So many nuggets of negativity in Tottenham's 3-0 away day drubbing at Stoke. So here are my picks of favourite worst nightmare narratives from what was comfortably our worst outing of the season.
We have a knack of signing players that appear to have some ability but yet somehow mismanage them to the point of maddening mayhem. They are either played out of position or sparingly used. In Vlad's case, he breaks the mould by only possessing the ability to have no control over his ability. Two yellows and a red sums up his time at Spurs; it's better spent when he's not on the pitch.
A forward pressing midfielder that has been tasked with a holding role whilst creativity fails to ignite in the space around him. Plays every week ahead of several other options that have been deemed surplus to requirements. Even a player like Benji Stambouli (signed to provide depth of cover) doesn't get a look in whilst Mason is fatigued to death. He's become the perpetual white flag of surrender, even assisting the odd goal via a calamity to compound our misery. Send him to the sunny kissed beaches NOW before we break him permanently.
Formation and substitutions
Mauricio Pochettino gave up on the pressing game a while back. Since Wembley, we've lost any zest and willingness to impress. So I'm left wondering if I should waste thinking time on tactics when the players look to be fairly disinterested no matter the formation. The squad needs fleshing out but it also needs slicing up. We're in possession of far too many players that will never be motivated enough to be dependable. So when Erik Lamela (who gave some heart) gets subbed for the impossibly frustrating Mousa Dembele, I can't help thinking it doesn't really matter at this point in the season. We've been rubbish on the pitch and in the dugout for weeks. It won't change now.
53 let in. That's as many as relegated Burnley. Only Spurs could have this record with world class Hugo Lloris in goal.
The "No you...no you...no you" chase for Europa League
Two games left to decide the battle for European qualification via the hedonistic route of sixth place (depending on Cup Final result) and we're not the only ones losing 'vital' games. Our competition (Southampton) got beat 2-0 away to Leicester. Come on chaps, make it a little less obvious you only want domestic games in a non-congested fixture list next season...AM I RIGHT?
"55 games played, we're fatigued"
"We're lacking confidence since the cup final, they've given up"
"There's no motivation. Some of the players know their days are numbered. The rest can't be bothered to carry the weight of the team on their shoulders"
Reality bites. Poch must know who will make the cut for next season and what he needs to bring in to balance us out and give us some genuine style and identity. There is no hiding next season whether you're the head coach, the chairman, the players...stand up and awaken from this slumber.
And you lot wonder why I've 'quit' blogging until the summer. With rumours of an NFL connection and Cain Hoy back with bids, expect meltdowns and sensory explosions in the coming months. Any genuine criticism is hardly worth the effort as nobody appears to know if the players have switched off, given up or simply don't care (all one and the same thing). Even Poch appears to be mentally drained and half-arsed.
As per, no need to describe the ridiculous defending (or lack of) for the goals conceded. It's not just Ryan Mason that looks shattered to f**k. Things are so depressively grim that Spurs fans fought each other during half-time because the old guard didn't enjoy the self-deprecating chorus of the yoof.
Just a couple of games left until we can kick this year into a shallow grave. Stay strong people. Look at the positives though. If we do continue to plummet further away from the holy grail of aggressive momentum, I can start doing satire again.