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

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.

Tottenham Hotlinks & Football links

Recent links

NBC Premier league channel

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.

Full matches replays, highlights, etc.

total sportek

BBC fixture list for Tottenham Hotspur

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

Run-in league fixtures

5: Everton (h) 3:2 won
18: Southampton (h) 2:1 won

1: Burnley (a) 0:2 won
4: Swansea City (a) 1:3 won
8: Watford (h) 4:0 won
15: Bournemouth (h) 4:0 won
22: Chelsea (Wembley, FA Cup semi) 2:4 lost
26: Crystal Palace (a) 0:1 won
30: Arsenal (h) 2:0 won

5: West Ham (a) 1:0 lost
14: Manchester Utd. (h) 2:1 won
18: Leicester City (a) 1:6 won
21: Hull City (a) 1:7 won

End of the season. Happy hols. See you at Wembley.

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

More links

Supporter sites, message boards, podcasts

the hotspur podcast great while it lasted, appears to have stopped

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

Cartilage free captain

fighting cock mb forum

Glory glory forum

not 606 spurs message board, new link as of 2015

big soccer spurs US based message board

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


girl warns guy not to go to 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

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

Los Angeles: LA Spurs

European Champions League
Spurs and Wembley don't gel
Tottenham Hotspur 0:1 B. Leverkusen
12.45 pm pacific, November 02, 2016
Fee Perpetual reporting

Can't talk much right now due to huge workload. How much? Hyoooj. But the time has come to face up to it, THFC are in a lull. After the impressive victory over Man City on Oct 2 the side has gone six ******* games without a win, they look stale, disjointed, and toothless. Yes we're still tough to beat, we still have one of the best defences, but that's about it, and it won't be enough. What's most worrying is the chemistry is missing, something is out of whack. I can't come up with the technical reasons or the solutions so for now I'll leave that to more expert analysis, and get back to you when I sift thru the material offered.

But if we can't come up with something pretty pronto then the visit to Arsenal in a few days ain't gonna be pretty.

I think losing Toby to injury was obviously a blow, but I didn't realize how much. Harry's absence actually didn't hinder for us for a while, but nobody else now seems capable of replacing him.

And we should have the squad to overcome a few injuries that inevitably occur. If not, we out of our depth and not properly prepared for what we knew would be an intense, fixture saturated campaign.

Pre-match: BBC Football reminds us that, in the away fixture to Bayer, Spurs dominated possession but the home side had better chances in the goalless draw. They also note that Moussa Sissoko is avialable for selection because his ban only applies to domestic matches.

I tuned in late for that game but it seemed, especially after the break, Spurs looked to be hanging on for dear life. Bayer were not only closing down but taking it to the highest level by cutting off any passing options, and it was really getting to the visitors who didn't seem to know how to cope.

Bayer looked a good well-coached side, surprising to see them only solidly mid-table in the Bundesliga.

Hugo Lloris was a lifesaver in that game in Germany. At the other end, the Leverkusen goalie had very little to do.

Can Spurs find goals at home, and can they shake off the hoodoo of playing at Wembley that also negatively affected Arsenal in the same venue?

Tottenham Hotspur: line-up


Walker Dawson Vertonghen Rose

Paulinho Capoue Dembele

Townsend Chadli


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

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

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

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

The Beautiful Game: Remember when

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

Review of an England match by Shaun Custis of The Sun: "Rickie Lambert used to screw tops on beetroot jars for a living. And he could never have dreamed that one day he would put the lid on a fairytale England debut with a Wembley winner over the Auld Enemy." courtesy of WSC.

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

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

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

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

The Spur's 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 Big Match
Spurs hotter than ever
Penultimate league match show THFC major force
Thurs, May 18, 2017 (Ssn 20016/17)
Leicester City 1
Tottenham Hotspur 6

Well 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.

Pre-match: Two more away matches to follow the fanfared last game at the Lane which of course gave Tottenham Hotspur the highly desired victory farewell to White Hart Lane with the 2:1 win over Manchester United.

For me, a visit to the dentist [for routine cleaning] follows this match so hopefully the only toothless display will be from The Foxes with Spurs giving us something to really sink our teeth into. You know the drill, lads.

