It is in the tense days of April and May in which a team’s season stands or falls, Tottenham Hotspur tether on the cusp of glory and the brink of failure. AVB’s outfit sits in 4th position with 58 points but with an in-form Arsenal side only two points behind with a game in hand and Chelsea level with Tottenham on points, the race for the final Champions League place will be viciously contended. Spurs endeavours in the Europa League also leaves them with an 2nd quarter final leg against Swiss side Basel after a 2-2 draw in London.
However the dual ambition of Europe and top four has taken a taxing toll on the players, Lennon and Bale both suffering injuries against Basel. The width and pace Lennon brings to our game and
Gareth’s ability to ignite the Lane; already boasting a goal tally of 26 and 10 assists this season, will be missed. The absence of these key men, as well as Sandro and Defoe was a crucial factor to why Spurs were held to a draw against Everton, dropping two vital points. Tottenham also lost to Fulham and Liverpool in the league after playing in Europe mid week, this startling trend raises questions about Villas-Boas’s European ambitions and how they could harm the teams Champions League qualification hopes.
It seems a Europa League trophy would feel hollow if Spurs failed to clinch a top four spot, and the ramifications of finishing fifth would weaken the club even further. It would be increasingly harder for Levy to attract a world class striker without the allure of Champions League football. And the reality is that if this team fails to progress we will begin to lose our top players, with Barcelona and Real Madrid lining up to bid for Bale this summer. It appears that top four is a necessity this season and with a tough fixture list ahead of us, I don’t think AVB can afford to exhaust his top players to win a second class European Cup.
And as Tottenham are to play Chelsea in one of the most crucial games of our season, after the team has to travel to Switzerland to play Basel. Should AVB take on Basel with a token team of young players and then start a strong rested team against Chelsea? Or try to keep both the Europa and Premier League dreams alive?
In a move that could deliver this team into the Champions League places and lift a trophy. Or that could leave the team defeated in Europe and see Champions League football slip through this Spurs sides fingers yet again. These next few weeks will define this current Tottenham team and André Villas-Boas as a manager.
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