The Most Important Game in the History of Tottenham Hotspur
I will not be present at today's game. I know, I know, its pains me to miss a potential early season 'burning of the season ticket' festival, but personal reasons have me anchored to my humble abode and thus I will have to make do with football forums, the BBC website and the anti-Spurs presenters on Gillette Soccer Saturday. It's a nightmare, I know.
So, to keep my mind occupied I will return to this blog at 3pm and update it through-out the afternoon up until the final whistle, to chronicle the days events in full technicolor detail.
13:57 - Team News:
Routledge starts to give us width. Sound in principle, but the jury is out with what he can do in practise. Jenas keeps his place, obviously. Out goes Zokora and Stalteri. The Constant Gardner once more starts as our ever-present lynch-pin in central defence. Lee is back from injury, which means the left-hand side might have some positive action for once. And, oh my God, Taarabt is on the bench.
Downloaded Sopcast which will have the Spurs game live. Looks like I will be saved from Jeff Stelling and his screaming banshees. Quality of streaming is very good. Maybe Levy could consider giving Spurs fans streaming on the official site, for a tidy monthly fee of course. Wouldn't want him out of pocket.
The game is being streamed, apparently with no commentary, and just crowd noises. Should be able to hear the booing clearly.
Not long to go now. Changed streaming to another site. Better quality. No commentary, so have BBC Five Live on audio, with the esteemed David Pleat co-commentating. Wonderful! Caught a glimpse of Daniel Levy, with a half nervous smirk on his face. Under pressure, Daniel?
1-0 up! Jenas with a mis-hit freekick which finds Steed who mis-kicks it past the Derby keeper. The boo-boys go quiet!!! Good play by Shambonba, according to Pleat.
2-0. Steed again. Always knew Jol was a tactical genius. Midfield at their creative best today. Surely 4th spot is ours to have now?
Pele'esque type goal from the Tottenham home crowds starlet, Jenas. Running through the Derby midfield and defence like a hot knife through watery butter. 3-0. Levy should offer that 5 year contract to Jol as quickly as possible.
Huddlestone running the show at the moment against his former side. Will be disappointed if we don't carve out another 2 or 3 goals before half-time.
Routledge has the ball in the back of the net, but ruled off for offside. Another sweeping move forward. Spurs are monopolising the midfield. No really, stop laughing. They are.
Another opportunity to make it 4-0 wasted. Not happy with this, not happy at all.
Three goals. One disallowed. A penalty shout ignored. Huddlestone dominating the midfield and allowing Jenas to play free and without stress. Spurs playing with width. Jeans lively and sharp. Gardner still looking shit.
Vital we score another 2/3 goals in second half for the sake of goal difference and also retain a clean sheet.
Jury still out.
Eight minutes into the second half. No chances created yet. Foot off the gas already. We should be going for more goals. Perfect for the goal difference tally.
Not much going on. Mido scores for Boro on his debut. That will probably be his lot right there. Seems Jol's textbook half-time talk has defused the relentless play of the first half. All a bit non-effective at the moment. Derby with a lot more of the ball.
Why do we have to have to slow down the tempo and sit back?
Time for the Taarabt?
Taarabt on. Already having shots on goal and running with the ball. Oh my God. We have an exciting energetic midfield who can actually play. More please.
All come from a freekick won by Taarabt. This kid is magic. Scrappy goal, Bent helps the ball over the line from about 1cm out. 4-0.
Game over. 4-0. Jenas finding his level, first half. Can we play Derby every week? Clean sheet the main bonus. That and four goals. Still lacking just that one extra special ingredient upfront. He's in Germany at the moment - get well soon Berbs. Still, Spurs had width and spirit which lacked on the previous two games. Jol's head is safe. Levy will celebrate with the usual £1000 bottle of champagne I'm sure.
More of Taarabt please. Yes, he plays like a kid in the playground, hugging the ball and shooting as often as possible. More composure will come with time. But he needs to be involved in the first team as often as possible.
Defence handled it will too. Big test will be against Manchester United.
Levy survives another day.