Last season was a fiasco. There were high hopes with AVB at the helm and 100 million spent on 7 players. Then he was sacked and a novice put in charge of the team. Levy and co had panicked. If they were unhappy with AVB then they should have either given him until the end of the season or at least put an experienced manager in charge. Even though AVB had some bad results I always thought we were in with a shout. At least while he was in charge we were in all competitions. Sherwood’s time running a top club was a disappointment (which is an understatement); getting us knocked out of all competitions and finishing 6th. With the exception of the Arsenal game (league; WHL), which we lost anyway, I thought we were appalling, and that is including the matches we had won. I thought Sherwood was out of his depth. But that messy season is now in the past and we’ve got a new manager/ coach to start a brand new season. And with that season comes high hopes. I, for one, am excited and optimistic.
Compared to us Southampton had a very good season considering their structure (that is compared to the top clubs). They played attractive football and impressed the fans and the media alike. Southampton’s good season was down to Mauricio Pochettino. With Tottenham finishing the season dishevelled we’ve now got a manager that is revered in the Premiership and will bring a more organised philosophy. He also should bring stability to our defence; under Sherwood tutelage we were devoid of any real defensive cohesion. Pochettino also promised to restructure our over bloated, and in some cases, deadwood squad.
Erik Lamela could be a surprise and a key player after his poor first season at WHL. No disrespect to AVB but you can’t embed 7 players immediately and in one season. On top of that Lamela has a manager that comes from the same country as himself, thus speaks the same language. So the omens look good where he is concerned. He is a talented player after all.
Soldado had a poor first season with us, but had a better pre-season tour. If he isn’t sold then hopefully we will see an improved performance from him. However I am concerned about Emmanuel Adebayor. He fades as the season goes on; he did that with AVB and that was why he stopped using him. He also did the same with Sherwood. Started well, but quickly faded out after awhile. Therefore I would like to see Spurs buy another striker to challenge both Adebayor and Soldado. I think Kane is too inexperienced at the moment, but hopefully he will flourish as time goes by (as I was writing this I just heard that Kane has signed a new and improved contract that will keep him at Spurs until 2019).
As for our midfield; I am happy with the talent we got. We have 13 talented players fighting for 5 places (providing we use one striker up front). No doubt some of those 13 will be sold before the transfer window closes.
West Ham is an interesting first game of the season for us. They humiliated us three times last season; culminating in them commissioning a West Ham shirt commemorating their treble over us (I suppose they’ve got to take the titbits where they can; to quote that famous Manchurian Frenchman “When seagulls follow the trawler it is because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea”; seems appropriate for West Ham’s situation). We need to show them that our lacklustre performances against them were just a blip. They, on their part, have problems of their own. They have a manager they hate; described as a “dead man walking”. Therefore we can help the West Ham crowd by humiliating their team and hopefully give them, the fans, enough ammunition to make their “dead man walking” turn into a reality. If we are successful then we move onto QPR and our former two managers managing them (Hoddle & Redknapp), at White Hart Lane. Get past that test and we will be confronted (again at WHL) with Liverpool, another team that humiliated us and finished 2nd last season. But this time around things are different for both teams. They are without their biting attacker and we are without our clown prince (Sherwood). But one step at a time. West Ham first.
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