelsea started with a shock loss at home to Burnley while Spurs won away; and lo and behold the club has finally splashed into the transfer market with 21yr old center-back Davinson Sanchez [Columbian playing at Ajax] bagged and looks like a great player, and teenage defender Juan Foyth [Estudiantes, ARG] in the frame. Lots to mull.

Good news for Spurs is our nemesis Eden Hazard is crocked for this one, although he has made at least one miracle comeback in time to destroy us! I rate him as among the top ten talents in the Prem and he always seems to pull all the stops out in this London derby of the capital's two biggest sides based on last season.

Chelsea won the last clash at Wembley by 4:2 in the FA Cup semi.

This bloke True Geordie points out that Chelsea v Spurs has grown beyond the rivalry between the two clubs to one of the big match-ups of the league season for neutrals and for other clubs' supporters. Split prediction of him and his side-kick: 1 vote each as to who wins.

It could be a tightly fought battle with some real opportunities being created by both sides.

MAN OF THE MATCH: To be decided. To be decided. To be decided. To be decided. To be decided. To be decided. To be decided. To be decided.

The Spur's Premier league
Two nil to the Tottenham
Ten man Geordies overrun by visitors
Sun, Aug 13, 2017 (Ssn 2017/18)
Newcastle United 0
Tottenham Hotspur 2
NUFC fan's forum

I haven't read other reactions yet [just about to] but the basic gist of the story is that Spurs, for all their massively superior possession [ultimately 73% for the whole match], struggled to break down an ordinary Newcastle side until their Jonjo Shelvey cynically and dangerously stamped on Dele Alli's ankle and got sent off.

Even then, it was mostly not an exhilirating sight watching the Lilywhites trying to find a way through but they did manage to continually ratchet up the pressure, and finally it was Alli himself who capitalized on a gold plated delivery service from Christian Eriksen to break the deadlock.

After that, Newcastle had some chances but, as would be expected a man down and with an overall inferior squad that looked very second tier and actually culture shocked by the demands of a top flight opponent that finished #2 last season, they just didn't seem to have the weaponry to make a real fight of it.

The second goal sealed the win, a mesmerizing sequence of interplay and trickery by the Londoners with Ben Davies getting the the last boot in, and no way the Geordies could climb that hill.

Harry Kane slammed the post moments before the final whistle, as celebratory songs and chants cascaded downward from the vociferous traveling Yarmy, perched high above and far from the action.

Those worried about Kyle Walker's move away to Citeh, and this writer was one of them to put it mildly, got jitters at the replacement's first few touches, but at least he had almost the same name as his predecessor, and subsequently looked remarkably confident for a youngster from the youth system filling such a massively important right-back spot, and it became apparent that he was actually very good and gelled brilliantly with the first team regulars.

The note of caution is that this is probably one of the weakest opponents we'll face in the league based on this return to the top display by the home side. Their manager Rafa seemed to ooze tense apprehension as he mulled the daunting task that lies ahead. In short, I'd rather be Spurs than Newc.

But Spurs played a lot of the ball in front of Newcastle's lines, and when you look at how Man Utd and Arsenal created so many more real chances rather than getting stuck playing slow motion flat or back passes, it seems we've still got to get to another level to challenge for the title.

However, Spurs reminded one of Spain's national side back in the day when they would obsessively play possession football but with no penetration for almost endless minutes and sequences, but then find a way to score in the end partly by hypnotizing the opponents into a trance or lulling them into a sense of security. I guess it can work.

Pre-match: Will this be the new era of finishing above Arsenal or even bettering our last season's placement, meaning, winning the league?

The former is certainly more than do-able but with the dosh that some of our rivals have spent, you know the usual launderers [and weren't we supposed to see a cap on this runaway spending by oil baron clubs?], it will be mighty hard to mount another credible title challenge.

Admittedly, finishing 2nd wasn't the same as giving Chelsea a proper run for their money, but we have a talented squad. Truth is we're too thin, not enough squad depth to cover the four competitions we're in and if injuries add up, all the money stashed in the bank from Kyle Walker's sale won't matter if the depth of talent isn't there to see the club through when the chips are down.

But hey I never expected Spurs to wind up second last season, I thought a serious run at top four would have been brilliant in itself, so I welcome being proved wrong and pleasantly surprised.

