Compliments regarding the fortitude of the side, Gareth Baleâ€™s extraordinary hat-trick and the ten man almost comeback against an Inter team that nearly eased off the pedal a bit too far have helped obscure the fact that we were four nil down after half an hour on Wednesday and but for a couple of Cudicini stops couldâ€™ve been even further behind by half time.
One of the oft-quoted sentiments going into this seasonâ€™s Champions League programme was that we â€˜hope we donâ€™t get embarrassedâ€™, well in five games, we have been twice so far. Any lessons learnt in Bern when we looked square at the back and slow everywhere for the first half hour looked to have been forgotten on Wednesday when we were square at the back and slow everywhere for the first half hour.
Baleâ€™s left peg strikes have taken the heat and the focus away from Redknappâ€™s tactics and team selection. From the start of last season Harryâ€™s response to any challenge has been to attack and his breezy assertion in this weekâ€™s press conference that we were going to â€˜have a goâ€™ is typical. But this was the home of the European Champions. We have kept only two clean sheets this season the last of which was in August. To leave a defence that fragile with the protection of only Modric and big Tom in front of it smacks more of naivety than a gamble.
Les Ferdinand explained the poor opening as â€˜people werenâ€™t doing their jobsâ€™. What? That means â€˜peopleâ€™ arenâ€™t good enough. Jenas wasnâ€™t good enough two years ago according to Redknapp, hence the purchase of Wilson and Sandro. Similarly with Hutton, hence the purchase of Corluka, Naughton, Walker and the repositioning of Kaboul. Gallas wasnâ€™t good enough to be offered a new contract by the smuggers.
If it is possible for Michael Dawsonâ€™s stock to have risen even higher then it has done. As the situations with Ledley & Woodgate become less and less tolerable, the fact that weâ€™re not able to field a stable reliable centre back pairing becomes more and more stark. Itâ€™s been like this since Redknapp took over but not been properly addressed.
I trust Harry, donâ€™t get me wrong and hindsight is a wonderful thing, but the Spurs websiteâ€™s description of Bale as â€˜San Heroâ€™ should have special resonance with the manager as the Welsh wonder has done more than spare the blushes of the whole side, heâ€™s allowed Redknapp and his staffâ€™s preparation for the biggest, most glamorous game Spurs have played in years to go largely unnoticed and uncriticised.
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