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Spurs 0-2 Portsmouth: Unlucky? Or Actually Pretty Woeful?

Well we had better get cracking with the inquest then. The slew of instant reactions I have overheard in the couple of hours since meltdown have included “Sack Harry”; “Sell Crouch”; “Recall Keane”; and even “Get Jenas back in the team”. Okay, I made up that last one, but some of the opinions ventured do seem possibly to have been delivered a tad hastily. Over at AANP Towers the mood is bizarrely philosophical – indeed, the primary question being ruminated upon around these parts is whether we lost because we were unlucky or generally quite bobbins.Luck (Or Lack Thereof)

Might as well fly through these first, for administrative purposes:

Disallowed Goal – If there was a push on David James it was by his own defender (Rocha). Well might the goalkeeper have grinned afterwards, the offensively-attired rotter.

Penalty – Sergeant Wilson got the ball, dagnabbit.

First Pompey Goal – Curses upon the Wembley groundstaff, Michael Dawson’s stud manufacturers and the Gods of Soil and Turf.

And as an added bonus, ITV’s wonky-nosed analyst Andy Townsend later highlighted that the free-kick which led to the first goal was given against Dawson for the gentlest caress on the back of a Pompey forward.

On top of these there were spells when we laid siege to the Pompey net, racked up a blinking great big stack of corners, had efforts cleared off the line and saw several of our better chances fall to Corluka – a likeable enough trooper, but not one to whom the epithet “predatory finisher” is normally applied.

Nope, not much luck around these parts.

But Not Exactly Vintage Spurs Either… 

Our play would have benefited enormously from taking the lead and thereby finding some space behind Pompey, but it was not to be, and instead every foray into the Portsmouth penalty area was welcomed by a good half-dozen defenders. They came out elbows flying, and duly defended for their lives throughout. (Whatever happened to the real Ricardo Rocha is anyone’s guess, but his doppelganger, barely recognisable from the blighter who once wore lilywhite, put in a near-faultless shift). By sitting deep our conquerors denied us the space to get beyond them, and our passing game never really materialised.

They may have made it difficult for us, but a general lack of invention, coupled with the determination of our lot to avoid one-touch football, did not help the cause, and it seemed we might have played all ruddy night and not scored. Perhaps, then, this one will be filed in the AANP the folder entitled “Simultaneously Unlucky And Actually Pretty Woeful” (next to the 2001 Carling Cup Final defeat to Blackburn).

A Couple of Points of Note Regarding Personnel

“FA Cup Semi-Final” can be added to the ever-growing number of key games in which Hudd has failed to impose himself. He might not have been match-fit, and he did pick a couple of decent passes – and one delicious, controlled shot – but boss the affair he most certainly did not.

Inevitably then, we looked out left for inspiration. The threat of Bale was largely countered by Portsmouth’s deep-lying approach, but while perhaps not as effective as in previous weeks he still seemed our most creative outlet. The hour of Lennon’s return approacheth, which if nothing else will give Bale a chance to catch his breath between gallops.

Poor old Sergeant Wilson is pretty much exonerated from blame. Understandably enough he played throughout like a man already on one yellow card, and while this denied us the sight of any bone-crunching challenges he still bustled around pretty effectively (and energetically too, in a game in which I do declare I saw a Pompey player cramp up as early as the first half). It seemed pretty cruel that after all that effort he was then unjustly booked and we lost anyway. The guy must have been pure evil in his previous life, because karma seems to have it in for him.

‘Arry’s Input 

The replacement by Krancjar of Bentley also prompted a raised eyebrow at AANP Towers. He may not have been setting the world alight, but Bentley was whipping in the occasional cross from the right, which seemed a reasonable tactic with Crouch and Pav ambling around ahead. Instead, he exited stage left, while Hudd continued to crawl around in the centre.

11th April 2010: A Pretty Rubbish Day 

If the players mope around feeling sorry for themselves like we fans are doing the Premiership push will also be up in smoke this time next week. The evidence of today suggests that over the remainder of the season we will once again choke – but how nice would it be to see our lot pick themselves up and go hell for leather for fourth spot over the next few weeks?

