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Letters September 2003 to May 2004

29.05.04

SORT IT OUT!!!!  

Do the big wigs at Spurs know what is happening ?  At the AGM they told us they knew who would take the hot seat and all would be revealed at the end of the season !  Ha ha ha !  They didn’t have a danny who to get and more important, who actually wants the job. Who is actually making the decisions in who to release and who to buy ?  If they are making those decisions what will the new manager make of that person and their decisions to buy and sell players ?

Davids to the Lane ?  A typical ploy to sell more season tickets.  We have seen it all before.  I and many many others are sick and tired of what has and what is going to happen to our great club.  Levy is all talk.  That article in the programme was an insult to us.  I mean it only took him all season to realise that what had gone on all season was un acceptable !  When he did attend games what was he watching ?  Because what I saw was utter rubbish.  Top six finish ?  Europe ?  Top half of the table ?  No, more like a struggle to avoid relegation for us next season !  I’ve had enough !  I will not be renewing my season ticket.  I will just chose which games to attend.

Des

Ed : - Many are choosing to pick their matches in future after the continuing disappointment served up by Tottenham.  It is a worry that Pleat may still be influencing the buying of players the new coach might not want.  The board have left the matter drift instead of making sure we had someone in place at the end of the season.  Now we must wait for Ranieri to be sacked !!

27.05.2004

I am sure there a number of sad obsessive out there amongst the Spurs faithful, but this news of waiting for our next coach is driving me nuts.

It reminds me of the summer of ‘88 when I obsessively flicked on Teletext every 5 minutes waiting to hear if we signed Gazza.  With the lord Hod disappearing the season before and having a very ordinary season after (Port Vale anyone?), it all seems eerily reminiscent and as far as I was concerned then, and indeed now, if we don’t get our man we are up the creek without the proverbial.

So for those few weeks in the summer of 88, I monitored all the movements of Gazza talks with Fergie, us bidding £2.2 mill and finally signing him.

And who is the man for 2004 ?

For me it's O’Neill, O’Neill, O’Neill.

We need a man who can motivate, manage star players (look at Larsson’s comments, even Sutton likes him) and give this club a right kick up the derriere.

Of course, in true Tottenham style, we put the roof on without the bricks and mortar by appointing a tech director and not a coach and I fear Mr. O’Neill will not put up with that.

Instead we could end up with a Danish Chelsea reject and a Danish obscure coach.

See you at Barnsley.

Dave Harris

Ed : - I am afraid that the announcement will not come soon, unless the man who they want to appoint becomes available very soon.  That is, if they know who they want ??

21.05.2004

I read Martin Gilbert's letter dated 5/5/04 and agreed with much of what he said, but was amazed when he said the atmosphere at the Lane is virtually non-existent.  All I can say is that he's either a Gooner winding us up or because he lives down under he never goes.  The atmosphere can still be fantastic at WHL and contrary to what he says the lay out of the stadium helps.  And before you say it, I've been going to Spurs week in week out since 1976 so I know what it used to be like.

How many grounds these days get three sides of the stadium singing in turns to each other ?  (I fully accept that the West Stand will never sing even if we won the Champions League).  He wants to go to Upton Park, Highbury or the Theatre of Dreams Old Trafford if he wants to experience poor atmospheres.  And as for Stamford Bridge, not so long ago they were getting 12,000, although every born again Chelsea fan you meet never stopped going.  Oh really !!

Was he at the Arsenal home game ?  There are still times when WHL rocks. It is easy to say yes, but you'd expect that for the local derby.  Considering what we've had to put up with I think the fans do pretty well.  I've been to most grounds in the Premiership often as a neutral and if you think most of them are any better than WHL you're dreaming.  Villa Park with the biggest stand behind a goal in Europe is like a morgue at times, so get real.

Some people say we should move to a huge new stadium. There is no point us having a 60,000 seat stadium, the fact is we won't fill it until we have several years of sustained success and wakey wakey, that ain't going to happen in the near future.  Nothing would be worse than playing in a half empty stadium, so lets keep the Lane but perhaps upgrade and enlarge the East Stand.

I love WHL.  I've grown up with it and it's in my blood.  When we get behind the boys it still makes the hairs on my arms stand up.

Sven, Cambridge.

Ed : -  The ground can be buzzing when the team give the fans something to get excited about.  There are times when it is quiet, but as Sven says, that is much the same for other grounds around the country.  At the moment, it is of an adequate size, but if we get then least bit successful, it will need to be expanded ... but bit by bit.

20.05.2004

I'm just writing to gauge to the views of others. The FA have reported that for the second year running NO ENGLISH CLUB is entering the Inter-Toto cup. WHY are Spurs not entering this if nobody else above them is.  Even Aberystwyth who finished fourth in the Welsh League are entering. Villareal Quarter Finalists this year got through by the Inter-Toto.  A good UEFA Cup run and a couple of high profile ties in the UEFA Cup if we made it, is what the club are yearning for, and may help attract more players, yet the club turns its nose up at the Inter-Toto every year.  They argue that its too early etc, yet the club will play and tour.  Can any one else just put my mind at rest and give me a thoroughly good reason why Spurs never enter, bar the time in the Mid-nineties when we put a youth team in it, and played at the Goldstone if I remember correctly ?  Is there some correlation that if you enter it, you suffer a mid-season dip in form ?  Villareal have qualified for UEFA again.

Ross Ellison

Ed : - I think that the "slump" argument is the one that Tottenham plump for and the only reason they took part before was because we had to or UEFA would take action against the club.  They nearly did anyway, as we fielded a team made up of youth players and loan players just for the competition.  Some English clubs have taken part from West Ham to Bradford City, but most have realised that they get a good start to the season, but then hit the wall about Christmas (we do that without the InterToto !!).  Some big clubs on the continent have taken part, like Juventus when they didn't get a European place for the first time in years.  I think that the Spurs board view it as an intrusion into the manager's build up to the start of the season and that is probably why you will not see Spurs entered in the near future ... unless we get a foreign coach who sees the benefit of it.

19.05.2004

Well, now at least we have a Director of Football, it could have been worse.  Pleat could have stayed and we may have ended up with Raddy Antic (who?).  

What price now we get Mark van Bommel ?  I think he will be a Spurs player before Euro 2004.  I hope so if anyone saw him in the pre-season friendly against PSV in July 2003 he was very impressive.  He bossed the whole game and looked as though he was only playing at 75%. Things might be looking up.

Chris, Enfield

Ed : - Hopefully, Arnesen will be able to pull in players from many countries, with his European links and a good scouting network already in place in South America.  Remember , this is the man who brought Ronaldo to Europe and took on van Nistelrooy, Robben and Gudjohnsen.  Let's hope he can still spot the right players that we need.

18.05.2004

Ah once again we come too the summer carnival of Spurs.  You know what I mean, that fantastic feeling of excitement that all us Spurs fans have.  I get so excited this time of year I could eat my own ears off, that is until the new season starts, then dread sets in.

I will go through the next few months scouring the newspapers, the net, Teletext and Ceefax pages, looking for juicy tit bits to feed my growing excitement.  Oh god, how excited I get, that is until the new season starts, then dread sets in.

I might as well get to my point which is, does anybody else feel Pleat has a certain aroma of weirdo around him ? It cant just be me can it ? I see Pleat as a cross between a 1930's B movie Dracula and detective Columbo, I think his name was Peter Falk or something. Of course I may be and hopefully I am wrong, but I imagine the players laugh at his obvious awkwardness which I feel he tries to overcome by putting on some strange kind of Jedi knight front.

I now turn the TV over when he comes on too speak I find him that idiotic, he actually makes me cringe. I may be at the upper end of the "Pleat's too weird" fan club, I understand that, please tell me this is all in my mind and that Pleat is not a curb crawling wrist jockey.

Daisy

Ed : - Well, what is in the past is in the past.  He had spent his time at Tottenham as Director of Football in his latest incarnation and done some good things and some things that haven't worked as well.  His appearances on TV have not always been as slick as other managers who face the cameras, but then he is no worse than Bobby Robson and the fact that he gets an expert summariser role on TV means someone thinks he is lucid enough to do that.  After tonight's news, you might not have to worry about Pleat much longer.

14.05.2004

Good to hear that we have picked up a major bargain regarding the acquisition of Paul Robinson.  One and a half million for such a young and talented GK is great and it sounds like he's glad to be here too. I was thinking though, he must either have a lot of faith in the club or Levy has sold him some major B.S. because to be perfectly honest - and it hurts me to say this, I wouldn't sign for a club with no manager for the foreseeable future !!  It looks encouraging though; call me naive but for a young England international  - who was shedding tears for his home club last week - to join us in these uncertain times speaks volumes for Levy's negotiation techniques, either that or he's been reading the "Tricking The Lie Detector Machine For Dummies" book ... let's hope he can pull off a similar stunt when recruiting Martin O'Neill - I've discussed the mercurial Irishman with my mates so much lately that I feel like I bloody know him !!!!

We need to follow this big step in the right direction with a few more sneaky signings. I seriously hope we prize Okocha away from Bolton, as that would be a sweet little Bosman and wouldn't affect the transfer kitty too much.  Then we can go out and get the most important signing - a combative, all singing, all dancing midfielder that can set up goals, protect the back four, control the midfield, drive the team bus, make the tea ...

On a respectfully sad but glad note, I would like to bid farewell to Gus, Dazza and Ziege although Gus was in the twilight of his career he still showed the passion that footie fans love - up until about a season ago.  Dazza had his moments, I'm sure he did, but I can't really think of any with significance at the moment (answers on a postcard ...) and Ziege purely for the belter of a free-kick he scored against Woolwich FC last season - the only other time I have broken the world high jump record from a seated position was when a certain Geordie legend flummoxed a moustachioed Village People type goalkeeper in 1991.

Anyway enough of this positive thinking and dreaming, I'm off to scour the web to find out if Robinson has snapped his cruciates in training yet...

Lee Bradley

Ed : - I think the signing of Robinson is an important one, which coupled with another couple of players in positions of need, will see us be a tighter unit.  I do not know what Levy said, but he probably sold Robinson on the "look at Defoe since he signed for us" line and that we are trying to form a team/squad of younger players who have experience to stick together for a few years.  Well, I sincerely hope that is what he is saying.

12.05.2004

What great news ... Darren Anderton will finally be leaving our club.  Brilliant, he's been with us for 12 yrs and spent 50% of that time on the treatment table.  Ask yourself how many times did he actually get injured playing on the pitch ?  What sort of example did he set in the dressing room to his peers and the young players ?  Look at our achievements in his time at the club ... very little, there's your answer.

This is a major step forward by the club.  I hope he never comes back.

Keep the good news coming and fingers crossed for the new manager whoever they are.

Regards,
Chris Sears (suffering like most Spurs fans)

P.S. If Anderton does go to another club he probably won't come to the Lane because he will be injured !

