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Jul 312011

This has to be one of the worst transfer windows as a Spurs fan. Last summer turned out to be pretty dull until the arrival of VDV, this summer is rivaling last for that honour.

On top of the lack of activity regarding incoming transfers there’s the Luka Modric saga, will he /won’t he….. If our experience is anything to go by then he probably will but not until deadline day for about £40m when it’s too late to replace him and so we beg Liverpool to loan us Joe Cole for 6 months.

I used to buy a paper every morning but last week I opted not to, it’s frustrating to see clubs like Sunderland spunking the wonga on new players while for about 18 months now Spurs have remained pretty idle in that respect.

I always think back to the older days, I would love to watch a Premiership match from the mid 90s again just for the frill of it, the days of Andy Cole still in his Newcastle strip, Jurgen diving in his new Holsten shirt, Giggs when he was only 30 and the days of Barry Venison with spectacular goal line clearances that made me applaud the fact that I still remember it to this day.

Don’t really see the point in this blog? it’s a sweltering hot Sunday so I don’t really see the point either… There’s always Barry Venison!

 Posted by at 14:36
Jul 292011

Maybe I shouldn’t go any further with removing the cling film from the major can of worms that is Luka Modric possibly leaving us for Chelsea; another story chewed over so much that the Innocent Drinks Co. might consider it as an idea for a new smoothie flavour.

However, I like having the final say on stuff, especially football-related discussion. So, I have been wondering what would happen if Modrić DID leave for £30-£35m. Would it be that bad? Would it give other midfielders a chance perhaps?

Maybe this would be a sign of Harry crawling back on all-fours to Niko Kranjcar and both Croatians have expressed a desire to leave The Lane for different reasons.

From here I’ll assume that Modrić has left and Kranjcar is still here:

Let’s touch on the financial implications first. Modric surprisingly doesn’t believe in paper contracts, much like other footballers who don’t know what the words ‘legally-binding’ and ‘United Kingdom Law’ mean when signing a contract. So he’s decided to forget that he signed a new 6-year contract and forget that he appreciated Spurs for giving him exposure in the English League. Chelsea started with a rather paltry £22m bid, only a few million more than what Spurs paid for him back in 2009. But then they got more serious and offered closer to £30m. £25m plus Drogba would’ve convinced me to sell Modric. Playing hardball is the key to a good profit and a possible last laugh if he flops like Berbatov did in his first few seasons at United.

Chelsea have recently upped their bid to £30m PLUS a striker! But it was Daniel Sturridge who was to be included, not Didier Drogba. Sturridge would be a slight gamble whereas Drogba would be a surefire hit as we’ve all seen it for ourselves.

Kranjcar could finally get a proper run of games to exhibit his finesse on the pitch. I believe Kranjcar can do exactly what Modric can do and more. Modric has scored 9 goals in 91 appearances while Kranjcar has scored 11 goals in 40 appearances including the matches he entered as a substitute. That matches how many Robbie Keane has scored since returning from Liverpool, barring one extra appearance by Keane. A great playmaker like Modrić is a fantastic asset to any team, but a great goalscoring playmaker is even better!

Croatia’s national team are the Mexicans of Europe. They’re not the most successful in international competition, but they can sure put on a show like their more successful continental opponents; with a feast of fluid football and the odd individual trick thrown in, the only difference between them and teams like Brazil and Italy is a major trophy; and that doesn’t do them justice.

You say I’ve gone way off topic, but not quite. What I’m trying to say is that every Croatian midfielder I’ve seen play in recent years has great vision and skill on the ball. Kranjcar and Modrić share those attributes. It seems as if Slaven Bilić ensured it was a criteria for getting called up.

And even if Kranjcar was to leave as well, we’d still have perfectly good back-ups to fill the void. Giovani Dos Santos would get the games that he should’ve had when he first arrived. Bags of energy and skill from him would give the team some added pace. Sometimes the way we play can be laggy, passing across the pitch rather than towards the goal purely for possession purposes. No point in having the ball if you’re not going to do anything with it. Dos Santos is even more forward-thinking than some of our strikers.

If there was a complete clearout of the three aforementioned players, there’d be more incentive to look within our reserves and academy for a replacement. Dean Parrett will be great I’m telling you.

Have I been jumping the gun about how this team will cope without Modrić? Yes. It might not matter if Modrić wants to leave. Let the baby have its bottle if this is how he truly feels about staying at Spurs. Sure it’ll take a bit of time to adjust, but this squad has managed 5th place with constant injuries to defenders/other key players AND a measly goal difference of +7!

That tells me all I need to know about the team – They can cope with anything.
Players leaving for clubs viewed as ‘bigger’ is nothing new to Spurs.

