Spurs show passing sideways doesn’t beat teams


part 11 in a long series.

Dr. Tottenham is back practising, bottom of the table Watford were the latest patients cured from having no away points so far this season.

Same old song and dance. Like deja vu all over again. Wash rinse repeat. Spurs 2019.

Some one on Twitter asked what happened to Spurs’ defence? That defence that produced the best goals against figures for Spurs in many a season. Pochettino put out a back three, with two wingbacks and yet this combination of five defenders coughed up a goal after just six minutes – just Watford’s fifth goal all season in the league.

The left wingback showed again he absolutely no positional sense as he let the ball go over his head and then couldn’t cut out the cross, which found Doucoure coming in from the Spurs’ right past the non existent Aurier, past Toby for a fairly simple goal. Five defenders and not a single one of them got anywhere near a Watford player involved in the goal, nor anywhere near the ball.

Five defenders made up of four of them that either want out of the club, at least aren’t exactly committed to staying, or the club wanted out of there.

For the next 70 minutes Spurs should yet again that sideways passing doesn’t break down a flat back 10. I don’t know why it took Pochettino so long to see it but he has a blind spot, a blind spot that the natives have grown weary of. The commentators pointed out the groans when Winks passed the ball sideways yet again. Even his cheerleaders in the press were even mentioning that was all he did.

Moura was showing. Dele was trying but his flicks weren’t coming off. Harry was getting even less service than if he was playing for England in a team full of Sterlings.

Rose might have had a penalty but as soon as the ref didn’t give it, it wasn’t coming via VAR. They don’t overturn the ref on such decisions as shown when Vertonghen slid in and dangled is leg out, just offering Deulofeu to go over, which he had the right to do when Jan hooked his foot. Ref didn’t give it. VAR backed him up.

Some were happy to see Welbeck go off after less than 2 minutes. It brought on Deulofeu. I’d have preferred the former being on the pitch. The Spaniard is a far better footballer.

Then after 86 minutes – 70 of them with Spurs passing sideways, while the rest 80, after Watford scored was taken up by the Ben Foster time wasting – Spurs got a break. Karma for Foster. A lump into the box from deep by Toby was nodded down but not clear, Foster came out and collided with his own player, Dele took the ball away and then falling, put it into the goal.

The goal was given but checked by VAR. Dele used his upper arm to flick the ball. Apparently handball is the whole arm according to former ref Keith Hackett – but as pointed out here numerous times previous Hackett has a thing against Spurs, it’s always a penalty when against Spurs, never a pen when for them – but again the ref in the VAR booth wouldn’t overturn his chum on the pitch, though to everyone’s bemusement the scoreboard flashed up “No Goal”.

Spurs had 70% possession over the whole game and had two whole shots on target. One each half. Two shots. Things were better after the subs and Poch shifted back to the back four. Son hit the bar and gave things some life as did Lamela. I assume the former didn’t start because of the travel during the international break. Eriksen was injured so his ability was missing, that’s of course if he’d bothered to turn up on the pitch if fit and picked.

Watford had the chances. Though they had fewer attempts off target, they had the same on but they had good chances which they squandered. Four on twos, Deulofeu clean through and passing instead of shooting.

Lo Celso and Sessegnon are back in full training, apparently – though we were told the Argentinian is months away from being fit, just a few days ago – their availability can’t come soon enough, Poch may have made the most changes between two Premier League games for the club but it didn’t refresh anything that can only be done by new faces.

From being down so early and not looking like scoring for so long, it’s a point gained. But in reality you’re at home to a team without a victory in the league, it’s three dropped points, to go with those against Newcastle, to go with those dropped when ahead against Woolwich and Leicester.

Another poor performance, you can tell how bad it was by the videos both clubs put up on YouTube for highlights. The one Watford put up, above, is 13 minutes long. The one Spurs put up is 2 minutes long.

Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League midweek. That competition is the only place they have performed in 2019 but that was last season…

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