Wales 2, France


Just in case you might not have heard – Spurs only have one player, Gareth Bale, Newcastle United are all French and Lewis Holtby is a German international with an English dad.

It’s true I did Tweet during the match that Spurs would be…

…but much as the media would love it to be – as it would mean the end of the club when they, the media that is, sell him off to the highest bidder – it doesn’t quite match up to the the fact Spurs were hanging around that fourth spot when the player was completely anonymous.

It wasn’t that long back where posts on here would mention how little of the Welsh winger had been seen during the 90 minutes. Things have changed somewhat over the last few games though. And one thing that’s certainly changed has been his ability to ride challenges. Keeping on his feet, when before he would have tumbled under the slightest touch – which is not the same as diving. Now he’s staying upright defenders are less keen to tackle him knowing he’ll leave ’em lying in his wake.

He was at it before, after and during the scoring of his second goal against Newcastle, the eventual winner. That winner was another classic piece of Bale, though started with him being the stronger and more determined of three players, other two from United, to win the ball then a charge before placing it between the ‘keeper’s legs.

Before and after he could have added more to the other one he scored in the first few minutes with a cracking free-kick. Krul made some good saves in the Toon goal and Bale missed a sitter. Crap with his right foot.

That free-kick was the culmination of the fast start we all want to see, especially in the home games. But after that things were not only fast from Spurs but loose as well. This looseness quickly allowed Newcastle back into the game, leading to the equaliser from some sloppy defending.

After that fast start Spurs drop a bit. The midfield pairing not exactly working again. There’s a gaping huge Sandro sized hole in the middle of that Spurs’ eleven. A hole Parker will never match up to. Ponderous dithering and butchering nearly every forward movement he got involved in. Dembele is the shadow of his former self with this encumbrance next to him. Though the Belgian needs to learn a new trick. The shuffle to the left was getting him away from players earlier in the season. It doesn’t so well now as opposition players know that’s the way he goes. It’s never right. Too left footed.

He is lucky to have that foot to play with after a particularly late , high and nasty challenge by Cabaye that probably should have seen more than the yellow it got. Two European games in the fortnight until the next league game, wonder if he’ll be fit or rested. The ref also didn’t give Spurs a penalty they should have probably got. Another classic I’ll stick my arm out at and block the ball but turn my back so it won’t be given job.

One man team. Well Holtby might disagree – he’s German don’t know you? – could have added to the scoring himself and added that bit of spark required to make up for the central midfield pair. Adebayor deigned to grace us with his presence. Some think he showed hustle and bit of contrition. Others that he fannied about like he did before he left for the ACN. Demspey came in for much abuse, didn’t have a great game but was certainly no worse than Parker whose fanboys were out in full voice over. Parker also didn’t have a return to Honduras during the international break.

All in all a good result, what with it being the early Saturday kick-off after the international week and against a Newcastle side that looked to have got somewhat back on track after their poor season so far.

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