Ed : - I think the way people view his time here might be different if you are a fan or a player.  Fans want to see him out on the pitch, but players are reminded what a short career this is and how injury can strike, some admiring players for fighting back against a lot of injuries (like Davies said about Redknapp recently).   With Jamie signing a pay-as-you-play deal and recognising he wants to give Tottenham something back for being on the sidelines for so long, I think that not all players enjoy being on the treatment table and most are probably itching to get playing again.

The point that you perceptively point out about Anderton was the number of injured he picked up in training and this not just true of him, but others here over the last ten years or so.  Something needs to be investigated to make sure we have as many players available as possible and that the training regime is appropriate to keep players fit ... to get injured in matches ;-)

07.05.2004

Woe, Woe & Thrice Woeeeeeeeeeeee!

It's terrible, unexplainable, poor, weak, feeble, pathetic, out and out rubbish, b-side (any more negative adjectives?)

 -  It's the Spurs official season review 2003/4 ! Ha Hah !

You may as well laugh, I think there is little else to do.

Trying to be positive though (for a change), I think there is a glimmer of hope for us.  Something is happening at Spurs, there's a light breeze stirring, it started when Hoddle came and I can still feel it there.  It's a -  yes it's a buzz, faint, almost inaudible (except to dogs*) such is the low frequency of it.  I'll explain:- think back, oh about 8 years, GF in charge, Jason Dozzell, Ruel Fox, Andy Sinton - You get my drift ! Now wheel back to the present:- Simon Davies, Robbie Keane, Jermain Defoe - these guys are young, fresh and they have something none of the others had - the ability to excite, produce something special and win us a game - even if it's not quite happening at the moment for them (I don't think it's totally down to them, Pleat is supposed to be the manager- Ha ! More like politician the way he talks).

I think what we have at the moment is the garnish - what we really need is the basic ingredients, Spanish omelette sounds fantastic, but your a bit stuffed if you haven't got any eggs and a top chef to cook them - at present we're a bit like Mc*onalds 1/4 burger (don't fancy a law suit but you know who I mean...).  The picture and promise looks great, but when you get down to it it's just hot air with no bite in the middle and a a slightly sick feeling afterwards.

Should our erstwhile "leaders" decide to go shopping in the summer, I hope that they realise their clientele won't settle for anyone less than Gordon Ramsey to cook their chips.  At the moment we've got Mr. Ben (Homepride dude) and it's just not edible.

This probably makes no sense ! I'll stop now !!

Just to say that all is not lost, we are a bad team that is true however one carefully placed stalwart in the heart of our defence/midfield could really make the difference, maybe then the likes of Simon Davies can concentrate on what they are good at, serving up classy nosh!

Keep the faith, I don't think it all over just yet...

Alan O'Brien

PS *Insert gonners here!

Ed : - Cooking up a storm there, but I am not sure there will be many Spanish ingredients, although recent news indicates we might be going for an Italian !!

05.05.2004

Daniel Levy
THFC plc
748 High Rd
London N17 OAP

Dear Daniel

Well there it is…....we survived!

In the end the abysmal performance of Leeds United is all that saved us from sailing into relegation. How we, the fans, can have any respect for David Pleat with the ever so poor job that he has done, is beyond me. Poor management above him has contributed significantly to the downfall of our club for some 13 years now ... lucky for us !

That aside, and despite several very poor dealings in the transfer market, I believe that you and the Board are aware of the calamitous state of matters and are intent on bringing in a big name to manage the club….someone of the stature of Trapattoni ? Have you considered the ‘high’ that could be gained from introducing Klinsmann, Gazza (desperately in need of work ?) or Sheringham into the dressing room alongside a top manager ? Certainly Jurgen and Teddy could learn much about management from a top notch coach. Please, please, please tell me that the ‘new’ manager isn’t Curbishley or Antic or somebody that quite frankly is uninspiring in the minds of the fans.

With regards to our ground, quite frankly the atmosphere at the Lane is virtually non existent. The design of the ground is poor but the middle class fan base we have needs to feel excited and believe in the players. This happened in 95 when Jurgen came but has now well and truly evaporated. We need that ‘feel good’ factor and we need it NOW !

It would be a move in the right direction if you and the board were to apologise to the fans for basically what has amounted to a wasted season. A ‘free’ game or some sort of token of respect would be a great idea ?? You won’t need to as the majority of our fans have become so blasé and have lost any real passion for our club that they will soldier on regardless.

Often people sit on the sidelines and spout their complaints. I know very little about a lot but I do know about THFC and I understand what sort of manager will be wrong for us … Personally I think Martin O’Neill is not the ‘right’ man either but the choice is yours. Anything less than a top rate manager is totally unacceptable. If it were my choice it would be a combination of Trapattoni / Capello and Sheringham / Klinsmann. If you can excite me more than that would, please go ahead !!

We all wait with baited breath !

 

Yours sincerely 

Martin Gilbert,
Sydney
22.04.2004

As usual I renew my season ticket year in year out, and have done this for the past 9 yrs.  I am disgusted with what is going on down the Lane and things just get worse when the scum of the earth are moments away from winning the league.  Hoddle was sacked and only the board knows why ... yes his results were not up to standards and there were rumours of dressing room unrest, but these comments only came from the idiots that were shown the door by Hoddle, i.e. Deadwood, Thatcher, etc ... the truth is Hoddle never should have been shown the door ... at least not until the season had ended.

Midfield is a massive problem with the Spurs.  We have not had a playmaker / hard tackler since Gazza ... van Bommel seems to be someone that is catching the eye of Spurs and hopefully he will sign, but I would not hold my breath.  We're only four points away from the dreaded "R" word.  Why is Dalmat not getting a go????????  Why does Pleat hate the idea of Hoddle's players.  Which brings me onto the subject of Pleat - Director of Football (caretaker Manager).  He needs to go, because whenever any manager comes, he will just put his boot in and we'll be back to point one, fighting relegation and losing a manager.

I still think think Steve Carr has not been playing to his best, his mind seems to be elsewhere, like a move to the Scum of red and white or United.  Go If you want to ...

Big, big game on Sunday.  We need to be behind the lads and equally the team need to give 110%.  God forbid, but if the Scum win the league, '71 feelings will come back ... we have to make sure Woolwich (South London) Arsenal don't get the win, but the odds are against us, but then again that's football "the beautiful game".

Ranjeet Jouhal, Spurs Supporter 20 yrs

Ed : -  It has been revealed that Stephen Carr has been carrying a back injury which might explain some of it, although he has not looked the same player since coming back from his long lay-off.  Dalmat reportedly had a bust-up in training with Carr and Redknapp and has rumoured to have been in disagreement with Pleat too.  Just like Ricketts and some others.  And they sacked Hoddle for being a poor man-manager !!
As for Sunday, I think that there is only one outcome unfortunately.  I would seriously love to be wrong, but we are in a bad run.

22.04.2004

Please can u help start a campaign to get Rohan Rickets back into the Spurs first team.  He is the only midfielder we have got with pace and who isn't invisible on the field.  Our midfield is the worst in the Prem., no creativity, and no tackles !!!  I fear we may go down, 'cos I cant see us beating anyone at the mo.

Rahul Mistry

Ed : - With so few games left, there is little point in having a campaign now, as the caretaker manager will be out in four games time and the new boss will assess the squad.  If Pleat has taken against Ricketts that will be that, but he has been on the bench for the last couple of matches, so there might be some hope.  The midfield is a great concern and has been for some considerable time, but no-one at the club could see that back in January when something could have been done about it.
As for where the next point is coming from, I'm with you on that !!

15.04.2004

Its OK, not long to go now and we can once again finish the season on a whimper.  I'm sure the club will oblige by keeping their heads down, drawing some games they should win and scraping together enough points for a low mid table finish.

Then what ?  I'm pretty sure there is no manager in place and there never has been.  To say that they have consulted him on transfers looks to be nonsense.  Is this because the club is to be sold in the summer ?  Would
Tottenham be more attractive to a buyer or group if they could appoint their own manager ?

There have been stories of Russian and Venezuelan businessmen looking to buy a club and Tottenham, a big club in a London location are surely a very attractive prospect.  Whether this will be a good or bad thing I don't know.  All I want is some stability and a decent manager for the first time in 14 years who is actually capable of building a successful side.  We have some extremely talented players at the club in Gardner, King, Defoe, Kanoute, Ricketts, Keane, Postie ... Think how well these players would play in a successful team.  Some of them you have seen play well but to play in a successful team week in/week out would see these players blossom and express themselves. 

If Pleat is an obstacle to a new manager then he must go.  Whilst I greatly appreciate discovering players such as Gardner he must adapt to Tottenham Hotspur not have the club bend to accommodate him.  How important will this summer be for the club? If things had been made right last summer Tottenham should have secured a top five finish this month.  Will it just be more of the same next season?

Stuart Hart

Ed : -  The mystery deepens with the news that the Director of Football might be booted out rather than invited to stay on, according to the Guardian and the Standard (if you believe what you read).  As has been stated in many other places, the prospect for a new manager to have Pleat interfering with the new man's control might not be the greatest attraction for the likes of Trapattoni and O'Neill.  These are men who have managed at top clubs in their respective leagues.  How would they react to Pleat interventions ?  I would imagine that they would regard it as an affront to their professionalism.  Not that they would put themselves in that position to start off with and that means that it is a straight choice for Levy ... Pleat or a decent manager ?

11.04.2004

Hi Guys and Girls,
Can anybody explain to me why Rohan Ricketts is constantly being left out of the Tottenham team ? 
He came on in the Everton game on Friday and set up a goal within 10 minutes of being on the pitch ! Whenever I have seen him play he seems to have a good game.

I think it is time that we ditch the old guard and follow the Old Trafford philosophy and bring the youngsters through.  We have got the potential for a very young, exciting team.

I hope that we manage to sign up Robinson from Leeds in the summer and the signing of Van Bommel would be a good one.  Diego would be nice, but I won't count my chickens !  Put those three together with King, Gardener, Carr, Jackson, Ricketts, Davies, Brown, Defoe, Kanoute, Postiga and Keane and I think we would have a squad to be proud of.

We need to lose Redknapp, Anderton, Ziege, Poyet and Taricco.  They have been brought into the club for their experience and what have they brought us ? Nothing !

I agree that Pleat needs to go as soon as possible and that the manager we need in place is Mourinho from Porto.  We need some discipline in the side and he looks like he could get the best out of a struggling Postiga, who I am sure could be a great player.

Lets hope some common sense is used in the summer and some good decisions are made for the good of the club.

Time will tell.
Spencer Derham

Ed : - The three signings would be every good, but our current position does not make the club that attractive an option for players looking for a golden future.  The young players do mean that the prospects are there, but without a manager in place, the whole thing about who we will be going for and who will be willing to come to Spurs is moot.
Ricketts' situation appears to be
as a result of the alleged bust-up with Pleat, if you believe what you read.  He does bring a vitality to our midfield that the likes of Redknapp, Poyet and Ziege bring.  I think he is biding his time until Pleat moves out of the caretaker manager's post.

