Looking Forward

 

MANCHESTER CITY (Home)

FA Cup Fourth Round replay

Wednesday 4th February 2004

With the Jeckyl and Hyde performance behind us and a lack-lustre showing at Fulham fresh in the mind, Tottenham need to show some of the form of early January to propel them through to Round Five.  With City going close to getting something at Highbury, they will be confident of a good performance when they turn up at the Lane.

With Kevin Keegan struggling to achieve league results, the Cup might be their one way out of the poor run they are in, but bearing in mind the Carling Cup game here, the light blues will need to turn in a better display than that evening.  Bringing in a couple of new faces might help, but defender Daniel van Buyten is in the same position as Jermain Defoe, having signed too late to be registered for the FA Cup, leaving Arni Arason, a free signing from Rosenborg, to make his debut in goal.  This will prevent Kevin Stuur-Ellegaard being exposed to making any more mistakes as his youth shows errors in his judgment.

Sommeil has gone to Marseille as part of the van Buyten deal, so he will be missing in similar fashion to Zamora for Tottenham.  This leaves City short at the back with four of Sylvain Distin, Richard Dunne, Sun Jihai, Michael Tarnat and the recalled Gerard Wiekens to fill the defensive berths.  With Jihai being made to look good last time out, the others might struggle against pace, so Dalmat's running at players at speed could force errors and set up opportunities for Postiga and Keane.  This could be the last time we see Keano in a traditional striking role, with Defoe ready to break through and grab one of the goal-scoring places.  We will not have great height in attack, so it might be necessary for the defenders to move up for set-pieces to provide some sort of aerial threat like that which paid off in the match at the CoM stadium.

The midfield is competitive and with Bosvelt and Reyna, there are two ball-winners that can release the wide men - Wright Phillips and Sinclair - to attack the Tottenham back four.  I would imagine that Wright-Phillips will start as he caused Spurs problems when introduced in the away tie, leaving Sibierski and McManaman on the bench to come on and add power and trickery respectively, if required.  Spurs will have Brown and Davies to buzz around, alongside Dalmat's running and Ledley King's cool passing, but they will need to put in plenty of effort to prevent City getting a foothold in the midfield.

Upfield, City have only limited options in attack, with the pacy Patrick Anelka and the prolific Robbie Fowler in partnership.  Gardner looked to be able to keep up with the speed of Anelka, while Fowler is canny enough to find space in and around the box to get his shots on goal.  Both need to be watched closely and shut down at the earliest opportunity to prevent them having a sight of goal.  Jonathan Macken came on in the first game and showed that he has good awareness of where he should be when an attack develops, so his goalscoring ability must be curbed by keeping a close eye on his movement.

Spurs might find it harder going than the Carling Cup tie here in December, but an early goal might settle Tottenham and make City come out to get the win to see them through to a meeting with their local rivals in the Fifth Round, but that would allow Dalmat more space to play in and even when he has three men around him, other players must exploit the vacant areas to the best advantage.

It will be tight and I take Tottenham to just edge it ...

PREDICTION : -    Tottenham  2    Manchester City  1

For more information on the opponents and their history, including full result history of matches between the two teams, click here.

VIEW FROM THE OTHER SIDE

MEHSTG has been unable to get a view from an opposing site.

PLAYERS UNAVAILABLE

TOTTENHAM : -  Jamie Redknapp (not match fit); Dean Richards (calf); Frederic Kanoute (on international duty); Jermain Defoe (ineligible)

MANCHESTER CITY : -  David James (cup tied); Paolo Wanchope (knee); Nicky Weaver (knee); Daniel van Buyten (ineligible)

COVERAGE : 
TV :  Live on Sky Sports 1
Radio :  BBC Radio Five Live (909/693 AM).
Internet :  www.spurs.co.uk   Live webcast    (subscription service only); BBC London at http://www.bbc.co.uk/london/sport/localradio/index.shtml

 

 