Following Leicester is of course the final game of this successful season and a visit to relegated Hull on Sunday.

Please check back for more as the Thursday match fast approaches. Please check back for more as the Thursday match fast approaches.

Please check back for more as the Thursday match fast approaches. Please check back for more as the Thursday match fast approaches.

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 Premiership 20016/17
Spurs stymied
Second place it is, WHU well organized
May 05, 2017
West Ham Utd 1
Tottenham Hotspur 0
USA live online & tv, various

Back to the old pre-Poch days when Spurs struggled to break teams down. Beyond that, to concede a goal because an opponent was totally unmarked in so much space in front of goal, was a big disappointment.

Losing, with so few opportunities created against a team dangerously close to the relegation zone until this win, was hard to take, but perhaps inevitable. There had to be a come-down from the high of a magnificent win over Arsenal the previous week. Just wish it could have lasted a bit longer.

Pre-match: Their new stadium hasn't been good for the east Londoners and now it's our chance to keep their misery going! The bubbles have well and truly burst for WHUFC.

The corresponding fixture of the 20015/16 season resulted in a Hammers victory with the only goal of the game as The Spur headlined "Spurs no-show at Boleyn." Here's how it went down:

Watching Match o' the Day it looked like Lasagnagate all over again. Horrible. Luckily the program got a lot better -- with the following games highlighting both Arsenal and Manchester City's meek and unsuccessful attempts not to lose.

This site has talked constantly about the inability and unwillingness to challenge in the air on defensive set pieces and it was an early corner that showed up this flaw yet again. Until we get that fixed, we cannot truly compete at the top level.

Tottenham looked really really lame. Hammers knew how to neutralize us and their central players snuffed out our corresponding players with alarming ease.

We have to do way better than that to get anything from Arsenal, who will also be ready to rebound and have the ability to do serious damage on the day.

Is this the usual end of the season capitulation? I think we've got more going for us than previous seasons, but there's a lot missing still. We bottled it. Luckily for us, so did our nearest competitors.

Harry Kane
scores again
against AFC
Majestic Spurs win final NL derby
Euphoric second half
Tottenham Hotspur 2, Arsenal 0 [Result]

A Spurs onfield explosion of skill and determination blows Arsenal away, starting ten minutes into the second half. Magnificent if scrappy goal from Alli and a penalty from Kane leaves the red impostors reeling.

No time to upload more reactions right now, Buddhist temple calls, but I've got a leg up on my way to Nirvana already, by watching this superb win. Emotional -- one more game at the Lane vs Man Utd in mid May.

More reactions Sunday night and Monday.

Half time. The world level skills of the Chelsea stars overwhelmed Everton, tough but expected news for Spurs, but there's already so much stuff surrounding this fixture for both sets of fans that the best we can wish for is that our players in white don't let it all get to them, and so far they're doing the right thing, playing their game and successfully bringing it to the visitors. Indeed Spurs created several plum scoring opportunities and on another day Alli and Ericksen would have buried their respective chances.

Pre-match: April 30th. This is what the season has been building up to. It may not be the final act with a few more league games to play, but a win here in the last north London derby at White Hart Lane is crucial for so many reasons, not least of which is that if Chelsea should fail to win at Everton earlier on, Spurs move back into serious title contention. By contrast, a CFC win and a THFC failure to get three points and Chelsea are practically crowned champs.

The other big reason for THFC supporters is of course, it's a historical game, the last home league match against Arsenal to be played at the world famous ground, the existing White Hart Lane. Legendary ground with so many memories. That's a whole volume of books distilled into one sentence.

Oh, and of course a win will inaugurate St Arse Day, the date when Spurs are guaranteed to finish above Woolwich in the league.

Tha talk is over, the teams take the hallowed turf, the proverbial tea is in the pot [for those not fortunate enough to actually be there].

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs still stalking the title faves
Ericksen super strike breaks the Palace grip
April 26, 2017
Crystal Palace 0
Tottenham Hotspur 1
Selhurst Park
Full time result

A noisy, vociferous night in deepest south-east London, with both sets of fans giving non-stop support to their respective heroes, and with Palace keeping Spurs at a distance from their goal it needed one of those laser-guided scorchers for Christian Eriksen, taking even the commentator by surprise, to break the deadlock and keep the Lilywhite flag flying as both Chelsea and Spurs add full pointage to their runaway battle of London for the very Premier League crown itself.

