I saw more than a 4-2 defeat on Saturday

Discussion in 'Tottenham forum' started by Craig Emanuel, April 25, 2017.

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  1. Craig Emanuel Member

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    It still hurts, our wounds are gaping open, they sting like hell. But it's time to draw a line in the sand and draw upon the positives, of which in truth there were many.

    The pundits and journalists will lazily judge a game by the score line, as if actually watching the game and analysing performance is a pointless exercise. For all the praise that they've heaped upon us in recent weeks, they were waiting for this. Waiting for the opportunity to tell everyone that we're still the same perennial bottlers. That we don't perform when it matters. That we're still a long way off.

    I refuse to believe it. I saw the evidence on Saturday, just as I've seen it all season. For the first 75 minutes on Saturday we dominated Chelsea. They were pinned back in their half for much of the second half and they just couldn't get out. We bossed it but we just couldn't find a way to get our noses in front. We got stung by some clinical finishing - they soaked up our pressure and hit us with the sucker punch on their rare forays forward. It was classic Italian "catenaccio". Credit to Conte for that, even if he needed a bit of luck to pull it off - he knew his team couldn't match us for possession so set his team up to counter punch, just as he did with Italy against Spain last summer. It's hard to take in a game of such importance but we must not read too much into it. Let's not overplay it. No one was saying that Spain were a long way off Italy after their defeat at the Euros. Condemnation is unhelpful and I refuse to be mired in the negativity I saw from some Spurs fans on Wembley Way after the game. I can understand it but I saw more than a 4-2 defeat on Saturday.

    This was not like the other semi final defeats. I saw our team show why we're in the title race, why we've won our last 7 games in the league, why we're a match for any team in the country. We showed that we are BETTER than Chelsea. Just as Barcelona and Bayern Munich were better than them in 2012. The thing about football is that the better team doesn't always win. That unpredictability is why we love it so much.

    It just seems that the footballing gods are sympathetic to Chelsea. They reward them for their antisemitic chants, they reward them for pushing black men off trains in Paris, they reward them for the racism of their captain. Chelsea are a vile club, from top to bottom, but we should not tie ourselves in knots hating on their good fortune.

    If we continue to perform at the level we showed on Saturday, there will be brighter days ahead. Possession might not be everything but if we played that game 10 times to the level we reached, I believe we'd win it at least 8 out of 10. Saturday was a freak. Three goals scored from outside the area - all well taken but that is highly unusual. And it's not like they peppered our goal with shots. 5 on target, 4 goals.

    I would still like to understand why Son Heung-Min was asked to play left wing back for the first time in his Spurs career in such an important game, and why Davies remained on our bench. The penalty never happens with Rose or Davies playing there and that is undoubtedly a key moment in the game. Whether Davies was carrying a knock or Pochettino made a costly mistake is a conversation for another day. Now is not the time for recriminations or to dwell.

    For now, Selhurst Park becomes our cup final. Saturday did not end our season but if we don't react well tomorrow, then it will be over.

    We've now outplayed Chelsea for 2.5 of the 3 games we've played against them this season. We showed on Saturday why we've picked up more points than any other team since the turn of the year and why we ARE the best team in the country. Pochettino and his charges now have to show it again and prove the doubters wrong over the last 6 games of the season. Negativity cannot seep in now. Performances must not dip. We must hold our nerve. We cannot control what Chelsea do and this fortuitous victory will no doubt give them a vital shot in the arm at a crucial point in the season. But we MUST do our job, starting tomorrow.

    We go again! COYS!!!
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  2. Everyone knows what Chelsea’s plan is. Defend well, absorb pressure, counter attack. Mourinho has been airing this publicly for the last few weeks. Conte allowed us to believe that we were the better team but the truth is, Chelsea’s victory never really looked in doubt. We did bottle this game and Hugo Lloris lead the bottling. He is our captain and our leader and you need your leader to step up in these games. He looked weak in goal and this gave Chelsea confidence to score four times.