10.04.2004

Could you please tell me why David Pleat has to have a say in any future transfers, when this is clearly preventing a top manager from joining this club.  Other than signing Defoe which was a good move, he has done nothing to improve the club, defensively we are  extremely poor.  What manager in his right mind would come under these circumstances, Pleat has not proven to be any good just look at our poor results since he took over, Pleat should go now and give our club its self respect back.

An unhappy fan

Ed : - Pleat has been bigging up his role with Levy wanting a footballing presence on the Board, with Pleat someone who he listens to.  The big problem comes with the new manager coming in, with Levy believing that a constant presence like Pleat will ensure that players bought in will meet the criteria that the club require ... young with resale value, rather than ones who managers feel they need before leaving THFC for another manager to bring in their own favourites.

06.04.2004

Wyart,

Over the past few months I have read countless stories on the 'net and tabloids linking our top spot with everyone from Pele to Maradona (okay, maybe not THAT imaginative).  I know this is part and parcel of being a Spurs fan and I have become somewhat experienced at spotting unrealistic stories about who will take charge at the Lane next season.  But I have to express my unhappiness at reading that a possible coaching set up would involve Peter Taylor dealing with the team whilst Pleat does everything else.  I have nothing against Taylor and wouldn't mind him having some sort of assistant coaching role at Spurs, but I think this set-up is a bad way to go as it would just make us look like we are a mid-table team and happy with that.

We need a big name manager like Fabio Capello or Marcello Lippi to take full control of the club and be a figure head.  All the big guns have a manager that has a big say in what goes on from grass-roots to boardroom table and whilst David Pleat is still at Spurs I can't see any big name managers coming to us for the pure fact that they won't want to be told what to do by ol' Pleaty.  I really think it's time to raid Serie A for their managers seeing as all the clubs are bankrupt and have no transfer money, three or four seasons ago the likes of Capello & Lippi wouldn't have dreamt of leaving their multi-million pound squads, but I have heard that a lot of managers in Italy have become disillusioned with the way the game is run out there.  Spurs could look like an attractive offer to someone like Capello; he could live in the Surrey countryside, wine and dine in the finest restaurants London has to offer and of course he could manage potentially one of the most exciting young squads in England.

Even though the team continues to frustrate, I believe at the moment we have the makings of one of the most exciting Spurs teams of the modern era and, just like last season, a few astute buys in the midfield area during close season and a little bit of patience will see us come good (I know, sounds familiar ...). 
I am highly impressed by Defoe, the last greedy striker that we had at Spurs was the Golden Boot Award-Winning Lineker and he wasn't half bad ... I think Michael Brown will mature and adjust to Premiership football next season, so that it's not just his work rate that catches the eye (albeit every other game) and once Ledders is back in his rightful place at the centre of defence with Gardner I think things will start to look much rosier.

Lastly, does anyone else have a funny feeling that we will be the only team to beat Arsenal this season when we clash at the Lane in a couple of weeks or is it just me ???!

Regards

Lee Bradley

Ed : - The worrying thing about Taylor, as you say, is that he is not the best manager.  A good coach, especially with young players (think about his work with the England Under-21 set-up ... unbeaten under his management).  He needs to be in there with a good, strong manager, who can take the strain of the first team pressures. 
The side is coming together and with a couple of buys could be solid enough to make progress (although the depth will be tested come Spring), but the age has dropped dramatically and the players brought in are sound buys.
As for the new manager, who knows who it will be ??  Levy ??  One hopes so, but the more names that are linked means he is either doing a very good job of concealing the identity of the in-coming boss or he is still scratching around trying to find someone willing to take over.

04.03.2004

Dear Spurs fans,

Having been living in Hong Kong for nigh on 10 years now, you would think I haven't seen Spurs much over this time.  Last time I saw them in the flesh was at Anfield a couple of seasons ago when Litmanen scored a scorcher, but believe it or not I saw more of Spurs last season than a lot of people at home and at times it was the worst I have ever seen us play ... an utter embarrassment.

Here in Hong Kong, we get at least two games live every Saturday, then the Sunday games and Monday and so on, so as you can imagine when the Arse & United and Liverpool, playing most Sundays, Spurs are a big team to show and being a manager of a sports bar I get incredible amounts of stick for supporting them.

So, I have been dreading the coming season, all I could see was Hoddle out by Christmas, which would have been devastating for me.  I can still see him at the end of 90 minutes (when most people had already left White Hart Lane) going the length of the pitch against Oxford Utd, and go round the keeper and stroke the ball home, pure genius as they say, and there were plenty of other occasions.

But then yesterday a signing, and not just any old signing. In Asia you would not believe how much football is televised here, in my bar we show live la Liga, Serie a, Bundesliga action, well all except the Scottish league !!! And I have seen bits of the Portuguese league and 'our new boy' looks awesome, hopefully I wont be made to eat my words here, but I think potentially we have an Archibald/crooks combination on our hands, Keano was our best player by far last season and we only played well in about 5 games !!!! So he deserves someone decent to play off.

So, once again I am looking forward to the next season, with hopefully another couple of surprise signings before august, and then come the end of April we put paid to the arse and Judas's title ambitions on our ground. The reason I say this is that on one of the Arse's websites I have discovered they have 
a) St. Totteringham's day, which is where they celebrate the day we can't finish higher than them, and 
b) they have a running clock that shows how long since we have won the title.

The optimism is now coming back for this season, but Glenn please don't let Carr go to the Geordies with Carl Cort coming this way, he's useless!!

Cheers

Sean the Yid - Hong Kong side

Ed : - There are many who follow Tottenham from afar and it shows the dedication to keep in touch with what has been going on at the Lane, with all the difficulties that brings.  Glenn has gone, so if Carr goes it will be Pleat or the new manager who gets shot of him and Carl Cort has gone to Wolves, so that is a relief.  Some of this news was not apparent when you wrote this e-mail in June, but I am not sure that even Dean Richards is as slow as the length of time it has taken for the mail to reach me !!
Hoping that the season has proved as teeth grindingly "exciting" for you as the rest of us !!

25.02.2004

Our recent performances have been abysmal and I feel that Pleat should shoulder the blame for the initial Man. City fiasco.  However if we don’t want our players to start developing a complex; Pleat has got to encourage them to go out and try and score as many goals as possible.  Sitting back on a lead, any lead, only seems to set the nerves a jangling among the players and the fans and isn’t in the Tottenham tradition anyway.

I’d rather see games like the Portsmouth game than have to sit through the Leicester game again.  The team are more than capable of scoring, and if they are encouraged to feel that for every goal the opposition gets they can score two then their confidence will surely be boosted.

Am I the only Spurs fan who thinks that Ledley King should stay in the centre of midfield ?

For years we’ve cried out for a defensive midfielder with skill, strength and the eye for the occasional goal, and when we find one we instantly want to lump him back in defence.  Anyone who has watched him play in that position against Arsenal (most notably) and Man. Utd would have realised how he made players like Vieira and Keane virtually disappear from the game.  As I recall in the Man U. game Keane resorted to playing on the wing.  Don’t loose sight of the long term benefits of having such a skilful, yet quietly dominant player in midfield, he just needs to be encouraged to boss his team mates around a bit more.

Ledley should stay in midfield, as our defensive frailties could be patched up by Mabizela.  Give Mabizela a chance, he had some assured performances at the African Nations Cup and will surely develop into one of the best centre-halves in the premiership.

That’s my two pennies worth.
Thanks
Naija Yid

Ed : - Agree about Mabizela being given a chance, as he has had little opportunity to show what he is fully capable of and it would be good to give him a go and take the opportunity to drop the Keystone Cops in our defence.  
King can play in midfield, although I feel his long term future is in defence, but at the moment, he provides something that we are missing with Redknapp out and that is a decent, incisive passer.  Davies runs well with the ball and can put people in, while Brown is the engine room and Jackson whips in a good ball from the left, but from the central position, we need someone who can thread balls through for Robbie and Jermain to feed on.  King does offer that option.

24.02.2004

What a difference a week makes.

If Ledley King had not been called up to the England cause and played OK in a meaningless friendly, would the Spurs moaners have made their call to get him back in the defence?

One of the reasons that the team have been improving since the New Year was the fact that King was playing OK for us in the middle of the park.  This was the position that has been a constant concern over the last few years.  If we add that he scored a couple of goals, does that mean that he should play up front as well ??

The main fact is that as long as he stays in the midfield we can pretend that he is the answer to the defensive problems, if he goes back there and we have no presence in midfield the results will not alter and we will not have that as an excuse/option.

One idea may be to get the three goal lead and then play 3-5-2 and pack the midfield so the opposition cannot play.  Then King can play in the back four and there should be plenty to stop the opposition.  Unfortunately then we will no longer be playing to our strengths.

Also what is wrong with Mabizela, he should at least be given a go.  It is getting frustrating that Pleat seems set on clearing out all the players that Glenn bought.  I wouldn't mind seeing Bunjy in left back position rather than players struggling out of position.

Thanks
Steve Keogh

Ed : - One player he isn't clearing out of Hoddle's buys was the biggest one - £8.1 million of it !!
Mabizela looks good in the reserves (yes, OK it's only the reserves) and did OK when he has been given a few minutes here and there in the first XI.  I would play him at the back, as Bunjy could only play as a sweeper and I don't think Spurs can play that way.  Bunjy passes the ball well, but the defensive side of his game has been a bit exposed by the Premier League.

As for King, he can produce a fine pass like that one for Defoe's equaliser on Sunday and adds a bit of calm in midfield.  Not sure he has the presence or the tackling ability to be our Roy Keane, so in time he will move back to defence.

14.2.2004

Dear MEHSTG

I could not agree more with Mark Edwards' letter of the 13.2.04.  I listened to the Pompey match on TalkSport whilst in the car with some friends.  I was mortified with embarrassment when the commentator's described the treatment we were giving Poyet and Richards.  What the hell is that all that about? 

It's interesting that Mike refers to John Pratt's treatment.  Although a fan since the early 70s, it was the early 80s before I was first able to visit the Lane regularly.  In 1982, with the club chasing four trophies and playing sublime football, I ventured along to see the boys beat a great Ipswich side by the only goal.   Imagine my dismay when a section of the fans started getting on Steve Perryman's back.  I mean ... Stevie Perryman !!!  One of the legends of THFC and a hero of mine to this day.  He'd mistimed a couple of tackles and so the fans felt he deserved a load of abuse.  I thought it was a disgrace and nearly got in a fight for saying so.  The verbal altercation  that followed reassured me that those idiots knew naff all about football and very little about the great service Stevie gave the club. 