As said many time before but worth repeating, THFC can only concentrate on winning as many as possible to stay in the title chase, albeit a long shot. If Chelsea keep winning too, which they mostly are, there's not much that can be done about that.

Whatever the outcome, the mood is sky high for north London's top club right now and this was such a great night: to both win and to bury the disappointment of losing to the Blue Racists over the weekend. Instant bounce back time.

Check back for more, plus build up for the north London derby, followed by a trip to tax dodgers West Ham. It's all happening.

Pre-match: Palace have been getting some great results recently to ease themselves out of relegation fears, including games I've watched online when they've beaten Chelsea and Liverpool away and Arsenal at home, with Christian Benteke at times unstoppable. On recent form they must be one of the top performing Prem sides and yet Spurs should be able to get the win here, but by no means guaranteed of course. But we need to bounce back after the FA Cup semi defeat.

In the corresponding fixture last season The Spur's headline was "Alli luyha!" as THFC bounced back with 3 great goals, 2 of 'em "worldies", after going down at Selhurst Park.

Here's the review [and meanwhile only moments from kick off, so back with the reactions of today's game coming up soon]:

Well again I had to take off from watching the game at 1:1 and, as usual, Spurs win when I'm not witnessing the action. That could make me a hated man, because I do want to watch "live" when I can. The good news, in that respect, is that I've had to leave during the last two matches, so if it becomes a regular thing, the future is bright for the 'Whites.

What I missed seemed to be, from watching MOTD, a phenomenal finale from a shining Spurs, with Dele Alli absolutely outstanding: including a flick, turn, and volley goal that within hours had the entire online soccer world raving about it. A bit later he hit the bar with a shaver that would have rivaled what's already surely the actual goal of the season. Glad MOTD let me catch both him, Chadli, Aldy, Son, and many others putting in a great display to win 1:3. Watching those highlights again on Match Highlights, just wow. And those goals, dude.... [and Christian's even been practicing corners].

Going back to the equalizer, it was so textbook and they made it look so easy, but you gotta credit Nacer Chadli for popping up the perfect ball for Harry "Hotspur" Kane to rise up and head it in.

If you like to see deep defending, Palace is your ticket, based on this. But they break out, "counter" is the word I was looking for, very effectively, with Zaha among others demanding either class saves from Lloris or stout, at times frantic, defending from Spurs.

But we won it and showed some great play. It's good to watch these days. Talented players performing as a team with high morale, strong sense of camaraderie [gotta credit Poch in great part for this], and clicking big time as a team, not just a collection of individual talents.

But I'm still seeing an unwillingness to challenge for aerial balls in front of our goalmouth. Since Palace also suffered from this, not willing to go up with Kane for example for the equalizing goal, and the fact we were in goal-scoring mode, it didn't cost us points this time. But it has in previous games.

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.

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs soccer tsunami sinks savvy Swans
Stunning very late comeback by THFC
Rob Francis watched online
April 05, 2017 (Ssn 2016/17)
Swansea City 1
Tottenham Hotspur 3
FULL TIME. On target attempts 1:8

Ex-Spur Wayne Routlege put the Swans ahead early doors and it was down to the last minute in regulation time when Spurs, trying and testing but totally toothless thus far, exploded into goal scoring action.

A mesmerizing, mindblowingly impressive climax that turned this match on its head and it's with great excitement to announce Tottenham man of the match as Vincent Janssen, he was involved in several of the goals and made a brilliant sub's appearance. Utterly stupendous way to finish for the Lilywhites that makes me wanna move back to England and buy a season ticket for the new stadium. That's how good Spurs were at the very end of this.

Swansea had done a great job of keeping the visitors at bay. For all the skillful Spurs build-up play the Welsh side really didn't allow the Londoners to get much clear site of the goal. Until the end, and then, frankly, they were swept away, overwhelmed, drowned, by a Spurs soccer tsunami. It was devastating.