    Yes there were positives but I categorically disagree we are better than Chelsea. The best team is the team that wins and we are not tactically wise enough to win titles…yet.
    Spurporter and Felon82 like this.
  3. Add to the criticism of Chelsea that, according to media watch, "Lampard Mocks Spurs after win".
    When a senior international emulates the louts on the terraces who simply wants to put one over on other people, and you wonder that the game gets into disrepute? Eden Hazard said earlier in the season that stopping Spurs wins the Championship was the greatest achievement of his career you can only hope that one day (unfortunately probably not far off) he achieves something positive.
  4. Garyhdb9 Guest

    i agree 100% and you've hit the nail on the head with the Son question! Why did we change a winning team/system?

    However tomorrow night is now our biggest game of the season, back to back defeats would start the doubters off - a win and anything is still possible! COYS
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  5. Wouldbebob Guest

    We are not better than Chelsea. If we were we would have won. We are tactically naive and played into their hands. Was the same at Anfield and Old Trafford, and almost the same at Etihad. We need to grow up fast.
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  6. I totally agree with everything you say. We came away asking ourselves how on Earth did we lose that? We played really well but in fairness did not work Courtois enough to say that we were unlucky or, as usual, their goalkeeper was man of the match.
    Son at left back was difficult to fathom and the penalty (even if it wasn't) was an accident waiting to happen.
    What annoys me most is that pundits like Alan Shearer seemed to think that the better side won. What utter rubbish.
    Poch is building something really worth savouring. Stay together and support the lads. This is the dawn of a new and exciting era. Let's not lose any of our starting 11 players and add some pace up front.
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  7. Never Mind Guest

    I agree with most of this, but not with "we are the best team in the country". I think we are the best team in the country to watch, and we have been clinical in recent games. However, to be the best team in he country you have to do it against the other best teams in he country. Sadly Liverpool, Man U and Chelsea can vouch for the fact that we didn't do it against them. We didn't beat them like we have other teams. Tactically they were better than us on the day and what ever you say about the FA semifinal, we were beaten on tactics, very well set up defense and clinical finishing. The only thing we were better on was possession. That's 3 things Chelsea were better than us.
    Now to be the best team in the country, we need to show we can also soak up the pressure. We didn't show this in Europe. We havent won a game this season where we were the worse team. Chelsea have.
    As for Son playing wing back. Technically he wasnt. He was a left wing attacking midfielder who also had defensive duties just like all the others in the team. For me knowing his defensive weakness, Vertongan should have compensated and rushed out to stop Moses before he got in the area. Like Chelsea's defense did to us. Therefore when a team is playing that way, surely it doesn't take much to realise that you need to take quality shots at their goal. We tied to walk the ball in to the area most of the time.
    Son justified his selection in the team through how clinical he has been in attack. Why didn't he take more shots.
    We lost because Chelsea were a better team. That hurts so much to admit, but that's how I see it.
    Onwards and upwards. Team are still learning and so is Poch.
  8. S-P Guest

    We were better than them at the Lane. We should have been better than them at the Bridge - Pedro's goal changed the whole dynamic and he should have been picked up - and but for that we would be above them in the league and 'officially' better than them. We would have been better than them on Saturday, we nearly were, but getting a penalty for a dive and the ref persistently refusing to book any of your players for multiple yellow card offences, each, that helps.

    And, yeah, that is the point: in spite of the fuss being made about Chelsea actually having a player missing at last, we have, and have had, far more injury issues than them, and we had to make more drastic alterations on Saturday. We fought back from going behind twice - and anyone who believes conceding multiple chances, two goals, double figures of corners and all that plain goddam pressure was all part of a Conte tactical Italian master class is deluding themselves. Because our defence is so tight they wouldn't have been going into the game scoring four goals! Even then it took a once in several seasons goal to see us off. And even then Kane's late free kick had to literally defy the laws of physics to deny us 4 - 3 and a grand-stand finish.

    We lost, but the margins were miniscule on Saturday. We know it and Chelsea know it. There was no bottling here.
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  9. G-J Guest

    I totally agree with the article, this is a very good Tottenham side, they gave us a game of football that as fan I can be proud of, the result flatters Chelsea a bit, but the manor in which we played went some way to diminishing the pain of the loss.
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  10. Cydtheyid New Member

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    I was at the game on Saturday and haven't felt such pain from a defeat since the same blue scum somehow managed to fluke a CL victory and subject us to missing out on the following season's competition. This transpiring as we all know even though they finished two places and many points below us in the league. I walked down Wembley Way feeling absolutely gutted knowing that we were the better team on the day, despite what most of the journalist's and so called experts have been expressing. We'd had most of the possession, but this alone does not entitle bragging rights. However our possession was not just slow side ways movement as we have witnessed in the past, it was with tempo and with purpose.

