We are That Harry Kane Team

10

Forget all the brave claims, all the optimism, all the belief that this team would be different. In one combination of mistakes by Toby Alderweireld and Eric Dier it all slipped away, and with it, perhaps the dreams of this squad, its manager, and its fan base. One can’t help feel that this year peaked at half time at Wembley Wednesday night, and now we are staring at the abyss. Madrid win Wednesday, we still have to survive a test in Dortmund, and either the Europa League or a knockout match with the likes of Barcelona or PSG awaits.

Of course for significant stretches of this game we were the better side. We pressed well, controlled midfield, kept advancing the ball into United’s half. The defence, after a shaky beginning, appeared well-organised. Until it wasn’t. But you see the object of the game is to score, and but for the one marvelous opportunity with Dele from Eriksen, Spurs never had a true chance. And that’s what missing Kane meant. It was as if Eriksen and Dele kept making passes to spots where they assumed someone would be because that’s where Harry would be. Only he was nowhere in sight.

As on Wednesday night it was the opponents who began the second half with purpose and it took an alert play from Davies to prevent a carbon copy goal as the Hammers’ first—keeper parries, forward there to deposit the rebound. Ayew was unmarked, not so Rashford. Lukaku could have won it with an exquisite header minutes before his next header set up Martial for the winner. Aldweireld was slow to De Gea’s kick, Dier was abysmally late to Lukaku’s pass, Lloris had no chance against Martial. Would Sanchez have done better? I think we know the answer to that question.

More concerning was the early substitution of Son—the one man, as on Wednesday night, that seemed capable of breaking down Mourinho’s defence. The game became more open with Dembele and Llorente on the pitch, but then again we were the ones who conceded a goal. Was Poch making the move out of necessity, knowing Kane can’t play Wednesday, either, and trying to preserve Son for Madrid? Dembele frankly looked out of sorts, and in the final minutes when he and others had the ball just outside the box with multiple teammates poised to make runs at De Gea, he/they had no answers. It was almost as if they forgot they were supposed to try to score.

Perhaps, other then Alderweireld and Dier the true culprits are Gareth Southgate and Harry Kane. For the life of me the decision to play Kane vs Lithuania—second game in three days and an utterly meaningless one—is beyond baffling. Kane knew and Pochettino should have made sure Southgate knew that the toughest stretch of the season loomed. Madrid-liverpool-United-Madrid all in a two week span. If we want to judge individuals, Aurier played very well, Winks missed a couple of balls but continues to impress, the rest of the attackers were all a bit off their best. Lloris had his usual two poor clearances. The defence but for the twin mistakes was solid. So what—Manchester United got the three points.

Well scrap the Brave New World—it’s still the old one, and we’re back in third place, trophyless. Let’s see on Wednesday just what kind of grit and backbone this team possesses. They didn’t play badly today. They played hard. They just lost. They blinked. Now we find out their true character.

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Paul is a respected U.S. political pollster (Democrat) based in Madison, Wisconsin and Los Angeles. His love for Spurs began when the Premier League games started appearing regularly in the U.S. and an American lover of football had to choose a side. Bale, Rushdie, Adele, Shakespeare, the Spurs faithful, The Lane, etc. were all irresistible attractions and have made Maslin a Spur for life.

10 COMMENTS

  1. Good summary….i think your right about the season now
    i am baffled why Sanchez didnt start..he has been brilliant…Dier tries hard but always has one mistake in him and sadly costly… ..
    The loss against West Ham in the second half in the Cup we apparantly dont rate…could end up hurting us much more than we think.

  2. Man U bring on a proven striker as a sub and hey presto they score.We again bring on a bargain buy sub past his sell by date and does nothing.Just point the finger to our manager and chairman.We are a one man team,and if it was not for Harry,I think Po would have had the sack by now,Harsh but true.

  3. Bit harsh, yes we could of played better but we are still 3rd with many games to play. We have a very good team, just lack consistency at time.

  4. Not much between the two teams & a draw would have been a fair result sinin effect we’ve got 1 ppint less rhan we deserved. I thought Diwr was outstanding today but if course that can easily be forgotten when he doesn’t block the shot from Martial.

    We didn’t create enough but neither did they. Fair comment though in regards of our continuing poor form away against our rivals.

    Must get something out of Wednesday & then start again in Prem. Next we’ve got Palace & I think United have Chelsea & Gooners have City so we can get back in the title race.Having said all if this like most I am disappointed with todays result,

  5. Come boys cheer up. We got done by Jose today, it happens to a lot of teams. He hates football, Jose. Just wants to bore us all to death

    Got to have a little faith. This is the best team we’ve had in a long long time. Hopefully they’ll learn how to win the game that really matters sometime soon

  6. Disappointed with the result but not ready to give up yet. This season we have finally got some decent depth in our squad…..just not in the stricker role! When Dembele, Rose and Wynama are back to match fit coach has some quality to choose from….

    Agree with the Dier comments he is a liability defensively

  7. You’d think we lost 5-0 reading this. It really doesn’t take much for some supporters to forget does it. We win games and we’re going to win the league, we lose a game and we might as well throw in the towel. Personally I’m a lot more dissapointed in the outcome last Wednesday night than I was yesterday and that’s a Trophy no one cares about. Yeah yesterday was not the result I wanted but what I saw seemed pretty even all the way through, it could have gone either way and at the end of it United got the goal. It easily could have ended differently, it certainly wasn’t a walkover. We lost 1 – 0 against United. Boo hoo, it happens! But by all means if crying into your beer, beating yourself to death and feeling sorry for yourself is what works for you as a supporter then get on with it. We all know plenty of fans who seem to take a perverse pleasure in moaning, criticising the team and doing the job of opposing supporters. I’m still behind the team and the Manager, (as everyone appeared to be only a week a go), and it’s gonna take a lot more than 1 goal to the opposing side in the last 10 minutes at Old Trafford to change that.

  8. Very disappointing. I thought after Liverpool we were kidding ourselves, ‘one swallow does not make a summer’.

    We just don’t have that edge. We should have buried West Ham last week, but we fell apart. Poch can say we played great and the team gave their all over and over again, but we lost and that’s the reality, whether it’s 1-0 or 5-0 it doesn’t really matter. We had the opportunity to close the gap on United and we blew it.

    This year, City are the team who look like champions already and we are miles off. Was Poch so wrapped up in this week’s Madrid game that he forgot we still have a job to be done in the League, despite what he says the facts speak volumes. Wembley is a curse, Madrid will step up to a higher level and we will rely too much on Harry Kane (if he plays), if not then it will be another disappointing night.

    I love this Club, the team and the manager but they do break your heart and they do not yet have the killer streak that wins silverware.

    If we don’t win something this season then it will be the end of the line.

    As Billy Bremner once said ‘you get nothing for coming second’ so wake up and get some Silverware in the cupboard.

    No one will give a damn about a top four finish if you win a trophy. Mourinho was right with his view from last season, winning trophies is all, everything else is bullshit.

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