Tottenham   3     Manchester City   4     (Half-time score : 3-0)
FA Cup Fourth Round replay
Wednesday 4th February 2004
Venue : -  White Hart Lane
Kick Off : -  19.45 p.m.
Weather : -  Dry, mild
Crowd : -  30,400
Referee : -  Rob Styles (Hampshire)
Teams : -  
Tottenham : -  Keller; Carr (c), Richards, Gardner, Ziege (Jackson 61); Dalmat, Brown, King, Davies; Postiga (Poyet 10), Keane
Unused subs:  Burch, Yeates, Kelly 

Manchester City : -  Arason, Sun Jihai, Tarnat, Distin, Dunne, Sinclair, Bosvelt, Barton, Wright-Phillips, Fowler, Anelka. Subs: Stuhr-Ellegaard, Sibierski, Macken, McManaman, Jordan
Unused subs:  -

Colours : -  (kits courtesy of http://www.colours-of-football.com)
Tottenham Manchester City
Scorers : -  
Tottenham  -   King 2, Keane 20, Ziege 43

Manchester City -  Distin 48, Bosvelt 62, Wright-Phillips 81, Macken 90  

Cards : -  
Tottenham  -  None

Manchester City -     Barton (foul) 43,           Barton (dissent) 46,     Bosvelt (foul) 79,     Jihai (foul) 86

An incredible match which saw a dramatic change around in fortune left Tottenham fans holding their heads and City supporters looking forward to a trip across their city in the Fifth Round.  

The return of Gus Poyet to the bench and Dean Richards to the defence signalled a step backward sin the progress the team had been making.  With Doherty unavailable through injury, Pleat chose to reinstate Deano in the middle of defence and opted to have Poyet as a substitute to bring the calm to the midfield he thinks is the Uruguayan's main asset.  Calm is not what he brings to the team.  Panic is what he brings to the team along with the similarly immobile Richards.  No wonder Gardner had the worst game he has had for ages, with the lumbering central defender alongside him.  At least Doherty gets around the pitch.

It had all started so well, with the ball being worked across the front of the City box to King, who, standing in the area, curled a shot out of Arason's reach inside two minutes.  It was a well taken shot and the early goal was what Tottenham needed to settle their nerves.  Not that the goal did that, because afterwards Postiga pulled up with a hamstring pull and Gus joined the action.  Then Spurs allowed City time and space to create openings.  Keane went close twice, but Fowler hit a speculative lobbed drive from 25 yards that missed Keller's goal by inches.  He isn't the finisher he was, and thankfully, he pulled another effort across the face of goal from a narrow angle.  Then after 18 minutes, Stephen Carr delivered a great ball over the top that Keane took down expertly in the box and neatly dinked over the keeper with his left foot to leave Jihai helpless as he ran back.

Anelka went over to the bench and looked non-plussed by everything, but Macken was brought on to take his place.  Twice Fowler mis-hit shots at the Tottenham goal and Dalmat fired an innocuous effort straight at Arason before Barton picked up a yellow card for a foul on Brown, which was his third foul of the game.  The free-kick was slightly right of centre and about 25 yards out ... ideal for Christian Ziege to hit it with pace and swerve into the roof of the net to make it 3-0 with just two minutes to half-time.  And on the half-time whistle, Joey Barton approached the referee and must have said something to him, as Styles pulled out the yellow card and then the red.  Most of the crowd had gone off or their half-time cuppa warm in the knowledge that a 3-0 lead would be good enough ... even thinking that Spurs would be facing eleven City players in the second period.

Not that it would have helped Tottenham.  Three minutes after the break a chipped up free kick into the area found Sylvain Distin's head alone and with a clear sight of goal and Keller had no chance.  The early goal just after the break was what we had all worried about, but we thought that the Spurs side would be able to cope with this, especially when Keane played Simon Davies in on the left side pf the box, but his drive found the keeper's chest.  

