Tottenham Hotspur’s recent good run of form under the rejuvenated Roman Pavlyuchenko will have delighted manager Harry Redknapp and the Spurs faithful. Yet come May Tottenham’s top four aspirations will be ever so despairingly within grasp yet piped by only a few points.
It’s been a good season so for Tottenham so far, they sit in the coveted fourth spot and look a decent bet for this year’s FA Cup with big guns Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool no longer in the competition. Jermaine Defoe has had the season of his life and things are definitely looking much rosier for the White Hart Lane outfit since Harry Redknapp took over. But with only four points separating Aston Villa, Liverpool, Manchester City and Spurs in the fourth spot race. I think Tottenham may just lose out. Aston Villa and Manchester City have games in hand and Liverpool has the experience.
Tottenham are capable of some wonderful football, but the reason they will not finish fourth this season is the results against so called weaker teams. I can picture it now, Liverpool or Manchester City gaining the Champions League spot with Spurs sitting just behind only three to five points off the pace. That’s when I would become severely frustrated as a Tottenham Hotspur fan. Fifth or sixth position is by no means poor, following a few turbulent years at Spurs since Martin Jol’s reign it would be a great platform to then challenge the top four next season, but this season was the best chance Spurs were ever going to get. Liverpool’s early season falters are unlikely to occur next season and Manchester City will be spending a hefty amount in the summer to continue their charge for the title. This was the season and in all honesty Spurs blew it.
Significant points were dropped at White Hart Lane with losses to Stoke City, Wolves and the goalless encounter with Hull City where Boaz Myhill’s goalkeeping master class kept Spurs out. The defeat away from home to again Wolves is such a frustration to those who watched Spurs outmuscle and out play Liverpool at White Hart Lane at the start of the season. I would count ten points dropped just there. Stoke City are a good side and very difficult to beat, but on their travels they are not the best and Tottenham should have brushed them aside, Wolves and Hull City the same. Furthermore I would expect Tottenham to beat Wolves at Molineux, comfortably.
All teams have off days, I accept that. Manchester United were humbled by Everton only last week followed by Manchester City putting four past Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. But Spurs fans must be frustrated at beating the likes Everton, Manchester City, Liverpool then throwing away vital points gained by losing home and away to newly promoted Wolves. You put those 10 points onto Spurs points tally and they are in the title race. Two points behind Chelsea Tottenham would sit now and all talk of the fourth spot would be over, it would be locked up with Spurs. Even if Spurs did lose away to Wolves and drew with Hull, victories over Stoke and Wolves at White Hart Lane and they would be six points clear of Manchester City and only three behind Arsenal.
So consistency is Harry’s charge next season, against Everton last weekend I thought Spur’s looked really good, especially across midfield, I’ve always been a fan of Niko Kranjcar and would always like to see him start more often, Luka Modric was sensational and looks to be getting back to the form we know he is capable of. Pavlyuchenko just cannot stop scoring and seems to be adored by Tottenham fans who have been calling for the Russian to start for weeks. Doubts were being cast over the form of England international Peter Crouch and Pavlychenko has stepped up to the mark brilliantly.
Spurs with one or two additions could be a top four team, but I think it will be harder for them next season, this was the year and the luck was on their side with Liverpool’s mini demise. If Liverpool does gain the Champions League position then not just Spurs but Manchester City and Aston Villa have missed a great opportunity. Tottenham still have games against Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal this season to play. Dropping points against teams like Hull and Wolves will cost you a top four spot. I think it already has for Tottenham Hotspur.
Do you think Tottenham will gain 4th spot?
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