 

Gary Mabbutt will be signing copies of AANP book Spurs’ Cult Heroes for the masses on the following dates:
Waterstones Stevenage – Saturday 24 April, 12 noon;
Waterstones Walthamstow – Saturday 8 May, 1pm

, is now available in the Spurs shop, all good bookshops and online (at Tottenhamhotspur.com, as well as WHSmith, Amazon , Tesco, Waterstones and Play).  

Spurs’ Cult Heroes

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19 Responses

  1. IOANX Says:

    We all know that only the players participate in the game and therefore only they can win or lose a game. It doesn’t matter what the coach, the president or the supporters want. Only the players are on the field and only they can determine to the greatest extend the result. If a team has players who are cowards, don’t have guts, their intelligence level is below average, they are slow, they are physically weak, they are mentally weak, they don’t fight for the ball and they don’t do their utmost to win every single personal battle and personally don’t care that much if their team wins but they care more about their personal affairs inside and outside the field, then this team has very few chances to win important and/or most of its games. This is a football and natural rule and law. I don’t understand why the president and the members of the board buy and pay high salaries to such players regardless their performance and the degree they possess the 4 main qualities of a top player: winner’s mentality, intelligence, physical/mental strength, technique. I watch Spurs for 45 years. It is obvious that their misery last decades comes from the fact that they miss the person(s) who will give them the right advice on which players they should buy.

  2. Jon Says:

    No excuses. The ref was poor all game, but we both had to deal with that, and yes, Dawson was unlucky with his slip but all said and done we simply were not good enough.
    Had 99% possession and over 30 odd shots yet it is Gomes who had to make two big saves.
    No urgency, no desire and hardly any creativity. It seems we just think,. hey lets give it Bale! Fantastic player he is though…shame he won’t be at Tottenham much longer given the way he plays.

    Season finished after the Wilson booking. Hudd isn’t fit and an extra 30 mins is just what we needed with the scum coming up fresh and ready to react from their Barca drubbing.

    Sad day to be a Spurs fan. Realisation that we have just blown our best chance for a good 5-10 yuears of getting champs League Football or into an FA Cup Final.
    Ah well, at least we saved bottling the big occassion until April this term. It actually gave us fans something to cheer about for a large percentage of the season. Unfortunately it being Tottenham, we can always be relied upon to bottle it and choke at some point.

  3. SPURSSINCE82 Says:

    Sorry to be so predictably cynical ,but today really did nail my coffin. Harry Rednapp
    bottled it ….so the team only followed suite. So i have to disagree on that one,the
    team can and only do play one way with crouch up top. he has no touch ,no pace
    no movement and as u said his heading is (a joke). Rednapp knew precisely how
    the team suffers starting Giraffe man he stiffles play and just about anything else
    traditional to us ,yet he starts over a mustard gudjonssen and in form Pav. He has
    done as much as his little old stubborn personality will allow him thus us. Job done
    Harry …..Adios !!!!!!!!

  4. dorian Says:

    The players just haven’t performed today, Harry will get another season unless his court case interferes with things. The only criticism I have for Harry is not giving pace a chance, in either Parret or Rose as a last resort instead of bringing on Eidur.

  5. rafi Says:

    Yes the gunners were drubbed – but by the most complete footballing side on the planet. In contrast your spurs could easily have been DRUBBED 4-0 had piquionne been less kind and this by a team relegated with two months of the season to go!

  6. Jamie Says:

    I cant help but cringe everytime I see Peter Crouch in a Spurs shirt, has there ever been a more embarrassing and cumbersome player than him to play for my beloved Spurs.