New mantra proposal -To just get on with it is to do.

Jul 272011

While trying to get through the boring morning shift this morning at work, you know the one, where it’s still early and you’re still on that first coffee trying to wake up. I heard on the radio that Newcastle were lining up a potential £10m for Defoe.

After hearing the news I was not really sure if I would be bothered should he leave, maybe he has lost some of his sharpness and isn’t the Defoe of old, maybe he just had a poor season coming back from injury last season…. I just didn’t know what to make of it.

My next thought was that if we were to sell Defoe then who the hell would we replace him with that is of better quality and willing to join a Europa League club within our wage structure? I cast my mind back to all the time we were linked with Leandro Damiao, sure he signed a new deal but that’s probably just to bump up the price. I forgot my thoughts for a few hours until I sat down in front of the television to flick over and see AC Milan playing Internacional, at the time Milan were 1-0 down and then Damiao scored and the commentator passed comment on the fact that a lot of scouts were probably watching, especially seeing as he scored in the previous match against Barcelona. Well I think now the rest of the world has seen him score against 2 of Europe’s biggest clubs that we can well and truely rule out any chance of him joining us.

A few days ago it was tipped that Chelsea would make an improved £27m + Daniel Sturridge for Luka Modric. This was the first time I thought that maybe Spurs should take Chelsea’s offer seriously. If anyone watched SSN today and saw the goal he scored you might understand why. Villas-Boas might be keen to hold on to him now. Sturridge done himself proud on loan at Bolton last season and a few weeks ago we could probably have had a chance of getting him for about £20m but Spurs just never really seem keen to take the plunge and splash out, especially if Levy thinks it’s a gamble.

With pre-season well underway now I have always believed it helps to get new faces in early if you can and get them playing in these friendlies so they can settle and not get them on the final day of August and throw them straight into Premiership games. Van der Vaart was one of the few players who hit the ground running, the Dutch effect if you like.

I really can see us having another season stuck with Crouch, Pav, Defoe and Keane….. In Harry we trust!

 Posted by at 19:47
Jul 232011

You can watch the game live in the FORUM for free, non members can view also but after today you’ll need to register on the forum to watch.

Well it’s the final of the Vodacom and don’t ask me how it works because I don’t have a clue, 1 draw in 2 games somehow makes us in the final. I think it’s all a commercial thing.

Tottenham Starting XI

Here’s our team v Pirates – Gomes; Walker, Bassong, Khumalo, Assou-Ekotto; Lennon, Modric, Huddlestone, Pienaar; Van der Vaart, Crouch.

subs – Cudicini, Hutton, Kaboul, Bale, Kranjcar, Palacios, Defoe, Pavlyuchenko

 Posted by at 13:06
Jul 212011

On seeing the video posted in another of our Triffic blogs, I’m already impressed by Spurs’ newest acquisition, 16 year old Souleyman Coulibaly. He’s just how I like lamb and women – Young and Fresh. He scored for Spurs within minutes of entering the field of play against Brighton on Tuesday; plus, he’s scored NINE GOALS in FOUR GAMES for the Ivory Coast U17s! Most of them weren’t even tap-ins, they were well-taken goals.

If this isn’t promising then I don’t know what is.

He appears to be the Anthony Lozano who was supposed to be on the books last season. So let’s give him a squad number, give him a few starts in the upcoming season and he’ll give us goals and be the black Jimmy Greaves!

BUT…there’s a big BUT regarding this hot prospect.

I don’t know if it’s just among us Spurs fans or other sets of fans in football, but there seems to be this ridiculous and restrictive criteria dreamed up by many when it comes to thinking about young players they would like to see in the team.

I’ve probably banged on about this kind of snobbery before and covered the ‘too old and past it’ label as well, but it gets up my nose so much because I keep hearing it.

Ever heard the phrase ‘He’s too young and unproven in the Premier League’??

I have.

Additionally, when we first heard about Coulibaly scoring WITHIN MINUTES of coming on against Brighton, people piped up with the classic ‘It was against Brighton. It’s not like he’s scored against Chelsea or Arsenal’

With the above in mind, how can we possibly give them that chance to ‘prove’ themselves in the League if they’re left on the bench or in the reserves all the time??

If he’s given a chance, we may see him score against such teams as Chelsea and Arsenal.

I think I have boo-boys’ thinking patterns down to a tee. The issue of Adel Taarabt may have sparked this fear of young players getting within 1ft of the starting XI.

Taarabt’s questionable attitude both on and off the pitch got him shipped across London to QPR in what I hope was a ventilated box for such a hot head.

