I’m about 3 paces into the hallway and he jumps out the shadows like Andy McNab on one of his missions, “WELL”
“Jesus Christ dad let me get in the bloody door first”
it’s funny, you know someone so well that you know it’s coming, yet it can still take you by surprise, that was double quick even for the old man.
“I told ya he wouldn’t spend any money didn’t I”
Oh god this is gonna be a long night!
I take my coat off, shake his hand and sit down, then he’s off again, “I told ya didn’t I, he’s an asshole”
“For gods sake man, calm down will ya, I’ve only just got here! My mum then pipes up “he’s been driving me mad – he hasn’t shut up about it all bloody day”
I take a sip of coke and a shrug my shoulders, waiting for another onslaught!
You see my Old boys a funny bloke, he seems to have lost all logic when it comes to Spurs.
We should beat every single team we play, Why ? Coz we should!
We never give away fouls or penalties, Why ? Coz we don’t!
Every other defence is better than ours, Why ? Coz ours don’t try!
Our managers are crap, Why ? Coz they haven’t got a clue!
We never spend any money on players, Why ? Coz Levy’s tight!
We spend too much money on players, Why ? Coz Everton don’t need to!
You getting the idea?…
I go round Mum and Dads once a week for dinner and every time it ends up with my losing my rag and it turns into an argument, I walk down the path and say to myself “Don’t do it – don’t bite” yet when he gets going no matter how hard I try he always sucks me in. I sit there listening to what can only be described as blind ignorance, yet this time I actually challenge him about his negativity, the fact it makes no sense as 1 minute we should be beating everyone the next we don’t even try ? I say to him “you just moan for the sake of it dad – at times you can be just blind ignorant”
There’s quite a pause, then to my surprise he replies with “You don’t get it do ya – it’s not blind bloody ignorance – it’s blind faith!!!
He then goes on to tell me why he screams at the Telly, why we should beat every team we play, how though it must hurt me that I’ve never seen us win a League tittle yet try going without one since 1960-61, and he then actually tells me why…
Il tel ya why shall I..
“Coz “We’re Tottenham Hotspur”
It wasn’t so much what he said, it was the way he said it
“Coz we’re ….. Tottenham Hotspur”
He then turns to the Telly and don’t say another word. Wow, I’ve never really heard him say anything like that before, it was only 4 words but said in such a way it was like all my own thoughts, feelings, love and hate summed up right there! and he’s right “We Are Tottenham Hotspur”
I felt like I should have said something back, ?? But I didn’t know what to say ?? So we just sat there watching Thinking Tackle..
After a few minutes the chat starts up again, this time a lot calmer though, it’s like we’ve suddenly turned into the sane adults we’re meant to be, we start talking about the Club as a whole, talking about players from the 60’s right through each decade up to now (wow we’ve had some proper star players in our time) we talk about the Glory nights, the way we should have a plan B against the likes of Stoke, QPR, sides that have no interest in winning just stopping us winning by blocking up the 18 yard box. He talks about how we’re the only side in the league who’ve made genuine progress, United haven’t as their always in the top 2, City haven’t progressed they just throw a quarter billion pounds at it, Chelsea are the original City who started the throwing, arsenal did make progress in the late 80’s and 90’s but have since gone backwards and appear happy to do so, the likes of Liverpool and Everton don’t seem to do either they just finish in the top 10 and then of course there’s us, we have made steady progress over the last 10 12 13 years, slowly building sides, losing top players, putting some cash in and recouping what we’ve spent, we are now a regular top 4 team.
Then all of a sudden he throws something in that gets the Mind ticking over,
He asks me “do you honestly think we tried to buy Moutinho in the summer? Do you think we was really gonna spend that sort of money? And then he says the same about Damaio? We have a discussion about it, then ask me what i think will happen if AVB finishes the season 5th and does so 2 or 3 years running, will he be sacked?? Because what he goes on to say, if given some thought can actually make some sense as goes on to points out..
