December 31, 2009
It has indeed been a joyous holiday season at White Hart Lane, with Spurs beginning the New Year in fourth. This has been accomplished on the back of four clean sheets, the first time this feat has been achieved in almost nine years. The last four games have been marked by consistency, purpose, and no small measure of attractive, flowing football. As 2010 beckons, anything less than a Champions League place by the end of the season will prove to be - on current form at least - a disappointment.
December 22, 2009
While it has hardly been goodwill to all men off the field, at least there have been glad tidings on it. A very good win against Man. City was followed in short order by victory at Ewood Park, a ground where Spurs have not enjoyed much success in recent years. And while Blackburn are admittedly a mediocre side, they had not lost at home this season since being beaten by Man. City on the opening day. As Harry Redknapp admitted, the game was not the most attractive to watch, but a second consecutive clean sheet and a berth just outside the top four will leave manager, players and fans alike enjoying the holiday spirit.
December 15, 2009
"The better reputation you get as a team, the more teams go away from home and make it difficult for you. If you are going to be a top team you have to find a way of breaking them down, that's what the top teams do, but we just couldn't unlock the door."
Harry Redknapp's post-match remarks were no doubt intended to accentuate the positive, but unfortunately contained no answer to the conundrum posed by the home defeat against Wolves. Following on from Stoke's victory in October, another physical, workmanlike team has left White Hart Lane with all three points by virtue of greater muscle, organization and desire.
December 1, 2009
With that other team from north London losing at the weekend, a point against Aston Villa was enough to leave Spurs in third place. In fact, given the number of chances that the team created, a win looked the more likely result as the game wore on, with Harry Redknapp reflecting that:
"We dominated and I'm sure Martin (O'Neill) was happier to hear the final whistle than I was. There was only one team going to win it in the second half and it was just a case of getting the goal - once we equalised I was sure we were going to go on and win it ... We knew it would be tough, they are a good side and they've had some great results at Villa Park but it was one-way traffic in the second half. I was delighted with how we played, we pushed them back, played some great football and made all the chances."