Spurs crave stability
So another season has passed, and another year that we can add to our ever-expanding collection of disappointing and trophy-less seasons. Maybe we’ve grown to become far too expectant as a fan-base; maybe our aspirations have become our expectations. Quite possibly. But, quite possibly we’ve cried out for the same thing every season only to reassess and drop the axe at the first sniff of trouble.
May 30th, 2014
Stability. Only a handful of clubs have achieved it. The problem is we obviously only want it with the right man in charge. I always felt that AVB was treading on eggshells more often than not. The pressure grew on his shoulders after our summer outlay, and his eagerness to make us a more defensively sound outfit across the pitch became arguably his own undoing. We’d held our hands up in surrender for the remainder of the season when Tim Sherwood came in for 22 games.
Tim Sherwood didn’t quite bring with him a philosophy, nor did we see his particular ideal system. We shot ourselves in the foot in consistently rotating the side, and failed to allow any measurable quantity of players make a position their own. You could argue that this came down to players consistently underperforming, but it is the man-management ability of the manager to give these players the confidence they so evidently craved at times and present them with the faith, as well as the tactical prowess, to persist and extract the best we can from them. Nacer Chadli was one in particular that grew as the season did, with the obvious stand-out being Christian Eriksen.
We could take glimmers of positives from the overcast sky that hung over the club for much of the season and it was this steady progression with Chadli and Eriksen in particular that give us reasons to keep on coming back next year. Hugo Lloris proved that good goalkeepers can play for Tottenham, and a continued heap of curiosity over Erik Lamela is another that we hope could prove a dark horse next season. The instalment of Nabil Bentaleb and Harry Kane in the side proved that our youth players have the capacity to add value and not merely make up the numbers in the first XI. The club scrapped its preparation and much of its identity upon the sacking of AVB, and we should take it as a blessing that it seems the names topping the favourable list to take the poisoned chalice would arrive with a particular system in which to operate.
A club with so much versatility in the playing side is wasted when it is not utilised effectively. With a persistent system and a more stable first XI comes with it the identity of how we operate. We’ve ended the 2013/14 season still not knowing our strongest XI. The evident fear is the questions over how long the next boss would get. We barely get through the nine months of a season before the question is thrown around the papers over how long the manager has remaining; a time-bomb counting down from the day they sign the contract. Maybe both stakeholders and shareholders should convert these arguable expectations back into aspirations, and just see what we could do without creating a shadow of pressure and uncertainty to hang over our own football club.