by Ryan the Perplexed
It was just two weeks to go before the season started. The Tottenhamites were restless. They prayed. They repented. They worried. It was their custom since the dawn of time. Boaz asked Daniel how the negotiations were going regarding the striker signing. ‘Fantastic’ replied Daniel. ‘We have bid £7m and they will accept £8m. Not far to go now.'
The next day, Boaz asked Daniel if the deal had been agreed. Daniel replied ‘Yes. We settled on £7.5m’ And so Boaz was pleased.
The day after, Boaz asked Daniel if the player had completed a medical. Daniel said ‘Not yet – I have reduced our offer to £6.5m in instalments, which includes a performance bonus and part-payment in WH Smith vouchers which expire in 4 days. I am confident they will accept.’
And the next day the deal was dead and Daniel’s efforts whistled in the wind. And the end of days loomed when the season started and the squad was weak. False prophets arose proclaiming 4 signings in one day, an end to hunger, world peace and the demise of Mark Lawrenson in fiery furnace. And the false prophets cried and squealed when the Tottenhamites turned upon them in great numbers when their prophecies did not come to pass. 'Things change' they howled. It was true, things do change, but not always for the better.
Yea, there was truly only one ITK and he was Daniel, but many suspected that Daniel did not know much after all, rendering the entire exercise rather meaningless.
And so Boaz was greatly vexed by the actions of Daniel. The promises of squad rebuilding became the dismal reality of failed brinkmanship. Boaz sojourned in the training ground where he watched balls bounce harmlessly off the heads of Defoe and Kane and prepared a midfield of Livermore and Jenas. And even BAE started dreaming dreams about the lack of strikers. He became a Nazirite, refusing to bathe, cut his hair or tweet until a striker had been signed. The camp was in utter disarray as the transfer deadline approached, and Daniel spent his time sourcing fax paper which would be the most likely to jam in the machine at 10.57pm on 31 August. Transfer windows came and went. Vanity of vanity, all was Daniel's vanity. There is nothing new under the golden cockerel gleaming in the sun.
And Ari found employment in management again in a job suited to his ways. As brand ambassador for Bettaq247's online management and gambling game he had found his true calling. He even found jobs for the Bondsman and Jordan in the call centre, where they shared jokes and stories about what might have been with Juande Ramos and Jacques Santini, who had found employment in the admin and HR deptartments.
And the Lord came back from his all-inclusive holiday in Torremolinos and was keen to know what progress had made with signings. 'Don't worry my Lord' replied Daniel. 'I am pleased to say that the Club are much stronger than last season. We have agreed deals with software developers, caterers, toilet cleaners and kit manufacturers. No-one can doubt these huge achievements'.
'Oh' said the Lord. 'What about the football side?' And Daniel drew himself up to a great height, puffed out is chest and proclaimed:
'My Lord. We have agreed a partnership with Real Madrid'
'But what does that mean?' said the Lord.
And Daniel replied 'it means they can have first choice on all our players, have free membership of One Hotspur Bronze, have parking permits on the High Road, and we can hide the fact of Luka's sale in the some sort of botched PR spin'.
'Hmm...' said the Lord, 'botched - that is a word many of the Tottenhamites associate with your efforts. What about Moutinho? We are sitting on huge amounts of cash from the sales of the last 3 transfer windows. We have lost two world class players in Modric and VdV. Boaz needs Moutinho to work his system - which is the one of the reasons why he failed at Chelsea.'
'We will try' said Daniel. And so the clouds gathered at Spurs Lodge. The skies darkened. Outside there was a gathering of teenage chavs, taxi drivers and Sky Sports news teams. No one came in. No one came out. Eventually Daniel brought forth Dembele and a goalkeeper. He even stole Dempsey whilst the Kopites weren't looking. The irony. But there was a large gap. It was called world-class creativity. Embodied by Moutinho. The deadline passed. The Tottenhamites hung their heads it despair. Another 'almost' signing. Of course. The more things changed, the more they stayed the same.
'What happened?' said the Lord.
'We just couldn't agree a deal' said Daniel. 'We had known that we were losing Modric for the past 14 months and needed a world class playmaker. When the clock struck 10.50pm, I was just not prepared to pay the bank transfer fees. Boaz was most upset. Don't worry we have signed Clint Dempsey and Harry Kane is off to Norwich to work in their mail order warehouse.'
The task of Boaz was made much harder by Daniel's actions. Boaz talked more and more about player's particular dimensions - as humans, beasts or attacking half wing backs. It was all very hard to understand, and the Tottenhamites feared that Boaz was a manager of less than average dimensions when it came to success.
And the Lord was greatly displeased with Daniel and his efforts to lead his people to freedom. Even Daniel's loyal followers started to doubt the trust they had placed in him. All had grown weary of Daniel's inability to look at the bigger picture, to take the next step and to act like a man of ambition rather than just talk like one. As the wise elders amongst the Tottenhamites had realised, for over a decade Daniel had sold well, bought well only in patches and the less said about most of his managerial appoinments, the better.
Yea and to many Tottenhamites, it seemed that their support of the club taught them lessons they could use all the days of their lives. And thus the Tottenhamites assembled and enshrined their 8 proverbs on a scroll:
1) Never trust information from a supposed ITK who won’t name names, constantly promises vague delights, and uses idiotic winks and smileys ;) to communicate.
2) If Spurs have a goal lead to defend and there is about 5 mins to go, it is better to accept sedation rather than witness the inevitable horror unfold, if a Tottenhamite values their health.
3) There is no more soul-destroying announcement than ‘Half-time substitution by Spurs – Gareth Bale off, Jermaine Jenas on’.
4) Unless they work on the London Underground, a Tottenhamite must never utter the following words in sequence again if they do not want incur the wrath of the Almighty – Mind. The. Gap.
5) Tottenhamite Transfer windows are much like the phases of love – evaluation, optimism, small success, unsubstantiated optimism, frustration, anger, hysteria, disappointment and finally dismal acceptance.
6) Tottenham will always have 4 right backs but never enough wide midfielders.
7) The earth is made of 5 indestructible elements - earth, wind, fire, air and David Bentley.
8) If a man wants success he should support Man Utd. If a man wants good football he should support Barcelona. If a man wants to blindly agree with everything their manager says he should support Arsenal. If a man sees John Terry as a positive role model he should support Chelsea and seek counselling. If a man wants to see his club never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity then he should support Tottenham.
And the scroll was bound in a surplus Pony kit circa 1997 and displayed before the Tottenhamites who read from the scroll every week.
And so Daniel looked back at his efforts over the summer and the previous decade and was proud of all his works. Yet the Lord and the Tottenhamites were less so. So Daniel was better than Alan Sugar and that was about it. Great things were promised by Daniel – a 60k capacity temple, brilliant managers, world-class players and regular CL campaigns and titles. Instead the Tottenhamites received a new toilet in the North Stand, Jacques Santini, Grezgorz Rasiak and one Carling Cup. Many prayers were offered to Daniel but he could only answer few. A great burden was placed on his shoulders. That is the burden of leadership and following the ways of the Lord. Only those who truly Dare end up Doing.
And thus ends – for the time being at least – the Book of Daniel, written by the humble hand of the scribe Ryan the Perplexed. He hopes that you enjoyed the journey with him, as we watched Daniel navigate his way through a summer of choppy seas – his little round bald head flashing like a belisha beacon, silently lighting the way whilst the Tottenhamites waited to cross the road into a new season, hoping that the approaching juggernaut of hope braked in time, and they all got on and drove together into the warm embrace of the setting sun.
Come on ye Spurs.