Posts Tagged ‘Manchester United’

The ugly head which belongs to history rears itself

August 23, 2011

History. Never been on our side at Old Trafford and unfortunately for us, that wouldn’t change this evening.

To everyone’s surprise, Friedel was asked to start. And thank goodness for that. We could have been down 5-nil had it not been for his experience between the sticks. Prior to the match, I was actually hoping that Harry would field the same unit which netted five goals at Hearts. Shows you how much I know about football, I’m not afraid to admit that.

It’s easy to play behind-the-tv manager, but the reality is none of us would have picked a winning squad against Sir Red Nose’s Red Devils. That single season game under their belt proved to be crucial. Throw in organisation, confidence and skill and that’s the winning combo right there.

There’s also the fact that these are the champions of the Premier League and not Heart of  Midlothian. The way we won in Scotland was wonderful, regardless of the lack of quality our opponents brought to the table. If anything, we tend to gag in front of those types of teams (remember Young Boys?). Most importantly, we didn’t. But as I was saying, this is United, a team which whether we like to admit or not, we are miles apart at this point in time. They clearly showed why they hold the title.

To be perfectly honest, I always thought that we would be faced with a major problem at the back. I’m going to say something and I hope many of you will be understanding. I don’t think Dawson will be capable of commanding the team. Players are doing what they like up front and I don’t see how he would have influenced the game whatsoever. Or many of our last matches as a matter of fact. Am I wrong to think so?

Oh well, a 3-nil result against an extremely young United side is what we’ll have to deal with as a start to our 2011/2012 campaign. Raise those heads boys and feel free to lash out on Hearts when they come to the Lane.

One request: no hangover when we face City.

Behind enemy lines

October 31, 2010

Oh if they only knew. A fellow Spurs supporter and I were in the midst of Manchester United fans, lurking with nothing but fake smiles, unmeant “cheers” and unnecessary laughter. Little did they know that we were cursing their very existence under our breath.

It was my first visit to Old Trafford. From the outside, I was a bit disappointed in that it wasn’t the historic looking venue I had imagined. First misconeption “busted”. It’s a squeeky clean ground with proper facilities, wisely divided seating sections where at the 45-minute whistle you have enough time to grab a drink, have a bite, use the bathroom and return to your seat (something I have never mastered at the Lane).

The second misconception – “BUSTED” with capitals B, U, S, T, E, D – is the fact that United fans aren’t as intense as I first thought. Our 21-year submissive opponents proved yesterday that their chanting isn’t even up to par with Macclesfield Town’s 6,300 home support. For a stadium that can hold up to 76,000 (approx.) individuals, it’s quite wishy-washy at best. 

Third thing proven is that there’s something really hypnotizing about Old Trafford for match officials, almost like deer caught in headlights. They just can’t go through a full match without tossing a controversial call into the mix… in United’s favor of course.

Having said that, I wasn’t expecting to go there and pick up a win having predicted a 3-1 loss. We actually came off quite solid yesterday, but once again failing to score (should have known better). Had VDV nailed that screaming “no-look” attempt which hit the post, it would have been a different match altogether. Once again, a set-piece in a similar area got the best of us; note to defenders: don’t do it again please. Down 1-0 but we never looked out of it. The score really doesn’t do us any justice.

Some thoughts on my mind (in bullet points, getting a bit lazy as I’m typing):

  1. Where the hell is Niko Kranjcar? Has there been some sort of a falling out between our Croatian “looker” and Harry?
  2. Why did Keane start exactly? You could tell we were in desperate need of Crouch in the center. Any balls crossed from the wings were mostly placed low and easy for the Man Poo defenders to clear.
  3. VDV hurt?
  4. Mark Clattenburg blind?
  5. United fans, lame?

I’ll answer the last two with a mighty quick “yes”.

Well, well, well… aren’t we special?

August 19, 2010

Tottenham may be facing a bit of stick in the real world, but in the digital world, we’re part of the elite. Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 (PES) has officially announced that since the Premier League only allows them to pick and choose two teams to include in the gaming phenomenon, this year they decided that it would be Spurs and Man United. Not too shabby being picked over the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool and the Arse.