I'd like to think that those that booed Dean Richards were equally ignorant and few in numbers.  Although the former might be true, the latter clearly is not if they can be heard over the radio.  It matters not a jot that I do not think either Gus or Deano have a long-term future in a successful Spurs side.  Whilst they are here, they should be supported and treated with respect.  I for one hope that they prove me wrong and finish the season on a high.  Good luck to them.

The Dazzler

Ed : -  There is a feeling in the game today that fans should be able to say whatever they want, when they want  because of the high prices paid to watch the entertainment on show.  I personally think that you should get behind the team while they are playing as booing will not encourage players and will not usually change the manager's perception of who should be substituted. Dalmat was having a stinker against Man City, but stayed on.  He didn't get booed, but you would have hoped the boss might have seen what was happening and made a change.
As you say, this isn't a new phenomenon amongst Spurs fans and from what people have told me goes way back to the Fifties at least.  There are always players that fans do not regard as worthy ... David Howells is one who always get stick when doing a "dirty" job well.  Now I think more people jump on the booing bandwagon as they regard it as the done thing.
I too think that Richards is one of the worst £8 million we ever spent, but he didn't ask for that much to be paid for him and I would still not boo him while he was playing 90 minutes for the club.
The other thing is to turn that negative into a positive and sing the name of the player you want to replace the object of your ire.  That way, it is the manager who is being informed of your opinion and the player who is not your favourite is not directly affected.
Only my personal view, but different views is what the game is all about.

13.2.2004

Dear MEHSTG

I'm still angry! I shouldn't be as we've just beaten Charlton away, but I can't get the treatment 'we' dished out to Richards against Pompey out of my mind. I say 'we' coz as Spurs fans we are all in this together aren't we?

Richards was aware he was having a nightmare as was Pleat, Hughton and the 36,000 crowd. I cannot for the life of me see what benefit it is to the team when we start booing our own players. The caning we gave Richards was an absolute disgrace. I travel all over the country watching Spurs, and can't think of any supporters that regularly have pops at their own players as much as we do. Even when Richards managed to set up our winning goal, 'we' still got on his case. Ironic cheers when clearing a ball etc etc. What is wrong with us? When I was 1st introduced to Tottenham, John Pratt was on the receiving end of all the boos. And ever since then 'we' have had to target someone. It's as if whinging is compulsory to be a Tottenham fan.

Yes, yes I know, we pay our money and have every right to voice our opinions - but again I ask, how does it help the team? Why is it mainly us and not other teams fans?  What kind of message does it send to the other players who we all want to keep at The Lane? Are 'we' making it so hostile for our own, that should an offer come in for them they jump ship at the 1st opportunity?

I remember not so long ago people getting on Doc's back - yes the same Doc that people are now raving about! Ask him if he is grateful for the savage time 'we' gave him and if it was the barracking that made him turn his form around. It wasn't! During his reign, Alan Sugar would talk absolute S**T 9/10 times, but I wonder was he right when he called us all fickle?

With the exception of Simon MacDonald (see issue 37 and this article), when we all come to the Lane, we do so with the hope that we are going to turn on the style and win the game don't we? Think about that before we start on our own players next time!

Keep up the good work

Mark Edwards - Ealing W5

Ed : - There are times when you might want to show your displeasure about a number of things, but the start or the middle of a match is not the time, in my humble opinion.  Whoever wears the shirt should be given our support while the game is on, as we want them to do their best while out on the pitch, but when the final whistle goes, it might be appropriate then to express your views.  

The only thing, as we have said before, while everyone will want to have their view after paying to see the match, it might have some effect on other players who might or might not come to the club in the future if they see themselves joining a club where they might be pilloried by their own supporters.

27.1.2004

Hello fellow Yids,

I wonder if anyone has noticed a little slice of lady luck / good fortune that has quietly been coming our way this year. A series of coincidences that has undoubtedly contributed to the five game unbeaten run we are enjoying.

Starting with CRYSTAL PALACE, they sack their manager two weeks before they play us ! Then BIRMINGHAM lose two of there most influential players before they play us, i.e. Christophe Dugarry and Mathew Upson (the previous weekend.) LEEDS - Alan Smith, there best  player, decides to serve his two match ban, starting with the game against us ! LIVERPOOL, Owen has only been back from injury a week and is off form. Gerrard comes back the next game and a week later they play a blinder and knock Newcastle out of the Cup! (Although much praise to Ant and Doc.)  Begin to get my drift?

Then Manchester City. (Do you need luck to beat them??) David Pleat made the tactical error of playing two defensive midfielders in the first half. i.e. Brown and King.  This invited City on to us, cut off the supply line to our forwards and even a crap team like them got confident and ran us ragged. Most teams would have been 3-0 up at half time, game over. But we survived and could have even won the game.  (Postie you've had your chance give Zamora an extended run ... )

Oh and there's our next game Fulham, who've just sold there top scorer Louis Saha !! Now, my name isn't Mystic Meg or anything, but I'm currently thinking, 2-1 to Spurs at Old Trafford, Kanoute to get the winner. There something in the air ... The only problem I foresee is, if we beat Fulham, Pleaty will probably get manager of the month, and then we're buggered !!  

Anyway, long may it continue, I'm loving it!
Come on the SPURS ...
Tunde.  Stoke Newington N16.

Ed : - As your e-mail was entitled Lady Luck, I guess she is a friend at the moment, but as we know at Spurs, she can be a fickle mistress to us so-called "fickle" fans.  There is one flaw in your argument and that is that Kanoute will still be in Africa when the Fifth round is played ... and that we have to get there first !!

261.2004

Have you guys heard the latest manager rumour?  Sven.  Yeah, I know, sounds crazy, but then I read this guys logic, and suddenly it didn't seem so crazy.  If I remember rightly it goes something like this...

1. He's coming in at the end of the season.  Thus, must be in a job right now.

2. Has discussed transfers with Levy, so must be in charge of a national side, otherwise there's massive conflict of interest issues, which would mean big trouble down the line if they have anything to do with a club right now.  Basically, Levy isn't stupid, so it's pretty unlikely it's a club coach.

3. Speaks English well.  As far as I know, Trapattoni doesn't.

4.  Knows English players well, as otherwise why would we put in a bid for Reid and co?  Let's face it, Gus Hiddink, Trapattoni and the rest wouldn't have a clue who these guys are, even Paul Robinson.  That basically means we're looking at a UK national coach.

5. Wants to run the club under a continental style, which leaves us with Berti Vogts and Sven out of the UK based coaches.

6. To repeat earlier, wants to come in at the end of the season.  Scotland aren't in the Euro Championship, so surely Vogts would come in right away?

7. Wants to manage an English club in the near future.  Haven't we all heard that Sven's a bit bored and wants to get back into the thick of it?

8.  Finally, it has been confirmed that Levy and Sven have talked about the club's structure and future.  Maybe a little more was said, like, get some transfer funds sorted out, and I'll think about it...

This is all based on official stuff, and a bit of basic logic.  So somebody spot the obvious mistake, because I can't.  Otherwise, pinch yourselves now guys...

Dave

Ed : - Ouch !! Pinching yourself hurts !!  The rumour might not be that true, as he has been advising Chelsea on transfers and although they have bigger fish to fry than we could ever afford, there must be something to that rather than him coming to Spurs.  Sven might also be keen to take on a team that has an immediate Champions League future and with big money to spend, he could do what he never had the opportunity to do at Lazio, who were always in debt.  

24.1.2004

Aah ... the return of the Tottenham Action Group. Where are they in our hour of need I wondered to myself before Xmas when Spurs were in the bottom three? I know what will save us a self serving spokesman on behalf of all Spurs fans.

It may not be the combative midfielder we require but what the heck the media love TAG it helps to strengthen that well known brand 'the moaning spurs fan' c/o the the London Arsenal Standard.

In the intervening years after they had 'got rid of Sugar' had they been in 'action' in other parts of Tottenham? Reporting dodgy lamp-posts to the Council on the Paxton Road or complaining about litter on the High Road. I mean they are the Tottenham ACTION Group.

I really don't know of any other club who have as many Action groups as we have had over years - a small proportion of supporters who claim they speak on behalf of the others and who the media always go to when the next drama at Spurs happens.

If they really loved the club, as they say they do, they should stop pandering to the media stereotype of the moaning spurs fan - wake up to the fact that we are not a big club anymore - and protest in a more calm and considered manner.

But then again I'm having a moan aren't I ?

Dave Harris
Sydney

Ed : - Having been at the AGM, there were a couple of vociferous questioners, who did not claim to be from TAG, but I would not be surprised.  There is never a name attached to statements made by TAG and as you say, they have been dormant for some time and they haven't been the best of times either.  But then there are the people on the phone-in shows who constantly carp on about our team not being good enough (which you might not have to hear being in Oz).  None of this helps the team or the club's perception in the media.  and if it's good enough for the fans to do it, I suppose it is only natural that the media will jump on the bandwagon. 
As you state, there might be some reasonable arguments in there, but they way they are presented gets up people's noses and makes them "anti-" before they get very far into them.

18.1.2004

Some time ago I was very critical of Gary Doherty and the standard of his play.  I have to now hold my hands up and say that in recent games particularly against Liverpool he has been outstanding and his confidence is growing with every match.  He was very good against poorer opposition like Wolves and Palace, but I expected Liverpool and particularly Owen and Heskey to expose his shortcomings.  It didn't happen and he played exceptionally well so full credit to him.  There were a couple of moments when our hearts were in our mouths but all in all a massive improvement. 

In my opinion he may in the long term only make a good First Division player, but at the moment he is doing really well and should keep his place ahead of Richards.  Keep it up Doc and win us over !

Simon Hassell

Ed : - It is an astonishing transformation and one that is good to see.  As long as the Doc sticks to what he is good at, he will not let you down and his strengths have been his determination to be first to every ball.  Some end up as fouls, but he wins more than he loses and that is what is needed to complement Gardner's assured presence alongside him.

18.1.2004

Warnock for boss?  Brown goes without Motormouth saying a word !

Shotterwell

Ed : - I suppose that he is good mates with Pleat, so it could be a possibility, although how he would manage with the continental system with a Director of Football, I hate to imagine.  North London derbies  could be very interesting with him in charge though !!

16.1.2004

Hi guys,

It's great to see the club start the new year a lot better than it finished the last. A good result against Liverpool will do us the world of good and hopefully the players will start to believe in themselves and play some consistent football.

Nice to see Dalmat starting to produce the goods, but how much is he going to cost us if we want to buy him! We need to get Nicky Butt in midfield, but will Levy let the funds go?

That leads on to the point I wish to make!

Instead of these more expensive club bonds, why don't the club set up a scheme which involve setting up regular debits throughout the year from supporters. A supporters transfer fund scheme.  Each supporter could elect to have a regular amount debited from their accounts every month and that goes into a fund which is used just for players.

eg. 50,000 signed up supporters each pay £10 per month.
Total saved in year equals £6 million, £20 per month £12 million.
More likely to get that cash saved, than from 60,000 fans putting in £2,500.

