Monday, October 6, 2008

More dispatches from the Relegation Zone

Image courtesy of Hockalees

It's been a rough season so far for Tottenham Hotspur. This is nothing new for loyal disciples of the sport, most of whom have been busy photoshopping the hilarity and standing by laughing at the carnage.

Perhaps one of the hardest-suffering of the Spurs faithful is not our own Likely Lad (although he is seriously afflicted, believe me), but the humble Relegation Zone Mikey. RZM is, in many respects, the typical sports fan; he sings when he's winning, and can be found at the bottom of a pint glass when he's not. We're all like that, but for some reason, watching RZM go through it is far, far worse. (I think it has something to do with the fact that there's no real end in sight to his misery)

He's been referenced in Mr. Hirshey's work before, and now he's decided to tell his side of the grim, awful, reckless story that is Tottenham Hotspur, 2008/09.

If only his outpouring of heartbreak and finger-pointing could give Spurs an extra point or two.

I love Tottenham Hotspur FC but what they are doing to me right now is cruel. The feeling of despair I felt after the Hull game cannot be described. I am a man with two kids and a wife, so technically I'm not allowed to let Spurs' start to the season affect my weekends yet I confess, from late summer until now, our household has not been the model of familial harmony.

This is not how it was supposed to be.

The optimism I felt before kick-off at 'Boro in August has been replaced with disbelief. I did not go into this 08-09 season with dreams of Champions League football. I am a rabid supporter, yet even I am not that delusional. I did go in with the goal of UEFA Cup football next year and a hopes of a bright future under Juande Ramos. so where did it all go so very wrong? I need to hear the opinions of the educated UF reader to help me sort out the disaster that is Spurs' start to the season. The only place to start is obviously the top. Is Daniel Levy responsible for this shambolic start? Let's lay out the case.

Levy always tells Spurs supporters about his ambitions to take us into the "Top 4" of the Prem. After the sale of Michael Carrick, he was quoted as saying, "once again for the record, we are not a selling club, rather we are building for the future. When we have players on long contracts we have no need to entertain offers." (Quote from

We were told he wanted to leave, so we took Levy at his word. Well, after this summer Mr Levy might want to retract that statement. With roughly 75-to-80 million pounds of talent in and almost the same $$ out, it would seem that he has no real plan at the moment except to run a nice profitable football team to line his pockets with.

Did the Berbatov affair really need to go on until the transfer deadline leaving us no other options than the UEFA Cup tied Roman Pavlyuchenko? I really get physically ill thinking about the fact that a year ago we had Berbatov, Keane, and Defoe and now we have Bent, Pavs, and Frazier Campbell on loan. The $$$ are nice, Mr Levy, but they can't buy back the goals you sold.

We have scored 4 league goals this year, one of them being an own goal at 'Boro. One was also an accidental goal vs. Villa that Bent got in the way of a wayward cross. Where are the goals going to come from, Daniel???

Levy will quickly point out that Keane and Berbatov wanted to leave. Guess what Daniel: Ronaldo, Barry, and even Arshavin wanted to leave their clubs too, yet they are still where they started. You hold the damn contract! Remember what you said about not being a selling club? Is it all bollocks? We are propping up the league, our strikeforce is decimated, and our team is comprised of talented parts that do not seem to fit correctly. Can we simply blame a greedy chairman?

I guess blame could also be laid at the feet of our Director of Football, Damien Commoli. Surely the man who ok'd 16.5 million for Darren Bent has to be held partly responsible, no?

I could go on and on analyzing his signings and how they do not make sense in the big picture. The glaring needs for THFC were a Defensive Midfielder, a Left-Sided Midfielder, and cover for King. Corluka was a good acquisition in the back but were the other needs addressed? Instead of a DM, we bought a couple of attacking midfielders in Dos Santos and Modric, while also adding another RM in Bentley.

This has obviously led to selection headaches for Senor Ramos; we have many players out of position which is making our play on the pitch poor to say the least. As another Spurs blogger noted, the books are balanced but the squad is not.

That leaves one more person who has to look in the mirror and accept some of the blame as well.

Senor Ramos, the shine is definitely off the Cup now and he has some explaining to do. On paper, at least, there is talent on the team. Shouldn't Juande be doing better than 2 points in 6 games? Since the League Cup, our form has been extremely poor. Wembley was a great day out but that was a long time ago.

The turnover in players has been massive, yet what are we left with? 400 wing backs and no spine, as my mate Bigus reminds me daily.

Is this true? Is this what Ramos envisioned? Is this the squad he thinks can contend for the Champions League and Cup glory?

Every week we seem to have a different 11 and even our players do not know what to expect every game. We need some continuity so our players can gel. The natives are clearly getting restless and Mr Ramos must be feeling the heat. When Bent came on for Pavs against Portsmouth, the travelling supporters serenaded Ramos with a hearty "You dont know what you're doing." He definitely couldn't ignore that, could he? I guess as long as Poyet didn't translate it for him, he's no worse off.

Bottom line: these are troubling times. UF readers. Where has it all gone wrong for Spurs?


BerbaBent said...

I blame Levy and Commoli more than Ramos. Profit over performance on the pitch. There was no plan. Watching the Scum game this wknd I miss Malbranque as well. Jenas is useless

The Fan's Attic said...

I blame everybody. But mostly, I would blame the lack of a good striker. You made 48 million from the sale of two strikers, you should be able to get another good one from that money.

The NY Kid said...

Problem #1: You're Tottenham. Which means you're shite.

BerbaBent said...

Ny Kid, very insightful. We would figure you could be more original yet you have disappointed the readers of Unprofessional Foul.

Now run along and put on your Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, or Man U replica kit depending on position in the table. Ny Kid, your always a winner

The NY Kid said...

Ah, Berba - we've already discussed how long I've been an Arsenal fan. And I would never be caught dead wearing a Spartak London or ManUre kit (I would consider a Stevie G, however). Therefore, my Tottenham hate stems from over 15 years of stench emanating from White Shart Lane.

BerbaBent said...

Well before you laugh at us worry about your own form. You cannot be happy. Anyway, I care very little about your happiness or any of the issues that pertain to the Scum. A Stevie G shirt? What is that about? Are you Wengering the editor of this site?

The NY Kid said...

I'll take 4th on very poor form over relegation any day of the week.

As for Liverpool, I have nothing against them, since they are not repulsive as are Chelsea/ManUre. And I respect Stevie G for his attitude and skill on the pitch.

BerbaBent said...

Yes b/c we are relegated after 7 games. I forgot this was a shortened season

Phil said...

The lack of a CDM and a dependable forward are partly to blame, which lies at Commolli's doorstep. But Commolli's failures have been compounded by Juande's odd lineups and poor substitutions. And then there's the players, who own some of this, as well. Lennon has barely improved in his time at Spurs. Although he's been the only real threat this season, he still struggles mightily to swing even a decent cross, still runs up the asses of his forwards, and still commits stupid fouls. Bentley has forgotten how to swing a cross altogether and is content to bang away from outside the box at every opportunity. Bent is clueless and cannot find the ball, and his first touch is always shite, shite, shite. Modric is far too tentative. It goes on... This has been a failure at every level. Sacking Juande fixes nothing, and, according to FOX, will cost the Spurs in the neighborhood of 20 mil. Try to keep your head above water and use the january window to buy a CDM and a big target man.