Leicester 2 Spurs 1 (28/11)
Watford 1 Spurs 1 (02/12)
Spurs 3 Apoel 0 (CL) (06/12)
In his press conference before today’s Stoke game, Pochettino is reported to have insisted that Spurs must learn their lessons from last Summer’s transfer window.
“insists” is a cheap journalistic trick that has emerged over the last 20 years. It immediately implies that there’s an argument against what the person’s saying. Somebody only has to ‘insist’ if they keep on having to repeat their point. So the question is why would Pocchettino have to ‘insist’ that Spurs learn from experience? I mean, who’d actually argue, ‘no, we must totally ignore experience?’ The implied answer, of course, is Daniel Levy. So Matt Law in today’s Daily Telegraph, for example, is already laying the foundations of a manager v chairman conflict over Spurs’ future transfers. It ties in nicely with the narrative of our wage policy saga, an expensive new stadium to be paid for, Rose, Toby, Dier, Alli and Kane all ‘leaving’, and possibly Poch going as well. So millions of future clicks and newspapers to be sold. With Spurs angst as an added bonus.
Meanwhile, six weeks have passed following the release of Pochettino’s book (“Brave New World” see Post 40) in late October. It was published during the week after Spurs had caned Liverpool 4-1 and were lying 3rd in the table with a 6-2-1 record.
The wheels have fallen off horribly since. In the subsequent six matches Spurs are 1-2-3, having lost to Man United, Arsenal and Leicester, drawn with West Brom and Watford, and beaten only Crystal Palace (luckily).
Our PL form has been a complete contrast to the Champions League where Real Madrid, Dortmund and Apoel have all been put to the sword.
So, the question is, where did it all go wrong? Or rather, what’s happened to our domestic campaign? In such a short period we’ve fallen from being potential title challengers again (to the Manchester clubs), into a dogfight for Top Four with all the usual suspects. After 15 games we have a 7-4-4 record and lie 6th in the table with 25 points. Our title challenge is over. We’re more likely to win the CL than the PL.
This has all coincided with a hugely busy period in my own ‘real life’. Perhaps my own distractions are somehow symptomatic of what’s happened to our team. We can rouse ourselves for some games but mostly everything feels like hard work right now. Our total focus of the past two seasons isn’t there. Nor is the enjoyment. Too many people know Spurs have reached a critical moment. Do we consolidate our place at the top table? Or do we slip back down to being an also-ran, as far as the title’s concerned?
The truth is that it’s also harder to write up my thoughts after a loss. Or even a draw. It’s easier to stay away from the internet for a while, from newspapers and Talksport as well. To focus on my family and business life. But the one place I do always visit to reflect on life as a Spurs fan is ‘Dear Mr. Levy’, by far the best Spurs blog I know of.
It has never been my intention to compete with other Blogs. I don’t seek readers yet and certainly not the arguments that follow in the likes of DML’s comments sections. For now, my Blog is simply for me to look back on (and anybody, including my kids, who stumbles upon it and wants to join me). I’ll look back on this Nov-Dec 2017 period and know that I was distracted. And so was my club.
But anybody who wants a more reflective analysis of where we are right now and what went wrong, I insist you go to ‘Dear Mr. Levy’ and read his triple post entitled “Do You Even Spurs Bro” (Parts I to III all posted on 4th December 2017). I will write up my own thoughts when I have time and also my review of ‘Brave New World’.
But go to this link now. I insist.
See Post 49 for Spurs v Stoke