The two incidents that turned the match came within five minutes of each other.  In the 56th minute, Ziege hit another free-kick that Arason did marvelously well to tip up onto the bar and then to get down to the follow-up header from Poyet, which the Icelander grabbed right on the line.  That was about the last major contribution Ziege made, as he is still not 100% match fit, so Jackson came on for him.  If it had been a straight swap, it might not have been so bad, but Pleat moved King to left back with Jacko going into midfield.  King was then exposed to the pace of Wright-Phillips running at him and that left Spurs vulnerable on that flank.

A minute later the damage was done.  On the hour, the ball pinged around the Tottenham box and fell to Bosvelt outside the area and his drive flew off Gardner's thigh to deflect past the diving Keller.  3-2 and panic did set in.  Poyet was lost in the chaos of midfield, as he dropped deeper to find the ball; Dalmat was anonymous and when he did get the ball he never looked like holding onto it for very long, producing more pressure on the defence.

Keano manufactured a shooting chance for Gus and his volley was deflected wide and then from the next attack, he forced Arason to a diving save to push his header away at the foot of his post.  A minute later with 77 gone, Jackson took a free kick that was awarded for the third kick at Michael Brown in quick succession and curled it a yard wide, but City went straight up the other end to equalise.  Fowler picked out a pass through the Spurs defence and left Wright-Phillips through on goal, with Keller racing to meet him, but he was never going to get there.  The City wide player lifted the ball over Kasey's dive and in to make it 3-3.  At this stage there was only ever going to be one winner and when a long Tarnat cross from the left was headed goalwards by Macken, you knew that the game was up.  

It was a soft goal to concede, but all credit to City, they wanted it more.  So much so, that they pulled back a three goal deficit with a man down.  That Tottenham were unable to hold onto what they had established in the first half is a crime and the fact that neither the team nor the manager reacted to what was going on is shameful.  The lack of leadership on and off the pitch is a worry as Tottenham go into a series of matches which could determine how the next few months pan out.  At least Defoe will come in for Postiga and maybe, we might have seen the last of some of the players in Spurs shirts tonight.  

MEHSTG TOP MAN : -  ROBBIE KEANE

East Stan

 

HOW DID THAT HAPPEN ??

 

Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear... Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...Oh dear...

Love and hugs
Alan
Hi Wyart,

I would just like to say that having watched the game in its entirety on Sky last night, I totally agree with the match report written on your website.

Bringing Richards back to the side was a big mistake.  He hasn't looked interested since Hoddle left and seems to have lost any pace that he had when we signed him, he's so slow it sometimes looks like he's running backwards!  He seems to have slowed down so much that it is taking him more time to get to the ball and consequently he has started to lose his composure and has become a liability at the back.

As for Pleat bringing on a midfielder in Poyet for a striker in Postiga when he got injured, that was utter lunacy and I was in total disbelief.  You do not play one man up front against a team that can't defend but are excellent going forward, especially when you are at home.  Why one earth didn't he replace him with Mark Yeates?

Gus, bless him, is well, well past his best and like Richards has become so slow.  Spurs were so impressive at the turn of the year as for the first time since the Premier League formed they actually pressed/closed down the opposition when they lost the ball and in Brown they seem to have someone who excels at this.  It was a very good move of Pleat to get the team to do this as it is very important in this league.  Teams will hurt you if you give them time on the ball and let them pick their passes.

Playing with two players who are so far off Premiership pace is like playing with nine men.  The other players have to do much more running and it becomes increasingly difficult for them to close teams down and remove their passing options.

Switching King to left back was also a mistake, he is "deceptively slow" and got murdered for pace by the outstanding Wright-Phillips time and time again.  Ziege may not be very quick any more but he reads the game well, is excellent on the ball, a good tackler and a great free-kick taker.  When he came off, he should have been replaced by Stephen Kelly.

