Opinion: What I want to see from Spurs this season – Connection and success

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Nuno Espirito Santo
Tottenham Hotspur FC/Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images

Where to even begin with this? A year ago, with a certain ‘special one’ in charge, I’d have said what I want to see is a trophy.

After a soul-destroying, life-sucking season, the biggest thing I want is a connection back to Tottenham.

It’s of course not that simple and I still have expectations and hopes for this season.

The Gaffer

With many names linked and the profile of some of the managers mentioned, Nuno Espirito Santo felt a little underwhelming at the time of his appointment.

That being said, like many of you I’m sure, he has my full backing. Something I would like to say is regardless of who was appointed, many changes are needed within the squad and without those changes, no manager would succeed, but more on the squad later.

I think the defensive stigma around Nuno is a bit unfair. If you look at his time at Valencia, he was praised on multiple occasions for his attacking style and versatility, often changing between a back three and a 4-3-3. That versatility is something I’d like to see at Tottenham.

All too many times under Mourinho, we’d go a goal up and everybody knew what was coming next: shut up shop, defend that one-goal lead, concede, drop points. Rinse and repeat over and over.

Where Nuno can succeed is by showing the bravery to grab a game by the scruff of the neck and put us in a position where we, as fans, aren’t sat on the edge of our seats head in hands waiting for the opposition to snatch the points from us.

At Tottenham, Nuno has a great chance to raise his own profile, so from his point of view, I’m hoping he sees this as a chance to experiment and show many different levels to his coaching and tactical nous.

He can win over many fans by using some of the youth prospects in different competitions and with some coaching, if he can help improve some of the young stars we have, fans will be left happy.

The Squad

It’s stale, or at least it feels stale now. With Paratici getting to work and a busy 7-10 days expected at Tottenham, there’s hope that the major refresh this squad needs can and will happen.

In Kane and Son we have two indispensable players, and keeping Kane is the most essential thing that can happen this summer.

The likes of Bergwijn and the returning Sessegnon offer young exciting attacking prospects, and Lucas Moura is ever-dependable with his work rate and ability.

Going forward we have a wealth of options, and that’s without a certain young Spaniard apparently joining the ranks (Sky Sports).

It’s at the back where change is required, change that’s felt needed since Pochettino left.

For me, Dier and Sanchez aren’t up to the level required, and Alderweireld is at the back end of his career and perhaps doesn’t have the speed needed to compete in the Premier League – so that leaves us with Rodon at centre-half.

I’m a huge fan of Rodon but he’s young and needs someone of his level or above next to him.

A full season of Ndombele, Lo Celso and Hojberg injury-free could make for an exciting midfield, sprinkle in Dele and Skipp for rotation and it feels like a fairly stacked midfield.

There are ins and outs needed and likely to happen with anything possible until the transfer window closes. But overall, I want to see the whole squad used.

The Competitions

I think it’s unfair for anybody to expect Nuno to come in and instantly achieve top 4. It’s not impossible, this is Premier League after all, but with the overhaul required it’s perhaps unrealistic.

For me, a top 6 finish is what Nuno should be targeting. Last season’s 7th placed finish almost flattered us in a way last season, but with the right improvements to the squad, there’s no reason Nuno shouldn’t look to bridge that gap to those above.

One competition no one is excited about is the Europa Conference league. Let’s face it, it’s a nothing competition and simply adds to an already congested fixture list.

However, to put a positive spin on it, it’s a great opportunity for the young players to get valuable first-team minutes. Players like Skipp, Tanganga and Sessegnon are likely to be in and around the Premier League squad, but it’s this competition that could give them a real platform to showcase their ability and develop.

Pre-season stars so far Nile John and Dane Scarlett should also be used in the Conference League to develop and progress their careers at Spurs.

After last year’s Carabao Cup final disappointment, of course, I’d like to go one better in that. Having had too many semi-final and final disappointments in recent years, it feels like it may never happen again. An FA Cup or Carabao Cup would go a long way not just for Nuno but the entire club.

Final Thoughts

I love this club, but last year was horrible. I can’t remember a time I felt more disconnected, it had got to a point where I just didn’t care.

It felt as though the squad, manager and even those above had become disjointed, all searching for different things while ultimately all falling short of expectations.

The Mourinho experiment felt more like an ego stroke for Daniel Levy than a sensible choice, an ego stroke that has perhaps set us further back rather than moved us forward.

I’m praying Nuno brings passion and harmony back to Tottenham, a successful season doesn’t have to include silverware (although that would be very welcome) it just has to make us care again.

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1 COMMENT

  1. Well summed up. I think top 6 is a realistic aim. We need top 4 to keep Kane is he stays. But very hard with what’s above us. Teams behind fighting hard like West Ham, Goons and Leicester sadly ahead of us now and continue to do excellent economical work in the transfer market. I think Bergwin and Lo Celso both at last chance saloon for me. Maybe Ndombele too. Hojberg and Skipp could have good seasons for us. Give younger players a go in dross European cup we are in and go full tilt for the league games keeping Kane and Son fresh. A tough start fixtures wise. We really need this Romero and more. If Sanchez or Dier end up as starter for the season they will hold us back once more. A right back is a must too. Neither Aurier or Doherty can be trusted.

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