Well here we are again. This tortuous season just gets worse. A third loss to West Ham, another comprehensive beating from the “tactical genius” that is Sam Allardyce. We’ve pretty much saved his side from relegation. They must wish they could play us every week.
There were some small crumbs of comfort – it wasn’t quite as bad as at White Hart Lane. On that occasion we let in three at home against a side without a striker. Here we had the excuse of losing a man early on, another defensive catastrophe. Rose got in a mess trying to play offside and let Downing through on goal. The West Ham midfielder cut across Kaboul who stumbled into him. Last man, he had to go and Spurs were on the back foot.
It wasn’t long before West Ham capitalised. From the resulting free-kick, Carroll’s powerful drive was turned behind by Lloris. Noble took the corner, Carroll won the header, the ball deflecting off the unfortunate Harry Kane and wrong-footing the goalkeeper. One nil and Spurs were rocking.
Every time the home side put the ball into the Spurs penalty area they caused problems. Carroll was dominating in the air. Downing was made to look like Ronaldo, as he cut through the Tottenham rearguard and supplied a succession of dangerous crosses. This was always going to be Allardyce’s main strategy, yet it didn’t look like Sherwood had formulated a plan to stop it. In fact, he played Rose, our weakest defender, and Eriksen, who was never going to provide him much cover, on Downing’s side.
It was the West Ham winger who made it two, scoring his first goal for the Hammers from another free-kick – the Tottenham wall parting to let a pretty ordinary shot through, leaving Lloris with no chance. Paulinho and Adebayor looked accusingly at each other but both were culpable. Another display of the lack of organisation and heart that has characterised this Spurs team. When it’s one or two errors from one or two players it’s unfortunate. When there are so many spread across the team, it smacks of a systematic problem.
As well as winning the aerial battle, the home side outfought and out-muscled a weak Tottenham. Hugo Lloris has become used to being left isolated and unprotected and as in previous games, the goalkeeper distinguished himself. He seemed to be playing all positions in our defence on his own, coming out to punch away crosses, rushing from goal to play sweeper, clearing the ball from the six yard box and making a string of fantastic saves. He must wonder what he’s got himself into, this can’t be what he signed up for. It’s a credit to him, that his attitude is still first rate. He’s definitely my pick for our player of the season and I hope Sherwood is smart enough to realise that he owes much of his impressive points haul to the French keeper.
Somehow the score stayed at 2-0. A largely anonymous Paulinho was replaced by social media celebrity Sandro. Within minutes of coming on, the big Brazilian seemed to be suffering – his ommision appears to be a decision Sherwood got right. Soldado, a late substitute, pulled another disappointing shot wide when Eriksen fed him the ball in the penalty box. Strong Spurs shouts for a penalty were waved away by the referee for a fairly obvious handball but a goal would have flattered the visitors.
This was a third loss to West Ham this season, in addition to three losses to our neighbours, Arsenal and a 4-0 thrashing against Chelsea. Results against our fiercest rivals have been atrocious. In modern football, where “getting the three points” and fourth place are supposedly all that counts, it’s worth remembering that these things matter.
Sam Allardyce basked in the victory. This was West Ham’s final home game of the season and the the points mathematically sealed their Premier League future for another year. The tone of Sherwood’s post match press conference suggests he knows he only has one game left in charge. It’s losses like this that expose the reality behind his record-breaking statistics but the players must also shoulder a large part of the blame for this chastening defeat.
Do you agree with my analysis? Please leave your thoughts in the comments section below.
Discuss it with me on Twitter: @ABPSpurs
Read about my choice for Spurs next manager. Do you agree?
Your point about the ‘systematic problem’ is spot on.
We all ‘knew’ they were going to attack on the wing and deliver crosses yet nothing was made to stop it especially on the left side… Rose was absolutely horrendous today (I was even more horrified that Skysports rated him 7/10…) True, he was not helped by Ericksen but again, like you mentioned, a systematic problem – why should a clear number 10 be tracking back on the left…
But on to the bright side: Lloris is simply a beast. Chiriches was solid and sharp when he came on. Naughton made some great interceptions and was very positive throughout.
Let’s hope Lloris stays. I’m worried that Barcelona need a keeper!
Of all the limp, gutless and downright pathetic performances we have seen from the mighty spurs this season this one was right up there with the very worst. Lloris and Eriksen are the only ones that looked interested.
It made my blood boil watching Adebayor jogging at the pace of a slow walk a few minutes into the second half. The legs were doing a running motion but he was moving about 6 inches per second.
I can’t describe how mad it makes me watching Rose lose the ball every other time he has it, and then stand there watching as the opponent he has lost it to advances on our area and looks to get a ball in the box. IF YOU LOSE IT, BUST A GUT TO RECOVER YOUR POSITION DANNY!!! I never want to see him in a Spurs shirt again, he is nowhere near good enough at any aspect of the game. He gets us in so much trouble every game, I think that if we had someone remotely competent there, someone from a mid-table Championship side, we would have looked a MUCH stronger side this season.
The cherry on top was Paulinho and Adebayor getting out of the way of the ball, whilst standing in the defensive wall. What the hell was that. You would get dropped and abused for that in an under 12 team; this is the Premier League, and you two are on £100k+ PER WEEK. Unbelievable.
But although I am saying the players are to blame, the manager is the one that picks the players and by default he is to blame. If you are going to take over with no experience and say you will learn on the job, you have to actually learn on the job, and for however many weeks it has been clear that Rose is appalling, Eriksen is not a left midfielder, Paulinho is not a holding midfielder…. still he persists.
Sorry Tim, you had a chance and you blew it, if only you had opened your eyes enough to see these glaring weaknesses we would have looked a lot better and you’d be in with a chance of the gig full time.
Agreed, the players attitude and concentration has been poor but ultimately Sherwood picks them, coaches them and motivates them. It is odd how he persists when things obviously don’t work.
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