Boring, boring Tottenham

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It is widely regarded in footballing circles that since ‘Arry Redknapp departed us, Tottenham are no longer the league’s entertainers. Gone are the days that the football on show at White Hart Lane is the free-flowing, pulse-raising displays that had journalists up and down the land drooling. Given 2013’s performances thus far, this is a sentiment I just cannot agree with.

In season’s gone by, the red tops favourite adjective to describe Spurs was undoubtedly ‘swashbuckling’, a word I have yet to see in a tabloid article involving us this campaign. I think it is fair to say that we’ve by no means played with the same reckless abandon and gung-ho attitude as the Jol/Redknapp eras, but to label Tottenham’s new style of play as boring is in my mind, too much of a narrow minded way to look at things.

In my opinion, Spurs’ recent performances are ones I daren’t take my eyes off. For a Spurs fan, being a goal down in the dying seconds of the game no longer means that we’re consigned to defeat. We’ve found a steely determination and the ability to keep probing for that late, late moment of glory.

Last-gasp goals aside, our build up play and possession football is often as impressive as a counter attack being launched at break-neck speed. Team’s have learnt to deal with Tottenham this year and set out to nullify our pace. Without space to run into, the pace we possess in the wide areas means nothing. By us keeping possession of the ball and working the opening we are still finding ways to unlock defences as well as taking away the risk of opposition goals. Although us moving the ball through the defence and midfield isn’t as aesthetically pleasing, you can always feel that there is something in the offing. The confidence that no matter what stage of the game, something will happen can be felt around White Hart Lane. AVB has become the Alfred Hitchcock of Football – A master of suspense.

Spurs Lyon

In previous seasons the football has been exciting, exhilarating at times. But we only knew one thing and that was to go for the jugular from the off and when a team could resist us taking a stranglehold on a game, we’d often fail to come up with a plan B. That is why we’d be held at home to teams like West Brom as often as we would administer a 4-0 drubbing. Compare that to this year’s performances and you’ll notice that although we’ve rarely won by a comprehensive score line, we’ve also found a way, that when we’re pressing hard but it looks like we’re out of luck, to ensure that we get something from those games. Often in a late, glorious fashion.

Although us moving the ball through the defence and midfield isn’t as aesthetically pleasing, you can always feel that there is something in the offing.

It has happened now far too often for it to be a fluke. That’s not luck, that is teamwork, that is determination and a never-say-die attitude and that is why for me, it is unjust that we have lost our tag as the premier leagues entertainers. If having a side that refuse the accept defeat is boring, then please Tottenham Hotspur bore me to tears.

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39 Responses to Boring, boring Tottenham

  1. Jay 27/02/2013 at 9:22 pm #

    Very well put. In fact, VERY well put.

  2. chris boyd waters 27/02/2013 at 9:46 pm #

    Yeah, I know ..we’re winning a bit ugly (boring even) and with a huge Bale reliance at present…but I just feel that we’re getting away with a midfield that isn’t quite sure what to do with itself yet. We DO miss a playmaker ..Gazza, Hoddle, Modric ..and we must find one soon. It’s the Spurs way, and I don’t want to go back to the Graham years. We DO miss a top striker also, and again must find one soon. Sandro’s presense this season gave us steel in front of the back four, no matter who he played with, while Parker (bless him) is trying his best, but is not playing the masterful stuff he played alongside Modric. Dembele is too deep and isn’t dovetailing with Parker properly, so neither know when to push forward (and Parker shouldn’t anyway) while poor Lewis just about gets used to playing inside, in all this mayhem, and then gets pushed out to the wings. I agree that we had little by way of Plan B in the last few seasons, but this season we still haven’t worked out our Plan A. Having said that, we’re winning and we’re creating lots of chances. Poor Ade. Rather than benefiting from our ‘swarming’ midfield, he seems bypassed by it, so we’ve got to go with Dempsey against Arsenal (or Defoe, if back). Bale has carried us and that’s great, but this won’t go on for ever, and we need to be tighter in the middle of the park. It’s wonderful that we’re doing well and having the privilege of seeing greatness (in Bale) unfold before our eyes, but we can’t let up for a minute in the run in for the top four, and I’m worried that the concentration and energy levels will drop.