Check back as the days unfold to the big kick off of a brand new season. Check back as the days unfold to the big kick off of a brand new season. Check back as the days unfold to the big kick off of a brand new season.

Check back as the days unfold to the big kick off of a brand new season. Check back as the days unfold to the big kick off of a brand new season. Check back as the days unfold to the big kick off of a brand new season.

Spurs win seven-one no champions league for Arsenal
Sun, May 21, 2017
Hull City 1 Tottenham Hotspur 7 [Prem]

END GAME: Spurs were in complete control at Hull. Arsenal as expected beat Everton [who didn't particularly want to help the Reds], but Liverpool FC themselves, reliably crap for much of the game, finally upped their game and stuck three in. Pool's first was a stunner and it spelled curtains for the Gooners, who conceded a penalty but won 3:1, but no champions league spot anyway for AFC because of the Reds win at Anfield.

Meanwhile Citeh slammed the door shut on the Gooners' alternative champs league route by demolishing Watford with an easy runaway result.

And Spurs?: Harry wins the golden boot. THFC were completely dominant on their trip to Hull and back.

Meanwhile MSNBC decided that a bunch of autocratic politicians milling around an air conditioned conference center in Riyadh looking like guilty sheep occasionally bursting into Commanche rain dances was infinitely more entertaining than watching the hottest striker in the world and England's most exciting up and coming young team play at the KCOM. Oh....kay....

We might have been Bernie's team for the day, but MSNBC chickened out to cover the world's most boring and abject display of the usually "angry orange" Trumpenstein groveling at Saudi feet in a posture of such bizarre contrast to his usual huffing and puffing about the crescent menace.

Still, one of the few meaningful matches of the day Liverpool vs Boro was not bumped from one of NBC's other channels, perhaps they couldn't find any Republican Road Rage monster truck pull events in any of the red states in time.

Pre-match: The last game of the season features a Premiership curtain closer between relegated Hull City and runners-up Tottenham Hotspur who were bettered only by the dodgy money launderers of Chelsea.

Fitting that this match was originally slated to be on the so-called "liberal" news and political channel MSNBC, soaring in the ratings, so close to treating its viewers to the wonders of the Prem season's top scorer Harry Kane and world class talents like Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen, Son Hueng-min, Victor Wanyama, and a cast of thousands [of traveling Spurs fans].

All of the final round Prem matches will be played at the same time but there isn't much suspense left to be milked, we already know who's won the crown, who's going down, and who the midtable maestros are.

The only thing left to ensure is that Arsenal don't qualify for the the Champions League and though they are likely to beat Everton at home, a Liverpool win at home to Middlesbrough will dash Arsenal's hopes, potentially causing their star players, and their manager, to exit stage left.

Manchester City are also theoretically vulnerable to an Arsenal win but they have a significant goal difference advantage and it's hard to see them getting battered by losing streakers Watford. The Citizens have never lost a Prem game to Watford, who just told their gaffer he's out the door [though whether that helps or hinders their cause is debatable].

So that's where the suspense lies: three clubs vying for just two CL spots, with Arsenal most likely to be the side that gets dumped. Awful shame, Arsenal in the Europa league, a fate worse than death.

Meanwhile Martin Fisher of BBC Football reminds us that "on the final day of last season, Tottenham travelled to an already relegated club and lost 5-1. I very much doubt that lightning will strike twice."

Spurs have a lop sidedly favorable 6-2-1 record against Hull City in Prem meetings.

The one thing going for the Tigers is that their current manager Marco Silva seems to be pulling the side out of its downward spiral and had he been in the job longer the east coast club might have avoided the drop.

The Spur's Premiership 2016/17
Big farewell to a classic old ground
Wanyama and Kane score as THFC finish 2nd
May 14, 2017
Tottenham Hotspur 2
Manchester United 1
Final game @ White Hart Lane

Bit of a cliffhanger there towards the end..... but the deed was done. Spurs say farewell to White Hart Lane in its current version, still the original 1899 ground albeit with many upgrades over the years. Meanwhile the imminent dawn of a new stadium, overlapping but stretching well beyond the currently existing square footage, is anticipated with relish.

