What can one say?

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

What can one say? We went there to close the gap between us and the top two, but all we ended up with was nothing… zilch, no points. Allowing the top two to get further away, while the ones below get closer to our position. Somebody was having a good laugh at our expense. Very disappointing.

The trip, planning, started the day before (Friday); going to London in the evening. I then got up the next morning at 3.15 am. From Goodmayes I made my way to Edmonton to catch a Spurs coach to Burnley. The trip to Edmonton took just under half an hour. The coach trip took a bit longer. We left Edmonton at 5 am, and with toilet stops on the way we finally arrived at 10.50am (outside the stadium). We all departed from the coach and then made our way to the Away end of Turf Moore entrance. I was with Martin, who was with me on the coach.

Some of you might be surprised to learn that Burnley have been champions of England twice, in 1920–21 and 1959–60, have won the FA Cup once, in 1914, and have won the Community Shield twice, in 1960 and 1973. The Clarets also reached the 1961 quarter-finals of the European Cup. They are one of only five teams to have won all top four professional divisions of English football, along with Wolverhampton Wanderers, Preston North End, Sheffield United and Portsmouth.

Burnley is a nice town, which is in Lancashire, England, The town is partially surrounded by countryside to the south and east, with the smaller towns of Padiham and Nelson to the west and north respectively.
The town began to develop in the early medieval period as a number of farming hamlets surrounded by manor houses and royal forests, and has held a market for more than 700 years. During the Industrial Revolution it became one of Lancashire’s most prominent mill towns; at its peak, it was one of the world’s largest producers of cotton cloth and a major centre of engineering.

The only thing Burnley never gave us, at least this time around, was the result we wanted. Anyway, we entered the turnstile area, a quick bag check and a pat down and to the turnstiles.

A lady Steward was giving out instructions at the turnstiles, such as: “put your ticket on the ticket machine, push in, and the turnstiles will let you through”.

Gee, thanks, I thought. We would never have thought of that, they were so civilised up there, and so kind to help us poor southerners out… So, the brain went into gear, and we did as we were instructed (otherwise the technology would have confused us, and then where would we be? Still standing outside looking lost and sheepish). Low and behold we were through, she was right! Thank you, lady-Barnsley instructor, for the bleeding bloody obvious!

We got ourselves a cider/ beer and meat pies (excellent traditional Yorkshire food), chatted and went to our seats. Martin and I were in different areas; he is a season ticket holder, while I am a Premium member. They group the Premium members together. I chatted to other premium members. One of them was a lovely lady sitting next to me – Rachel – who, even though born in Tottenham, lives in Dundee, Scotland. This wasn’t the first time I had met her. I first had spoken to her at the Palace league away game.
Finally, the whistle went, and the cheers went up.

Chris Wood broke the deadlock for the hosts early in the second half as he rose to head home Dwight McNeil’s inswinging corner – his fourth goal in as many games.

Harry Kane, making his first appearance since 13 January, equalised after latching on to Danny Rose’s quick throw-in and poking past Tom Heaton. When Kane scored, we were ecstatic and high fives all around.
We were getting back into it, or at least we thought so. It was only a matter of time.

Ashley Barnes tapped in Burnley’s winner 7 minutes before the 90 minutes were up. So much for a matter of time.

After the match, Mauricio Pochettino angrily confronted referee Mike Dean after our damaging defeat at Burnley, which dealt a huge blow to us. He was angered by a number of decisions including the award of a corner that led to Burnley’s opener, had to be pulled away by Clarets defender Phil Bardsley as his frustrations spilled over. But blaming referees is just an excuse. If we had won in the same manner, would he still have chastised the referee because it went our way? Of course not. Pochettino must accept some of the blame for his tactical errors (and not for the first time).

Pochettino later apologised for his actions (but that did him no good as he was charged by the FA).
We stay in third place, six points behind Liverpool who drew with Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday. Arsenal leapfrog United as they beat Southampton.

Burnley rise to 14th and are now six points clear of the relegation places.

There isn’t that much more to add. Now we must brush ourselves down and concentrate on our next three matches; Chelsea (a), Arsenal (h) and then Dortmund in the Champions League (a).

I got back to Goodmayes and Hanna’s house at 9 pm. A long and knackering day and the result didn’t help. The next day I went home.

Just one observation; an argument started at the back of the coach about Brexit, and then you could hear somebody else pick up the subject and continue it with their friends/ seat companions. I suppose it took the thoughts away from our result.

Chelsea lost in the League Cup Final, and Sarri lost his temper and made a total arse of himself (over a simple misunderstanding). Next up for them is us (surprise, surprise!) and if he fails that test, then that will be curtains on another Blues manager. They are going through managers as diarrhoea goes through the hole of despair. Never mind, we shall give him a proper send-off, something to remember his last match by.

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In the 90's, I was a writer for many of the top Spurs Fanzines (The Spurs, Spur of the Moment, MEHSTG and many others). A Spurs loyalist since the 60/61 season and now a season ticket holder (Premium). I run a Spurs Facebook page (“Tottenham Hotspur Supporters’ voice” and co-run another one with Don Scully called “Tottenham Hotspur FC: Inside Track”). There is also a Spurs Twitter account (@HotspurVoice). I travel with Spurs to away games (including Europe). I have my a Blog (My blogging travels with Tottenham Hotspur Premium). The articles that appear on the blog also appear on SpursWeb and other applications.


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