I don't know why Gardner stuck his thigh out like he did to deflect the shot for the second goal and felt that Wright-Phillips was fractionally offside for the third goal but the team was simply awful in the second half and Man City could have scored three goals in the first 5 minutes if the half.  Dalmat letting Distin go for the first goal was criminal, he was supposed to be marking him and instead of tracking him ran the other way!

I felt so sorry for players like Keller, Gardner, Carr, Ziege, Brown, Davies and Keane who all worked really hard.  I sat watching this game as the only spurs fan in my spurs shirt in a room full of 30 people and was totally embarrassed to see the team I have supported my whole life capitulate against 10 men.

I expect to see a much improved performance against Portsmouth this Saturday and I hope and pray that Pleat's team selection doesn't involve King or Poyet in midfield and Richards in defence.

Yours
Rob Jackson
What is it about Manchester clubs, we're 3-0 up at half time, and then we lose 5-3 & 4-3 ?

At least United had eleven men on the pitch, unlike City last night, but this was Man City, a team that failed to win in fourteen matches, not Real Madrid or Milan!

I'm going to state the 'bleedin obvious' here, but why oh why does Dean Richards get a game, because everytime he plays in the defence, Gardener & King have a nightmare trying to 'get him out of jail', and their own game(s) suffer!

Pleat deserves a lot of criticism though, for pushing Ledley at left back(after Ziege's departure), when everybody knows he's not a full back, and playing Jackson left midfield, when it would've been better for them to have swapped positions, and so by counteracting the growing threat of Wright-Phillips & Sun Jihai.

Another defeat snatched from the jaws of victory, how may more times have we said this, and will continue to say it?

Paxton Mark

I left the UK 25 years ago for the US.

At the time it was not a permanent move, but, like all things in life, things change. My only regret was giving up my season tickets and being able to see Spurs play 20 games a year like I had done since being a 10 year old.

Over the last few years I have been very happy that football coverage in the US has expanded to such an extent that I can see about 12 Spurs games a season in addition to seeing all the highlights from their games.

This made it easier for me when I saw my annual game each Christmas at White Hart Lane in recognising the players and knowing their abilities.

I have been very disappointed this season by the carelessness of both the players and management.

Last night was the nail in the coffin. To watch them be three goals up and then fall to a 4-3 loss against a 10 man team was nothing short of pathetic. That's what I thought when I watched the game. However this super nerd that manages the team had the audacity to blame it ALL on the players and take no responsibility for himself.

I have coached football in the US for the last 14 years very successfully winning tournaments all over the country and against teams from many countries.  Never once would I blame it on the players for a loss.  It is a team sport where the manager is the 12th player both on and off the field.

A decent manager would have apologized to the fans for a poor performance as a manager.  When you are three up against a 10 man team a blind manager should have been able to control the situation.

I think the team would be better off if David Pleat like Glen Hoddle would part from the organisation and allow fresh ideas and leadership from  the staff already in place till a more permanent replacement is found.

I sincerely believe that the current manager, temporary as he is, is the creator of all the woes at Spurs.

Maybe it sounds harsh but I cannot see any value Pleat has added to the team since Hoddle's departure. Spurs could have also given Joe Kinnear a temporary contract till the summer but I am sure Pleat was the one who prevented that happening.

On another note.  I travel a lot on business in South America. I have been watching Santos play a few games both in the Brazilian league and the South American equivalent to the European Cup.  They have two absolutely great players their in Diego and Rubinho (excuse the spelling, I also never caught on to the language) Spurs had shown interest in one of them. If they want a team for the future netting any of these two players would have been important as they will have market values in the 20 million range.

Why did Spurs loose interest in Diego? Who is responsible for that? Somehow the job of Director of Football comes to mind. Is there one?

Next Manager (Look towards the Highlands) ... he might be working there now.

Paul Marx

Ed : -  I think the Diego deal still might have legs if Spurs can get a European passport out of him.  From what he said recently, he still rates Tottenham highly and we must have done a decent PR job on him if he is desperate to join us instead of other clubs in Italy, Spain, etc.  Watch that midfield space in the summer ... along with a midfield general type player.