    • woodsy 27/02/2013 at 11:29 pm #

      I agree that we need someone creative in midfield desperately and that has to be a priority in the summer.

      Disagree about Ade not playing against Arsenal though. He’ll be up for it and needs games to find his form. He’s got the potential to be decent again if we give him time but we could do with a top striker coming in too.

    • Spursfan 28/02/2013 at 12:13 am #

      I very much appreciate your unbiased and analytical opinion. You’ve shown your heart as well as head for football matters and your love for the club – as we all have. Unfortunately, some of us don’t have the head at times. AVB is not the main reason of our success this season – it’s Bales’ and [occasionally] Defoe’s contributions that made the difference. But as you quite correctly say, what we at least need is a quality [Mordic like] midfielder and a van Persie like striker. There I think AVB and Levy & co. are failing the club. Thanks for your [so far best] comments. Spursfan.

      • gotthemnotstir 28/02/2013 at 12:50 am #

        You clearly have nothing original to say “spursfan”, so how about this…….keep your negativity to yourself, stop behaving as though you’re an undercover gooner and love the shirt. And no, that doesn’t mean pretending everything is alright, it means understanding that it is alright! 3rd in the league in spite of having no decent forwards (Bale aside….obviously), having key players out for ALL of the season (defoe, kaboul, Benny, The Beast……) and a manager in his first year. For gods sake man, what do you expect??

        • Justin Martin 28/02/2013 at 6:09 pm #

          Agreed! What’s with the negativity? FFS. I don’t know about anyone else but as far as I can see, there are just some people that are never going to accept AVB. Sadly, that also includes some so called Tottenham fans.
          I have criticised DL, and still do. What I will say is that DL is by and large doing what he thinks is right for the club. Do I disagree with his business dealings? At times yes. Do I understand much about business? Not very much. Anyway! We may lack the quality striker we all crave. However, the situation is as it is, we must get on with supporting out team, just like the team gets on with it.
          COYS

  3. spurian 27/02/2013 at 9:52 pm #

    some people are never happy, we’re 3rd for gods sake

    • Spursfan 28/02/2013 at 12:17 am #

      My dear friend

      Someone can easily say then, we are fourth for god’s sake, or sixth [for Europa cup] for god’s sake or we are at 17th in the table [we can play PL next year] for god’s sake. If you can’t look up my friend you always look and go down and down………best wishes.

      • Dan Mac 01/03/2013 at 4:05 pm #

        He didn’t say we should want more… but if you don’t enjoy the good times while you have them… what’s the point??? also, it’s not our job to be stressed about the small stuff and the tactics, we can discuss them, as it’s always fun, but when things are going well why not enjoy the ride?

        • Dan Mac 01/03/2013 at 4:05 pm #

          *shouldn’t want more

  4. Serj 27/02/2013 at 9:54 pm #

    I don’t know a single fan that has said we are boring. Are we as exciting as last season? Nope. But that isn’t the same as boring

  5. Martin Chivers 27/02/2013 at 9:54 pm #

    Very well said, we work extremely well as a team with that never say die attitude. Everyone fights for that cause. Really proud of the boys at the moment, credit must go to AVB for his preparation and no matter how I loved that free flowing football that we’ve all been blessed with watching for the last few years, we are getting those results that we’ve all considered to be potential banana skins. If that equals boring then I’m with you all the way mate. Come on!

  6. wiltshirespur 27/02/2013 at 9:56 pm #

    Simply we just haven’t been playing our best yet, the passing isnt nearly as quick or as smooth as it will be. This, for me, is a great sign for the future, as when it does get going we really will be a force to be reckoned with.

  7. michael 27/02/2013 at 9:59 pm #

    were clearly missing sandro as he was the steele who broke up the play and gave thatright pass for quicker and better attacks credit to avb and he should be rewarded with a montinho and w/c striker

  8. Andrew 27/02/2013 at 10:06 pm #

    It’s not that, it’s just we lost Modric, VDV and effectively Adebayor from last season.

