Opinion: My thoughts on the West Ham defeat and people losing patience with Nuno

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Spurs Fan Supporter
Image: @snapshotspurs

I want to start by saying that I think the result itself has been blown a little out of proportion, especially as I’m watching Liverpool destroy Man United. Tottenham lost 1-0 away from home to a good side in better form, in a game that could have gone either way.

From the start of the match, it had the feel of a tight 1-0, although I wasn’t sure which way that would swing. Kane had a headed chance, Son, Kane and Ndombele all had chances to square balls across the box. West Ham also had a host of openings and half chances.

In short, it was a low-tempo game of thin margins and Tottenham coming out on the losing side is nothing worth losing our heads over. However, there is plenty to pick apart from the performance within the result, and some individual moments from certain players.

Of course, the one that has seen most conversation on Twitter is Harry Kane’s defending from the corner. It was strange to see, to be honest. Kane is usually dominant when defending from set-pieces. For some reason, this time he looked lazy and just was not switched on.

He let Antonio brush him aside, which is nothing to be embarrassed of in itself, but Kane didn’t seem to make any effort to stop the goal from happening. He just kind of let it happen. Hopefully, this was just a lapse of concentration but, honestly, it’s hard to explain…

I was gutted with Reguilon’s mistake as I thought he was having a very solid game. He made a great interception to get Spurs out of trouble, then overplayed and gave the ball away, eventually leading to the corner we conceded from.

It looked like Nuno had a word with him on the touchline when he subbed him off, perhaps about that. Reguilon is still very raw and he needs to improve his defending and that decision-making, but I still think there is a class diamond in there if we can polish it.

Going forward, it was tricky for Spurs today. I don’t want to overanalyse because West Ham put their entire team behind the ball and looked to break us. These types of games are always tough and, sometimes, it’s hard to create chances… which it was today.

We didn’t play great, but I don’t think it’s a prime example of a lack of creativity at Spurs. Even with an Eriksen and in-form Kane in that side, it would have been a hard wall to break down today. We still should have scored from the few openings we made.

On a positive note, I thought Oliver Skipp was superb once again. He is becoming a player to really build a midfield around. Hojbjerg also played well, Ndombele and Lucas operated in difficult and tight areas but always looked to be positive and go forwards.

Hugo was a great sweeper-keeper today. Eric Dier was actually extremely solid and mopped up well when others made mistakes. We saw the edge from Cristian Romero, as well as his ability to win the ball high up the pitch. He overplays a little at times, but he is learning the PL.

It felt very much like a Tottenham who are still learning under a new manager coming up an in-form side who played slightly better than them. There were some good Spurs performances, but we weren’t quite at it today. That’s okay though.

At least we saw more to be positive about from today than the defeats to Palace, Arsenal and Chelsea. It wasn’t in that kind of worrying bracket, I don’t think. Hopefully, this is more like one step backwards to take two step forwards, but only time will tell.

I think my main takeaway from the defeat is the worrying future of Nuno Espirito Santo. From opinions on social media, it feels as though more and more Tottenham fans have made up their minds about him. A couple of wins can’t change those minds, but losses will cement them.

Ultimately, Tottenham fans were downright promised attacking football and a return to the Spurs DNA. In a way, Nuno has been a victim of a promise he never made. I still don’t think Levy will be considering sacking him as it is simply too soon.

I have been saying for ages, give him until Christmas and see where we are. But every week, Christmas gets nearer and it feels as though more people are demanding change than ever before. I fear for Nuno in the long term, but I think there is still hope for Tottenham.

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1 COMMENT

  1. I don’t think Skipp and Hojberg is working. It leaves all the creativity and knitting together of the midfield and attack to Ndombele. He isn’t delivering enough. It says about how well Skipp is doing, that I would drop Hojberg and leave Skipp in. We have to try someone else in there for more creativity. Maybe Lo Celso. But we just aren’t creating enough chances or scoring enough goals. The defence was ok today. Dier and Romero look pretty good. The sideways keep ball mentality just kills me. We need to do more with it. Show more urgency. Resting the players did not work. Kane never plays better after a rest. Thursday was awful. We lacked energy in the last 30 mins again. We need a creative midfielder who can really pass and shoot ideally. Plus Moura isn’t good enough and we need another top winger. I’m also sad Lloris hasn’t been offered a new deal as that’s one thing less to fix. If we pay for Romero, we need to concentrate funds on the two areas mentioned. Pape Sarr will obviously help. I can see Ndombele moving on as well.

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