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Nov 162010

I posted a link to the petition against a move to Stratford, and I’m surprised to read that there are some fans who have no problem with this mental idea.

Everyone is of course entitled to their opinion. I know that people have their own personal reasons for choosing to support a club, and it’s for not for me to tell them what should be important to them, but speaking from a personal point of view, here’s why I’d want no part of a THFC based in east London.

To start with, it always tickles me when people claim that “history” and “emotion” are stupid, unimportant arguments when it comes to football, and try to act as if fans should look at everything from a business point of view. There is nothing about being a football fan that makes business sense. There’s not even anything very logical about it. You go and watch eleven blokes you’ve never met kicking a ball around, and the result matters a lot to you. You spunk away your time and money in the process.  That’s not sensible. The only thing that makes it meaningful is your emotional attachment to the club. The history is the whole point. It’s not just eleven men, it’s eleven men representing something important to you. And for me, a big part of what’s important about Spurs is that they represent north London, the specific part of the world that I come from.

Someone left a comment that I found absolutely bizarre. They said “Stop supporting Spurs if north London means so much to you.” You might as well say “stop supporting England if England means so much to you.” THFC is north London – the whole identity of the club is wrapped up in the area. If north London doesn’t mean anything to you, I have to ask why you’re supporting Spurs in the first place.  Aren’t we always critical of all those Surrey Man United fans, supporting a team from a city they have no affinity with? We sing about being the pride of north London. We’re named after Harry Hotspur because his family owned the area which is now Tottenham Marshes. The most important game of our season is the north London derby (which we play against a team who we hate mainly because they moved across London to steal another team’s fans – er…) For decades we’ve competed against Arsenal for north London bragging rights, and now you’d be happy to just vacate the area and leave them to it for an increased capacity and an easier tube journey? I can’t understand that at all. If it costs us an extra 200 million, so be it…even if it bankrupts us, I’d rather stay in Tottenham because in my eyes if we moved to Stratford the club as I know it would cease to exist anyway. I’ve barely ever been to Stratford, except passing through on the Central Line. I don’t feel at home there. I don’t know anything about it. If I did, I’d probably support Leyton Orient.

I understand that lots of our fans are from Essex and Herts, and all over the world  (although surely a lot of the fans who no longer live in north London support Spurs because their family were originally from there) and that maybe for them the area is not as significant as players past, the culture of good football, the glory, glory nights and all that. But you could go to Barcelona on holiday and see those things. Surely what’s special about the great Tottenham teams is that they did it not just anywhere, but on the High Road in Tottenham. Players change, so do managers, so do styles of play and levels of success.  But the geography doesn’t, and what else is there apart from the name and colour of the kit that makes the Spurs of today the Spurs of 50 years ago?

Then there’s the people and businesses in the area that depend on the club. The Two Brewers, The Bell and Hare, all your favourite pre-game pubs and restaurants – I doubt any of them would survive Spurs leaving. All the kids who work in the club shop, and benefit from the club’s community work – it would all end, and Haringey is one of the most deprived boroughs in London. Whatever you think about the council, it’s not the fault of the local people. Stratford will be fine, they’re getting West Ham anyway.

On top of all this, I think there are practical reasons against the move too. We’re told that the plan would be to demolish the Olympic Stadium, months after its completion, and build a whole new one in its place. This just sounds to me like a totally ridiculous idea that I can’t believe the IOC would even entertain. And there’s no way that I’d want to play in the soulless bowl that is the current Olympic Stadium – the atmosphere would be terrible. West Ham are happy to take the stadium as it is, and I say we let them get on with it.

If you don’t agree, don’t sign the petition. You don’t have to sign anything you don’t want to, that’s why it’s fun to live here and not in Burma. If you do agree, sign it and make your feelings known. Let’s hope that, as some of you have said, the whole thing is just a ploy to put pressure on and get the Northumberland Park deal through.

Nov 162010

Jermaine Defoe has returned to full training for Tottenham in a bid to be fit for the match against Arsenal in the first North London derby of the season.

Defoe has been out of action since the start of the season after picking up an injury on England duty. Spurs have missed him up front but the Spurs man isn’t far from a return. Having started light ball work last week he has now taken part in training today.

Welcome Back JD

Defoe desperately wants to be able to take part in the Arsenal game and early reports are that he might get a place on the bench. Defoe is also looking forward to playing in the Champions League with Tottenham.

Some of you won’t like what I am about to say but personally I don’t want him involved on Saturday, at the very most I would give him 15 mins at the end if we need a goal but no more than that. He won’t be the sharp Defoe we all know, he will be slow and rusty and in no way shape or form will he be anywhere near match fitness. I would stick with Pav and only in desperate need of a goal in the last 15 mins should he even contemplate using Defoe. My worry is Spurs players rushing back for the big games and doing their selves more damage in the long-term.

On another note, Michael Dawson is apparently only a couple of weeks from a return and Aaron Lennon could be fit to face the scum on Saturday. Could things finally be looking up?

Oct 302010

To watch this match live click the forum link at the bottom of the article and log in or sign up.

Firstly sorry for the confusion, someone was pulling my plonker by telling me Bale wasn’t playing which made me angry.

The Tottenham team is somewhat as expected, Gomes starts in goal, Hutton keeps his place at right back, Kaboul and Gallas pair up in central defence with BAE on the left. Lennon starts on the right wing with Bale on the left, Modric and Jenas are in the middle with Rafael Van der Vaart just in front and a surprise inclusion up front as Robbie Keane plays the loan striker.


