Has the dust settled? Have we all calmed down now?
Whether we like it or not last Sunday happened, and there’s nothing we can do about it. We can continue blaming Martin Atkinson and his “assistant referee’s” or the players for eventually succumbing to a drumming to Chelsea at Wembley, or we can put it behind us and look forward.
Once upon a time, we were looking forward to a probable 3rd place finish and maybe some silverware, and whilst finishing in the top three isn’t impossible (kudos to Wigan), 4TH is more realistic and really, imperative.
This season is in danger from going from dreamland to a nightmare, and worst case scenarios are being thrown around like a ball in a playground. Finish 5th or below and we can wave goodbye to Modric, probably Bale, definitely Adebayor, maybe Van der Vaart. If Harry does go to England, we won’t be able to attract a calibre of manager we all hoped we could. The likes of Mourinho would definitely never darken our door, if he was ever likely to, and the quality of player we would hope to attract to add to our rostrum would diminish substantially.
Hope springs eternal
Go back 2 years though, and remember the situation we were in. 4th place, and just knocked out of the FA Cup by Portsmouth in the Semi Final. The points were very similar, it was touch and go and went down to the penultimate game of the season and that glorious night at the Etihad Stadium or whatever it was called at the time. We also had games against Arsenal and Chelsea to face before we travelled to Manchester, and look what happened.
Granted we had momentum, but we also had a very tricky run in. This time, we visit QPR on Saturday, welcome Blackburn to the Lane, go to Bolton and Villa, then finish with Fulham at home. Only Fulham, as it currently stands, sit in the top 10. Or more specifically, 10th.
Not the most difficult run in I think you would agree. Neither is it to be taken for granted that we will pick up all 15 points available.
Fire in our belly’s
The season starts again now. Five cup finals. The players must use the anger, frustration and sense in injustice from the weekend to fire them up for the game at Loftus Road. We know they can be formidable at home, after despatching Liverpool and Arsenal, but we also know they are vulnerable and had to drag themselves from 2-0 down against the Scousers to win 3-2 and have not always been as ruthless and solid in West London all season.
We’ve been saying this for a while now about each game as it comes, but this really is a must win. If the players can’t forget about the humbling at the home of football, they need to use it as a fuel to put things right, prove our first half of the season was no fluke and we really are that good. There is a chance Newcastle will leap frog us this weekend, and who would have thought that when we demolished them 5-0 at the Lane back in February.
At the time of writing we have no new injury concerns. Kaboul is still out with the new injury he sustained against Norwich, and there is always a chance Ledley won’t be fit, so we could see Nelsen and Gallas at the back.
QPR seem to have a settled team, and with the exception of the perpetually suspended Cisse, will be able to field a full strength side, of course without the long term injury to Faurlin.
Possible Spurs Team
Friedel; Walker, Gallas, Nelsen, Assou-Ekotto; Lennon, Modric, Parker, Bale, Van der Vaart; Adebayor