MF looks back at Rubin Kazan 1-0 Tottenham


You play an understrength team and you’ll get an understrength performance. I’ve said it before and it’s still true. Rubin Kazan deservedly came out on top in this one even if the deciding goal was very avoidable. If it hadn’t been for a fine exhibition of reflex keeping from Cudicini then finishing top of the group would be out of our hands, now though, if we pile on the goals against PAOK and in Dublin we still stand a good chance of leapfrogging the Russians.

Eleven changes from Sunday tells its own story. There was some composed tippy tappy possession play in midfield but little penetration in their third where Defoe was mostly anonymous and Pavlyuchenko asleep in the shop window. Falque needs a touch too much, Townsend and Fredericks aren’t full backs at this level, Livermore needs to be much more careful with his passing whilst Carroll is still a work in progress and also still in need of a pie and a pint.

The scoreline makes the game seem closer than it was. We created a few openings but never tested the keeper whilst at the other end it was Cudicini pinball for long periods.

It’s the first ‘proper’ defeat of the season for the cup team. There’ll be more though if they don’t get any added bite up front.


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  1. Bassong was supposed to be one of the ‘more experienced’ players on the pitch to lead by example for the youngsters and he turned out to be the worst player on the pitch by a mile. How anybody rates this guy is beyond me he an absolute liability and never want to see him in the shirt again.

    Oh and how he had the cheek to take the captains armband off Gallas when he went off!!!

  2. Pienaar wasn't much better than Bassong, and never has been; the kids were just that…. kids who were out of their depth. Defoe and Pavlyuchenko were conspicuous by their absence (they might just as well been for all they contributed). All that can be said about last night's team is – thank f**k for Cudicini.

  3. Lets not be too negative shall we. We managed to rest our entire first team (Fulham, our opponents on Sunday, played most of of theirs!), and we're still well on course to top the group. When we need the bigger guns, they will be there like they have been. This team had two YOUNG WINGERS at FULLBACK. Rose wasn't even fit. Dos Santos was injured and surely would have offered more than Falque who I think looks a bit limited. No Corluka, no Kranjcar, even Sandro was spared the trip. Gallas was returning from injury and looked excellent!

    Bit harsh on Bassong and Pienaar in particular i think. It was Pienaar's first game back, he clearly wasn't match fit and i've already detailed who he was playing infront of. Also, I thought Bassong was having a good game untill a poor touch let him down. If he was playing a bit more regularly, that MAY(!!!) not have happened.

    • League position is priority. We need CL next season. I'm sure ppl like u will bitch all day if we didn't get into CL. U have had nothing good to say about Spurs since day one. What are u about? Big Gooner?

  4. Harry made if clear from the start that he was going to rest his 1st team players for this tournament from the start. Why are u ppl bitching abt it? To me its a great opportunity for the youngsters. Where else are they going to get the experience? They r never going to get a league game. I thought the young players did alrite. Especially caroll. Very composed.
    Only downside was Pav proving to us all why he doesn't any game time. Absolutely rubbish. I was a big fan of his but now i know why he is in the position he is. Defoe worked hard and showed great strength. He definetly needs to play more in the league. He has got a lot to offer. Even if he comes on for the last 20-30mins in a game it would be good.
    Bassong always did give away stupid freekicks. And he proved it again. What happened to that S.African defender we had? Khumalo or smting?


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