Oct 032010

Now I know a lot of people will be raving about Rafel Van der Vaart after the week he has had but is he already a God with us Spurs fans? Yesterday against Villa he won us the match, he was inspirational against FC Twente on Wednesday also. Van der Vaart has now scored in each of his three home matches for Spurs.

I followed this guy since he was at Ajax and I was hoping we would get him when he was in his early twenty’s but he rather surprisingly went to Hamburg. There is no doubt in my mind that Van der Vaart will be the signing of the season, when he was at Hamburg in Germany he was top scorer for his club three seasons in a row which goes to show the goal scoring ability he has, he also captained the German club which shows he is also a leader.

First time I saw this Rafael in action was when he was a youngster, I went on a stag weekend to Amsterdam and we went to an Ajax game and he was head and shoulders above the rest of the players on the pitch. I was shocked when no big European club took him off of Ajax, he would have been a great signing for Liverpool, United, Arsenal and Chelsea back then but nobody would gamble on him. Their cautiousness is now our gain, we have one of the best attacking midfielders in world football.

Van der Vaart is so good when it comes to reading the game, he gets himself in the right positions to create chances. His vision is second to none and along with that he nine times out of ten picks the right option for a pass, whether it be a simple pass or a final defence splitting pass. He has qualities that come instinctively, qualities that you can’t coach players. The last time Tottenham had a player who had a top top football brain was Teddy Sheringham and Van der Vaart isn’t too far off.

Tottenham have got a real bargain, £8 million wouldn’t even buy his right leg if I was his manager and why Real Madrid wanted to get rid of him especially at that price I will never know. Now he is at Tottenham I am sure he will become a hero and be adored by all the fans, there were a few skeptics who didn’t know much about him but I have never seen a player change the opinion of so many in such a short space of time. He will add the goals that we have been missing for years, he will be our Gerrard, Lampard and Scholes.

Let’s just hope we keep him fit, Van der Vaart loves playing football and we love watching him play. I hope he is loyal and doesn’t do a Berbatov on us, that is why I believe it is more important than ever that we finish in the top four again so we can hold on to players like Van der Vaart, Modric and Bale because I fear if we don’t , Man Utd and Chelsea will come knocking.

I would love to hear your thoughts on the the man himself Rafel Van der Vaart.

Oct 022010

First Half

4 mins – A cross from Modric goes to the back post but Pavluychenko couldn’t keep his header down, sending it over the bar.

6 mins – Crouch breaks free from midfield and has a long shot which goes well wide.

8 mins – Heskey slips in the box and then goes down again under the challenge, a shout for a penalty but would have been harsh.

15 mins – Downing breaks down the right,cuts the ball back for Warnock to run on to and hit a shot that gets blocked by Jenas.

16 mins GOAL – Hesky breaks down the right and runs dowards goal shrugging off  Bassong easily to square the ball to Mark Albrighton for an easy tap in.

21 mins – Bale put a ball in from the left and Pavluychenko had a shot blocked by the arm of Dunne but the rebound fell to Hutton in a good position but his shot went into the side netting.

32 mins – Jenas threads a ball through to Van der Vaart who goes down in the box after a shove in the back but Clattenberg says no.

37 mins – Petrov hits a long shot that rolls wide of Gomes post.

39 mins – Bale whips a ball in the box for Pavluychenko to scoop a volley agonisingly wide of the post.

41 mins – Downing cuts a ball back to the edge of the box and Carew who came on for Heskey put it in row z.

42 mins – Ashley Young hits a freekick over the wall but wide of the post.

43 mins – Van der Vaart hits a long shot which Friedel spills but it goes wide for a corner.

45 (+1) – The ball drops to Young who hits a low shot straight at Gomes.

45 (+1) Van der Vaart curles a shot which takes a slight deflection and shaves the top of the bar.

45(+2) GOAL – Pavluychenko crosses to the back stick for Crouch who nods it back across goal for Van der Varrt to header into an empty goal. 1-1

Half Time – Spurs 1 – 1 Villa

Spurs got going after a slow start but after going a goal down picked up the pace, a bit worrying at the lack of width on the right with Lennon being on the bench, I would expect to see him come on within 20mins of the second half. Tottenham’s most dangerous player was Van der Vaart once again.

Second Half

48 mins – Ball into the box and Downing hits a volley wide of the post.

51 mins – Lennon crosses back stick to Crouch who nods it back again to VDV but a last ditch tackle from Petrov puts him off and the ball bounces wide. A goal saving challenge from Petrov.

55 mins – Corner from Bale and a free header from Crouch goes over the bar.

58 mins – Bale picks the ball up deeps and goes on a run before playing it through to Van der Vaart who has one touch and then shoots but a last ditch block from Dunne thrawts him.

62 mins – BAE gets the ball from a cleared corner about 30 yards out and strikes a long distance shot over the bar.

65 mins – Reo-Coker hits a shot from the edge of the box which fires wide of the Spurs post.

66 mins – Great chance for Villa, Downing with the cross which Carew missed then Gomes missed and Albrighton missed it at the back stick.

70 mins – Corner comes in and Huddlestone wins the flick on to the head of Crouch but he put it wide, should have done better.

75 mins GOAL – Lennon crossed the ball in from the edge of the box to the back post and Crouch again nodded the ball back, it fell to Van der Vaart who let it run across his body before smashing it past Friedel leaving the Villa keeper with no chance. 2-1 to Tottenham.

85 mins – A short freekick is played to Van der Vaart who fires the ball just over the bar.

Full time Tottenham 2-1 Aston Villa

This will be updated with match incidents so keep checking back