I know a lot of supporters already fund the club through season tickets which is great, but supporters like myself who struggle to get to matches on a regular basis could do their bit to contribute.

It's just an idea! 

Spencer Derham

Ed : -  The share issue is being under-written by ENIC, so they must be able to raise that amount of cash somehow.  I believe the Trust are asking questions of Levy about how the club are going to go about the purchase of players and when will they be buying.  I think that most fans might think they put enough money in already, but with your scheme would the club own the player or the fans ??  It might make Dream Team look like reality if the fans started trying to decide who they wanted to buy for the team !! 

14.1.2004

Time to both wake up and grow up, fellow Spurs fans - if there's a chance of sharing a stadium with the Arse we should give the board our full backing and go for it.

The money saved on going it alone can be used to cut the debt and buy in better players which in turn will improve our chances of winning things again which in turn leads to bigger crowds which means more money etc etc - the virtuous circle.

Oft quoted but true - the Milan clubs don't seem to have any particular problem with such an arrangement and I can't help but notice that both teams are successful in both their domestic league and Europe and regularly attract major players from across the globe e.g. our own Stephane Dalmat!

OK, so you might have to sit on a red seat or be positioned in front of an Arsenal sponsor's logo - it matters not a jot. If the team in white on the pitch is producing superior quality football and winning trophies who cares if the whole stadium is bright scarlet ?

Yes, we will miss Mick's Grill on the High Road and the Paxton Road burger vans, the unofficial souvenir sellers and that emotional moment when the pitch comes into view as you trot up the little staircase in the East Stand - we all will. But, as with The Dell, Roker Park and Wembley, all things must pass - it's time to move on.

Neither Wenger or Ferguson are immortal - sooner or later both will be off due to old age, boredom or the lure of bigger bucks. You can be sure that both the boardrooms of the respective clubs are bricking themselves as they contemplate who will take over to maintain the success that both clubs are currently enjoying. Nothing is forever in football (ask the moaning Scousers who want Houllier out, look where Leeds and. more frighteningly, Forest are now) and our time will come again.

We just have to be sure we're ready to seize the opportunity when it comes - and that isn't going to be accomplished by emotionally blackmailing the board into spending unnecessary millions on a stadium of our own when we could be halving the construction and running costs by taking the long view and sharing with the enemy.

It's not a betrayal of our traditions - it's common sense. It would be a far greater betrayal to pass up the opportunity of taking the club forward by refusing to do the obvious, the simple, the right thing.

Sugar's refusal to follow Dein's example and pay the wages for players like Bergkamp in the early 90s ago has cost us dearly - we don't want to be looking back in another ten years or so wondering whether ground-sharing might not have been a good idea.

Peter Lis, Leamington Spa

Ed : - The Milan clubs share a stadium, which is owned by the local authority there.  Neither had to stump up for the building of it, as far as I can find out.  I am sure if we both were tenants without the costs involved in the likes of Ashburton Grove, they would bite the hands off the owners.  Even Wembley or the potential Olympic Stadium at Stratford will require a contribution to the costs or an arrangement like Man. City's where they lose the income derived from crowds over a certain level.  The Milanese clubs have an end each, so whether "home" or "away" in the derby, they don't have to go to the opposition's end.

10.1.2004

I am really looking forward to next weekends game, especially after the win against Birmingham in midweek.  The arrival of Marc Van Bommel or someone of equal ability during this week would be great but also wishful thinking I reckon.  But then again maybe Pleat and Levy will prove me wrong !  I see we are being linked with Edgar Davids today, I remember reading somewhere where Pleat said he was always telling Levy to buy him.

I never could understand why Glenn did not have a replacement for Freund lined up ?  What Freund brought to the midfield was and still is missing from the team  (Nobody to mix it up a bit and get stuck in).

Hopefully we will turn Leeds over today.

COME ON YOU SPURS !

Ed : - Well, Davids nearly got here !!  However, I think the management might struggle to bring someone in of that quality now, as van Bommel is just getting over an operation, so won't be fit and won't leave until the summer.  We live in hope though !!

9.1.2004

Wyart

It's 9th January 2004, and I just want to say what a fantastic year so far !! Two wins out of two, seven goals scored, Fatty Dalmat starting to look the part with two MoM displays and lots of quality apparently arriving at the Lane from star international players to about four top-notch managers for next season.  I'm saying this now because it will probably be the last chance ...

Michael Brown so far confirmed - does "nearly got Rivaldo but instead here's the future of Belgian football" ring any bells ?  And the "top-notch manager" will probably end up being another crap manager who only gets the job because of Spurs connections. I expect someone like Nico Claesen is probably available...

Anyway, don't want to moan too much as so far this year I'm happy, but how long will it last?

Phil Drummond
Poole

Ed : - No firm news on the manager and you will see that the club are trying to bring players in early ... unlike previous transfer windows !!  As to who will end up here, we are all interested to see that !!

8.1.2004

Hello,

I don't know whether you can help me, but I am interested in somehow starting a campaign to bring back Steffen Freund to Tottenham Hotspur Football Club.

I don't expect to see him back in the starting line up at the Lane, because I no that is almost out of the question (although we have never replaced him in the midfield). I am thinking more along the lines of a testimonial match. He although and not like by some was a true legend at spurs a proper YIDO and he was loved by the crowd.

Don't know whether you can help me but it would be appreciated for a response.


Thanking you in advance

Adam Colley

East Stand Season Ticket Holder and lifetime fan of the yidd army

Ed : - I know Freund was back at the training round last month, with rumours of his return until the end of the season, but I think it is unlikely he will return in any capacity.  Normally players have to serve 10 years at one club to earn a testimonial match.

7.1.2004

Please Please Please Tottenham!!
Get rid of Poyet, Anderton, and the rest of the old guard.
To be honest the young, inexperienced guys like Blondel, Kelly, Jackson, etc... can't exactly do much worse than the current first eleven can they.
Oh, and WHEN Pleat goes I think we should bring in a foreign manager, then at least we can underachieve with some glamourous players in a Spurs shirt.
Look at the Chelsea team that contained the likes of Gullit, Vialli, etc...
Old players are OK if they are class (ie Zola), but boys like Poyet and
Sicknote don't seem to have the same magic in their legs as they did a couple of seasons ago, maybe ten seasons for Darren.

Cheers
Alex

Ed : - The old guard are being gradually phased out, with Pleat adding some youngsters when he can.  He will still use them until we have secured our safety in the Premiership.  What the new manager will want to do is something we are all waiting to see.

7.1.2004

Belatedly it appears that the powers that be at Spurs have come to their senses and sanctioned Kanoute's desire to represent Mali at the African Nations Cup. Regardless of his apparent change of nationality it is counterproductive to deny any player the opportunity to play in major tournaments. Despite the tabloids stoking the fire it was foolish of the club to get involved in yet another PR disaster. It does nothing for the image of the club and only adds to the pressure when the focus should be on climbing the table and attracting new talent to the team.

If we weren't in such a perilous position this would have been a non-event - the current lack of goal-scoring form shown by Keane, Postiga and Zamora compounds the problem. The celebrated law of averages suggests that all three of the above sooner or later will start to score regularly - Keane, in particular, has endured a wretched run of form in front of goal.

After a good showing against Palace at the weekend it is essential that we take Birmingham apart on Wednesday - with Upson and Dugarry both missing we have a good opportunity to move up the table and get a run going especially since Leeds are up next.  Four points is the minimum return in the next four days.

Peter Lis, Leamington Spa.

Ed : - We will have to hope that one of our other strikers comes in to do the job we need in Fredi's absence and that we can continue the run after the Palace win.  Tottenham are right to be upset over Kanoute's change of nationality, but should be big enough to say "Good luck and see you soon".

6.1.2004

Great to see The Sun's ace sports reporter Dave Kidd hitting the mark with his hysterical piece this morning informing all and sundry that Kanoute had been dropped from the starting line up v Palace.

In what other walk of life (politics excepted) can you get paid to write and publish such wildly inaccurate nonsense?

And remember it was The Sun and The Times (both Murdoch scandal sheets) that 'broke' the 'news' about Mancini. What price their credibility now?

Join me in emailing Kidd to congratulate him and his paper on such accurate reporting.

The Sun - shove it.

Peter Lis, Leamington Spa

Ed : -  Don't believe what is written in newspapers and on the Internet.  Rely on MEHSTG for all the speculation and rumour you need !!

2.1.2004

Well at least that year is over.

So last Sunday was my second visit of the season to the Lane, and my second viewing of a 0-1 scoreline, with Bolton being the first.  Bolton had only been worth seeing in the end for the superb performance of Mr. Jay Jay, and he was the only real difference between us and them.  If I were a Bolton fan I would fear for the clubs plight in the six weeks he will be away, because they looked decidedly like a one a one man team.

Anyway, a thoughtful Xmas present saw me going to the Charlton game and really for the first half we dominated the game and I was very impressed with Jackson, who certainly has the delivery Matt Etherington lacked but didn't appear to have the ability of Etherington to beat players.  I would far rather have the former than the latter, so hopefully Jacko will push on be our Ryan Giggs (or is that too hopeful).

So, at half time we go in having controlled the game and surely feeling the more upbeat, but then something happened at half time which meant we got worse and Charlton got better.  You don't need a rocket scientist to tell us Pleat's been hung drawn and quartered by Curbishley in the tactics department.  The game was as simple as that in the second half.  They played slightly longer up to Carlton Cole and eventually scored from a second di Canio corner after a bit of camera posing by Kasey to tip over a ball going well over.

Hopefully the upcoming year will see Pleat leave the club Premiership survival, the a new coach Mourinho looks a good bet to bring the best out of Helder  and my New Year's resolution to become a billionaire oil tycoon should help the club, give me six  months.

Riclatam

Ed : - Good luck with the 'black gold' - heaven knows, Spurs need an injection of something !!  

Pleat did seem to run out of ideas in the second half by piling on forwards with nobody left to supply them with the ball.  What we need is a goal off someone's arse to give us a bit of luck that might help us turn things around, but the team need to play for 90 minutes first.  The second half performance got what it deserved really.

26.12.2003

Merry X-Mas to all... yo ho f****** ho.

Not usually in the business of slagging players off, but the current bunch we've got (with a couple or three exceptions) are the worst collection I've witnessed in 30 years of following the team.

Flu has (now thankfully) kept me confined to the Gillette Soccer Panel this boxing day, but assuming ex-Spur Mullery hasnt got secret allegiances to Pompey, he has just described our overpaid stars as gutless, cowardly, and having surrendered the white flag long before the second goal.

New levels of ineptitude then.. beating previous lows v Man City (a), Boro (h).. and several more that came close.

In what will no doubt degenerate into an exercise in ranting to vent some anger, I'd like to put forward my opinions on which of the "key" personnel currently at WHL are causing our problems...