    I couldn't totally understand the absolute devastation I was feeling regarding this result so I put myself through the pain of watching the full match again. It was interesting to watch the game having already seen it once. The first thing I will say is what nonsense people are talking when they proclaim that we fell for Conte's superior tactical nous. Their goals didn't stem from quick decisive breaks, although I do concede the first one via the foul could be seen in this light.

    I understand why the hurt is so raw. Apart from the first 10 minutes of the match where Chelsea certainly started the brighter, from the moment we scored the equalizer there was only one team playing and asking any questions of the opposition. Totally against the run of play they were awarded the penalty. Soft as it was, had the same situation occurred in the opposite penalty area we would have expected a penalty. We continued in the same vein after the brake and absolutely dominated until the 75th minute when we conceded our first corner and Hazard inexcusably wasn't picked up on the edge of the box, what ensued was a great finish. Even having gone 3-2 down we carried on where we left off for the next 5 minutes until Matic hit his once in a lifetime strike. Had he walked to the goal and placed the ball in the top corner with his hands he couldn't have placed it any more snug in the corner.

    The point I'm making is that it wasn't some great tactical masterclass from Chelsea where they hit us with a flowing break having soaked up all our pressure and suckered us. Combined with us shooting ourselves in the foot with the first 3 goals and them being the recipients of a worldy that if Matic hit another 100 times it would be unlikely that there would be the same outcome. The second, third and fourth goals all came against the run of play. In fact Chelscum rarely had any extended passage of possession. I concede their defense, particularly Luiz and Ake played very well. On another day, one of the umpteen crosses would have found it's way to a Spurs player rather that a player in Blue's head, foot or whatever other piece of anatomy got in the way. And of coarse the Kane free kick was a moment of play I don't think I've ever seen in 45 years of watching football. A ball doesn't generally head towards the goal line only to spin backwards as per a golf ball. As the author points out, we could play another 10 matches as well and probably win all of them in my opinion.

    On second viewing it was also incredible to observe the amount of times that both Alli & Kane were repeatedly subjected to tackles that went through the back of them. Tackles that were often not even deemed a free-kick let alone worthy of a yellow card. The tokenistic card given to Kante in injury time was laughable. He fouled all afternoon and was given carte blanche to do so. This point along with the fact that Hazard particularly, is very adroit at falling over just as the tackle is coming in and being rewarded with a free-kick, left a feeling of what might have been had the referee been a little more even handed with his rewarding of free-kicks and justifiable cautions.

    In conclusion, we were by far the better team, but didn't get what our play deserved, as is sometimes the case with football. Keep the faith, if we play the next 6 games in a similar vein, then we will be in second place unless Chelscum drop points in two of their remaining games in which case we will be crowned champions which will certainly wash this hurt away.
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  11. Dany Guest

    NOT a Chelsea supporter. The game was great to watch. As the author pointed out, Spurs dominated possession. Its true, but the game is not decided on that. It's the goals, and Chelsea got 4. And saying that it was not Conte's masterclass is denying the obvious. He took two of his best players, started a 20 year old something(Ake) in place of the captain (Cahill) and a striker who was starting his first game (Michy) and still managed to win. And blaming Son for entirely changing the game isn't right too. Yea his misjudgement changed the game but how many saves did Courtois make before that. How many shots did Kane hit. Conte planned it. His subs affected the games. Pochs didn't. And the being the best team and winning the league are entirely different. Playing beautiful football does not mean league titles. Ask Arsenal for that matter!!!
  12. Cheshuntboy Guest

    Sorry, but didn't Liverpool play us off the park twice in the PL, while we were distinctly lucky in both games against City - does that make us the third best team? And what about Gent? They were thrashed by Genk after seeing us off in the EL, so are we also the third best team in Belgium? It's all about tables and trophies, not corners, possession figures or stupendous goal differences, and we've GOT to start winning the games that really matter if the latest 'project' isn't going to end with big transfer fees for Alli, Eriksen, Walker et al in Levy's coffers, rather than silverware in the currently very bare trophy cabinet.
    Felon82 likes this.
  13. DELUDED Guest

