Tottenham vs Fulham: Let’s Finish On A High At The Lane
It’s the last match preview of the season but unfortunately there’s not really much to get excited about other than possibly having a hand in sending Birmingham to the Championship and pipping Liverpool to 5th spot and the Europa League place. Judging by Tim Sherwood’s comments about Europe’s secondary competition being the perfect stage to give younger and fringe players some game time and a chance to shine I’m not that excited about the prize for 5th place.
I’ve got nothing against the competition really, other than it’s been diluted by UEFA and teams don’t take it seriously. Personally I stand on the side of the fence that argues if we’re going to play youngsters and therefore not take it seriously why bother? I’d certainly expect ticketing to be priced at £15 a head or less. Come this time next year we could’ve just won a major European trophy so why not go for it from the start? Anyway, that’s a discussion for next season.
Back to Sunday and with the exception of West Ham (ok, stop laughing now) there are 5 teams who can still go down, albeit it’s most likely two from Wigan, Blackpool and Birmingham. Until a couple of weeks ago I would’ve said I want Blackpool to stay up, but having spent the last 9 months enjoying their brand of football I’ve now developed a dislike for them, after their bullyboy and downright thuggish at times behaviour in our encounter at White Hart Lane. Nothing personal of course and if they do beat the drop then so be it, I would expect them to disappear into the abyss next year anyway so I’ll get my twisted bit of revenge then.
That leaves Wigan and our opponents Birmingham. I love the fact Wigan don’t change their style of football even when they’re struggling and Roberto Martinez is always worth an interview, usually smiling and trying to get his team to play expansive football. Their fans are second to none, constantly supporting their team and making noise even though there’s not a lot of them so final day heriocs would be perfect for them. Then there’s Birmingham, who let us not forget enjoyed their day at Wembley slightly more than our north London neighbours, but they represent everything I hate about football. Boring for the most part and their main objective is to fight for every point and make it hard for the opposition to play. They’re negative and try to keep a clean sheet before they try to score. This can be very successful but it’s not entertainment in my eyes and that’s what football’s meant to be. They’ve also got Lee Bowyer on the payroll.
I don’t like to watch teams like Stoke, Wolves, Blackburn, Everton, the old Bolton teams, Arsenal teams under George Graham etc and the disappointing fact is, hard working, disciplined teams often do quite well in the premier league which is why there are more and more of them. So that being said of all three teams it’s Birmingham I’d like to see get relegated which by a happy coincidence means it’s a Spurs win that’s needed on the final day. How we play could be a sign of just how badly we want the Europa League or not too.
Personally, I think it’s important to finish a season well and a win at Anfield, followed by a convincing victory at home could see us go into the summer break and the inevitable transfer merry-go-round on a high instead of wondering what might have been.
There’s not much else to say really. It’s a pity this isn’t a massive game for us with a lot hanging on the result but the following stats (taken from the BBC) probably say more than any other why that’s the case:
- Victory at Anfield last weekend was only Tottenham’s second win in 11 league games.
- Spurs have suffered just one league defeat at home this season, a record bettered by only Manchester United. However, they have drawn nine games at White Hart Lane, the highest tally in the top flight.
- Tottenham have won three of 11 games against sides in the bottom six this season (W3, D5, L3). Had they won all those games, they would be one point clear of Manchester United at the top of the table.
That last one’s a bit of a stinker as far as we’re concerned. All if’s, but’s and maybe’s of course but to make it seem less extreme how about we pretend we just managed to turn the 5 draws into wins? Oh, that’s not much better. We’d be sitting in 3rd just in front of Man City, and Arsenal of all people would be outside the Champions League places with 1 game to go.
We’re so very close to something great when you look at the cold hard facts. One thing we can obviously do better is pick up more points against the lower teams as those above us do and we might as well start on Sunday and in the process send a dull, anti-entertainment team packing.
Submitted by THFC1882
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