Copy of a letter sent  to Daniel Levy.

Dear Mr. Levy

I am sure you will receive many other letters on the same subject, but I hope you will find the time to read the views of a very disgruntled season ticket holder.

I have been coming to watch Spurs since 1966 and in that time I have seen over 1,000 games, both home and away. However, I cannot recall such an inept display as I was unfortunate enough to witness in the second half last night. What do our half time team talks consist of ? It is obviously not discussing football, judging by the shambles that was to follow. It was clear to everyone (apart from our players) that Manchester City would come out and attack in the second half, as they had nothing to lose, being a man short, so why couldn't we just hold the ball for 15 minutes or so and deny the 10 men any space ?

However, that wouldn't be Tottenham, would it? Instead we witnessed senior professionals performing worse than a Sunday morning pub team. The manager was incapable of changing tactics and we were comprehensively outplayed. It was Man City we were playing, not Real Madrid! The players should hang their heads in shame and a few of them should never wear the white shirt of Tottenham again. Why does the manager persist in picking certain expensive signings whenever they are reputedly fit, when it is plain that they are not up to the job.

Our pampered overpaid prima donnas have no idea what this defeat means to Spurs fans. They don't have to go to work and have the mickey taken out of them all day; they can leave Spurs whenever it suits them as most of them do not know the meaning of loyalty. We fans are with the club for life, whatever the heartache and expense. Considering that last night was the third payment over and above our season ticket, I think the club has an incredibly large and loyal fan base, as we are always there, week in, week out. For instance, last night, my ticket, plus fares, cabs, drinks etc cost me over 50 and I didn't arrive home till 12.20 a.m.

It's about time our under-achieving players started giving something back to the fans (how about them giving up some of their wages and ensuring that all Spurs fans are given their money back for last night?) but we all know that would never happen, would it ?

Last night could be a defining moment in the history of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club. There can be no more excuses. We have some excellent youngsters at the club, who must be given every opportunity, but we all know that certain players are not good enough, or do not want to play for the club, so why keep picking them? We have to get it right before it's too late. The players should be proud to play for Tottenham, if not, get rid of them. The fans will not accept any more embarrassments like last night, otherwise Keith Burkinshaw's words could come back to haunt us - "There used to be a football club over there."

I know you are a Spurs fan, so my message to you is clear - we have a superb stadium, we have incredibly loyal fans - now give us a team!

Yours sincerely,
Pete Crawford

Now Zen, Now Zen, Now Zen ...

Before shock home defeat - chop wood, carry water.

After shock home defeat - chop wood, carry water, beat Portsmouth.

Peter Lis

The debacle against Man City showed us yet again just how far we have to go before we have a side capable of challenging for major honours. What defeated us was a lack of strength and character in the side. We lacked leaders out on the pitch. Players who are prepared to stand up and be counted when the going gets tough and not earn tens of thousands of pounds a week laying on a treatment table.

We need two major signings, a centre half and a strong play making midfielder. The defence is completely shambolic and is in need of a leader to organise and inspire it. Richards is not cutting the mustard. (Yes I know he's been injured but even when he's played regularly the opposition look like they may score with every attack, whoever they are).  The best I have ever seen Richards play was for the Saints against Spurs at WHL when he was playing for a move. He was fantastic. Since then he's been very average and uninspiring. He certainly does not appear to be a commanding presence to lead and organise the younger players around him. When was the last time you saw him shouting and inspiring those around him and directing less experienced players like Gardener, King or Doherty?

In midfield physically we are weak and have no one putting in tackles, especially in front of our back four, breaking up the opposition play. Everyone knows it, Pleat and Hoddle acknowledged it but still no one arrives to fill the gap. Brown is not a holding midfield player. Arsenal and Man Utd sides are riddled with spirited battlers who fly into challenges and fight for every ball. Where are our players of the same ilk ? Our most spirited players are Carr and Keane, talk is they may be sold. One step forward, two steps back. To sell Keane would be insanity and I cannot seriously believe they can be contemplating it. I suspect Carr will be off in the summer frustrated at a lack of progress over the years. I know how he feels.

