Opinion: Era is over, Levy must decide how to pick up pieces

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Image: SpursWeb

An exciting game where we were too wasteful and they were too clinical devolved into utter shame and humiliation. Our defending has been a shell of two or three seasons ago for months now, and nowhere was that more apparent than tonight. But the absolute surrender—to use Steve Bruce’s term—in the final quarter hour speaks volumes about where this particular group of players stand—and their manager’s ability to affect them. 

That was a disgrace, and given that all the key players—Aldeweireld, Vertonghen, Eriksen, Aurier and Rose—were on the pitch at the bitter end—I would be surprised to see any of them in a Spurs shirt beyond January, and certainly not after this season.

Poch is an honorable man. And given that, I expect him to submit his resignation either tonight or tomorrow morning. Daniel Levy is a pragmatic man. Which means I expect him to accept said resignation, because what choice does he have? If he sticks with the manager—he is saying it is the players’ fault. And he can do nothing to ease the situation for another three months. By then, it is likely that Spurs will be bounced from Group Stage—and might not even make it to Europa. By then, after several more away losses in the League, Top Four status will be a pipe dream. Get Allegri in here now—and tell him to bench Vertonghen and Eriksen until they each can look someone in the eye and say the problem is over.

As for this game—before the white flag, obviously we didn’t seize the opportunities in the first half hour. Son had three excellent chances—and only made good on one—Ndombele had a great chance, and shot directly at Neuer. All the flow and great passing produced all of one goal, whereas Kimmich and Lewandowski were brutally clinical in the chances we gave them. And lets face it—our defence is in name only. They threatened our slower backs over the top from the get-go. The goals all run together—Aurier lost his man and Alderweireld gave him entirely too much space on one. Aurier and Ndombele failed to clear properly on Leandowski’s goal. Winks—who had a mare of a time in the second half—coughed up the ball for what seemed like the fourth or fifth time.. And after that it was simply “how do you do—please score on us—we don’t care anymore”. To be brutally honest our penalty might not have been given and Danny’s foul given to them at the other end, and then the final might have been 8-1.

This is not a team anymore—in any sense of the word. The spirit they showed after Aurier’s madness and Hugo’s howler was a mirage—just like the edifice on the High Road that may start to showcase increasing numbers of empty seats. They don’t have the pace or the mentality to defend. Two of their former stars are shadows—Dele perhaps permanently, Eriksen until he finds a new home. Surely Kane doesn’t want to stay for Europa League games and battles for 5th or 6th place if we’re lucky. Surely the two Belgians have lost their ability to influence a game. Sissoko and Lamela are about the only contants any more—Son was great in some ways but wasteful. I think Kane’s best days are behind him. Ndembele might be the bright light of the future, but as of now he can’t play a full 90 minutes, and even when he was out there, after several moments of brilliance and effort, he too lagged behind a step or two and allowed Bayern to dictate the game.

It was a damn good run. But it’s done. We can only hope that the replacement manager—and the new players that must start to populate the dressing room—in January and beyond—can make the revival happen—at all, not just in the next couple of years. Nothing is guaranteed in life. This particular story might not have a happy ending. It’s Tottenham, lads.

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11 COMMENTS

  1. Agree. I told a fellow supporter Poch should have gone after the final. it was obvious in that game it was a step he couldn’t bridge. He has taken spurs as far as he can imo. The players are not listening anymore and his system has been found out.

  2. What a shameful blog. You are no different to the players you criticise. It was a humiliation tonight, but we can still qualify. There is work to do and as supporters we can assist by getting behind the team and not tearing into them.

  3. Tonight just goes to show that as much as I love what Poch has done for my club of the last 50 years, he has lost the dressing room . His comments on the Madrid job has basically said to the players , that getting to the Champions league final was an unexpected bonus , but I don’t think I can win anything with you. All the Levy haters will blame him , but he doesn’t pick the team he doesn’t decide the tactics. Sorry to say this but the players are buying into the Poch vibe of we can’t win anything. If things don’t change and change soon, we are going to lose a whole crop of very talented players.

  4. The problem is Poch. We’ve got an amazing stadium. A half decent squad. Money. And if the NFL deal works, we can be financially secure in a number of years.

    The problem is we’ve lost our soul. A young, exciting squad with effort energy and most importantly speed.

    Poch is all about sideways passing, not playing youth and not developing our kids. He inherited a good team and has failed to win with it. We’ve had many opportunities to do so and he’s not got it over the line.

    If you ask me we’re a sitting duck for a talented young manager who will identify, buy and play quality youth players.

    Until we have that we will go nowhere fast.

  5. We don’t spend the money needed to be able to compete against the biggest clubs – if we manage to find a bargain, they will eventually leave for bigger wages and the chance to win things.

    It’s inevitable. And this applies to the managers too.

    We should keep MP for as long as we can; some time soon he will be off to a club who are willing to give him the cash and the resources he needs. It was a bad night, but let’s not let ourselves be blinded by emotion – this too shall pass.

    Our defence needs fixing. Our midfield is not coordinating well. We have lost that fast pressing ideology on the pitch. But we have players that are very talented individuals. They just need to start playing as a team again.

    This is a low. But it’s a long season.

  6. The ‘Poch Out’ brigade are the same people who moan whenever another club sacks their manager when they go through a bad spell. That’s the trouble with football – everyone wants instant success & the minute things look like they’re not going to plan, they want the manager out.

    As for a crop of very talented players, don’t make ma laugh. Alli? Overrated (name the last time he influenced a game). Eriksen? Ditto. He wants out – get him out or put him in the reserves. There’s a reason no-one came in for him in the summer & that is he’s not as good as he thinks he is. Same with Toby. Rose? Getting on & also not as wanted as he thinks he is. I could go on but it’s the players not listening & not the manager.

    The different agenda thing is all about players not wanting to be there but no-one else wants them because they’re not good enough for the bigger teams. If Eriksen goes to Utd, I hope the fans give him a hard time when he return’s as it’ll prove he’s only moving for financial reasons. At least when Berber, Bale & Modric wanted out they actually won something with their new clubs – Eriksen won’t with Utd.

    If you’re 21/22 & earning £100k per week, regardless of whether you play or not, there’s no way that you’ll stay motivated.

    Levy isn’t going anywhere until Joe sells the club.

    Get the players out – not the manager. Get players in that actually want to play for the club.

    • Agree…the comments over Poch are ludicrous. He is a very good coach. Get rid of the players and get in new players. Spurs is not the same as any other clubs and must be seen in that light. Patience is key. Remain steadfast. Don’t be fair weathered supporters.

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