Tim Sherwood: Out of his depth

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

With the season petering out into one of frustrating anti-climax, despite its springs in August of excitement and progression, another summer of guaranteed uncertainty is nearly upon us. With everything slowly and painfully going further and further wrong we ask is Tim Sherwood the right man to take this club forward; and the answer is a resounding no.

Since Sherwood’s promotion to ‘Head Coach’ on 23rd December, despite a good start things have been pretty much downhill ever since. Simply, the same tactical and style problems that were prudent within AVB’s reign are still as evident today. Sherwood has proved more flexible, switching between 4-4-2 & 4-2-3-1 yet has generally favoured the latter in recently months; so the formation is the same. The style of football is likewise identical; too slow, too boring, side to side and generally lacking any kind of direction, fluency or tempo. Couple this with increasing long balls and reliance on Adebayor; whom is the one major success of Sherwood’s tenure so far, and in fact there’s an argument the team have gone backwards. With the exception of Ade and Christian Eriksen no other players form has improved, highlighted by Sherwood incessant use of Bentaleb and now the worrying emergence Harry Kane. Indeed he seems adamant he’ll prove a point about bringing players through.

Perhaps most worryingly though the team lack an attacking style, and with that substance. We are now evermore realiant on Adebayor than we were on Bale or any other player. Indeed as of 2nd March 2014 the (Opta) statistics compare to reveal:

  • Adebayor has scored or assisted 54.5% of Tottenham PL goals under Sherwood
  • Bale scored or assisted 37.8% of the teams PL goals under AVB

As such, AVB was getting more out of the team unit; we were more efficient, more organised and did have a style of play; albeit a tediously boring one. Yet Sherwood, has done nothing to alter this and currently the team look more clueless that ever.

Couple this with plain and simple match results and Sherwood doesn’t compare favourable either. The Tottenham record this season with AVB and Sherwood in charge looks as follows (Sky Sports):

Andre Villas Boas


Tim Sherwood


Games in Charge



Ave. Scored



Ave. Conceded



Win Rate



Loss Rate



As is clear under Sherwood we have deteriorated in all areas regarding match result as well as goals scored & conceded. So how can Sherwood, who was last choice to replace AVB in the first place, still be considered to be capable of taking Tottenham into the future when his record is worse than his predecessor anyway? You have to feel if AVB was replaced, Sherwood should too under the same pretences, and thus install one of the originally favoured candidates in Louis van Gaal, or Frank de Boer, however there is also talk of Italy Manager Cesare Prandelli.

Finally, to backup these points it’s been clear that Sherwood has been recently been feeling the pressure. However, much he wishes to ‘wear his heart on his sleeve’ he has to be careful in the image he portrays of himself, but also most importantly the club to the footballing fraternity. Yes, it is great to hear the anomaly of a straight talking manager, holding no punches against opponents, his own players or whoever; however, there is a time and a place, and its effect lessens with each time he comes out firing. He has to pick his moments, and pick his battles and I think this issue originates in his inexperience of management at the top level. Indeed it’s very rare you see a manager speak about his team as Tim did after the Chelsea game, and yes he had a point but in modern football is there a place for this? Well that remains to be seen.

Frankly, he can’t afford to get too passionately involved in particular ‘moments’ or matches; the top managers remain reasonably level headed, survey and act with intelligence poise and a plan. Currently, Sherwood has display very little of these key attributes. Take Thursday for instance, yes we want to see that you want to fight the battles for the club on the touchline, but the way he squared up after a pretty petty gesture by Jorge Jesus was poor, and tarnishes the image of the club. There was no need. Id simply rather he focussed on winning the wars on the pitch, through clever astute team selections, tactics, a certain plan and good substitutions. It is this that he has to develop quickly if he wishes to remain in charge beyond the end of May.

However, we as a club cannot keep up the level of managerial turnover we are currently, it’s just not good business, and is destabilising from a footballing sense. However, do we have time to nurture the talent of Sherwood and grow with him? We are well off the Champions League as he rightly stated, but on paper we shouldn’t be. Instead of various experiments and hoping Sherwood turns out alright, now is the time to go and get one of those colossal managers of European football. Personally, I think we needs an experienced, old knowledgeable head, that’s been there before, seen it all before and most importantly achieved it all before to turn out fortunes around and give us back our stylish identity, direction and hopefully bring us the success we so desperately crave. Over to you Mr Levy…..

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  1. Love the article esp the stat, I agree we do need a good head is team really it ?as fantastic as he may be seems to appear to be a clueless bull in a china shop , no vision to develop the team that we have no sense of creativity frm a managerail point of view.this is more dwn to the fact that he wants more than anyting to prove himself rytn in terms of breaking the youth players into the first team, no harm, however this needs to be a process slow, meothodical process ,we have come a long way in the last 13 yrs and the greatest manger that we have seen was uncle harry , who with much respect should lil and at tyms showed no loyalty to the club, sherwood has that but lacks a managerial brain to move this team forward.I agree we need a manager that has been there, done that we need a manager aour players are going to trust and look up to , we need a manager that is going to inspire us on and off the pitch , we may not have the funding of a city and chealsea wht we do have a a mr levy , a shrewd and intelligent bussiness man who at tyms gets a tad too involved , none the less its a no brainer that the “D” will find us such a manager , never thought I would say this , but for once I wud conceed , ” in daniel levy ” I trust god forbid we lose him and gain a chairman with a footy brain that matchs a lord sugars… Fingers and toes cross for tomorrow personally tim is gona mess it up mr self proclaimed gunners fan. COYS


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