Pre-match: Earlier this season we clobbered Swansea at the Lane, and last season this corresponding fixture finished 2:2, apparently "an absorbing spectacle, Tottenham probing away and Swansea generally content to wait their moment before countering." Sounds credible, I didn't witness it, because unfortunately a crazy schedule got in the way for yours truly.

I did see the goals and brief highlights on the online international sports news and it was great to see Eriksen regaining his skills, especially from dead balls, after his bout with injury.

This site noted at the time that "the chemistry is happening" and it proved to be true on an ongoing basis as Spurs have flourished since then to even greater heights with a side that's gelling, in full swing, and no signs so far of an end o' season collapse.

In last year's corresponding fixture The Spur also remarked that "Tottenham had more possession, and we had 11 on target shots compared with a measly 2 for Swans, one which went in. They needed Harry Kane's own goal to make up the numbers, so you could argue they were very lucky lads on this occasion."

From the brief high speed skim I saw later, Harry Kane looks burned out, to be honest. He was getting seriously overworked at the time but survived to tell the tale.

The season before that, our league visit to Swansea was a 1:2 win, and before that an excellent 1:3 win for Spurs as Tim Sherwood's reign went from strength to strength, with a brace from Adebayor.

All in all, we've got a great record against these guys.

Planet Swans forum

Swansea blog pierre91 was a good read in it's day but dried up many moons ago.

The Spur's Premiership 2016/17
Spurs battle to subdue Burnley
Full time: win for Spurs as Chelsea lose
April 1, 2017. Rob Francis widja.
Burnley 0
Tottenham H. 2

It took a while with Spurs players falling in droves to injuries but in the end the Lilywhites found a way through with a cool finish from Dier and Spurs in full flow for a glorious second that ensured all the points as the one club above us, Chelsea, lost in a three goal thriller as they couldn't find a way back against Crystal Palace who win 1:2 at the Bridge.

Pre-match: Last time I saw Spurs at Burnley was in the 4:2 loss at Turf Moor. It was back in the day when I was watching matches on online, and I was moaning about how bad it seemed compared with Setanta. This is amazing to think about, because now I think fondly of compared with the rather sad cord-puller service known as

Sling is much more stable than was, but to give just one example of how their service is inferior to what's come before is that their repository of stored matches and programs consists of, seriously: Man Utd v Burnley from earlier in the season, and tucked away somewhere else in their confusing layout, Bournemouth v Swansea from weeks ago.

And you still can't you can't timeshift matches. Just wow. Insulting.

Back to the Burnley v Spurs game, and more recently, on April 5 two years ago, THFC's most recent visit to Burnley resulted in a 0:0 Prem draw.

Check back for more updates and reactions.

The Spur's Premiership 2016/17
1st half burst edges out Southampton
Eriksen & Alli a touch too much for stubborn Saints
March 19, 2017
Tottenham Hotspur 2
Southampton 1
White Hart Lane
Final score. Done & dusted.

Arsenal lost while City and 'Pool could only eke out a point apeice, but Chelsea and United delivered the goods for their fans. Meanwhile Spurs showed they can hang with the pack, going two goals up in the first half with a quality Ericksen strike and a highly disputable penalty given for an alleged foul on actor's guild award winner Dele Alli. Meanwhile Saints were denied their own far more legitimate penalty call, so it has to be said, even by a Spurs lifetimer, the Lilywhites really needed the rub of the green to put this to bed, mixed metaphors aside.

Top of the highlight picks has got to be the first goal with world class control and vision from both the provider Dembele and the sublime Ericksen finish. There is an understanding developing amongst players in this squad that sometimes dazzles and delights, as this moment of glorious brilliance demonstrated.
Preview for Burnley away match coming soon  
The Spur

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".

So it's ten trumpeted league home wins in a row for the mighty Lilywhites and, though Chelscum are nailed on for top spot, second place is there for the north Londoners to bag by avoiding a Spursy run-in collapse, though it looks like City will be a fierce competitor for #2.

Preview for Burnley away match coming soon. Preview for Burnley away match coming soon. Preview for Burnley away match coming soon.

