Been sat here thinking (dangerous I know) about my immediate post-game reaction to the Everton defeat and the manner in which it resulted with our third successive defeat. I always seek positivity and balance post-match and consider other variables like form/psychology/fixtures/circumstance in an attempt to find solace and peace. Perception can usually cloud emotion and distort judgement. Something in isolation or something that goes against the grain can be deemed definitive even though completely contradictory a few weeks earlier. Negatives are always all consuming over positives when you're sat knee deep in the negatives.
Soon enough I was posting and tweeting composed and calm words to aid my brethren in their hour of need. That was before I took fingers to keyboard to elegantly type the post-mortem. My immediate post-game reaction watching the internet stream of the game was one of disgruntled frustration and angering of the blood that had me spitting out countless expletives and punching the air with venom all towards the players who trudged off disheartened with the 1-0.
I wasn't enraged by our calamitous gutless performance. Because it was neither calamitous or gutless. I was not holding my head in my hands trying to figure out where the Tottenham side that has both swaggered and bullishly dispatched so many this season to find themselves in third place had disappeared to. Because I could still see them with my own eyes. The crux is they don't appear to see it themselves, blindfolded, along with a manager who has (using his own free will) turned around in a circle over and over again and is now so dizzy he can't quite work out where to look and what to focus on.
The fact that even with players out of position and ineffectual compared to their more natural habitat in our more seasoned and successful line-up, we still pushed forwards and attempted to get something out of the game. What I was enraged with was the manner in which we endeavoured. The application and execution was a bloody mess. It was like the 300 Spartans unleashing hell with no shape or cohesive pattern to their attacking formation. 300 Spartans blindfolded and holding their spears back to front.
11 Spurs losing their way.
"It's over there. Those sticks, get the ball between them"
"Er...I don't know, how about we just run in that general direction and if you see a team-mate pass the ball to them"
"I don't know. Kick it?"
"Kick it straight?"
"What if I'm not facing the goal?"
"You'll need to reposition yourself"
"Okay, sounds a bit difficult"
"Does doesn't it. Okay, let's just run really fast in that direction and see what happens"
England distractions, tinkering with formations...even though Spurs are built in such a way that we can not hit full pelt if we have no width, there is still the question of desire and guile. Two emotive components that we have lacked for years until rediscovered under Redknapp. Two components that can sometimes guide you through a rocky period. We've had one or two of them already but you tend to forget because that desire and guile saw us through them with minimum impact. Having a pocket of games where it deserts us completely is actually quite normal for any side. Although the timing does suck a little with this one. We are a team out of form and lacking leadership. We might not have the experience others do in these pressured games but that's no excuse. We have been here before and as stated in earlier blogs, we are far more equipped for it this time round.
I was still very much angered because nobody appeared able to step on the ball, anchor in the frustration and remind players that patient intelligent build up play with some tempo will get the job done. In the Everton game, with our main conductor being pushed out to the left hand side, our galvaniser on the bench and our main attacking force lost on the right, composing ourselves seemed an impossibility. Blindfolds and dizziness nullifying us.
All three defeats, each in isolation have been stupid. As a collective, painful and avoidable in some instances. But all part of a continuation and a personification of doubt and the result of us inviting a smidgen of complacency to the party, who has proceeded to relieve himself in the flower pot.
It's now all about pride. We could finish 3rd and they could finish 4th or vice versa, both clubs claiming CL football out of it. Still a testament that both sides are not quite good enough for a title push. One attempting to hang onto the past another vying to claim a slice of the future.
Two successive home matches await. White Hart Lane. A cup game followed by a league game that will play out like a cup game. If we win these two games then the three before will take the shape of an apologetic blip, a crisis of confidence and moral and much like other teams that have navigated their way out of troubled waters we might soon find ourselves back on that surf board on the crest of a wave.
There's a reason I love football so much. Music, women, my baby daughter aside - it's the only thing in life that truly makes me feel alive. This is my Tottenham and I'll be damned to have it any other way.