It almost went potentially Spursy, Kane denied last scorer at WHL as Wayne Rooney grabs one back.

Second half began, and a few minutes in an Ericksen free-kick is instinctively diverted into the Paxton net by the extended right boot of one of our own Harry Kane.

It's half time and Victor Wanyama coiled a mighty header for the 1:0 home lead in a match dripping with atmosphere. Great that it's the fans of Spurs and Man Utd witnessing this because you can count on these two sets of fans going through a rendition of some of the terraces' greatest historical hits of yesterday, including chants and songs for some of the players who've served Spurs in former days.

It will be fantastic if Spurs bid farewell to the Lane with a win against a massive old rival -- the very fixture of Spurs vs Man Utd remains a must-see event in the footballing world -- and being a goal to the good it's on the cards, but the main thing it's turning out to be what was hoped for on this historic day, a wonderful send off for the grand old ground and those who have graced its hallowed turf.

Pre-match: Another historic day in a series for THFC culminating in the final home match of all time at White Hart Lane, and against Manchester United of all people. To win this would be a wonderful finale on this special occasion but whatever the outcome it'll be a unique event especially for those fortunate enough to be there.

In last season's corresponding match played on April 10, 2016, a five minute second half blitz the like of which has rarely been seen, even by this dynamic incarnation of Tottenham Hotspur, the home side tore the Red Devils apart and produced three memorable and exhilarating goals that propelled the Lilywhite legions into a collective ecstasy trip.

"Five stunning Spurs minutes net 3 glory glory goals" was The Spur's headline on the day.

And all just as I was thinking this was about to peter out into a nil-nil quid pro pro with the occasional notable save by Hugo Lloris to give us a rather tokenistic point that would have effectively sealed the crown for the Foxes.

Perhaps Poch can give Man Utd's incoming manager some tips on how to survive the rigours of trench warfare in the Europa League next season, because, as the Spurs fans pointed out, "Champions league, yer 'aving a larf."

Man Utd forgot the time difference and showed up at the Lane seriously late using the usual lame excuse of north London traffic. They still reckon they're a big club and that the world waits for their every move, and that Harry Kane has all but signed along the dotted line for them.
Two more matches: away to Leicester and Hull

Of course the game should have started and if they choose not to have players present then we get to score as many goals as possible until they're ready to come on. Even Erik Lamela could have scored one with that much time and space on his hands.

Talking of which, Erik Lamela had a great chance to put us ahead earlier in the first half. In fairness to him, he was active and making space for others and himself, helping make things happen, though the visitors overall were the stronger side first half. No score at the break.

Lloris saves the day in the 62nd minute from a point blanker from Martial.

Then Eriksen and Dele change it all. Great cross from the Dane and Allie makes no mistake driving into the Paxton End goal.

But wait, there's more. Call right now and we'll give you the towering header of the week courtesy Toby AlderW from a Lamela free kick, and then the Argentine himself bags the third with a devastating first timer into the 'ole onion bag. Wot a goal.

Van Gaal getting sacked in the morning. Well, end of the season. Thrashing couldn't happen to a more deserving victim. Not him. United.

"The main headline here is the Spurs resolve," says Martin Tyler.

"We want four, we want four, Come on Tottenham, show 'em the door", as the home side wipes the floor. Or, to borrow a line from the 70's terrace era "the great Man United got battered to ****."

Three nil up I can finally relax and enjoy the last ten minutes. Rarely have I seen the United midfield and defense look so vulnerable as in this second half.

And the talk of Kane and Poch being lured away by United. Why? Why would they want to go to an inferior side who are a shadow of what ManUre once were. They have the chance to make THFC the "new United" if you like, it would be risky going to Old Trafford which is becoming, since Fergie retired, a graveyard for managers and players alike.

Spurs v Manchester Utd. Always one of the big 'uns of the season. And this, after a dodgy start, was magnificent from Spurs, especially six minutes in which the Red Devils were unceremoniously dismantled.

Pre last season's match: Highlights and goals from the 2013 league encounter at the Lane here including Sandro's absolute wonder-goal. Stroll aboard.

As an aside, great to see Chelsea lost at Swansea. Gylfi Sig on fire.

