B word blasphemy

What's going on then? Aside from yet more brilliantly contradictory nonsense from the footballing press. Do not fret, I will not mention the B word.


Who the **** am I kidding? Let's do this.


So, Sky Sports run an exclusive 'confirming' Real Madrid have made a £85M bid for Gareth Bale, except it isn't quite the exclusive their headline suggests because the bid was made a week ago. Bale, frustrated, is keeping his feelings to himself. But who cares about facts when there are two embedded ads for Sky Bet staring you back in the face whilst you read nothing, because there is nothing to actually read.

I guess you could attempt to read between the lines and ask why Sky are able to run a multitude of stories referencing Madrid's imminent bid when their bid is already a week old, making all 'stories' in the past week redundant what with the bid no longer being imminent. You follow?

'Sky Sports Understands' - a creative tag, a licence of melt, that allows the journalist to freely say whatever he wants, with not attributed quotes or evidence. 

Spooky Understands that Sky understand how to play the game.  We all know they are just doing their job. They publish, we rise to it.

It's not truly a vindictive assault on all things Tottenham Hotspur. There is no conspiracy as such, it's simply a story that fits a template that generates hype and money. And sure, maybe they like to pick on Spurs the same way player agents like to cite 'Tottenham interest' in a player they are attempting to engineer a move for to another club.

The hype amounts to more than a Rooney or Suarez story arc would generate. Bale is box office, hottest property in football - because they've also told you that a few times already, so the foundations are set.

Tottenham also have no God given right to hold onto a player of such quality and then God forbid challenge the status quo (not the band, that would be hideously random) of the usual dominant clubs shining bright with seasoned arrogance, consolidated by the very same media that set expectations, blinding those below them.

There is no story in a side wanting to retain their best player to be able to compete. There should be, but we all know modern football players are bigger than the clubs they play for. Or at least that's what it sometimes feels like in this type of transfer saga circumstance. 

Nothing else to say now. I promise. Until tomorrow at least. It's all been said in the past 3/4 articles I've posted. I sincerely apologise for saying the B word again. There's a naughty step with my name on it. 

Actually, should we discuss Sky going after Bale due to his BT allegiances? No?

Too much?

Quickly, someone get me David Aaronovitch to guest-blog, stat!


Luka Modric back at Spurs? Either the press are running out of material or Daniel Levy is trolling.


Roberto Soldado has obviously opted for the economy class transfer to Tottenham Hotspur which involves arriving last minute so that Daniel Levy can save a few bob on wages before we need to officially announce him as a Spurs player.

It's obvious (well, it is if you place confidence with the news outlets in Valencia and the Valencia board) that there is something more than just rumour at play with this transfer. It's all been agreed, but it's not done. That according to people involved with the La Liga club. Cue criticism of Levy for dragging heels. Because the only logical explanation for any 'delay' is that the club trying to buy him is purposely sabotaging the deal. Riiiiight.

Okay, I'm going to suggest something in a rather clumsy way because I don't want to end up writing 10,000 words so here goes...

The reason we think this deal is being dragged is because of the transparency around it. Because we know about it, we set ourselves - as supporters - deadlines, imaginary deadlines on when it should all be sorted and if its not, we decide it's because we are somehow not committing to finalising it. Ridiculous, no? It's a deal that can not possibly be completed in private - hence the transparency. So, we - as viewers - on the outside looking in, can't see anything, became nervous due to the lack of any conclusion and find the time to push all our other first world problems aside to collectively break down in confusion.

Transfer deals are hardly as simplistic as me transferring you £20 via any random online bank transfer drop down menu. The complexities themselves are also not always stumbling blocks, just financial stuff that takes time. Time that equates to days. Add to it the fact that not everything stated by Valencia should be taken as the absolute truth. We know how Spanish sides like to put up a brave face or good fight, using the media to support their own agenda. In this case, Valencia not wishing to lose face and to retain a quality of strength - even though they are selling their best player.

Also add to it the fact that we are dealing with a club for a striker and its still late July. That in its self is insane. 

Once Soldado is officially confirmed, I'll dance a little jig of celebration. Until then, I'll wait until the moment Spurs break the news. Dancing shoes firmly under bed.

Talking of transfer deals, I've half-ignored the talk of Stephen Caulker being sold to Cardiff.  I've seen re-tweets of news articles on Twitter but I've not looked into it any further. I've seen some discussion on social media about Caulker -  some fans delving into the players strengths and weakness, attempting to facilitate both eventualities - the player staying / the player going.  My opinion?

I wrote about Caulker in the look ahead to this season (and player expectations) and I stated he needs more games time. I like him, I rate him. However he needs first team football and he needs it regularly. He won't get it at Spurs. A loan deal would be ideal but perhaps that's not an option viewed by the coach and club. If he's good enough, he's good enough to compete for first team football. Perhaps for us, he's not. I don't know. I need to know by seeing more of him. He was superb on loan the season before last but not so dynamic for us when he returned. It's harsh though, difficult to bed in at the back when you're part of a rotating centre-back pairing and you're nowhere near first choice.

I didn't think much of this story at all until the name 'Vlad Chiriches' appeared, also on my timeline.

What? Who? Why?

A Steaua Bucharest centre-back, 23 years of age. 'Confirmation' by his club the deal is done and he'll be joining Spurs. I know, I know...we all know the C word is just as bad as the B word.

So is he a replacement for Jan 'will miss a game or two at the most' Vertonghen or a long term competitive first team option that is rated more highly than Caulker? Would be a shame to let Caulker go, but then I guess I (we) need to trust the coach and his team if it plays out like so.

Perhaps we should no longer look at back up players as back ups. The necessity to have first team options to cover all areas of the side with the ability to retain strengthen is one way to remain competitive. That doesn't make sense does it? What I mean is, Chiriches might be good enough, composed enough to slot in at the back now, with no major doubt or question marks with his ability.

I've got to be honest, I'm just theorising. I don't know much about this guy. I do know more about Caulker. I guess we're all about to find out more one way or the other.

Just don't ask me when.