The Spur's FA Cup
Spurs demolish Millwall
Son hat trick ensures Dockers get hit for six
Sunday, March 12, 2017
Tottenham Hotspur 6
Millwall 0
Updates coming in

After this brutally clinical performance from the Lilywhites the big challenge is yet to come -- overcoming the psychological block of progressing beyond the semifinals to make the actual Cup Final, and facing one of three fellow heavyweight clubs in the draw.

Son Hueng-min does a Harry Kane and nabs a hat trick, whilst the star Spurs striker himself has the alarm bells ringing by sustaining an injury.

Guardian poster: "Clinical stuff, and in this form I don't see any reason we can't push on and win this now. Would any other team fancy themselves favourites against us? An FA cup after our recent drought would be very nice indeed."

Even Vincent Janssen got in on the act.

Check back for more reactions, and the FA Cup semifinals draw.

Pre-match: A fitting fixture as the last Cup match ever to be held at the old White Hart Lane and, given that the historic and legendary Tottenham Hotspur ground will shortly be demolished to make way for the shiny new stadium, what better vistors to have than those of Millwall.

Many of their supporters work in the building trade and and are particularly noted for their expertise in the demolition aspect of the profession. I would imagine some of them will drive their Caterpillar digger trucks straight over from their respective construction sites. Thoughtful and willing to get stuck in, as always.

There may even be some football thrown in and Spurs have to be favourites to win.

For some reason I thought the Lions were in the Championship [2nd tier] but in fact they are, at the time of writing, in the League One [3rd tier] play-off spots.

Millwall's song:
"We're the best team in London,
No, the best team of all,
Everybody knows us, we've done **** all!

The Spur's Premiership 2016/17
Spurs scramble across winning line
In-form Kane nabs brace, plus Alli supergoal
March 05, 2017
Tottenham Hotspur 3
Everton 2
WHL, London N17
[Full time].

A surprise ending to a match that Spurs should have seen out without any undue drama erupted when Everton suddenly and dramatically came to life and ended up taking this game to the wire.

As Spurs seemed to be cruising towards a comfortable and largely untroubled two goal victory, Everton turned into a threat as Lukaku pulled one back with one his speciality drives that left Lloris flapping.

Suddenly Tottenham's easy home win was threatened, and even a superb Alli goal fed from a free-kick didn't take the pressure off for long as the visitors pulled back a second.

Finally the clock called time on Everton's unlikely revival but for a while this low-key stroll in the park was turned on its head with a raucous, nervy, and thoroughly exciting finale to a match that eventually lived up to and even exceeded expectations.

Harry Kane showed once again why he just got moved into the hallowed category of "best strikers in the world". Sometimes he makes it look so easy but he has an intuitive understanding of the exact place to be, based on the surrounding play, to pick up the ball, shoot, or tap it in. It really helps now that the supporting cast knows exactly how to set him up.

But equally important is that against opponents that like to play their own game, like Everton, the squad as a whole are really working and providing for each other. What they still lack is a way to cope with the teams that aggressively close them down and concentrate on how to stop Spurs gaining their rhythm. To get to the next level, they have to deal with the sides that go for the latter approach.

Pre-match: Ronald Koeman is a great example of why it's a thankless task to be a manager of a top flight club these days. After the Toffees' stuttering start to the season he got all sorts of grief from supporters not previously known for their impatience. Now that they're one of the most successful sides of the new year, and the realization is that he actually seems to know what he's doing, all on a limited budget, expectations have risen as the squad itself has proved to be one of the best emerging sides in the league.

The renaissance of the blue portion of Merseyside sets up a strong Sunday early morning fixture at White Hart Lane, where in theory at least, Everton's impressive 2017 start could come up against its first disappointment. Despite being unbeaten in nine Prem games, impressively demolishing Manchester City in January [also having beaten Arsenal in December], and putting six past Bournemouth at Goodison Park, they have recently been tending to draw away from home, which hints at a win for Spurs who are indisputably a cut above Boro, Stoke, and Hull, or for that matter Palace, whom Everton beat 0:1 away.

Spurs have missed Danny Rose but most of the other regulars should be back.

Meanwhile Everton have established a consistent line-up in their last couple of games and look set to to do the same here.