Konami, the makers of PES, are probably having nightmares at the thought of what could be if Spurs don’t make it past the Champions League qualifier round.

[Source: Videogamer]

The Chelsea domination post

April 18, 2010

The Chelsea domination post. I wanted to write it last night. Instead, one image summed up my zany thoughts for the evening.

After last night’s superior performance, who can dare claim that Spurs are not 4th place contenders? Tottenham have thrown the league into crazed shambles. The throne is up for grabs with Chelsea and United now left to fight for their lives. On top of that, Wenger has admitted that it will be extremely difficult for the Arse to have a shot at claiming the championship. All thanks to our beloved Spurs.

Harry and his staff are to be applauded for this past week’s achievements. The unit was so tight last night that any attempt by Chelsea at goal was met with a lilywhite body. All of my qualms with Modric playing in the midfield next to Hudd or Palacios are quickly fading. He seems to be gaining confidence in this role, whether it be defence or offence… to the point that I feel terrible for ever doubting him in the first place.

Gomes once again put in a stellar shift. RELIABLE. ROCK SOLID. Two very similar goals were conceded in as many matches, but they were due to pure flakiness on our part. The successive scores of 2-1 do not realistically depict the spanking Spurs awarded their opponents. S&M bondage style.

So many players and endless moments from last night to praise. Chelsea were left to ponder “what could have been”, leaving the Lane with their captain red-carded and their egos deflated. What more could any supporter ask for?

United worry me since we have to play them next week when they are clearly challenging for the title, but I’m not being negative here. Expecting to take full points from our Arse and Chelsea fixtures was a long shot to begin with. But we did it with such pizzaz, oozing confidence and class. United will be a different fight altogether. We need the rest but I’m left wondering if our intensity levels will drop off. Who knows anymore!

For such a dazzling day at the office, this post is extremely short. There isn’t much for me to say other than the whole squad was brilliant last night. Even Crouch. We’re back in 4th and the fat lady is singing in full harmony.


Poo Poo

December 2, 2009

Not much to say folks. Spurs started off with the right attitude, holding the ball well and playing with some zip right from the start. We started with more of our first team players than Man Poo, so I was expecting Tottenham to be consistent throughout the match. Gibson took his first goal well and I still believed we could get back into it. Then Gibson took his second and my world caved in.

The biggest disappointments for me were Palacios and Bassong. They just didn’t seem to have their heads in the match from the start. Palacios was subbed at the half for Jenas and it changed everything. Hope reared its ugly head again only to leave me disappointed… again.

Let’s face the facts, they beat us fair and square with practically their youth team which is quite respectable. It’s not the end of the world: Spurs are still in the FA Cup, still sitting pretty in 3rd and Berbatov is a flop so far.

I’m still all smiles.

Poo on our parade

September 13, 2009

It was bound to happen people. We all knew that the top 4 teams would eventually grasp the fact they have dominated those spots for a reason. And they showed us exactly why yesterday. Man of the Match should have been Evra… Lennon was invisible and I could have sworn I only saw him cut in maybe twice.

Defoe gave us the premature (1st minute) early lead with a lovely bicycle kick. 3 points for sure? Not quite. You could feel that they would eventually score a goal and come back but I felt we could have kept them at a draw. Rooney was a menace and his last goal was class. BAE and Hutton looked completely lost on that play.

We didn’t take advantage of them being a man down. PERIOD. But I place the blame for this loss is on Redknapp.

  1. Why stick with Keane on the left? It was blatantly clear 20 minutes into it that it wasn’t working.
  2. Gio not even on the bench? Why? We could have used him instead of Keane and I think he would have been more effective.
  3. Kranjcar was not prepared for a match debut; especially vs Man U. He’s rarely had time to train with the squad.
  4. Lennon should have moved to the left… you could have brought Bentley on and his sole focus would have been to place some quality long balls at Crouch’s head. That also would have brought Evra out of the box, adding some opportunity to our 10-man advantage.
  5. PAV! Are you kidding me Harry? He should have come on and that’s that.
  6. Did anyone realize that Man U were better with Berbatov off the pitch? That was nice to see!

