Both sides of the coin
5 reasons Spurs fans should be cheerful ahead of the new season
1) New founded identity
Remember the two times we believed there was a power shift on the way in North London? Spurs blossomed with style and intent. If there was ever any proof that the God particle decays into dark matter you only have to look at the alternative to the Large Hadron Collider, White Hart Lane, where we stretch a trillionth of a second to cover the final day of the season. We've not quite reached for the stars since Harry Redknapp and that patch under Andre Villas-Boas, but surely now we have a guiding light that won't be sucked away by a black hole. Mauricio Pochettino is carefully laying the foundations of a spine. The defence is set. The midfield and attack will need completion to allow for his philosophy to finally birth success from recent failed experiments.
2) You won't win anything with kids
Whilst everyone is buying top tier players to replace the top tier players they've already bought but either loaned out or sold, we continue to pluck youth from within and from beyond to give us a more traditional, old skool approach that feels more organic than laboratory induced. What's the point in having Hotspur Way if we're not going to engineer an ethos from within that encourages the youngsters to aim for the first team? It might seem to be an excuse (to praise academy promoted players above marquee ones) and it might also be a by-product of the inflated transfer market, but you can't dispute the feeling when seeing a Bentaleb or a Kane muscle in on what is meant to be an exclusive playground for the expensive foreign imports.
Talking of kids, how about the one that turned into a man? Harry Kane has already broken through the hardest obstacle of them all; the Spurs first team. Perhaps with thanks to the poor form of the expensive imports, Kane still had to impress and work hard to stake a claim as an option. He pushed beyond that and is now our leading striker. For someone who constantly seeks to improve why on earth should he be concerned about 'second season syndrome'? If players and teams aim to adapt to contain his style what about how he plans to adapt to once more out-smart them all?
4) Leadership everywhere
We are beginning to see what happens when you look to construct a side that allows for mirroring of talents rather than reflection of mistakes. Our signings might appear to be functional but they are fit for purpose, offering cover and depth rather than creating new problems. We have strong personalities in the team, some are occasionally fragile, but with better consolidation we can get the best out of them. Lloris, Vertonghen, Bentaleb, Eriksen, Kane...they can all lead by example.
5) The dross has left the building
The streamlining has dominated our summer. We've sold players that don't offer much beyond disruption or half-baked performances. It's not impressive that we sold Elvis to buy The Beatles and ended up with the not so Solid Crew (where most impressed for around 21 seconds) but the fact we're correcting this proves we've admitted the mistakes and we're now moving on.
5 reasons Spurs fans should be miserable ahead of the new season
1) No guaranteed first team players signed (thus far)
Alli, Alderweireld, Trippier, Wimmer. Players that add to the squad but don't quite give us that top tier steel which will be needed in abundance if we plan to throw the occasional knock-out punch at our more esteemed (and richer) opponents. There is nothing wrong with functionality in the transfer window. Some measured scientific analysis is a healthy alternative to the marquee mayhem of signing illusionary promises of glory. But signing youth and cover is just another bridge to further transition.
2) Harry Kane Second Season Syndrome
'He's gonna get found out' scream the Spurs fans that have completely detached themselves from the 'support' element of following a football club. Let's not talk about how marvellously refreshing it is to see a player that most wrote off when he broke through the expectation barriers to storm the goal scoring charts and win the PFA Young Player of the Year award. Let's instead focus on the worst possible scenario...
Was last season a fluke? Did Kane peak in a single season where it took an academy player next to no time to impress in a squad that was assembled with chaotic calamity? Will it now be highly unlikely that he'll be afforded the space and time to rip through defences? What if he gets injured? What if he loses form? How exactly do you replace a player that was the replacement for the supposedly fully fledged experienced players?
3) Friendly free summer
Development squad games. Spurs XI behind closed doors. And three official first team pre-season friendlies. Three. A 2-1 defeat against a MLS All-Star team. A 2-0 defeat against Real Madrid. A 2-0 win against AC Milan. It seems that Spurs have once more opted for that alternative to the summer tours to refine momentum...the opening ten games of the Premier League. Not that pre-season results mean much (anyone care to remember the time we went unbeaten, beat Roma 5-0 and witnessed Darren Bent smashing them in...all before 'two points from eight games'?). We've opted for the minimalistic approach this time. Just train during the pre-season, keep up the odd appearance for marketing reasons then just dive straight in at Old Trafford away. Which means by the 10th game we'd have dropped the exact amount of points that will see us miss out on top four by the end of the season.
4) Roberto Soldado and Emmanuel Adebayor
The support for Harry Kane comes in the form of one player that has turned the art of failing to score into poetic tragedy. The other has suffered personal problems off the pitch, so much so, that he practically disappeared from the Spurs landscape last season. The depth of our attacking selection is on par with the Titanic.
5) Daniel Levy
Our chairman has already eluded to the fact that most business tends to take place in the final hours of the transfer window. It's a game or risk and can dangerously turn to desperation. Why can't key targets be got at first rather than spending time on the functional ones? Are the key targets that much harder to negotiate for? It always leaves us incomplete days before the new season.