With both teams firing on all cylinders the signs are there for an interesting clash. Everton typically don't do wins against the Lilywhites, but they're becoming draw specialists away from home and although they won't park the bus, a point is probably what they're realistically eyeing for this visit to London.

BBC Football: "Tottenham could win nine consecutive home games in the Premier League for the first time." BBC computer prediction is 1:0 to the Tottenham.

Guardian: "Tottenham look unbeatable at White Hart Lane and the division's form side in Everton."

At the time of writing ten man Bournemouth have held Man Utd to a 1:1 draw [full time] at Old Trafford so the star signs are promising as the weekend's earliest result rolls in.

The Spur's FA Cup
Hat trick for Harry
High Rd shutters readied for Millwall visit
Feb 19, 2017 (Ssn 20016/17)
Fulham 0
Tottenham Hotspur 3
Craven Cottage
FS, Sling and others online

The draw for the Quarterfinals:
Chelsea v Manchester Utd
Middlesbrough v Manchester City
SPURS v Millwall
Arsenal v Lincoln

to be played March 10-13th

Reaction of the day: "I also think that Vorm's distribution puts us under less pressure. It was immaculate. No dallying, just crisp fast and precise passing when under pressure. That's Lloris's biggest fault." -- Dee Gee, Fighting Cock forum

Second half: Dele Alli the provider for the third goal, setting up Kane with a one-on-one with the keeper -- in today's form Harry doesn't miss. Hat trick.

What a way to bounce back after a tepid time for Tottenham recently. Fulham were generous in allowing the visitors to play their game, something denied by recent THFC opponents, namely Gent and Liverpool.

The dynamic duo combines again as Eriksen for the second time feeds Kane a great delivery for well taken goal number two.

First half: Quick Spurs throw-in from a fluffed FFC defensive pass leads to Christian Eriksen's nicely weighted cross to the face of the Hammersmith end goal and Kane just able to poke in the opener about 16 mins in, sparking the "Spurs are on their way to Wembley" anthem along with some vocal backing for Arsene Wenger to remain at the helm of Arsenal following their delightful capitulation in the Champions league a few days ago.

Pre-match: Fulham vs Spurs in the FA Cup. What a match-up. It conjures up images of Spurs playing at Craven Cottage. Of two teams who normally wear white shirts but with the away side obliged to wear an away strip. Meanwhile the Thames babbles its timeless song as geese frolic above the murky ripples.
All aboard the
special to the Cottage

BBC Football: "Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino believes Jan Vertonghen could be fit enough to return after missing six games with ankle ligament damage.

"Harry Kane suffered a minor knee injury in Thursday's defeat at Gent and is unlikely to be involved."

The 5th Round: THFC's psychological barrier BBC: "Tottenham have reached the fifth round for the second successive season. They last fared better in 2012 when they were beaten semi-finalists."

Sporting Life writer: "I was in awe of Tottenham's back-to-back Premier League wins over Chelsea and West Brom at the start of the year but those heady displays are becoming an increasingly distant memory following a series of less-than-stellar efforts."

Dried up
A Fulham win likely to add to Tottenham's woes? BBC: "It's far from unthinkable [with] a Fulham team firing in goals galore just as they've dried up for Spurs."

Fulham eye promotion challenge next season
Fulham appear to be having a good league season. Though miles behind the top two automatic promotion clubs they are, at the time of writing, six points shy of the lowest playoff spot held by Sheffield Wednesday. But they have the third best goal differential in the second division [the EFL Championship] behind only the two top teams.

Eighth in the table, the general view seems to be that the clubs below them don't pose any serious rivalry for playoff spots, but even if they do muscle into the top six it's hard to see the Cottagers beating superior playoff opponents. Interviewed prior to the Spurs Cup match on Sunday, their player, captain, former England senior player and ex-Spur Scott Parker says this season is all about building for next year's planned assault on promotion.

The Spur's Europa League
Gent in there
Gent leave Spurs mucho work to do
February 16, 2017, 10am Pacific (Ssn 2016/17)
Gent 1
Tottenham Hotspur 0
USA: live on tv and internet

This was about as welcome as a Stella lager with the all the fizz gone flat.

Spurs went Gent-ly into the night with people scratching their heads as to how this collection of talented young players can turn in two away performances so abjectly lacking anything resembling a supposedly top level side.