Pleat; though I respect his honesty when interviewed on TV, he is ultimately the man in charge until the summer, and quite frankly, some of his selections are mystifying.  We need the new man in BEFORE summer, or whoever he is may find his first task is getting us back into the Premier League.
Keller; ok, great shot stopper.. if the shots are point blank range.  He apparently has trouble with anything from 25 yards or more (Beattie, Okocha, Robert 2, Berger 2 etc...) and is scared stiff of getting bumped if there's crosses landing in the box.
Carr; never recaptured his form after injury, and appears to me to be biding his time before exiting stage left.
Gardener; subject of much debate with my mates, but sorry... he's never good enough for the top league. He's 6'5".. why do we concede so many goals from corners?
Richards; better than AG, but too slow and always looked better with King next to him in my book.
Midfield; On the whole, not up to it. Poyet's best days are a distant memory and the odd goal is not a reason to accept 89 minutes of not keeping up with the pace of the game.  Anderton can still pass a ball well, but again cannot get into a fast paced game.  Dalmat and Ricketts can look the part, but need to impose themselves more, though Rohan is well worth persisting with.  Blondel looks too light weight, Redknapp looks good ... but is never fit (a problem we knew about but still signed him).  Bunje and Acimovic are never good enough, and I always thought Konchesky wasted too much ball when in good wide positions so wasn't over fussed when he returned to Charlton.
And we need a ball winner desperately ... rumours suggest Davies cannot wait to leave, so how about using him as bait for a bid for Butt?
Forwards; Lots of potential here, but we need results QUICK.
Keano is top drawer, and can be a superb "supplementary" striker with 15 goals or more if Kanoute can weigh in with 20 maybe? Fredi has looked good to me, though seems to flitter between working his socks off and taking 30 minute breathers.
Posty and Zamora can both be good players for us in my eyes, but need nurturing in different ways. But we need one or both of them to start hitting the net if one of the main pair are unavailable, or we our plight will worsen.
Collectively; The club needs some guidance from above fast. This whole manager situation is a joke, and we can only hope it has gone this way while we wait for O'Neill. The board need to raise more cash for a substantial transfer budget, and we need to buy battling midfielders and defenders.. and a keeper I suggest.

Well.. thats a rant ladies and gentlemen.. I doubt this splurge will ever resurface anywhere, but I am a very disgruntled Lilywhite right now, and had to get some stuff off my chest.
See you all v Charlton, 4-2 conquerors of Chelski today (gulp..).
JINX (Midland Spurs)

Ed : - I think you speak for a lot of fans in their disappointment at the results in 2003.  The turnaround in achievement needs to be rapid, as our form is never good going into Easter and the end of the season, so we need points on the board now .. .especially with some of the fixtures we have coming up.

26.12.2003

We want are Tottenham back we're shit and we're sick of it.

Soendergaard

23.12.2003

Dear Wyart,
Whilst recovering from the latest batch of defeats I was reflecting on the year to date, starting with that awful televised mauling at SCBC, and wondered whether this is the worst calendar year ever for the sheer volume of straight losses?
I have followed Spurs through some traumatic times in the past but this year must be one of the worst ever for the number of post match depressions I have had to endure.
Has there been a worse time?
Hoping for better times ahead and that Michael Brown proves to be a good buy.
Marcus

Ed : - Without looking it up, it certainly feels like 2003 has given us little to cheer about in terms of wins.  I think it will be a year that we will all be glad to see the back of.  It makes me worry when people come on the phone-in programmes and say we are too good to go down, as the record does not substantiate that this year.  Whether Brown will make a lot of difference on his own, we will have to see.

19.12.2003

Mid-season finds us mid-table but with the notion that having been on the wrong end of a lot of bizarre decisions (starting Day 1 at Birmingham) and bad luck (Arsenal and Blackburn away for example) the ball should start running for us in the New Year.  'These things even themselves out over a season' say the pros - hopefully this will prove to be true.

With January sales imminent Pleaty has hinted at a bargain or two - hopefully he'll be shopping at Harrods and not Poundstretcher !  Wednesday night showed how desperately we need a LEADER to rally the troops when the pressure is on : in the past it was players like Mackay and Roberts who would point, shout, cajole and chivvy to make sure the job got done.  On Sunday, we'll get to see the supreme example of this in action when Roy Keane steps out for the reigning champions.

For all his faults (and they are many) you could have bet your mortgage on Wednesday night that Boro, for all their impressive approach play, would not have breached us five minutes from the end if RK had been wearing Poyet's (or anybody else's) shirt.  The goal, coming as it did, from an attempt to waste time deep in Boro's half, would have resulted in some verbal GBH to the guilty players at the least.

I made of point of watching our players as they regrouped for the kick off - hardly a word between them and no-one seemed to want to get angry about such a stupid goal.  The body language said 'self-pity' and the match played to its logical conclusion - we never looked remotely like clinching it in extra time.

Whilst the side has a great deal more solidity about it than when Hod was at the helm we need a battler in the middle who will kick arses when they need kicking - I can't think of anyone on the current playing staff who fits the bill.

Looking around the teams above us Vieira, Makelele, Parker (titanic performance v Southampton) and co all end up on the winning/drawing side more often than the losing one.  Parker is out of the question at the moment (maybe Curbs will bring him in August when he arrives) so maybe Poundstretcher it will need to be. Sacrilegious to say so, but Savage fits the bill and Birmingham are on the slide ...

Happy New Year to all,
Peter/Leamington Spa

Ed : - The need for that sort of player has been a long time arriving.  Not sure how many there are like Mackay out there or the way we would attract them to Tottenham, but without that rigid spine through the side, we will always struggle.  Not sue that it will change in January and I just hope we can stay far enough up to give the new boss a go at getting the one player that might turn things around.

16.12.2003

Dear Wyart,

All the managers over the past few years, but I think I've sussed where we've been going wrong in recent seasons. Nothing to do with tactics or whatever. It came to me when I watched the premiershit at the weekend. Followers of champions league teams, whether at the theatre of dregs, Stamford Bilge or the other place,  all hoot at players with an 'oooooo' sound, 'Rooooood', 'Muuuuuuutuuuuu', 'Kanoooooooo'. We would not be copying them because,  as with most things Spurs were there first with 'Nayeeeeeeeeeeeeeem!'  So far from us playing catch up, everyone else is.  

Kanooooooooote...

All the best
Elfrid

Ed : - Don't forget 'Viiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiilla' !!

13.11.2003

Dear MEHSTG,

Heard a rumour, and don't know how much truth there is in it, but it is interesting.

Apparently, Fredi Kanoute has been injured during the same month each year for a reason (and it isn't that he is injury prone!).  As a Muslim, he observes the fast of Ramadan, and is therefore too weak to play.  He then exaggerates any niggling knocks he might be carrying as an excuse for not playing.  

As I said, don't know how true this is, especially as no-one could claim that Izzet's horror tackle which has put him out this Ramadan was not serious enough to genuinely keep him out !

Block 32 Yid
(I still believe)

Ed : - This one seems to be doing the rounds at the moment.  I know from doing a bit of research previously, that Ramadan is not at the same time each year.  It is around this time, but is dictated by the Sun and therefore is a moveable feast, so to speak.  His general constitution might affect his performance, as I am sure it affects everyone who is fasting during the festival, but I recall last season his injury ruled him out until the last few games or so for West Ham.
It sounds to me like someone is putting two and two together without the aid of a calculator.
And anyway, wasn't Nayim a Muslim too ??  I don't remember him suffering the same fate.

13.11.2003

On my browses for Spurs news on the web, I came across an interesting article about "Postie", as we affectionately call him now.
Turns out that Postie along with Nuno Gomes, once a target of ours are the Portuguese ambassadors for McDonalds.
Is this the reason for his lack of confidence in front of goal?
Too many 2% meat Big Macs have been no good for for the protein he needs to build up his muscles.
I doubt this very much, and I think his real problem comes from possibly trying to be a bit to clever, which he had more time to do for Porto. I watched him do shooting practice against rob Burch in the warm up for the Bolton game, and out of around 20-30 shots he scored twice.  I began to feel sorry for the people in the Paxton Lower because he was really peppering them.  He was trying to hit these rifling dipping shots in the top corner, which he didn't score with once.  So maybe Postie should go back to the drawing board and take the Alan Shearer route of hitting the ball as hard as you can, so even if the keeper does get a touch its still going in, then when he gets his confidence I cant wait to see those balls flying into the top corner of the goal rather than the top of the Paxton.
POSTIGA WHOOOOOO
POSTIGA WHOOOOOO
HE COMES FROM PORTUGAL
HE HATES THE ARSENAL
(lets just forget the arsenal game Helder ... how often is Lauren gonna be around to put you through)

Sugarloz

Ed : - We all look forward to seeing Postie deliver, because he looks like a skillful finisher (although he is doing an impersonation of the complete opposite at the moment), who would serve the club well in the future.  I hope he gets a few "ugly" goals to set him off, because they are the ones we need to score and the one he got against Stevenage in pre-season was a one yard prod over the line after arriving at the far post.  After all, it doesn't matter what they look like ... they all count as just one goal in the end !!

4.11.2003

Although we have flirted with relegation I have never felt like I have at the moment.  Our supposedly fantastic form under Mr. Pleat leaves me fearing the worst, as in the last few games we have been dominated by Bolton, Leicester and Boro, all poor teams who should have hammered us.  We have lost three games at home this season and have played no one of any note and the manager who we desperately need - Mr. Curbishley - might no longer feel he has nothing left to achieve at Charlton, as they near a European place with a centre back that couldn't even get in our reserve team.

Our team is average, not average good, or average bad, mid table average (think you get the average drift); but we are being outplayed by teams that are going down ... why ?  And why are we being praised for it ?  Opposition strikers miss shed loads of chances and have a penchant for our crossbar and we are suddenly resilient ?  No, we are lucky.  We are in a real state and the sooner we get a new manager the better.  Why wait ?  Who would come here at the end of a poor season that wouldn't come now ?  O'Neill - no chance; Curbs was interested, hopefully still is.  I suggest Mr. Levy you get on the bloody phone now, because we may not be attractive to anyone in the summer.

Here's hoping
Joel Elvidge

Ed : -  The longer the club assume that we have a right to pick up other club's managers, we will drift on aimlessly.  And the longer we drift, the more difficult it will be to attract a top manager, because we won't be in Europe and will not be able to attract the players we need to move on.

2.11.2003
Am I right in thinking that away supporters are considerably more vocal than home fans at The Lane?  The Bolton and West Ham fans, for instance, were behind their teams for the entire match. The Tottenham fans, however, were quiet, particularly against The Irons, other than when Bobby Zamora (quality, if a trifle late) scored.  On Saturday I was disappointed with the performance of our players but equally disappointed with the lack of sustained encouragement from the stands.  Bolton players made mistakes but had a more tolerant measure of frustration from their fans. Groaning, booing and worse (yes, profanity!) seem the primary reaction from Tottenham supporters (certainly in South Upper) for the entire 93 minutes. 
 
