Posts Tagged ‘Younes Kaboul’

Champions League… we’re havin’ a laugh!

November 26, 2010

Calm, relaxed and composed. An effortless win against a visiting Bremen side which led to a historic night. We are through to the knock-out stage of the Champions League!

I’m not going to lie.. I never thought that it was possible.

At first, I knew we had a good chance of winning the qualifier round and making it through to the group stages. However, when we were placed in Group A with champions Inter Milan, Dutch champions FC Twente and Werder Bremen, I honestly had very little hope.

Well thankfully, I was wrong. The history books have been opened and amended. Tottenham Hotspur… “we’re havin’ a laugh”.

I would like to take this chance to gloat a bit. To kick things off, Arsenal lost the other night, stiff as a deer caught in the headlights after the NLD. A day later, Bremen came to visit the Lane and were treated to a delicious display of football class. Take notes ze Germans: the Tottenham boys were at their very best that evening. Domination without aggression. Simply because we didn’t need to let it get to that point.

With Pav still looking a bit lazy on the pitch, it was nice to have the extra option of Defoe on the bench. He looks good so far, just needs a goal to his name quick. Crouch had another solid European performance + goal; glad to see the big man delivering.

The midfield were great as a unit once again. Creatively, we are a very hard team to match. Lennon added two assists to his seasonal stats. Bale missed a penalty kick but hey, who cares! Modric just gets better and more intricate every second he spends on the pitch. Pure genius this boy!

Gallas was once again given the captain’s armband, rewarding the team with a commanding performance. If he and Kaboul continue in this form, we could be looking at a good run of clean sheets.

Each unit – attacking, midfield and defence – contributed to the score sheet; one goal from each. That’s what I call diversity. Obviously we shouldn’t be laughing too much. We host Liverpool on Sunday and we all know how we perform after a successful CL night out. All I ask is for the boys at the back to do their job and everything else will fall into place.


The road to…

October 19, 2010

Chugging along. Plugging away. Making ends meet. Doing the business. 5th in the table and a mere 5 points below Chelsea means the league is up in the air and the top 4 are as vulnerable as ever. I likey!

4 wins, 2 draws and 2 losses… and we’re still in 5th? Arse and Man United (3rd & 4th respectively) have dropped a few unexpected points keeping us in the mix of things. Thankfully. But it’s wins like the one at Craven Cottage, home of the Fulham sore losers, which mean we’re doing something right. Okay, it wasn’t a pretty victory but at the end of the day, it’s all about those three vital points. In the near future, those very points will be an integral part of a collective figure which will dictate if we play Champions League football next season, in-flow of money for the club, new bandwagon supporters and last but not least, the possibility of adding another VDV or “flair” player to the squad.

So now that we have the midfield doing the job our strikers are contracted to do, it’s safe to say that we are able to score (I was a bit hesitant typing that). Even more importantly, we are able to hold the ball for long periods of time; crucial to success in Europe, and potentially at San Siro tomorrow.

Still, something’s not right. Harry needs to address the defencive issues within the squad. We need to rewind back to a time when White Hart Lane was a sealed fortress. I think the main point of concern is the fact that we don’t have a consistent pairing at the back. It takes time and communication to build the trust between the center duo. “I cover you – you cover me” type of unspoken promises.

Ledley seems to be nearing the end of his career. It’s a heart-breaking matter and I don’t know how I’d feel without him on the bench. But it’s only a matter of time before he will have to give in to this chronic injury and take a bow.

So is Ledley the cause of our lag at defence? Not quite. He plays when he can (and is stellar at such efforts) but it is hindering any potential of a blossoming defencive partnership. Bassong needs time on the pitch. Gallas definitely does as well (it’s no secret he’s rusty). If the players don’t have time to strengthen their partnerships, it pretty much leaves us open and vulnerable in one of the most critical positions on the field.

Remember the “2 points from 8 games” season? Our fight to claw back from the dead was aided by the very fact that we went on a record clean-sheet run. Gomes was in superb form, having developed an understanding with the two center-backs and vice versa. That is what we desperately need today.

Kaboul should return soon from injury and Dawson needs a bit of time, but we have players who can establish themselves and secure regular selection. I am concerned that Ledley’s involvement in the team might prevent that to a certain degree. Do I want to see him go? Of course not! Am I sick of seeing us stupid goals conceded? Yes. Ledley does little wrong when on the pitch; he is naturally gifted like that. Since we have brought in Gallas, we have Bassong, Kaboul is beginning to flourish and it’s only a matter of time before Dawson returns, then would it be wise to keep throwing Ledley into the mix?

I’m not so sure anymore.

“That’s all folks!”

February 3, 2010

The short-lived January window officially came to a close the other night with a few surprises, twists and turns. It wasn’t the usual erratic Tottenham we’ve all grwon to love, but it was filled with the ever-redundant Harry vs. Pav quotes constantly gracing Newsnow. Snooze.

So we all know that Gudjohnsen and Kaboul have arrived. The signing of Gudjohnsen was a positive move in my opinion, a player who has played at the highest level and has tasted success. He may be off in the fitness department, but I’m sure Harry sees something promising in having him around. In regards to Kaboul, I guess it was a deal which was done out of necessity more than admiration. Woodgate has been unable to overcome his groin injury, while at the same time we cannot depend on King to stay healthy game-in game-out. We need options. Whether Kaboul is up for the job is another question. Apparently, he also has the ability to slot into the RB role, where since Hutton and Naughton (both RBs) have been loaned out, Corluka will desperately need cover.

Giovanni Dos Santos has also been loaned out to Galatasaray. I hope this isn’t the last we’ve seen of him. I worry though that all these loan spells have done nothing to boost his morale at Tottenham. Not being wanted can have a major affect on any player. Bent. Who am I kidding? Act like a professional FFS.

So it was looking to be a boring window, but then came the highlight of it all. Keane’s move to Celtic could be the highest profile transfer of this window. I’m sure Celtic fans would like to think so. I mean, at the end of the day, he’s back at his “boyhood club”. It makes me wonder if Keano could be the luckiest player in the world? I mean, to play for both of your boyhood clubs in the span of two years must be an amazing accomplishment. Not.

Leeds tonight. Praying for success.