Defoe is a good signing but he won't score goals unless we can win the ball in midfield, keep it and get it to him !

It's a shame one tenth of the spirit of the supporters cannot be put into the hearts of some of the players who pull on our beloved shirt. I remember the song "You're not fit to wear the shirts" after we got trounced away at Bolton a few years ago. It could have been directed at a few who went missing last night.

Simon Hassell

I just can't begin to articulate the utter humiliation and sadness I feel at last evenings result ... What is going on at this club ? There is something seriously seriously wrong ... sorry I can't go on !  I have two kids 4 & 5 years old; one who has a heart condition who could keep a 10 Man City from scoring four goals in 45 mins. 

Oh God !

David McMeekin

Well, is this all part of a cunning plan to involve Man City in a cup run, thus detracting from their League position and an attempt to keep us up by stealth ??  Was it all a trick to maintain Kevin Keegan's place at the club to ensure that they strive to keep on failing ??

Everyone at work was very kind, marvelling at the measure of our abject failure rather than taking the piss.  

"How did it happen ?" they asked.

"Well, see that bit in the score-line that says "Tottenham Hotspur" ? ... " I answered.  It says it all.

It was all so obvious what was going to happen form the moment Barton got dismissed.  We all turned to each other at the break and said "If City get an early goal in the second half, we will fall apart."  And what happened ?

And you know it is not virgin territory for Spurs fans.  We have been there before.  Man U two seasons back.  Derby County in the FA Cup back in the 70s.  There is nothing more dangerous than Spurs with a big lead.

But it would have been easy if we hadn't kept presenting the ball to the blue shirts.  "Hold on to the ball."  "Make them work for it."  "Make the extra man pay."  All things I can hear being drummed into me as a youngster.  Do you think any of them resurfaced in the home dressing room last night ?  Hmm.  Tricky one.  Do we ever play well against ten men ??

And the use of subs really showed Pleat to be lacking in the tactical nous in how to ram home an advantage.  King got roasted in the first match by Wright-Phillips when he came on at the CoM stadium.  So why put Ledley back there ?  We know from last season and the one before that he is not a full-back.  It is central defence or nothing, although he makes a go of it in midfield.  He and Gardner play well together, so why take Richards off and put Kelly at full-back ?  And why have Yeates on the bench with no real intention of using him ?  I would rather have seen Slabber or Barnard there, who could have come on and played the forward role instead of Gus slung up front to lose sight of the ball every time it went up in the air.  I am certain that Jamie or Lee would have reacted quicker to the Ziege shot touched onto the bar and might have got it in.  And they would have been able to get around more, even though they might not have had the experience that Poyet can bring to the team.

And I won't even get started on Richards, as I might not finish before daybreak.

So, Dalmat wants a move to Tottenham ?  Surely he cannot think that a performance like last night's is going to win over the manager and board ?  I think not.

And where was the referee when we needed him (and yes, I do know it was Rob Styles) ?  City players were queuing up to kick Michael Brown who was annoying the hell out of them.  I counted four fouls on him in quick succession, with Jihai and Bosvelt both booked for second half fouls on the former City man, while his being the victim of a foul in the first half lead to Ziege hitting the third goal in just before the break.  It was like get booked for kicking Brown once, get three kicks free.

I don't know about the rest of you, but on the way home when Spoony on 606 said it was like watching a Rocky film, because you knew how it was going to end, you knew what he meant.  Not just Rocky, more like quaking !!

