Imagine if you will, the ghost of the late great Bill Nic, came to you and offered you the chance to end the season how it stands right now. Would you take the easy option and the Champions League football that goes with it or would you see the season out and risk it all?
We’re currently having our greatest BPL season to date, one in which may shape the future of the club as we know it and help us become a true footballing force. A squad full of young talent, world class players, some of the best training facilities in Europe and a new stadium on the way, surely the final piece of the jigsaw is just the allure of Champions League football.
So with this in mind, surely ending the season now would help achieve this. But is Champions League simply enough? Yes a few years back, we probably would have bitten your hand off for this offer, but with only ever really seeing our teams push for the title once, which ended after Defoe came inches from sending us top came late January 2012; is this not our best chance to not only push for the title again, but maybe actually win it?
I think without seeming like a deluded or biased Spurs fan, we’ve been the best team in the league this season, something I don’t see changing anytime soon. We have the best defense, an unusually high goal difference and are probably the hardest team to beat thus far. If it wasn’t simply for a lack of potency in front of goal at times, we would probably be a couple points clear, at the very least.
So the question is, what would you do?
If you look at the squad as a whole and the way the rest of the Premier League have been competing this season, you’d probably say ‘No thanks Mr Nic’ and fall back to sleep, but is it that simple.
Many would argue that this transfer window we should have strengthened. Instead we decided to remove the fringe from the squad and trust the rest. It was a similar situation in 2012, where our only additions saw the experienced Saha and Nielsen arrive at the club, something which clearly didn’t work out, instead of buying players who could of taken us that extra step. A player like Berahino could have been this step, adding much needed goals to a side who needs to stop drawing games if they are truly going to compete, plus being a suitable replacement for Kane, in the event of an injury.
We have a lot of games coming up and the risk of maybe an injury or two, we may see our season slip away and will be starring in videos next to Stevie G, all summer.
However, is what Poch said in fact true? Bringing in some new players may upset the apple cart, with some maybe losing confidence. Personally I think he’s right and believe it sends the message to everyone associated with the club, that you have the managers trust. They’ve taken us this far, so why not let them see out the task? Yes there’s risks and yes it’s a gamble, but it’s no different when you sign a 20M plus player, everything’s a risk and a gamble, let’s just pray this one wins!
Probably the biggest question most of us are asking, is can we get over that line, do we have what it takes? Most Champions are not just made out of thin air, they are already champions, they know how to win. I spoke about a major plus for our side is the fact it has so much potential, but could this also be the chink in our armour? As a whole, the team’s experience is very low, with our star performers still eligible for the under 21s. We don’t have the likes of Yaya to call upon and push us that extra mile, someone who has won it all and knows how to do it again.
Currently I only see one winner of the league this season and that’s Man City. Arsenal, though may have won the league in the past, lack that killer instinct and experience, with Leicester’s bubble on the brink of bursting. Realistically, City have the only means of securing the title, something we should have looked to change in the transfer window. But with chances of us signing a player like Yaya or Rooney, being very slim, I doubt we can point a blame here.
One thing I do believe may give us the edge however, is our performances over all fronts this season. We’ve had no problems whatsoever this season rotating the team and performing to the same level each week and with the likes of City in a competition that boasts a much higher caliber of opponent, it may be the distraction we need to turtle this hare race.
Yes, eventually we may play much harder opposition ourselves, the likes of Dortmund spring to mind and may have to use a much stronger starting eleven to compete, but with Arsenal facing Barcelona and City featuring in the Capital One Cup final as well as the Champions League, we may have forced ourselves into front runners before it will even matter.
Hopefully by now many of you have shunned Mr Nic away and have decided, we can achieve more this year. But let’s now imagine the worst and consider not finishing in the top four this season. The repercussions of this failure could prove detrimental to the future of the club.
Most of our squad have already gained potential suitors from around the globe, as well as a manager who probably could get any job he likes. In what way could we blame a player like Lloris, calling quits on his time at Spurs and any other player with their ambitions not being met. It’s not as if previous players have left the club and failed in their attempts.
Tottenhams flaw over the course of the Premier League has been the constant switching of regimes and philosophies, whether it’s sacking managers or clearing out the squad. We need consistency, which has seen the likes of United and Arsenal flourish, something I doubt we can convince Mauricio, Hugo and Harry to do if the club has to settle for Europa for years to come.
So with this in mind, are we now calling Mr Nic back and begging him to ask the question again? Are we now content this season to finishing third/fourth and clutching at the chance to play Champions League football?
Or would pushing onwards, taking the risk and not settling for third or fourth, be the better incentive all round for the club? As stated already, we are not far from being one of the forces of world football and with the knowledge that Tottenham actually competed for the league and didn’t fall short, because of what some may call the Tottenham curse, wouldn’t this take us there?
Though we may not win the league, settling for third or fourth probably won’t give us much advantage, next season. Though we may be playing Champions League football, players will probably still opt to play for the likes of Chelsea, United and Liverpool, simply because they can offer what we can’t and that’s stupid amounts of money in wages.
With a stadium on the cards, we are unlikely to match the £100k plus wage demands, which a top draw player will want, but the knowledge that Tottenham competed or maybe even won the BPL, may give us that edge.
Look at Athletico as the perfect example. A summer of losing Costa, Luis and Courtois prior to a season of winning the league and being seconds away from lifting Europe’s crown jewel, the Champions League. Simply put, they lost their star players as they couldn’t match the wage demands that Chelsea and others could offer. Even the likes of Dortmund, after falling short in the Champions League final couldn’t sustain their squad, losing out to the German powerhouse, Bayern.
We are certainly financially better off than both of these clubs, with the added bonus of being London based, and the allure of the greatest league in the world. But realistically what hope do we have in stopping the yearly raids time and time again, similar to every morning on Clash of Clans, without becoming a consistent title contender.
Could you imagine actually entering a season with people believing we have a chance to compete for the title, or even better, a squad in which has the aim to do so?
But then again, after so many years of heartache, can we really go through it again?
The memories of food poisoning, both Messi & Robben missing penalties to eliminate Chelsea from Europe, throwing away a 13 point gap, can we risk it again? For crying out loud, our last game of the season is away at Newcastle! Wouldn’t it just be the Spurs thing to do and see Townsend somehow ruining our season?
The term spursy often gets thrown around, meaning to consistently and inevitably fail to live up to expectations and with so much riding on this season, could we be blamed to settle and take Bill Nics offer? Or do we trust in Poch, trust in the squad and maybe start to believe that this may actually be our bloody year?
Personally I’d say no and maybe just ask Bill how he was and what he thought about the current Spurs side, maybe what he would do if he was me. But then again I would probably shit my pants because there’s a ghost in my room and run out screaming.
Whatever happens, first, fourth or god forbid, fifth again, let’s just enjoy the journey, COYS!!
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