  7. DAVspurs Says:

    We got beat by a team on death row with the nation pleading for them to beat Spurs and carry on the dream . Don’t forget the ref who gave a penalty against Dawson in the 6 min of four at our place something no ref would have done at old Trafford . He must have it in for Dawson he gave the free kick that led to Dawson slipping. He was put there to help Pompy get there wish and we where the fall guys to save the premiership from the blame for allowing a conman to buy them . All we have heard Pompys tales , Dindane can play we got it wrong said the Administrator then the FA said you can have the prize money then most of the players cant play in the final and lastly Rocha last of the Moekans played like Ferdinand and Vidic Finnan Brown girl in the ring muggins pretty in pink James all inspired to play like Davspurs said they would and after watching the game for 30 mins i never watched and still wont another min and please dont blame Hudds injured or not this year i have told you is full of players snapping at your heals and not allowing you a second on the ball and if they foul you so what its only Yellow. The first few mins where the clogging mins where Whiley allowed players to whip the injured returning players legs from under them without a yellow in sight no lads this is one game we where not going to win and there is more to come because City loads of money are scoring for fun ad thats Magic as well. It seems no money and plenty of money has ruined our season in one week and broken all our hearts and all my warnings have just made me the laughing stock and that to is sad because the cheats have and will carry on winning .Keep strong lads and lets Hope we don’t lose our stars to greedy City

  8. SPURSSINCE82 Says:

    Lol@Jamie….the answer is a resounding NO !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! David B ,aint far off either for
    me. Hot mutha f**** Air , been to three games only this season and this guy isnt
    serious in any shape or form. Though agreed he acts alot more like a player then
    old Petty !!!

  9. ParkLane67 Says:

    Look at the Stats on Sky Sports. This was just not our day. Ref Wiley didn’t help, and clearly the whole Country barring Spurs fans were willing Pompey to do it. I’ll bet any money that Uri Geller tries to take the credit for Daws falling over at the critical moment. Anyway, I for one am over it and looking forward to doing the Goons on Wednesday. COYS

  10. Maxi Says:

    Pompey deserve it, more heart than money can buy hope they win the final. Now we dnt get r day out that i was so lookin 4ward to bt keep the faith coys

  11. dean Says:

    What a load of crap. Singling out Modders as sluggish and in the next few paragraphs saying that Bentley wasn,t to bad. You must have watched a different game. Bentley was pathetic. Like a headless chicken! Jinking in and out and always choosing the exact wrong option. Crouch was absolute crap. All assholes and elbows. Hud, what a lazy, nonchelant performance. Never looked like he cared one way or the other. Dawson looked generally confused. Bassong was wearing lead boots. On the other hand Charlie played well along with Wilson and Modders. At least they looked like they cared!

  12. dean Says:

    Bale put in a shift also!

  13. abe Says:

    Another one of those days – yet again. I am devastated. My feelings are similar to the ones in this blog. We were a unlucky but the performance was not great. we were not poor or woeful. The stats in terms of shots, possession, corners etc showed we were not poor. This game showed that Spurs do lack those “special” attributes viz Leadership, Extra Creativity (aka plan b), and BMT. We have a decent set players but in games like these you need certain kinds of players to stand up and be counted. Chelsea have the likes of Lampard and Drogba. The ol United Side had the likes of Keane and Cantona, who best represent what I am talking about. This Spurs team lacks those kind of players. To some degree Keane provided some of this before he left for Liverpool and Berba (when in the mood) had that extra creativity. Even City have Tevez and you can see the difference he is making to them at this crunch time. I would think a Tevez in our side yesterday would have helped us win. I must admit I am down, and I am not sure if I can see this Spurs side can rise. I hope I am wrong.

  14. Paul Robinson Says:

    I’m just f…..ng exhausted. Decades of having my balls busted by one lukewarm performance after another. I hope the rumours about the Barcelona guy are true. We need to spend the next 7 years developing our own players instead of paying over the odds money for ones who are then shipped out and return to haunt us. Whatever you say about Redknapp he has just not learned the art of beating teams who play deep – and it has cost us very dearly

  15. Trevor Tanner Says:

    Harry Redknapp do me a favour, when you eventually get the sack from Spurs can you make sure you take that Dangly Waste of Space called Peter Crouch with you.

  16. siberiaspur Says:

    You would think that after the 473rd corner we might have perhaps figured out that lobbing them in wasn’t working. Try a short one to Bale or Modders for God’s sake!

  17. elwehbi@ibleedhotspur Says:

    An unfortunate loss, however, credit to Pompey for digging deep and putting in a hard shift. I’ll go sulk now.

  18. julie Says:

    james shirt enough to frighten any ball

  19. Goblin Says:

    It was all because of O’hara… he cursed us! the bastard… don’t want to see him at White Hart Lane next season.

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