    This year’s Ade is a waste of time, space and money, and Dempsey & Sig have so far failed to match VDV. Dembele has had moments of brilliance, he’s a joy to watch, but I would not put him in the same league as Modric.

    That’s why we’re not as exciting, but AVB has made us resilient and we’re doing brilliantly.

    • spursince82 27/02/2013 at 11:53 pm #

      Good acquittal!

      VDV (even on a lazy day) brought actual pedigree, as a cultured footballer and exponent of ‘ the beautiful game ‘to the premier league and tottenham respectively. (Especially against that lot down the road).
      Modric, is, was a brilliant little schemer on his day and had a touch that has not been surpassed in our side since his departure.
      I have to say , watching spurs this season has been ‘ boring ‘ and that albeit the team has a resolute and nervy approach mentally, if it were not for Bale going the extra yard, we would not be riding so high and able to boast our current points tally ( as awkward as that is for me to say).

      none the less, we are third and are grinding out results. In the balance of things, think if we could introduce, Adebayor to the exit door, bring in a player or two to compliment the abilities of Bale, then the free-flowwing side to our game could be combined with the work-man-like style that is currently serving us so well.

      COYFS

    • Spursfan 28/02/2013 at 12:19 am #

      Spot on Andrew. You too have a good head and a better heart. Levy must surely is responsible for our also-ran efforts. Best wishes.

      • Dan Mac 01/03/2013 at 4:13 pm #

        Levy is responsible for the fact we are even discussing champions league… shame that some people can only blame him for not signing a world class striker, when in fact he bought Ade (Arsenal, Man City, Real Madrid) for peanuts and the only reason you think a world class striker would even play for us is due to the fact that Levy has taken our club up a level by being careful in the transfer market and building a team gradually!

  9. rob 27/02/2013 at 10:06 pm #

    This article is completely mental. Nobody is saying Spurs are boring this season, we are considered the most dangerous counter attacking side in the league; with the most exciting player. This article is the first I have seen to suggest that we are boring, and it then goes on to argue that it’s own suggestion is harsh and attempts to disprove it.

    • AlphaT AKA SPURTAN 27/02/2013 at 11:08 pm #

      THIS IS SPUR-TA!
      Honestly you don’t read this blog much do you?, did you not get the sarcasm dripping from the article in relation to the title!

    • Spursfan 28/02/2013 at 12:36 am #

      My dear friend, read the article properly. The author is not saying we are boring, other journalists are commenting it. ~And don’t they have a little point the way we are playing this year [although winning] compared to first half of last season? We all love our club but don’t have the right to analyse our performance in an objective way? I think we do. So we say what’s best for the club, its future and most importantly its fans – that’s you, that guy wrote the article and me. Best wishes to all of us – who make up the club. Not just Levy. Spursfan.

      • rob 28/02/2013 at 6:37 pm #

        Try reading my comment properly. The point is that nobody is saying that we are boring, and this is the only place I have heard it suggested that anyone is. ‘Other journalists are commenting it’. By all means continue trying to be a smart arse and provide a couple of links to these articles. In fact, try what I just did. Type ‘Boring Tottenham’ into Google and there are five links to an article about that subject, and no others. All links to the same article. Wanna hazard a guess as to which article that is?

  10. paul f 27/02/2013 at 10:09 pm #

    We are mostly dull. Take away Bale’s goals and we don’t create much. We are methodical, compact, hard to play against. Essentially dull but effective. But, and here is the thing, we have the amazing Bale, who is worth the admission money alone

  11. Jon Gorman 27/02/2013 at 10:15 pm #

    Have people forgot that AVB learnt his trade under Mourinho and have you ever seen any of his teams playing neat intricate play? No but he can win games against the best… Time to make a choice do we Bore the pants off everyone and win or Play with style the Tottenham way and win FA?? COYS

  12. Andre's Crouching Again 27/02/2013 at 10:19 pm #

    When we get our new player up for the fight, by that I mean Younes Kaboul, we will be even tighter at the back and another threat from our set plays. It’s right that Bale should get all the plaudits but it’s Lloris for me thats made a hell of a difference to our defence. For a slight keeper he is very brave and the save against the Spammers won us the match.