And another thing that irritates me is 'supporters' who leave before the end of the match. This is scandalous and disloyal. Even when we beat The Everton, people were shoving off after 80 minutes. What are they saying? "We've had enough, we've won (or we've lost). We want to beat the rush". How about waiting until the end and clapping the lads off the pitch?  (Even on Saturday some of our players gave 100% for the whole match).
 
While I've been writing this I've had a feeling of 'perhaps I'm being naive' but don't human beings perform better when they're encouraged and not criticised?
 
N17 Yiddo (Spurs down to the bone marrow)
 
Ed : -  The response to some of our players and the way they play have been the same for years.  Even going back to the 60's if I believe what I am told.  The crowd had been better this season, even in the depths of the SCBC defeat, but the last three home matches have been very quiet and there has been a strange atmosphere around (The West Ham game having an unsavoury atmosphere).
As for people leaving early, it is something I have never understood and have never done (well only once when we were 1-5 down at Wimbledon).  Here at MEHSTG we have always advocated the crowd getting behind the team, but it is everyone's right to praise/criticise as they feel fit.  If the bloke who moans the whole game and says he wont be back lived up to his words, I would be well pleased !!
28.10.2003

I had to chuckle when I heard the latest ramblings of the French Gary Glitter himself - Arsehole Whinger after the Charlton v Goonies game.  How unfortunate that Mr. Whingers 20-20 vision kicked in just as Pires fell off that springboard whilst being shot by a sniper and subsequently conning the ref out of a pen in the game against Portsmouth last month.  

The smirking French manager assured us that he could see nothing whilst he offered up the same old garbage (that he does every time that the Scum win a dodgy decision thus robbing the opposition of a result) about bouncing back, character, blah blah blah.  How strange then, that when quizzed on the penalty awarded to Charlton, Whinger not only saw the incident, but saw it clearly enough to denounce Matty Holland as a cheat and a diver.  Hallelujah !  It's a miracle !  Either that or Mr. Whinger is the most arrogant up his own arse manager in the entire Premiership.  Methinks that the latter is the case.

If Holland is a diver then Pires should be representing France at the Olympics next year as he has made such an art form out of it.  What's more, Pires has gone on record to admit that he has previously taken to diving to win penalties.  OK, we all know that Charlton should not have been awarded a pen but then either should the Scum against Pompey.  A case of the pot calling the kettle black I think Mr. Whinger.  

The incidents that I have just highlighted just go to show the amazing double standards that that lot from the Library have.  I can hear the laughter reverberating all the way from N17 to the South Coast.  Mr. Whinger Spurs and Pompey fans have a message for you.  
You should have gone to Specsavers.
Ha Ha Ha!

SurreySpur

Ed : -  It's not so much 20-20 vision as selective vision ... not a super-power that any of the super-heroes even possess.  Double speak is the only thing left to Wenger now that they have little chance of a double of anything else !!

26.10.2003

This is my first contribution to your excellent site, and as such I find myself a bit nervous. However, the nerves have been overcome by the anger at the state of our midfield. Now, don't get me wrong - I think we have the players that can make up a good midfield. The problem is they don't get picked. Week in, week out, there are two ever presents in the side. The two players I am particularly thinking off are....Poyet and Anderton. Well, you couldn't guess that could you ?

Hod used to pick those 2 every game he could and now Pleaty seems to be doing the same. This puzzles me, not just for the obvious reasons though. In my opinion, anyone who picks those two when they are blatantly too slow, too far off the pace to contribute anything to the game, has to be mentally disturbed.

In my opinion, Pleat has made little tactical difference to the side.  OK, he's tightened the defence and changed to 4-4-2  but that's it. The performances have reflected this. Leicester played us off the park for f*&ks sake.

While the performances have not improved, the results have. But...We have been lucky in most of his games except Coventry and Everton. Today we were lucky, but it was 9 men against 11, so I can't complain too much.

Anyway, all this leads me to believe that anyone who becomes manager at Spurs is doomed. There must be some sort of Voodoo operating behind the scenes, some sort of black magic, some sort of deficiency that turns competent, decisive men into blithering idiots who can see no further than picking the players who are always picked.

The team needs a shakeup  - don't get me wrong, the rest of the team looks OK, solid and inventive - it's just this area that gets my blood pressure rising.

I live in hope that it will change for Wednesday, but I'm not going to hold my breath.

Thank you,
Yid army.

Ed : - Thank you for your contribution, it is welcome.  The Poyet/Anderton midfield axis has been spinning out of control for a while now and I must say with some younger legs in the squad, it is a possible to replace them and have them on the bench in case they need some experience or to try and change the game near the end of a match.  I think Blondel might be introduced for the Spammers game, while Ricketts might benefit from returning to the first team then, as both Anderton and Konchesky took knocks, while Konch will be ruled out of the Cup game while Charlton still retain an interest in the competition.  Even today, in the second half, Boro ran the midfield, with the two of them not featuring enough in working to get the ball back or creating something with it when they had it.  It is something Pleat needs to address and soon, if we are to get any higher in the table.

25.10.2003

Nothing original here, just some comments on recent posts.

Gary Doherty is way, way out of his depth. £1 million from Cardiff would have been good business. Every time he's defending in the box, I cringe on the edge of my seat waiting for the inevitable penalty.  Like Graham Roberts ??   Do me a favour !!!!!!!!!!!

Bunjy - see Gary Doherty.  Are these men made of pure Oak??

Stephen Carr.  God knows I love the bloke but he really hasn't been the same player since he came back from injury.  I keep waiting to see a return of his pace, but it appears to have gone.  When was the last time you saw him bombing down the wing ?  I hope I'm wrong, but I think we've seen the best of Stevie.

Ledley King - see Stephen Carr (although he does have a bit more time left to get it right).

Rohan Rickets/Johnnie Jackson/Dean Marney/Jonathan Blondel -  future of Spurs.  Give these boys a chance.   

The Dazzler

Ed : - Doherty will have limited chances.  he doesn't cut it up front and at the back will be behind a number of our players if fit.  Bunjy probably falls into the same category under Pleat.
Car has been playing solidly if not attackingly fluent.  May be useful as a captain with the responsibility making him more aware of the team rather than the self.
King could fill the defensive midfield role and came on there in the Boro game (I am writing this reply after that match ... I am not prescient !!).
Young guns - yeah, Go For It !  They should be allowed to have their chance soon and hopefully, will if we can get a safe distance form the bottom of the table.

21.10.2003

How can we possibly need someone (Graeme Souness) whose idea of exciting football is worse than George Graham's and whose current team have lost their last four home games?

Steve, Bristol

Ed : - I am not sure that Souness would come, although I am reliably informed he still has a home in Winchester.  I believe he still holds a big chip on his shoulder about his view of the way he was treated here as a player, but he loves it up in Blackburn, so might be more content to stay with the club he currently manages ... or I hope so.

20.10.2003

If ever there was proof of Hoddle not getting the best out of his players it has to be the fact that even Stephen Clemence is playing really well for Birmingham this season, and scoring goals !! What the bloody hell is going on there ...

Phil Drummond
Poole

Ed : - Some players prefer a certain way of being coached, while others have something to prove on finding a new club.  Not many players have done better after leaving Spurs, but there will always be the one that proves the exception to the rule.

20.10.2003

I travelled up to Leicester yesterday for my first game out of London for over 10 years and would just like to say that the travelling support were superb. I had to sit in the Leicester end in the opposite corner of the goal - keeping quiet obviously, but I was proud to be a Yid. The guy behind me wondered why I kept standing up - I think it's impulse whenever you hear Stand Up If You Hate Arsenal! One thing that has been puzzling me for some time now though - Is Gary Doherty the worst player ever to wear a Spurs shirt? His display yesterday is one of the most inept I have seen stretching back to 1981. He can't tackle, pass, head the ball, surely we would have been better accepting the £1,000,000 Cardiff offered in the summer. There must be better players in the youth team.

Dean Palmer

Ed : - The away support has always been strong and vocal, through everything we have gone through over the last few years.  As for Doherty, he has his limitations and as long as he plays within them, he will be a good defender ... for someone, as I am not sure he will be able to force his way past the ones we already have at the club.  There are better players in the youth team, but they lack first team experience at the moment, which is why Stephen Kelly is on loan at Watford and Dean Marney has had time at Swindon, with Johnnie Jackson being loaned to Colchester United last season too.

7.10.2003

Hello all,

Didn't I promise you that Pleat would stop the rot.  Pleaty is the right man to take over as Spurs manager.  Lord knows that he didn't deserve to lose the job in the first place, as he was the victim of a nasty media witch-hunt.  Pleat should get the job now because the players clearly respect him and like his fresh, jovial approach.  Tottenham look organised for the first time in years and are passing better than we ever did under Hoddle.

The big difference in the last two games was the exclusion of Bunjevcevic.  

It's no coincidence that we suddenly looked twice as hard, with Ricketts in.  Ricketts deserved his recall and continues to make a mockery of Hoddle's decision to ignore him all throughout last season.  The only surprise for me is that Mabizela has not been given a game yet and Blondel has again dropped out of contention.  Also, where is Johnnie Jackson ?  I was sure that Pleat was going to hand him a first start for us this term.  It's about time Rob Burch had a crack in goal, because Keller is an accident waiting to happen. 

Come on you Spurs!
Sean Jackson

Ed : -  I imagine that Mabizela might be used soon and Blondel will be phased in once the team is playing a bit better. Pleat probably doesn't want to throw in too many new players into a struggling side.  As I said in the letter below, Bunjy doesn't fit into our system and might be used to sweeping behind a three man defence and not playing players in their best positions is something this club has been good at.  And if the team are looking for a ball-winner in midfield, then they could do worse than give Jackson a go, as he tackles like a tank.  
With Keller, I think he needs some competition, but wonder if they will prefer Hirschfeld, because he has international experience, albeit with Canada.

6.10.2003

At times I wonder if I'm watching the same game as other people.  How can Hoddle or now David Pleat select Bunjevcevic.  He has not made a decent tackle since he joined Spurs so how can he play in front of the back four ?  He can't head the ball so how can he be a centre half ?  And he can't get from box to box so how can he be a midfielder in the premiership ?  In his defence his passing has on occasion been OK, but no more than that.  But still they persist with him, Ricketts on the other hand has been superb since his introduction to the team and proved his point against Everton.  He MUST be selected every time over bottle-less Bungy.

I read one of your letters saying Gary Doherty should be our holding player in midfield !  Was it written by Gary Doherty ?  Because I can't believe anyone else would want him in the side.  He is just about an average first division player and no more than that.  To play him as a midfielder would be more embarrassing than when Colin Calderwood tried to do it.  Scott Parker is the player for us and Spurs should have spent serious money to get him instead of contemplating spending £9m on some 18 year old Brazilian in the summer.  But Gary Doherty do me a favour ...