Martin Jol got 2 5th place finishes. In his first full season and much for of it we sat in 4th only missing out on the Champions League because the entire team suffered from food poisoning on the last day of the season and went on to lose at West Ham. That season was our highest finish since 1990 and we conceded only 38 goals the lowest amount since 1971. The following season we beat Chelsea in the league for the first time since 1990 and also got to the Semi-final of the League cup, the qtr final of both the F.A Cup and UEFA Cup being beaten both times by the eventual winners. His final season started with 2 defeats, after the 2nd defeat the next day in the Sunday papers representatives of Spurs were photographed in a hotel with Ramos. Martin was then sacked the following month. We again heard Daniel Levy say “we’re moving in a different direction”
Jol in fact built a decent little squad, wasn’t perfect and had their faults but we all thought it was moving in the right direction. Ramos came in appeared to change everything, the players hated it and although he won the Carling Cup beating Man City and a “massive” win against arsenal in the semi-final we’d have to admit it was Jols side. 7-8 games into the new season sitting bottom of the league “the different direction” was moved on.
Harry came in and to be fair did a terrific job, right from the 1st game at home to Bolton, we agreed the place was buzzing, and so too was the team, as they moved off bottom going on to finish 8th, and only losing out in another Carling Cup final this time against Man U on penalties.
He then took us to a 4th in the league and that got us into the Champions League and as far as the Quarter final, then 5th and then another 4th place but this time missing out on Champions League due to Chelsea winning the bloody thing.
Then it was HR’s turn to hear the words “we’re going in a different direction” and he also got moved on!
Now we all know it wasn’t quite that clear-cut, these managers had their faults, Jol was some times naive and would have lost games he maybe shouldn’t have, but he was still learning. Harry had plenty of faults too, being too pally with the press just 1 of them, and the way he handled the England speculation being another. But what my Dad was pointing out was each time a manager appeared to be closing in on the 3 or 4 teams above us Mr Levy & Co called time? Both Jol and HR made huge steps with the teams they had, both managers also asked for that extra piece of quality that could have been the final piece in their jigsaw, however what they asked for and what they got couldn’t have been more different!
AVB has now come in, and after what seemed a slow start we are now again in that 4th spot, yet going back to Dads questions 1 being “if AVB finishes 5th will he be sacked?” You’d have to say Looking at what’s happened before it’s gotta be more than possible, and the other question being “do you honestly think we was gonna spend that sort of money?” I’ve gotta say, to the pair of us it looks more and more unlikely because there seems to be a pattern emerging, every time we get close the boss then asks for that special player to take us to the next level, but rather than spend that money and give him what he asks for he instead hears those words “Good-bye old chap – we’re going in a different direction” ?
Now, all this could mean 1 of 3 things
1 – The board are implying the manager has reached “his” coaching limits?
2 – The board are implying the team has taken the manager as far as “they” can?
3 – The board are just “scared” to fund that extra special player required, and it’s then a cheaper option is to try again with a new man?
I can’t help but now think having listened to what my old pop has said he might actually be right for once..
As great as Levy and Co have been at making our club stable, as great as our finances now are, as great as the new training centre is and as great as we hope the new stadium will be these are all things they “can” control, yet the reason we’re here i.e. the Team that’s the only factor they can’t, so when it comes to making that final extra special purchase maybe their just to scared to do it, so out comes the inevitable “were going in a different direction” line.
No doubt in anyones mind this board and the owners have done a fantastic job since taking over, we are again 1 of the biggest football clubs not only in England but Europe too, however as good as they’ve been and as controversial as this might sound is it time to “Stick or twist”
Maybe it’s not the managers who’ve taken us as far as they can
Maybe it’s the owners who’ve taken the manager as far as “they” can
There’s so much sense in what my old boy’s said, but as the saying goes “The grass isn’t always greener”
So, what would you do ? “Stick or twist – shit or bust” ??
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