The Spur's FA CUP Semifinal 20016/17
Chelsea draw from their bench to win
Two stunning Spurs goals not enough
Sat, April 22, 2017
Tottenham Hotspur 2
Chelsea 4
Rob Francis watching

Pity Vorm couldn't be fit to continue his FA Cup run as goalkeeper because Lloris, though a great professional, held partially responsible for the first CFC goal from a free kick.

"What a header from Harry Kane! He makes it look so easy. Christian Eriksen manipulates the ball really well, but to get down that low and guide the ball is a superb header," texts Danny Murphy on the BBC Football play by play. Yes, a rip roaring start to this semifinal when "one of our own" equalized. Hardly a moment to catch the breath in this amazing spectacle, albeit with a tragic score, so far.

Despite Spurs gaining the upper hand after the predictable and costly wobbly start, Hueng-min Son concedes the penalty and Willian gets his second in a colossal blow to the Lilywhites.

Son, like a lot of the Spurs players, is a young up 'n coming star but youth will tend to make poorer decisions under pressure and he looked a bit out of place in the role he's playing.

Second half starts it looks like some of the Spurs fans have remained in the bar to drown their sorrows, but those that made it back to their seats are still clearly desperate for their side to sock it to the, uh, much disliked Blues.

And sock it they did, with a pin-point pass of the season from Christian Eriksen as Deli Ali races forward to slam it into the back of the net. Incredible atmosphere as the fans sing Alli's praises but really the man of the moment is Eriksen, that assist will live forever in Spurs history, along with the goal itself. Indeed both Spurs goals sensational.

Confident Chelsea haven't even brought Eden Hazard on yet. He's on now, along with Diego Costa. Sickening how mafia money can buy a bench like that.

Son off for Walker, Tripper moving to the left.

Hazard coming on and it all went downhill after that, he's unmarked from a corner and buries it, and then a fourth one finishes it off.

Pre-match: Both the biggest contests in the domestic calendar are boiling down to a battle between London's two current strongest clubs, and the first of the showdowns will be in the FA Cup. Will it be Chelsea or Spurs who win the semi and then very possibly win the final itself?
"Harry Kane makes
it look so easy."

The other even bigger showdown is the battle to be Premier league champions but that option is of course an outside long shot for the good guys, Tottenham Hotspur, but either way Chelsea are the prime obstacle in the quest.

In any event, since the Prem hangs on a string of results means that no single game is likely, on its own, to have the importance of this, the Cup semifinal battle between the two clubs this weekend.

So for us this very arguably is the biggest game of the season. It's the likeliest route to a long awaited trophy, albeit still a gargantuan ask.

It's a tough game to predict but for the first time in a long while Tottenham are not going in as underdogs. At the same time, it's hard to argue with the job Conte has done at Chelsea in a very short time, they're the real deal and on their day they're unstoppable.

But with the flair, the flow, and the confidence that we're showing, throw in the rub of the green, and it could be a Glory day for us.

For sure it's not going to be for the faint hearted.

Phil McNulty, BBC Football: "Will Pochettino detail someone like Eric Dier to shadow Hazard? I will be really intrigued to see if Pochettino tailors his usual approach to copy Mourinho's winning formula [as United beat CFC last weekend in the Prem] because I think the influence of players such as Hazard and Alli could decide the outcome at Wembley. Hazard is a magnificent footballer, a match-winner, so last Sunday at Old Trafford may just have been informative for Spurs."

Check back for more build-up.

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs 4:0 Bournemouth
Janssen's fourth raises the roof
"Both sides
like to go
for goals"
Sat, April 15, 2015 (Ssn 2016/17)
Tottenham Hotspur vs
AFC Bournemouth
White Hart Lane, N17

Watching the match on replay, still early on a California morning in paradise, but not as ridic as getting up at fohr ferty, kno wot i mean, guv? And Spurs don't disappoint, about sixteen minutes in a hotly disputed corner kick, deliberately run out by the away defender, awarded to the home side at the Park Lane end and Eriksen takes his usual frustrating near post corner except this time, shock horror, it actually works, flicked centrally either by a Spurs or B'm'f player, almost certainly accidentally, and it falls to the weaker right foot of Mousa Dembele but he buries it good 'n propa.

Dembers had scorched the hands of the visiting keeper moments earlier and like so many of our men in white, he was looking to make a mark.