  13. andrew lucas 27/02/2013 at 10:22 pm #

    i will take boring and winning all day long . . . . well maybe for one season at least. We have areas to improve all over the pitch but the league table does not lie. There are still plenty of games to go and time for us to blow it again . . . . i cant help but think it is perfectly set up for Spurs to fluff our lines again and in reality if Bale is injured we are buggered!! COYS

  14. David Jackson 27/02/2013 at 10:41 pm #

    I am bewildered, gobsmacked, confused, puzzled, mystified by this ridiculous article….. Spurs are indeed the most entertaining team this season. Nothing boring about them at all!!! We are left breathless every time Spurs play – our hearts are always pounding. It wasn’t like that with Redknapp most of the time. I was over the moon when he was sacked as he really let the team down badly last February after being ten points ahead of that team down the road. Redknapp had his mind occupied on becoming the next England manager that he neglected his duty for the club. You can see what happened – Arsenal snatched the third place and even in fourth place, we were at the mercy of boring boring Chelsea winning the CL later. Please don’t waste your time writing such drivel!!!

    • Spursfan 28/02/2013 at 12:27 am #

      Calm down gentleman, use your head, mind your language – that guy is no lesser a fan you are, he is no less intelligent than you are. But what you don’t have my fellow Spurs-fan friend is that he has a head as well as a heart – he can see things analytically, objectively as well as emotionally [in a balanced way].

      Just hope and pray that [1] Levy gets some sense in his head and [2] in the meantime Spurs rule London in May 2013. Best wishes. Spursfan.

  15. RhinoNeal 27/02/2013 at 10:46 pm #

    We have to keep going with what we’ve got thanks to Levy. We have no real threat up front and have needed a real striker since Berbatov left us. I fail to understand why Levy has never been that interested in buying one. We also need a good attacking midfield player to carry on from Modric or get him back. Wouldn’t that make a lot of difference to have Modric back in our midfield?
    As for being boring then I don’t think so I think it’s more of a case of being more organized.

  16. Martin Sewell 27/02/2013 at 11:11 pm #

    When we brought in ABV and lost Modric and VDV I resigned myself to a transition season expecting any manager would need time to build. Hugo and Jan have been first rate buys. When Younis is back we’ll be really blessed at the back. Having said that we are a bit duller and we all want to see us win with style. Still, I’d have taken 3rd during a ” transition series” so lets keep supporting a manager who is clearly effective in setting up his team. Lewis looks good when we can figure out how best to use that talent and energy. I love his commitment.

  17. Viktor 27/02/2013 at 11:11 pm #

    Don’ t Sell him-wake up and move away AVB and bring back the only reason Bale, Berbatov, Modric, Carrick was and are here-atlist the money…Remember the way it all happend untill now.Remember AVB and Levy will kill us.
    Please spend some time and read this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Jol
    And see this-and try to remember!
    https://www.google.bg/search?q=martin+jol&hl=bg&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=GpAuUe2IDY_KsgaQwIGQBg&ved=0CAoQ_AUoAQ&biw=1366&bih=643

  18. Nate 27/02/2013 at 11:33 pm #

    I’ve also heard people criticise our style under avb so I agree that with the writer he is not making it up

    We are so organised that our frailties are less obvious

    Parker should have adequately stepped in for sandro’, if fact sandy wasn’t suppose to start over Parker but did as he was injured if Parker was playing like he was last year we would be stronger same with ade

    Dempsey is not hit form or Lewis although he’s shown signs basically if Parker was on form and one of our ams we’d be better

    We are relying on bale, I’m struggling to see a win on Saturday
    I’d be happy with adraw tbh

    Players need to step up ESP ade and Parker that’s why he brought on Carroll need an am with guts, hopefully soggy will come good and Parker will either stay behind in the em position and covered belle rather than copying him doing 360 degree turns that make him look lost and confused to me

