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Tottenham v WBA Review

Posted on December 27, 2013 by Guest Writer

The general consensus of opinion following yesterdays draw with WBA was of overall disappointment, that covered team selection, performance, tactics and as a result of all those things some individual player performances were heavily criticised. Vlad Chiriches , Lewis Holtby and Nacer Chadli probably attracted most wrath as well as Roberto Soldado who was in fairness our better chance of a goal with Adebayor returning to type.

Chiriches on the face of it had a nightmare but Michael Dawson was not far behind him, both were terribly exposed time and again as the midfield was continually over run, WBA played with just the one striker and while Tottenham still retained plenty of the possession they were unable to create much with it while WBA on the other hand managed to create as many, and in all fairness, better goalscoring opportunities.

Lewis Holtby was asked to play an unfamiliar role in a deep holding position alongside Christian Eriksen, quite why with the giant specialist Etienne Capoue sat on the bench is anyone’s guess. From that base and against an extra man our midfield duo were asked to create momentum and chances and to provide protection to the back four and to be fair to them both retaining the lions share of possession over the course of the game was some achievement.

Nacer Chadli whilst rightfooted has played for most of his career in central midfield or as an inverted winger coming in from the left and although he had a very decent half hour against Southampton seemed unable to reproduce that form in this game, his eventual replacement Erik Lamela actually provided far more spark to proceedings and might have been the better option from the start on the day.

Emmanuel Adebayor, so influential in his last outing over the course of the final hour of that game really did very little and if Tim Sherwood intends putting all his eggs in that basket, based on on yesterdays performance he won’t last long, his control of the ball and movement was very ordinary and he infuriated us with being caught offside so often, Soldado was asked to pick up wider positions around him it seemed and was the main source of danger.

Things will improve with the return of some of the more influential players like Vertonghen, Dembele, Sandro, Paulinho and Townsend, but until that happens Sherwood has to consolidate our position and leave us something to play for this season and to do that surely this fast and loose method of playing has to be reigned in a little. Sherwood has been talked up as a coach of great potential and someone capable of taking the club forward, all I have seen is a person with plenty to say but with little to back it up so far. I hope that there is more to Tim Sherwood than being a Harry Redknapp clone, there are times to play with two up front, Manchester City are doing quite well with that method at the moment although even they are susceptible to leaking goals, they have the quality to outscore the opposition on most occasions whereas Tottenham don’t.

Here we are approaching the New Year and we are a troubled set of supporters, we turned against our coach and demanded more adventure which resulted in a solid defence and a good set of results being transformed almost overnight into heavy defeats and difficult performances, we became a team unlikely to lose a game and with every chance of winning all three points and turned it into a team rarely in control of a game at any stage. Already out of one cup and looking at elimination from another at the hands of an Arsenal team that will likely rest some of their stars and still have more than enough to defeat us.

Let’s hope to be proven wrong but if Tim Sherwood is taking advice from anybody at the moment please don’t let it be one of the Redknapps, Chelsea have set themselves up to be difficult to beat, they are not the swashbuckling side that they and their owner would hope them to be but they are third in the table and will only improve, the gap is growing between ourselves and the group at the top and looks like it will continue to grow, take a look at them Tim because right now some of us would rather be in their position than ours and incidentally their strikers are performing even worse than ours.

We all want our Tottenham back, a team that performs with style and brings excitement, but we have been trying that since the early 60’s and it hasn’t brought the amount of success that we would all like, in fact in the last twenty years the amount of success we have enjoyed has dwindled still further, it’s surely time for a Tottenham reality check, the club and the fans have to accept that the team has to start from a solid base and then evolve into what we want it to be, until we battle our way into the Champions League if thats how we have to do it we shall continue to come close occasionally, fail and lose our very best players, Modric and Bale and probably Vertonghen and Lloris next summer, Lamela might turn into the star we all hope and then we will lose him.

I know it’s very early day’s and many of the better players are injured so let me say now I hope Tim Sherwood is our coach going into next season as that will mean continuity and that he has done a great job, some sort of target might have been achieved and that he has proven himself to have the coaching ability and tactical awareness to take us forward, only time will tell but even now that is probably in short supply on the evidence of our last two home games,


7 to “Tottenham v WBA Review”

  1. Jeremy says:

    At around 60 minutes it became fairly obvious that ade was having one of off games, i dont understand why he didnt take him out and put an extra man on midfield. We were hardly in control from start to finish. How is this any different from what everyone’s been saying was wrong with AVB? Tactic obviously not working and he stuck with it all the way to the end. Eriksen in the middle of the park trying to defend just doesnt work. I understand he rates bentaleb but putting him on instead of capoue is more of him making a sub for himself rather the good of the game. Our backline was constantly being exposed and the match could have very easily ended 3-1, capoue would have offered some protection to the back four and eriksen can be pushed up Bentaleb did fairly well but i dont see what difference did he bring to the play? I seriously hope we do better for the stoke game cause we cant afford to be this tactically naive again

    • Tony says:

      It was a shambles, three games and the opposition could have scored 4 or 5 in each of them, as they are no liverpool or city there has to be concern. Not one of the new players have ever had to operate ina 4 4 2 system and to try to convert them in the 2nd half of a vital season is madness. To be honest AVB should have been supported until the summer as changing things so drastically now is a joke. Wasn’t Sherwood there to implement the methods of AVB right through the club to the youngsters. This whole sorry episode stinks and it’s us supporters who have to face the flak and ridicule once again. Sick to death of everything, we have been in great positions so often at this stage in last few seasons and Levy has not spent the money to bring in a great striker, we have all known what has been missing and what have we ended up with Saha on a free.
      This has got to stop.

      • Caleb says:

        In all fairness don’t blame levy for not buying a great striker he splashed out on a £26 million striker who hasn’t performed, doesn’t look like performing and was probably the wrong sort of striker for spurs

        • Tony says:

          I’m talking about the winter transfer windows of the past three seasons, Saha, Ryan Nelson, Lewis Holtby and Zeki Fryers have been the only purchases I can recall when there was talk of Damiao, Rossi and even aguerro. missed opportunities. I happen to think soldado is quality but needs someone near to make things happen, Eriksen close by or Lamela might be the answer.

          • Caleb says:

            I think soldado isn’t a lone striker he has no physical presence and doesn’t strike fear into defences, I suppose but in January it’s never the best time as prices are inflated and less players are available. AVB screwed soldado over by playing 2 inverted wingers basically giving soldado no crosses. Lamela should play, he may be young and adapting but you don’t spend £30 million and not play him. Eriksen should help soldado but if Sherwood keeps playing this kind of 4-0-6 formation with no centre mids and attacking creative mids in a 442 he may find even if they start to score they will concede just as many

          • Tony says:

            I don’t actually think inverted wingers is such a bad thing as we had more shots and more on target than any other team. Inverted wingers works when fullbacks overlap and with Walker on the right and rose on left it was effective. rose injury and no replacement for nearly 4 mths upset things and our best centre back had to cover. Levy and Baldini did the spending but no cover at lb cost AVb his formation. 442 with no def. mid is a joke and utd and Arsenal will take us to the cleaners if he persists with it.i would just play lamela around and with Soldado, he has a trick or two up his sleeve.
            As far as inflated fees are concerned getting the right man even over the odds might have seen them home in the CL as they only lost out by a point

          • Caleb says:

            What I meant was the inverted wingers didn’t help soldado, they were decent for spurs, although they didn’t score, it meant soldado had less shots

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