Poch has a huge reservoir of goodwill from supporters who have witnessed with impressed amazement what seemed to be a transformation in the club since his being manager, but suddenly it looks like it might have been a fluke.

Are the Emperor's clothes, so tattered from these away performances, unthreading as rapidly as Ivanka Trump's beleaguered fashion line?

We'll look into why things are starting to go wrong in the build-up to the Fulham cup game and Stoke City prem match.

Second half: Tottenham's mediocre modern day European record continues so far as they trail by a goal to nil. Will the introduction of Son Hueng-min spark some kind of cutting edge into another toothless away effort?

First half: Half time, nil nil. Spurs free of being ruthlessly closed down as they were at Liverpool, yet still unable to make much of an impression so far against a Gent side struggling in their Belgian league and missing some key players.

Disappointing so far from what should be the solid favourites THFC. Great away fan turnout with not much to crow about, while the Flemish fans provide plenty of chanting and in good mood - nothing to lose, all to gain attitude.

Gent apparently have leaked more goals in the Europa league that any other team left in the competition, yet Tottenham have made little impact on their goal with half an hour gone.

Still, for all the lameness, if it stays nil-nil the Londoners have the edge, but by no means guaranteed, for the second leg of this Round of 32.

Pre-match: Ladies, fish, and Gent-lemen, another glorious Europa day in which Spurs can keep the festivities of north London in full tilt, with the celebrations of Woolwich Arsenal's whimpering elimination, in effect, from the champion's league last night.

It needs to be better than the tactical fiasco at Liverpool that had untold millions questioning the very meaning of existence. "Tottenham were rubbish," was the nicest thing any commentator had said on that awful day last weekend.

It's actually a great chance to show we're not already into our "end of the season slump" way too early in the calendar.

League Match 2016-2017
Spurs have Mane Mane problems
THFC's attempted pressing game ripped apart, played into Klopp's hands
February 11, 2017 (Ssn 20016/17)
Liverpool 2
Tottenham H. 0
Anfield, Liverpool. 9.30am US Pacific time.
USA: Live online & TV

That was the most abject load of rubbish I've ever had to endure watching a football game in a long long time. I can never get that 75 minutes back [started watching later in the 1st half]. Though it cost me nothing to watch, I felt the price was far too high. The price to my psyche. To my sense of the cosmos. To my belief that humans are, essentially, er, whatever.

If I ever have to watch Hugo effing Lloris roll the ball out to a nearby Spurs player who has already been closed down before the ball even reaches him, and either loses the ball or it goes into touch for an opposition throw, or we get dangerously bogged down in front of our own goal, it could be the end of my mental stability.

I could have been playing glorious tennis instead on a rare sunny day between endless rainstorms that are doing little to end the Californian drought but are creating a mass epidemic of cabin fever in the promised land.

Did I mention that that tedious excuse of an event was a truly abysmal Spurs performance and a diabolically horrendous game of football?

Liverpool know we are obsessed with passing out from the back and that we cannot cope with being aggressively closed down. As a result we had no discernible supply line and consequently we created almost nothing. We never got going, and we never tried anything different when it was obvious we were in deep trouble and rendered impotent. For Spurs it was a non-event.

Our pressing game is too easy to unlock and the shirts in white appeared to be getting swept away by a much better organized red tide. It was embarrassing.

Klopp must have been surprised by how easily we played into his hands. Usually the other managers figure him out, but we gave him our pride on a silver platter.

Pre-match: Spurs fan on the Liverpool forum: "Despite your dodgy form of late, I can't say I'm looking forward to this one at all. We've really struggled against you in our recent matchups - home and away. Bizarrely we usually came off quite well when Redknapp was in charge!" Liverpool response: "That is indeed bizarre."

Liverpool beat Spurs at Anfield earlier this season in the League Cup and it seemed a fairly easy encounter for the home side.

But Poch is a priorities man who knows the score and he will be taking the Prem a lot more seriously than the far lesser of the two domestic knockout competitions, so that loss doesn't really tell us much.

In that cup game it was, more or less, a Spurs 2nd XI who didn't have the guile or the wherewithal to make any real dent in Liverpool's shape and intention.