What was originally accepted as his enthusiasm and spirit turned out to be arrogance when he spouted fantasy stories about the top clubs in England and Spain wanting to sign him. I kept thinking to myself – ‘well? where were they?’.

However, this might not be everyone’s reasoning behind apprehension about young players. Also, not all young players are arrogant like Taarabt was. So I don’t know what harm it would do to throw young players in at the deep end.

By getting them into it straight away they learn to cope and only get better.

If there are concerns about them not being able to handle bigger teams in bigger competitions, then maybe Arry can put one or two youngsters alongside the seniors in the league each week. The seniors can then offer guidance on the pitch and the high-quality performances of the whole team should become continuous.

As the longer-serving seniors begin to leave, the younger players will get older, use their experience, remember what the former players taught them and hopefully serve the club well just like those before them.

Let’s get the academy linked to the senior squad like the old days, not a loan-turned-sale for a new club. It’s time to learn from mistakes of the past and create a future. A continuously high-quality squad and a shiny new stadium for years to come would do me nicely.

Jul 212011

Sandro has given the Spurs fans a major boost by putting on Twitter that he promises the Spurs fans he will be back in action within a month and not three as initially feared.

Yesterday’s tweet by Sandro stated :

“Hi guys. I’m tired of sitting by putting ice on my knee, but I’m getting better.

“Spurs fans in one month I’ll be back to “fight” again, not three months. I promise I’ll be back in one month. Come on you Spurs”.

So good news for all, Sandro will be back around the time of the start of the season which starts in just over three weeks.

 Posted by at 08:34
Jul 212011

Arsenal, Spurs and Chelsea are all still interested in Anderlecht striker Romelu Lukaku.

Chelsea had been red-hot favourites to land the young Belgium international until Lukaku dropped a hint that Chelsea may not be his first choice destination.

Lukaka said: “I’m not obliged to sign for the Blues.”

“There are other big clubs in Europe,” he said. “I want to aim as high as possible.”

Lukaku is thought to want regular first team football and is not sure he would get that at Chelsea with the likes of Drogba and Torres already there, putting Tottenham and Arsenal on red alert. Arsene Wenger and Harry Redknapp have both made enquiries about the striker and will both still hold out hope that a possible deal can be done.

 Posted by at 08:31
Jul 202011

Once hailed by the Spurs faithful with that feeling slowly fading in an all too familiar storyline that Spurs fans have seen happen all to often.

Luka claims himself to have been loyal for 3 years to Spurs since he signed but yet Chelsea are the first team to bid for him and now he wants to leave… How is that loyal? Fabgregas is more loyal at least he stayed at Arsenal for another couple of seasons after Barcelona’s initial interest and trust me, Chelsea are not even in the same league as Barca.

Some may say the chance to earn over £100k a week, would you turn that down? Most people I know would be happy to earn the £40k a week Modric picks up, hell most of them would be happy to earn that a year.

I would wish Modric all the best if he really wanted to better himself by joining a Real Madrid or Barcelona but to say he wants to join one of our bitter local rivals is a slap in the face, he might as well have just come out and said that he wants to join Arsenal. Manchester United are not local rivals and one of the biggest glamorous teams in the world and any player wishing to play for them is forgivable but wanting to move to local rivals is not I’m afraid Luka, but that’s ok because you are loyal.

If you really think for one minute that you expect anyone to believe that just before you put pen to paper on a new deal that Daniel Levy said if a club like Chelsea come in for you then you’d be allowed to leave if it was right for the club. He has said he’s not selling you because it’s not right for the club, doesn’t sound like he’s breaking the agreement to me mate, if you are going to make up stories then at least do it in a way so it favours yourself. You moving to Chelsea is not right for the club, we don’t need to sell nor do we want to sell and that combination means that any buyers will have to pay well over the odds for you.

We sold Dimitar Berbatov to United for over £30m but we still haven’t been able to replace him, we bought Pav and as much as we adore his commitment and effort he is no Berbatov. Maybe Modric can understand that even with a lot of money it’s still hard to find a replacement. 3 years on and we still haven’t replaced Berbs, if the same happened with Modric we’d be in shit.

So has Luka betrayed us by wanting to jump ship once we had our first ever bid for him but yet somehow he thinks he’s loyal, plus he wants to move to one of our biggest rivals? Or do you blame him, is a footballers career short that they need to make the best of it while they can, make the most money and win as much silverware? I am split, I would be happy to let Luka leave as I stated earlier but over my dead body would it be to Chelsea! that would just send out all the wrong messages, clubs would the target us when it comes to pinching our players and it would be harder to attract new players to the club, we would have to resort to signing Emile Heskey and even he might not fancy it.