Disappointed? We shouldn’t be. Losing to United is nothing new people… they are a world class team whether we like to admit it or not. This just proves that Spurs need to work that much harder to break the top 4 in the future. Harry needs to take whatever positives from this match and build on them. It’s still a long road till the end of the season and games like this should not deliver the knock out blow. We need to hold our heads high because another monstrous test awaits us next week at Chelsea. Harry needs to work hard on his substitution tactics. It was a valid concern last season, and it seems it might still be one this season.


Starting XI vs Man Poo?

September 12, 2009

Not much longer till we finally kick off so going to keep this short and sweet. I’m guessing our starting squad will looks something like this:

  • Gomes – back from a long injury but I believe Harry will play him
  • BAE – missed him
  • King – would be great to have him back
  • Bassong – looks solid when paired with Ledley
  • Corluka – got to sit out during England’s thrashing of Croatia… well rested
  • Lennon – Azza to destroy Evra hopefully
  • Hudd – can’t bench him now, even if Jenas is healthy
  • Palacios – key component in stopping them from coming up the middle
  • Keane – would prefer Gio in this position, but our captain will not sit out a match against Man U
  • Crouch – this is where he justifies his price
  • Defoe – on fire and should continue his form; he loves big games

Any thoughts?

What do we do with Keane?

August 13, 2009

Robbie Keane left Tottenham in the summer of 2008 to join his “boyhood dream” club, Liverpool. At the same time, we were engaged in a war with Manchester United for the transfer of Dimitar Berbatov, which we knew was going to happen sooner or later.

But the Keane move hurt much more… it hurt so bad that it left a scar. It’s partly the reason why I started bleeding in the first place. It wasn’t just me either. Spurs forums and blogs were erupting with disbelief and anger; HOW COULD HE LEAVE US? In my heart, I always thought Robbie would remain a Spur until his retirement. But he happily left for Liverpool and there was no turning back… so we thought.

On the 1st of November in 2008, Keane and Liverpool paid a visit to White Hart Lane. It was a fierce match that saw our side persevere and take it to Liverpool coming out on top 2-1, thanks to a thrilling goal by our new signing, Roman Pavyluchenko. But I wasn’t happy because of the score – OK, I was ecstatic! I was really happy because Keane looked out of place, eventually being subbed in the 66th minute. Revenge was on my agenda. The thought of “I hope it hurts you like you hurt us” consumed my head at the time.

From then on, our savior Harry Redknapp did a fine job of turning our season around but we were still clawing our way out of the relegation zone. In December, Spurs lost to two soon-to-be relegated teams, Newcastle and West Brom. Harry had to move quickly in the January window and bring in some players to give us that much needed boost. Players like Pascal Chimbonda and Jermaine Defoe returned; faces we never thought we would see in a Spurs uniform again. The real shocker though was Keane, only 6 months later, not wanted by Liverpool’s manager Rafa Benitez, and being traded back to Tottenham.

I must admit, at the time I didn’t know whether to be happy or to be angry over the news. Why would we bring him back? After what he put us through? Why should we rescue him? The blogs and forums were on fire once again. Some fans were distraught at the news and others were confident of his return, happy to see him in our colors again.

It turned out to be the right decision for the time. Keane came back and was handed captaincy over Ledley King due to the latter’s chronic knee problem. He actually started off with some decent performances, although not the Robbie Keane grit I was expecting. Then he slowly began to fade away and disappear on the pitch. Was his ego hit by the Liverpool saga? Was he unhappy?

So now here we are ironically, preparing to face Liverpool on Sunday. What do we do with Captain Keane? Wouldn’t you say that after the summer friendlies and international matches, Defoe and Pavyluchenko deserve the starting role more? Do we play a 5 man midfield and accomodate Keane there? I don’t believe we have that luxury. Can Keane play in Jenas’ position? Maybe, maybe not.

So the season is about to kick off and Harry will have to answer a question he’s probably asking himself this minute: what do I do with Keane?