This match should prove vastly more entertaining because both clubs know this is a Prem with big implications.

Spurs may be too far behind CFC to win the title but a stunning second place finish would be simply phenomenal for the club, whilst the jittery hosts simply need to start succeeding again, especially at home, as they battle to get back into the coveted top four, with both their own fans and resurgent Manchester United suddenly breathing down their necks.

With six clubs looking for those four CL places, much of the media has Arsenal and 'Pool to be the two likeliest casualties.

We know that both clubs are inconsistent. Candidly, Chelsea are the only side in the league that are predictably successful, their visit to White Hart Lane excepted.

Surprisingly perhaps, with their shaky record since the new year, only a few points separate us from the lower placed Reds. We're somewhat better on paper. If I had to guess the outcome I'd say with home advantage for them, but us in better form, a draw looks most likely.

The Spur's Premiership
Spurs need penalty to bust Boro
Harry's hot spot kick the difference
Feb 04, 2017 [Season 2016/17]
Tottenham Hotspur 1
Middlesbrough 0
Various online
by Rob Francis

Saw this match on the road and a rare chance to watch an actual giant screen TV instead of my usual laptop.

It wasn't much to write home about. Boro's astute, defiant even, defence was impenetrable by any means of open play so the penalty was, ultimately, the deserved outcome of almost constant pressure, with Victor Wanyama the architect of much of what was going on, that would likely goad the visitors into making that one rash move to prize open their goal via the punitive legal route. That happened in the 58th minute when Son Heung-min, whose pace and hi-energy runs plagued the resilient but dour north-eastern side's defensive shell, was unceremoniously upended about 13 minutes into the second half.

Kane was clinical with the penalty kick and the celebration at the Lane was more about dispelling the anxious atmosphere than unbridled jubilation.

Sometimes it just has to be about grinding out the result, what every team has to do to win a place at the top, or more realistically for THFC, the the three coveted succeeding places.

But it's back to the European theatre soon, something some of our rivals for Top 4 don't have to contend with.

Meanwhile Chelsea go marching on, but by beating Arsenal on a day when Liverpool also lost, it's once again a weekend where results elsewhere helped Spurs dream the wild dream. Can it happen: finishing second and above Arsenal, instead of scraping 4th and allowing the gooners to gloat? Still a long way to go, but this is another step on an upbeat weekend.

Let's enjoy it while we can -- 'coz away to Liverpool in the next league match is never easy, even with Klopp's army floundering currently.

Pre-match: Christian Eriksen says Spurs looking for a strong season finish. BBC Football reminds us Rose and Vertonghen still injured.
It is about us.
Mauricio Pochettino, THFC manager

Spurs are in form but the away draw against bottom of the table Sunderland was perceived as a disappointment.

It's a weird feeling that we are talked about as the team challenging Chelsea for the title. In reality, Chelsea are nailed on to win it, and for us to finish #2 would be welcome with open arms. But the media has to make it seem the Prem title is still up for grabs since, of course, a one-horse race is not good for business [Russian oligarchs excepted].

We've apparently beaten Boro in the last two league meetings with them, but they have a good record of minimizing goals conceded away from home, and it's probably going to be one of those park the bus days where the visitors hope to nab one on the break.

Middlesbrough have drawn three of their last six league games, losing the balance.

The Spur's Premiership
Sunderland 0 Spurs 0
Arsenal lose, LFC 1 CFC1
January 31, 2017 (Ssn 2016/17)
Sunderland 0
Tottenham Hotspur 0
More reactions to follow

The away draw means most of the talk is about the other clubs' matches and at least we got a point more than Arsenal managed, losing 1:2 at home to Watford, allowing THFC to swap positions and jump into the number two position behind Chelsea.

The shared points at Anfield meant only two point dished out between Liverpool and Chelsea so not too bad from a Lilywhites perspective.

FA Cup:

Amazing comeback from Spurs 4:3 over Wycombe

Sunderland fan's view from salut sunderland: "Our best chances came in the first half. In the second half Spurs turned the screw a bit more and made it difficult. We wanted to win, but we also had to make sure that we didnŐt lose, so it becomes a fine balance."

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