  19. Alan Cable 28/02/2013 at 7:22 am #

    We have struggled to score , I think thats a huge problem, but we are managing because of how fantantastic a player Gareth Bale is becoming. If we had a world class striker, and I mean world class, not benteke, I think our reliance on Bale would be less pronounced. I’d like to think that he’d of scored just as many great goals, but we would of already been in winning positions. Last summer and January just gone, I patiently waited to see which striker we’d get, when the summer window closed, decided it was beacuse DL was waiting until the Brazilian season was finished to get Damaio, but alas no. I am positive, no point being otherwise, but the opportunity we have here is immense, genuinely. If we can challenge for the title, why would Bale leave? It seems Hulk is unhappy in Russia, and he still looks a class act….. COYS on Sunday, and I hope The dirty ARSEnal dont try and nobble Bale, which I certainly wouldnt put past them.

  20. Alan Cable 28/02/2013 at 7:23 am #

    FYI, Fantantastic is Fantastic squared. ahem…

  21. Cheshuntboy 28/02/2013 at 8:17 am #

    Teams and managers are ultimately judged on results, not performances, and even a sceptic like me can’t dispute that Spurs under AVB are winning games (but in a style that George Graham would be proud of). If we qualify for the CL (the Europa League as well would be a bonus!), then AVB’s first season would have to be judged a success, but why his fans have to believe that the football is as good as under Redknapp in the face of all the evidence to the contrary I just do not know. We’re prettier than Stoke and Sunderland, but just about every other club in the top half of the table is easier on the eye than Spurs – FACT (as another Iberian manager once said).

  22. Brian Grace 28/02/2013 at 8:41 am #

    As a spurs fan for over 60 years I have seen many ups and downs and at the moment we are on an up Spurs have always played good football and to suggest they are boring is rubbish we have a great squad and a very good manager the club is run on in a sound financial way by Daniel Levy and how many other premier teams can have 5 top quality players injured and keep getting results

  23. Viktor 28/02/2013 at 1:40 pm #

    Don’ t Sell him-wake up and move away AVB and bring back the only reason Bale, Berbatov, Modric, Carrick was and are here-atlist the money…Remember the way it all happend untill now.Remember AVB and Levy will kill us.
    Please spend some time and read this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Jol
    And see this-and try to remember!
    https://www.google.bg/search?q=martin+jol&hl=bg&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=GpAuUe2IDY_KsgaQwIGQBg&ved=0CAoQ_AUoAQ&biw=1366&bih=643

    P.S. Dose anyone missing the time from 1991 until 2004??? How many managers we had and when all turn around?Do you remember at all when we played last time nice attacking football?
    What we see now is not by mistake laughable by talksport-AVB: ”There is Gareth Bale-pass him the ball he will shot”.
    Why Berbatov left us and decline Juventus to join Fulham and run all the way-yes Run!!! to hug Martin Jol?
    We have no future with AVB and Levy-soon or later they will sell Bale and we will slowly get back to 1991-2004.As simple is that.

  24. Dave Mac 28/02/2013 at 3:49 pm #

    Decent read. I certainly think our fitness levels are better as we are staying sharper in the dying minutes. But we also seem to be playing right to the end as well. Previously we’ve let our heads drop but we are showing that bit of extra grit. Its great!

  25. Justin Martin 28/02/2013 at 6:38 pm #

    As far as I’m concerned, DL has made mistakes, but we are in 3rd. Yes we could blow up again. However, are those waiting for that to happen just too used to seeing previous spurs teams crumble under pressure, or is it based on any objective evidence? Yes we are relying on bale. Yes we are evidently crying out for a decent, reliable CF, but no, we are not going to crumble. It is testament to the team that, almost strikerless, we are still winning games. By hook or by crook we are doing it. When we do get the team playing properly, and our strikers hitting the net regularly, then we will be an unstoppable cyclone.
    One point. Not playing with the required swashbuckling style? Didn’t someone say on this page that teams are setting out to nullify our attacking prowess? They did. Yes teams are setting out to stop us playing, so no we are not waltzing around the pitch looking beautiful. Instead, we are having to break teams down, and we are not doing to badly at it. What do people expect? Maybe we should start a petition demanding that teams allow us to play our style of football. Demand that any team playing us keep 7 players in our half? FFS get real.

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