The World Cup is almost upon us and I welcome it with open arms, even if I've spent a decade in the international wilderness, purposely lost, not wanting to face the harsh reality that I have fallen out of love with the Three Lions. Or rather out of love with the brash and arrogant modern day footballer. I know it's a cliché to hate on the obvious ills of our game but I find very few in the England squad appealing. I'm not going to dismiss that a moments magic on the pitch might incite me back into the fold but my interest in the competition is more for its spectacle than the unrelenting desire for victory.
Add to it the fact there are no Tottenham representatives accompanying Roy Hodgson (although there are in other national squads) I'm almost in scouting capacity as I ready myself for the games.The key interest is how Paulinho performs for Brazil, what with this rather inept performances for Spurs that many have quickly judged as his standard. Although the more astute will know he's a far more capable player - meaning once more Tottenham have mismanaged a player with the system and selection at fault.
What is the system? Well Mauricio Pochettino will no doubt reveal a more robust and quality enhanced pressing style all geared up towards possession play but with the defining difference - goals. Something his Southampton team lacked in abundance and faltered many times when being pegged back. Alas, that's his former side. Spurs also have recent issues with putting teams to bed. I'd like to believe that with the players we do have, the application of his tactics will be far tidier.
I'll worry about all this when pre-season kicks in. For now, there is tumbleweed along side the transfer market conjecture and hyperbole whilst we await the action to kick off on the other side of the world.
Louis van Gaal revealed he almost joined Tottenham. A supporter in his younger days, idolising Jimmy Greaves. However he turned down Daniel Levy's initial approach and opted for Manchester United. I hope he wrote us a letter of apology like Rivaldo once did. Is this even newsworthy? Of course he turned us down what with the debacle at Old Trafford playing out with a dazed and confused David Moyes who appeared to cradle a survival kit that turned out to be sweaty sticks of dynamite. His last coaching appointment could either have been an attempted reboot of a football club that is in dire need for de-fragmentation or a club that won the title a season before the last and have momentarily hiccuped thanks to the misguided notion that they could birth a second Alex Ferguson. If our hard drive needs wiping, United only simply need to be switched off and back on again.
Adam Lallana looks set for Liverpool (unless you believe the transparent mind games being played out in public by the suitors and agents), which to be fair, suits me fine. Okay, Liverpool getting stronger doesn't necessarily suit me at all but £25M for a player that is valued around £10M more than he's worth because he's English is a bit steep. Then again, if you sign someone that gives depth to a Champions League campaign and aids the charge for another one - you might say it's worth the purchase. Equally so to deny said club of that extra spark. Then again, we have Christian Eriksen - younger, better, just not English. We also have Erik Lamela (if he isn't sold/loaned out/fired into space), who might as well be a new signing for this up and coming season considering last seasons Lord Lucan impersonation.
Transfer market wise, we are supposedly facing a mass exodus. Plenty of Spurs fans already sympathetic to the likes of Hugo Lloris and Jan Vertonghen and their expected depature (in the eyes of the depressive self-hating apologists). Not so loyal Sandro who has spent this season and the prior one mostly injured is on his way to Roma unless Chelsea get there first after they've stolen in a second time to nab Frank Lampard replacement (not good enough for us, good enough for them and Brazil) Paulinho. Roberto Soldado is fighting a hashtag to escape from his Spurs hell back to La Liga and poor old Michael Dawson is only good enough for treble winning t-shirt wearers West Ham United.
So, onwards with the World Cup, the grand distraction before the stress kicks in with Tottenham. I'll hazard a guess and suggest that we won't be selling any first team players. But don't let that stop you (or anyone else) from writing it, reading it, over-dosing on it.
via Club Metro with additional blurb