I for one was glad of City's injury time winner, as I had had enough of it and didn't want to suffer for another 30 minutes.  Of course, I was gutted to lose, but we now have bigger fish to fry, so need to regroup and get players who can last 90 minutes out on the field.  Pleat needs to learn the art of substitutions ... sometimes he gets lucky, but sometimes he needs to make the change (Ziege at Fulham, Dalmat last night) that will steady things when the pressure starts to build.

Despite the final result (and the Man U game was the same), it was a cracking match and one that the team have to learn from.

What was it that Danny Blanchflower said about "The game is about glory ... not boring the other team to death !"

The Funky Phantom

Before I go, I thought I'd chip in about the shambles on Wednesday. I had the misfortune of watching it in a pub near Holborn and of course all the Gooners suddenly came out of the woodwork when the winner went in which made it even worse. As to the game its self, you could see it coming a mile off, we weren't convincing even in the first half and I thought we were lucky to be so far ahead.

Like others on your website, I could go on about the main culprits (Mr. Dalmat please stand up) and the manager, however I don't think I could add anything other than to say that maybe 'Ginger Pele' may have done better at centre half. Although with the absence of anything remotely resembling a midfield I doubt it!

What gets me is that it is so obvious to anyone outside the club that we need a central midfielder who can dominate play. So what do they do......buy another f***ing striker. IT'S MADNESS, even Rodney Marsh said it on You're on Sky Sports on Monday night and that was before the night of shame. This leads me to the conclusion therefore that the ONLY person to blame must be Pleat, as Director of Football HE selects the players to buy (even when Hoddle was there) and now as Manager HE chooses where they play.  For example, everyone has been talking about Gus's lack of speed in the Midfield and how he's past it. Then Gus appears on Goals on Sunday and says admits as much him self and also that he's out of position as a central mid and can't keep up. He must have said this to Pleat so WHY does he insist on playing him there!! I can't for the life of me work it out ...

Maybe this is Pleat getting his own back for sacking him after he was caught ... ahem ... "asking for directions". Just a thought.

Keep the faith, some of us have got to.

Mark Gomez
"I always said it was an honour to serve Tottenham Hotspur and I feel the same every time I walk back into the stadium."

"Any player coming to Spurs whether he's a big signing or just a ground staff boy, must be dedicated to the game and the club. He must be prepared to work at his game. He must never be satisfied with his last performance, and he must hate losing."

"If you don't have to drag yourself off the field exhausted after 90 minutes, you can't claim to have done your best."

"it's been my life, Tottenham Hotspur, and I love the club"

After the Manchester City performance I felt it important not to fill the air with heavy words of condemnation, but with ones of thought, from someone who made the club what it is today.

All of the above quotes were made by Bill Nicholson, if you did not know, and I think everyone should read these and consider if the above is what they saw on Wednesday, or the countless times before when Tottenham have lost.  It is in these quotes where I think we find the reason for our lack of achievement since the Eighties.

Being 17 I can only wish that the days of us challenging may return in my lifetime, but yet I feel this will not happen until we put in place a manager who can put into practice what is above and lead us the Tottenham way
hopefully.

"Spurs have got to be the best in the land, not the second best"

Richard 
Everyone sounds so depressed about it.

But look on the bright side

Danny Blanchflower died a couple of years back and was spared the embarrassment the rest of us feel.

Regards...

Jeff Steel
Spurs since 1959

Trust you are not still suffering from the pain afflicted on us last night (second half especially), I wondered what was said at half-time. Because even though Man City had ten men I felt we had seven, see below.

1/ Ziege not match fit.
2/ Dalmat can only do 45mins.
3/ Poyet as above line.
4/ Richards totally useless (as always).

The rest of the team were somewhere else.

I feel extremely sorry for Ricketts, he was sitting on the advertisement hoardings when Defoe was introduced, and the players came off from their warm-up.

Eric Penn

 

Other Fourth Round ties played this week :

Colchester United

3 Coventry City 1 Tuesday
Fulham (after extra time) 2 Everton 1 Wednesday
Telford United P Millwall P Wednesday

 

Back to homepage