Sod it, if Luka wants to join Chelsea, that makes him a scumbag like Sol to fans like me, however if I was Modric I’d want to join Chelsea too, if I was a footballer I’d be a money grabber. I doubt Modric supported Spurs before he joined us, so he won’t feel the same way about the club as we do, our history, our passion, the good and the bad times we have all been through, he just won’t get it. If I was in his shoes I’d do the exact same thing but I wouldn’t pretend to be as innocent as he is, I wouldn’t blame Levy, I’d hold my hands up and say “I’m a money grabbing bastard and Chelsea win more than Spurs” and of course I would expect the Spurs fans to love me no more.

So Luka I understand where you are coming from, I just hope you understand that we are in our shoes, not yours, we have been hurt before and to the ordinary man you earn enough to last you a lifetime so we have no sympathy for you for you most people would say you are blessed to play for our club when most of us grow up as children dreaming we could play for Tottenham, pretending to be Gazza when we were teenagers playing football in the park. You have your values and we have ours, most of us might slightly understand why you’d want to move but you have to understand that our loyalty is Tottenham, we defend what is best for Tottenham Hotspur and no player surpasses that. Levy is defending Tottenham’s best interests, don’t make us chose over him or you, you will lose, even if we don’t always agree with Levy we still take heart from the fact that he has Tottenham’s best interest at heart.

So I have defended him and slated him, he who’s name we shall not speak… you lot can be the jury!

 Posted by at 19:02
Jul 202011

The transfer saga starring Luka Modric has quite rightly angered many Tottenham fans. How dare a player that Spurs have given the opportunity to showcase his skills to the world, and just a year ago signed a 6(!!) year contract demand to leave. Unfortunately in recent years we have seen this situation before, and in the 3 high profile cases (Carrick, Keane, and Berbatov) it has always concluded with the player getting their way and leaving. Thankfully Daniel Levy up until now has stood firm on his transfer policy claiming Luka is not for sale. Despite this, you only have to look to a couple of years ago when he was more than willing to sell our best players at the time. Although we were in the Champions League last season this means nothing to most mercenaries like Modric who appear to forget the reason we are no longer in the Champions League is because the PLAYERS were not good enough. For this reason his main aim next year should be to make it a priority Spurs return into the Top 4, but I’m not naïve enough to think players have a mindset like that. Modric sentiment is similar to Aloe Blacc’s ‘I need a dollar’ but replaced the dollar with £120k a week!

Selling Modric is not something Spurs should be considering at all, however Spurs fans have to be realistic and realise there is every chance Levy will end up doing this. Bearing this in mind, I believe there is a Chelsea player Spurs will look to bring in a swap deal that could end up being very useful for the next season.

Didier Drogba

Spurs have been crying out for a new striker since last summer, and this player has been arguably the best premiership striker in recent years. With Torres at Chelsea finding it extremely hard to link up with Drogba last year, and £50 million at risk of being wasted, Chelsea may be willing to offload Drogba in order to revitalise Torres. Furthermore, Drogba has a fantastic record scoring goals against Arsenal, which is always a characteristic Spurs fans like to see in a player. Moreover, it appears if Drogba were to ever grace the lilywhite shirt it would be without Modric pulling the stings in the middle of the park for Tottenham, but we do have a player that is capable of stepping up to the plate in Tottenham’s absence.

Niko Kranjcar

This is a player that was very unfairly restricted to mainly substitute appearances in the last campaign, but still managed to score 2 goals that were winners (Modric scored 3 goals in the premiership last season). More than that Kranjcar has openly stated he is ready to fill Modric’s boots at Spurs, hence this is a footballer that is determined to succeed which can be seen by his desire to leave Spurs (last season) to further his career rather than earn more money in Modric’s case. What’s more, you only have to look to the 09/10 season when Kranjcar scored many goals from midfield as well as a handful of assists. Obviously Modric is a greater technically gifted player, but I think Kranjcar with an extended run in the side will score at least 10 goals a season in all competitions, and to only a slightly lesser extent compared to Modric be able to take a game by the scruff of its neck at centre midfield.

It is also important to remember with Drogba in the side there would be far more emphasis placed on Bale and Lennon running down the wings trying to provide service for Drogba’s exceptional aerial ability, hence Kranjcar’s role in the side would be different to Modric’s last season where we didn’t have an effective target man (Crouch’s knockdowns to VDV aside). This is not to say without Modric in the side we will become a glorified Sam Allardyce side, but the way we play will be able to represent pace and power, along with Kranjcar and VDV representing the technically gifted players in the side. We will be able to combine the advantage of having old-fashioned swashbuckling wingers along with a skilled centre forward, and still have players in the side who can play the Barcelona style of football that has worked in recent years.