Great to see confidence seeping back into the team what a difference it makes. Sorry to say Pleaty isn't the long term answer and Curbishley could be another Gerry Francis.  So it has to be O'Neill, although I suspect he is bound for Merseyside before too long.

Simon Hassell.

Ed : - Some of Hod's signings were odd to say the least. The fact that he bought Acimovic and has not played him is a weird one.  Bunjy doesn't seem one thing or another; maybe good as a sweeper, but not in a flat back four or in midfield, where the Premiership pace leaves him struggling.  As for Doherty, he is OK as cover for the back four, but he showed that he doesn't really have the touch to play up front and in midfield, he will be caught out by the need to be constantly on the turn.

29.9.2003

Why not give Joe Kinnear the Manager for Spurs. He is a great skilful character who loves the Club.

He should be perfect !!!

Regards
R.G. (Fan from Norway)

Ed : - I may not be a skilful character, but I love the club and I wouldn't want Tottenham to give me the manager's job !!  Kinnear would jump at the chance to take over at Spurs, I am sure, but he is unproven at a big club and even his time in charge at Wimbledon and Luton have not been roaring successes.  I think we have to look beyond those who played here ... the club have tried that and it hasn't worked ... and would Kinnear really be a manager to take us into Europe ??

29.9.2003

Sirs,

How about playing Gary Doherty in the holding position in midfield, he is strong good in the air, can (?) tackle and can get forward at set pieces and score goals, a bit like Graham Roberts.

Am I missing something, but isn't Stephen Carr out of contract at the end of the season and we have made him captain or has he signed some form of extension?

Bob Boustead

Ed : - I am not sure that Doherty is the inspirational figure we need in that role in midfield and he appears to be slow on the turn, which is a major flaw if he plays in midfield with the speed of the Premiership.  In my opinion, Ledley might be better employed there when he returns, but again, he is not a Roberts/Mackay type.  As for Carr, his deal runs out in summer 2005 and is the contract he signed in 2000.

24.9.2003

Would it not be decent now, post GH, to bring back Sergei Rebrov from exile and give him a chance to resurrect his career ?
He was not a bad young player when GG bought him but under the wing (sic) of GH he has been destroyed, he has been sidelined, denigrated, loaned out and as such he has lost both his domestic and his international career.
Tottenham paid a lot of money for him which so far has just been wasted on the whim and fancy of a manager, great though he was as he was as a player, who if the face didn't fit it was bye-bye time.

Football is now a money business and it may be that the owners of Tottenham are happy with a regular mid table slot which gives them the best of both worlds a regular very good income without the need to purchase big money players.
The only thing that would terrify them is relegation to the lower division and provided they do just enough to avoid this then the share holders are happy.

Is this what the Tottenham faithful want ? Don't they deserve some of the "Glory Days" back again after all these are the people who week after week put a reasonable proportion of the cash income into the Spurs coffers by attending matches and purchasing the spin off items from the Spurs shop.

Roy Woollard

Ed : - Sergei has expressed his desire to return and Pleat was the one who brokered the deal, so stranger things have happened !!

24.9.2003

A quiet night in our house Sunday last - the missus supports Man U - but her gloom was as nothing to the inevitable dismissal of Hod. It was the right thing to do but oh, how it hurts to see one of your own leaving by the side door after so many wonderful performances on the turf.

The stats don't lie - Glenn just couldn't get it together on the pitch. The lack of man management skills coupled with poor results was a deadly combination - that and an uncanny knack of signing underachievers from central Europe.

One ray of light amongst all this is the possible (probable?) return of Rebrov to the squad and the opportunity to resurrect a career that seemed destined to end ignominiously this time last week. I really hope Sergei comes back and sticks 20 or so in the onion bag before the end of the season : Kanoute, Keane, Postiga, Zammora and Rebrov is not a bad set of strikers to have battling for starting spots.

Also noted today : del Bosque ( sacked by Real Madrid after winning the championship !) is available. If he, like Signor Ranieri, could sort the translation thing we could have ourselves a kindred spirit whose experience and ability to foster a team spirit even amongst the biggest of egos suggests he wouldn't be overawed by the array of talent at the Lane.

I'm off to Coventry tonight to see us kick start our season by burying the '87 ghost once and for all.

Peter, Leamington Spa

Ed : - Rebrov might come back as he hated Hoddle's treatment of him and might feel that he can play more often than he did then and he is now at Fenerbache. Not sure that he will be any better equipped to cope with the physical side of things, but the new manager (whoever it may be) might give him the opportunity to show what he can do.

21.9.2003

I have been a supporter since 1961 and wonder if we will ever get a decent side.  We buy 4million pound players, has beens with gammy legs or, so they say, 4million gets nothing which is the reality sadly.

Take these players back to their playground days, when all we did was play football even in the dark.  Why do they want to be remembered for being with a club for so many years and played hardly any games and especially when Tottenham let them.   Nice work if you can get it.

Phil Close

Ed : - The game has changed out of all recognition since the 1960s and not necessarily for the better.  Contracts are not worth the paper they are written on, unless you need to stay on a big wage ... then they become very important.  With Hoddle being sacked, it shows that there is no loyalty in the game, except with the fans.

18.9.2003

Dear Wyart Lane,

It's really tough to put down two straight ideas after the goal-fests SW6 sides had against our beloved cockerel, but we'll give it a try.

The great misleading philosophy that inspired our close-season signings was the desperate search for a striker: too many interesting prospects - nobody of them being albeit a first-class ace - were signed to bolster the offense, meanwhile the matters of the lack in the midfield generals' and defenders' positions were surprisingly underrated.

A creative play organiser was particularly needed to relieve Anderton and Poyet from playmaking duties unfit to their style, particularly effective when aggressive and schematism-free (Chievo's Corini and QPR's Langley could have been shrewd and cheap signings, for instance).

And what 'bout an experienced  defense marshal, just like Graeme Le Saux?

Now, it's no longer the time for "ifs" and the only usefully supportive thing is getting behind the lads and the manager - who, for God's sake, is not guilty and must retain his own place - hoping that the autumn will bring more pleasant news and less depressing scores for our already broken hearts.

The most important thing is that Helder won't hit the goal ... Post, but delivers what he was imported because of : thundering strikes.

Despite the seven goals allowed to the West Londoners, we can be proud of our disciplinary record : No Spur, attempting to equalise a home game with an hour to go, would accept to fake an Old Vic-like nosedive in front of a capacity crowd and the cameras.
People from Avenell Road, did you understand?

Cheers,
Sergio Capozzi, Rome

Ed : - Not sure about Langley, who would have come here at one time, but appears to have suffered with injury and looks good in the Second Division (I think David Pleat is aware of his abilities) and Le Saux, who would not be a popular signing at Tottenham, as he has been one of those players who has enjoyed beating Spurs too much in the past and now is in the twilight of his career.

As for the midfielder, a player you have probably seen in Italy - Stephane Dalmat - could be the creator we have been seeking, although the destroyer in midfield will probably have to will until January.

14.9.2003

As a Spurs supporter of nearly 40 years, I an disgusted at the state of the so-called team that Hoddle (the nearly man) has assembled.  I do honestly feel that the team was much better and harder to beat under George Graham and that the present board have made a very big mistake in employing Hoddle as team manager.  I don't think we will ever do anything under his management.

Londontreat

Ed : - not sure where we would go after Hoddle, although if the rumours are true that he has two more games t save his job, then I would hope that the board have someone lined up.  Bet your bottom dollar it ain't going to  be GG though !!

7.9.2003

Dear MEHSTG,

You must excuse me, for I am a little drunk at present. I'd just like to say that I've been a die-hard Spurs man for almost 16 years, living on a rough Arsenal-supporting estate. My school was full of Gooners but I always knew who the
best team in London was. In '89, they beat us to the league but the football that we played that year was more than enough to reinforce my opinion.
Having grown up in the era of Waddle, Stewart, Gazza, Chiedozie and Lineker, I know how GREAT Spurs were and could've been.  Now that my woman is gone, my job is gone and my social life too, Tottenham are one of the few joys I have left in this miserable life.  It really kills me when monkeys like Fulham come to WHL and walk away with a 0-3 win ... it sucks.
I mean, we only beat 'em 4-0 a few seasons ago, for christs' sake.
I just hope that the possible return of Blondel can add a new dimension to the team ... Keano too !  Let's also hope that Dalmat and Koncheskey can contribute something positive to the side.
I love Tottenham Hotspur and only hope for the very best from 'em.
Come on you Spurs,

S J Wightman

Ed : - I was at a school in Islington, so I know the problem of being surrounded by Gooners.  I think that the Fulham game was a one-off.  They sussed that if they work hard and close us down, Spurs are not effective.  This should indicate to Hoddle that our players have to work equally as hard to earn the right to play like we want to.  For all Gazza's failings, you could never say that he didn't work hard to impose himself on the opposition.  That is what our current players have to learn too.

2.9.2003

Just been listening to Jimmy Greaves in fine form on Radio - in the first game I ever saw at White Hart Lane we beat Leicester 6-2. Cliff Jones hat-trick, Greaves 2 and I think Gilly got the other. The second Greaves goal was a penalty taken when Banks (yes, England keeper) was in the back of the net or fiddling with his gloves or some delaying tactic. Ref blew for the kick to be taken and Jim put it in the net. Ref awarded goal - uproar! But it stood.

You wonder what he'd be worth today - mind you, Abramovich would probably buy him for Chelsea.

Question: if we like Konchesky ( and we should) can we extend the loan indefinitely or does he go back to Charlton anyway?

Peter - Leamington Spa [in nostalgic mood]

Ed : - The matter of the loan still seems unclear, with John Gorman believing that we can extend or sign the player permanently, but I thought it would have been for the period of time before the next transfer window.  It is all a bit up in the air, but it looks like a loan of convenience at the moment, with an opportunity to look at both players.  However, it's a bit odd for Spurs, as Konchesky is away with the Under-21s, so Hoddle doesn't see him in training and then when he gets back, there are only two matches before he goes back to the Valley !!  Perhaps Taricco's injury is worse than he feared ??

1.9.2003

I have read reports of Spurs defeat by Fulham on so many web sites and the reports say how inspired Fulham were. I think Fulham were tired of reading reports out of the Spurs clubhouse about taking all three points from Fulham. 

Hoddle's comment was "The last two games won't mean a thing if we don't take three points from Fulham", also other players were quoted saying something similar. It's fine to say that in the clubhouse but when Fulham see it in all the newspapers and web sites it becomes a great boost from the Fulham coaching staff to challenge their team to set an example and show what they can do.

Sid

Ed : - It looked like Tottenham thought they only had to turn up to get the points after a good performance at Anfield.  Fulham out-battled us all over the pitch and a bit more effort might have got us something out of the game.  I notice he didn't do the same before the Liverpool match after beating Leeds.  A little more humility might not inspire the opposition.

 

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