    This is Chelsea's Tactic. They do this in most games. They beat us because of this tactic. Therefore, they tactically outclassed us. STOP BEING DELUDED.
  14. Ravspur Guest

    I thought Chelsea had 2 major challenges going into this game. 1 was stop us scoring and 2 was break our solid defence. Unfortunately we broke the defence for them with our choice of wingbacks. Anyway, I heard this talk from the pundits that Leicester won the league because they soaked up pressure and attacked on the counter and chelsea beat us in the FA Cup because they did the same. I thought then that maybe Poch may realize his mistake, but when listening to his postmatch comments it sounded like he would rather win playing free flowing attacking football than win playing defensively. We havent won anything for so long that I am willing to win anyway possible. Anyway, if chelsea do win, please let it not be after the london derby.
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  15. Felon82 Well-Known Member

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    The excuse culture does not breed winners.
    The legions of fans we have that wet themselves about being in the 'mix' and proud when they fail is Embarrassing.

    No longer do we have a Team that is not capable of going toe to toe with the best in the country that is down to 2 things the standard of the Top sides dipping and us improving.

    So why are we still happy with a cup 'run' and a title 'challenge' we need to be hungry to win not take part !

    So far it's the Refs fault that we conceded 4 and it's Moses fault for daring to run into a telegraphed challenge from Son etc

    The Team/Manager and Club need to take responsibility and Step Up on these occasions.

    Possession stats etc mean nothing!

    9 Years since our last Trophy, a league cup.
    26 Years since our last FA Cup......

    Have we all forgot what football is about?
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  16. Craig Emanuel Member

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    You're entitled to your opinion but I think you're being overly pessimistic. I imagine you've watched enough football to understand that the best team doesn't always win. Are Palace better than Chelsea? Are they better than Liverpool too? Your analysis (just like what we often see on TV) is oversimplistic.

    Lloris didn't have a great game. But that doesn't make him a bad keeper. It doesn't mean he or anyone else "bottled" anything. How exactly did we bottle the game? We played incredibly well but made a couple of individual errors for the first two goals and were undone by a couple of great finishes for the last two. We were punished and Chelsea were clinical. But on another day they're not so clinical. Like against Palace.

    If Chelsea were so imperious, how did they allow us to score twice? If they are so much better than us then how did we beat them 2-0 in January. I'd say on that day, after we had taken the lead, a Spurs victory never looked in doubt.

    We just didn't get the breaks on Saturday and Chelsea had a day where everything went their way. **** happens. But look beyond the score line.
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  17. Craig Emanuel Member

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    1. I'm not blaming Son. It was Poch's fault for playing him out of position. But it was clearly a key moment in the game. We did come back to 2-2 afterwards but without that penalty we could go 2-1 up having got next goal and then it's an entirely different game. When Chelsea go behind they struggle - see their recent defeats to Palace and United.
    2. Conte had a far stronger bench to choose from. They have a deeper squad than we do. I'm not denying that. Helps when you have a Russian billionaire piling money in. But I think we have a stronger first XI. With Rose playing LWB we probably win that game. Poch didn't have the same options from his bench - that doesn't make Conte a genius.
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  18. Craig Emanuel Member

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    Did they tactically outclass us in January or did Conte have an off night?
  19. Craig Emanuel Member

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    1. I haven't blamed the ref for anything.
    2. Let's have a little perspective. We are progressing year on year under Pochettino and competing like we haven't done in at least 30 years. No one is making excuses, I'm saying we didn't get what we deserved on Saturday. No need to diminish everything we've achieved under MP to date. No need to take aim at our players for "bottling" it or not "stepping up". You can have a pop when we lose 5-1 to an already relegated Newcastle but this was entirely different. We have a team and a manager to be proud of. We haven't yet won a trophy but we're getting closer.
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  20. Felon82 Well-Known Member

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    What have we achieved then?

    We've got slightly better while others have gone backwards.

    It's hardly an achievement.

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