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Spurs 2-1 Arsenal: Doing What Favourites Should Do

If the sign of a good team is winning when not playing the most coruscating stuff then I suppose our lot are trundling towards half-decent, and the Top Four goodies contained therein. Although things picked up in the second half, today we were certainly not at our Give-Scousers-The-Run-Around-And-Score-Goals-For-Fun best. Nor, I suppose, we were playing the toughest opponents around. Still, a handy three points, and the ongoing transition of General North London Eminence continues, now seemingly irresistibly.Where we pressed high up the pitch at Liverpool and tore them apart with multiple instances of football’ greatest shape – the humble triangle – today the drill seemed to be to sit back and contain their three man-midfield. Consequently, and a tad frustratingly, in the first half the other lot had most of the possession – although sportingly enough they did step aside and grant us the best chances. As the deep-lying member of their midfield triumvirate Arteta had the freedom of the Lane when in possession, while for our lot Modders was most decidedly below par in the first half.

The Great VDV Debate

VDV got the nod, but how many future nods will be directed his way – particularly within a 4-4-2 – remains a point of debate. As seasoned Corluka observers will no doubt testify, there is something a little incongruous about a top-level professional athlete waddling furiously hither and thither in what often looks like slow-motion, and at times we looked to have ten and a half men.

The flip side of the VDV argument is that few have the technique to finish as he did. Craftily side-stepping the issue of whether armpit equates to handball, the finish was a darned difficult skill made to look simple, an area in which VDV is quite the connoisseur.

As it happened, the replacement of VDV with Sandro – a move for which my little party of fellow onlookers were creating a petition by half-time – swung matters in our favour, the Brazilian doing a better impression of Scott Parker than Scott Parker himself. Things tightened up, we created more chances, and by the end of the game Ledley and Kaboul were repelling attacks simply by directing stern stares in the direction of their feeble foes. Thus does the balance of power swing up the High Road.

“Walker Makes Great Strides” And Other Predictable Word-Play

Young Walker’s Danny Rose moment would no doubt have had tabloid-writers across the country licking their lips. While blowing kisses at his chums in the stands, Walker generously opted not to make rude gestures at AANP, for around this part of the interweb aspersions have been cast on the young blighter’s defensive prowess (or perceived lack thereof). Today however I come to praise the lad, not bury him, and even as I write some bespectacled veteran of such occasions is carefully etching the chap’s name into Tottenham folklore. Although the occasional error of judgement does slip into his defensive game, these things will happen (recall ye, if you can, a young Ledley erring rather seismically in the 2002 Worthington Final), and ought to aid the learning process. One suspects Walker will make that particular right-hand strip of lilywhite turf his own for a few years to come. Good lad.

The Advance of the King

That said, the AANP Moment of Choice from today’s proceedings was the sight of Ledley ambling forward in almost reluctant fashion in the closing stages, to become, somewhat bafflingly, an auxiliary striker. One could almost hear the creaking of his bones, but mercifully the international break gives him plenty of time to do whatever he does while everyone else is training.

All things considered, a jolly satisfactory afternoon’s work. Things may not have begun quite as we planned, but by the end of proceedings we were solid in defence and chance-laden in offence, the stuff upon which all sort of wholesome end-of-season goodness is built. With a two-week break upon us, and this particular scalp swinging merrily from the mantelpiece, it seems that the most appropriate thing for all of us to do right now would be go forth and brag.

9 Responses

  1. Sam-I-Am Says:

    And brag we shall, heh, heh, heh.

    Btw, I can see why Real Madrid sold us VDV for 8 Mil and a box of Aspirins.

  2. WHLBoy Says:

    I thought we just about edged this game, looking a lot structured with Sandro in the middle. I must admit I was a little nervous as we have been known to slip up against a team in the bottom 6.

  3. SiberiaSpur Says:

    How can Sandro and Parker not be the first 2 names on the team sheet every week? Bloody marvelous. I actually thought Defoe had a decent game too – held the ball up and could have bagged a couple.

  4. choc Says:

    Games against the goons at present will be odd because they keep the ball but they don’t actually threaten our goal much with it.

    So we don’t get the time on the ball to play. But most important is three points in the bag. We were favourites and we delivered. A professional performance against a good side.

    VDV got a goal with good technique but didn’t close down the cross for their goal and Walker seemed quite exposed at times on the right. Nobody can doubt Walker’s attacking abilities and he did well today. Starting to think that the current position of Rafa is either partnering Ade or on the bench especially as Lennon will be fit by our next game.

  5. Ashley Collie Says:

    Great Blog, AANP! We so miss the days of Jenas’ box to box slalom, then trip over and fall. . .NOT!

  6. Steve Says:

    Nothing of note to add to what has already been said so I’ll just say YIDS!!!

  7. JimmyG2 Says:

    Having cracked the code to enable me to post on here, what are you some form of secret society, I would like to say that for a team that missed out on everything last year because it couldn’t put the ball into the net some of us are seriously undervaluing the ability of Van Der Vaart to score goals nomatter how unfit he may be or in what nominal position he is on the team sheet and that as they once said of Hoddle it’s not the good players that are the problem, where’s that full stop key, Davspurs eat your heart out.Aaah!

  8. elwehbi Says:

    I could get used to younger Spurs sinking Arsenal in the NLD (a la Walker and Rose).

    COYS!

  9. College Sports Says:

    Being an arsenal fan, I find this change in the sport troubling.

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