Please Lord, let it end soon

5
Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

Tonight we can finally clear the air of the bad smell that has been the Champions League in 2016/17.

The whole thing’s been a blight pretty much from start to finish (depending on how tonight goes). From the moment in the 15th minute of the game against Monaco when Erik Lamela got caught in possession and Bernardo Silva was shown inside on to his stronger foot by Jan Vertonghen virtually nothing has gone right for us. Injuries have weakened our side since that defeat but we have also contributed hugely to our own downfall by playing abysmally against Leverkusen at home and then picking a defence that was never going to help us get the win we needed at free scoring Monaco.

The massive joy at seeing so many Spurs fans in one place at Wembley has been hugely tarnished by the performances and results. The thought of going there twenty odd times next season personally fills me with a sort of dark horror, watching the team will start to feel like a duty rather than the pleasure it generally is.

I’m fed of hearing about the ‘Wembley hoodoo’. The place is rubbish. Seeing us win would make the experience slightly more bearable, but it wouldn’t take away from the fact that it’s a life-sucking, solidly red (RED!) bowl with no atmosphere, charm or redeeming features whatsoever.

Anyway…  CSKA won’t look back on their Moneybags League campaign any more fondly than we will. They’ve won none of their 5 games so far and sit a point behind us in fourth. (We’ve lost more games than they have though. Get in!) Domestically this is their last game before their winter break. They currently sit third, 8 points behind Spartak. Their coach, Leonid Slutsky has announced that this is his last game in charge. Let’s hope their team doesn’t decide it’s going to go out on a high as a result – “Let’s do it for Slutsky!”

Possibly the biggest draw for anyone heading to the game tonight is the potential return of Toby Alderweireld. Woo-hoo! The stock of most players rises if they’re absent during a lull in their team’s form and whilst Eric Dier has grown into the role alongside Vertonghen, the return of Alderweireld will raise the defence more than a notch and also improve the long range passing from the back. He’ll be welcomed back with open arms.

Elsewhere we might get to see Sissoko, Winks, Trippier, NKoudou, Onomah or some combination thereof.

If we make it through to the Europa League it keeps our options open come February. If we’re in touch at the top of the Premier League, then Pochettino will sack it off as is his wont – it’s only two games not the whole tedious group process. If the top four are moving out of sight, then let’s give the EL a go.

I hope we win and win well – wouldn’t surprise me if we didn’t though. Mumble grumble.

The officials are from Italy.

COYS!!

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5 COMMENTS

  1. I could not agree with you more about Wembley, it is an absolute toilet and the transport links are appalling. I may have to take a sabbatical next season !!

  2. I do not know why the title is a plea to let it end soon. It ends tonight. We know that. There is no need for a plea.

    There is no Wembley hoodoo. The players did not perform.

    Tonight a draw is sufficient for an EL place.

    > 'it’s only two games not the whole tedious group process'
    Not sure what you mean here. There are rounds before the final. Each round comprises two games, so eight games in total if we got that far, plus the final.

    > 'If the top four are moving out of sight, then let’s give the EL a go.'
    The problem with that is we often do not quite know.. Also, what if we are well in touch in the top four, ditch the EL somehow, then do not do well in the PL?

    I am not trying to be over-critical. I just do not understand the purpose of the article. If it is to state we had a poor CL run and you are glad it will be complete tonight, it does not take an article for that.

    Sorry if I appear negative. I would genuinely welcome any insights.

    • Hello. I was just saying that if Pochettino doesn't fancy the Europa League then he's only got to pretend that he does for two games, not for the six game group nonsense and as for the 'top four are moving out of sight', I mean that if they're ten points clear of us then we might profit by putting more effort into making a success of the Europa than we might otherwise do.

      The article's purpose is a short preview of tonight's game together with a few subjective meandering thoughts to try and give the game some context.

      Thanks for reading!

      • Ah, ok, thanks for the clarification :-)

        In regard to the EL, I'd be very happy if we won it. I felt like that before it gave CL entry. With our advanced entry, there are just four rounds to the final. I think it is worth a decent shot.

        I take the point that you cannot compete on all fronts, but I would ditch the FA Cup in favour of the EL.

  3. Well! I think this cannot be called a weak team!

    Tottenham: Lloris (C); Walker, Dier, Vertonghen, Rose; Winks, Wanyama; Eriksen, Dele, Son; Kane

    Subs: Vorm, Alderweireld, Wimmer, Dembele, Sissoko, Nkoudou, Onomah

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