About three minutes later a nice combo involving hard pressing THFC nicking the ball deep in enemy territory, Kane's super accurate flick sets up Heung-min Son, shining again, with a beautiful goal from a tight angle, leading to the complex "secret handshake" celebration between the two. If they can work out that handshake, footie tactics must seem like a piece of cake by comparison.

Seven wins a row for Spurs? Will it be, equalling Bill Nicholson's record? It's on.

Eddie Howe, a good manager, must be shell-shocked but truth is the Cherries play a style that gives Spurs license to kill. Admittedly, he drew the sting from us last time for a nil-nil draw, but we're way beyond that scenario right now.

'Arf time. Put another cuppa on and see ya on the uvver side.

Second half kicks off, when the buffering has completed. And it looks like more of the same to the delight of the Lane faithful as, three minutes in, Tottenham go three up, superb build up with Spurs in full flight and passing the ball in style, finally into Harry Kane who turns his man and buries it. Dynamite stuff.

But wait, there's a finale as Vincent Janssen gets his first premier league goal in open play and raises the roof at White Lane with a stoppage time score that seems like the perfect ending for a wonderful display by the lively Lilywhites at the Lane.

Ta'rah for now.

Pre-match: The amazing home run is still intact with a twelfth home win in a row up for grabs.

BBC Football confirms Harry Kane is back to start, he loves to score against the Cherries and is looking for his 20th goal of the season.

Also Victor Wanyama is fit for THFC, and with Son Heung-min on fire as an attacking left midfielder, and Dele Alli in fine form, the Londoners look formidable. Did I mention Christian Eriksen or Eric Dier? It's scary stuff for any visitor at the minute.

Opponents Bournemouth have some injury worries adding to the already daunting challenge of trying to get anything from this game.

Which all augurs well for the Lilywhites as we stand in solid second place, in practice too far behind Chelsea -- they have games in hand as well as a significant points advantage -- but equally we would be gutted now to let slip that second spot with points and games advantage over Liverpool, who travel to The Hawthorns to face West Bromwich.

One thing already being celebrated by Spurs fans, the stigma of being supposedly "forever in Arsenal's shadow" is obliterated for this campaign. For us, it's been nothing short of magnificent, but of course the run-in has only just begun.

Bournemouth haven't beaten Tottenham in the league but they did manage that 0-0 draw in their most recent league encounter with us. They have struggled for points this season but will remain in the top flight and are a team that likes to play football and try to score goals, not known as "bus parkers".

Two of their players are touted by the likes of The Guardian as eye catchers, namely Joshua King up front and Steve Cook, likely future England first teamer, in central defence.

The Spur's Premiership 20016/17
Top class goals impress the Lane
THFC getting better, no sign of slump on radar
April 08, 2017
Tottenham Hotspur 4
Watford 0
video highlights
Check back for ongoing reactions

"Alli's goal was beautiful.......", "All goals was beautiful" says most of what I was going to react with, see highlights link above, but then fell asleep after late tennis on Friday night and then getting up at some insanely early time to catch this live. The things I do for Spurs.

Compared with this time last season, it's interesting to see we're in the same league position, 2nd, but with seven additional points, eight more goals, two less goals conceded, and 20 wins over last season's 17 victories. Even the "least impressive" stat there, our second place position, looks good because at this point [and I'm going into territory Spurs fans traditionally fear to tread] we have great confidence that we're not going into a Spursy end of season nosedive. There, I've stated it. Now let the chips fall as a they may [and April, too].

An upbeat mood at the Lane with some terrific goals to enjoy, a joyous sense of camaraderie among the players, and yes, they've "gelled".

SPUR OF THE MOMENT: Son Heung-min. Scored two, assisted, bubbling with energy and enthusiasm as usual, he's becoming an icon, up there with Alli and Kane as the biggest Spurs superstars.

Pre-match: Prior to the weekend's results, Spurs are second in the table and Watford a surprisingly high tenth, equal actually with the Saints though with a far inferior goal difference.

In the corresponding fixture last year, Spurs edged a 1:0 victory with Kane, Dembele, Dele Alli and Trippier combining for the only goal.

Alli coming on allowed him to be the assist passer, culminating from a great THFC team build-up movement that finally pierced the Watford bus.