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Entries in England (43)


Kick Danny Rose out of football

Serbia FA: "Danny Rose, behaved in inappropriate, unsportsmanlike and vulgar manner towards the supporters"

No matter how many times I read the above statement, I still laugh. How dare Danny Rose be racially abused whilst playing for his country. The kid needs to white up for next time. Maybe then we won't hear any monkey chanting coming from the stands. I know we have our own problems in England with discrimination but the days of bananas being thrown onto the pitch are long gone. That's not to say some elements of racism are more acceptable. Well, unless you throw up the context argument as a defence.

The main crux is that all examples are not brutally dealt with by the authorities. The underlying caveat to it is that this is a social/cultural issue that seems to manifest itself more so at football matches, almost like the stands are indicative of exaggerating a nations ugly side. So why is it acceptable in the minds of the guilty to behave like that? Mob culture? Less likely to be punished than perhaps behaving in the same manner when walking the street? Comes back down to the authorities simply dealing with it by dishing out one punishment rather than checking the wall chart and fining the country/club based on how 'bad' it all was.

The other laughable incident was the actual red card Rose was given for petulance. Because how dare he react to racist chanting. He was quite restrained in his reaction. Yet no further red cards dished out for all the aggression that played out with punches and pushing shared amongst the players and coaches.

Our FA have complained.

“No football team should be asked to play in any environment where racial abuse, violence and threatening behaviour is prevalent. We must question the validity of sending a team to Serbia in the
future. We look forward to UEFA dealing with last night’s events as a matter of urgency.”

And UEFA have grown balls (the size of grapes currently, hopefully to grow to the size of grape fruits).

"Regarding alleged racist chanting, UEFA will instigate proceedings against (Serbia) over the misconduct of their supporters. Proceedings will also be instigated against (Serbia) for the improper conduct of the Serbia players at the end of the game. UEFA will also commence proceedings against the FA for the improper conduct of the England players at the end of the match"

Fining is not an acceptable conclusion to this. Although pretty much nothing can be done to alter the way some people think, football itself can take a handle on how these same people are dealt with at football stadia. Let them play in empty stadiums for five years. Or ban them from the next three major competitions.

Enough with the slapped wrists. Break a f***ing arm.



Lazio fined £32k for monkey chants. Ashley Cole fined £90k for a naughty tweet.

John Terry banned 4 games. Joey Barton banned 12 games for handbags.

Football is broken.



Oh well

I own a pair of Adidas Beckenbauer so that technically makes me German. I'll take that.


We had plenty of desire and heart but lacked quality. Can't really hate on them for that. Italy had more possession than Pete Doherty and managed to blow it all. We could have nicked it but we really should have been well beaten before extra-time. Hodgson can't do much with the likes of < pick any three players at random > and when our supposedly best player is completely off key we're hardly going to ignite and set the night on fire.

Got schooled, justice done for the Italians. Another QF heartbreak for us. It's just not in our mindset to win penalties so let's not pretend we believed we could. Look on the bright side, we're not going to lose 4-0 to the Germans now.

Viva two banks of four. Onwards to Brazil then.


Forza England

I'm not quite back in love with England. I hardly even lust her. I wouldn't even consider a one night stand. Perhaps a cuddle at best. If it did lead to a kiss I might lose myself momentarily and allow a tug although I expect it wouldn't get beyond a limp state. I call that a Milner. She probably wouldn't even notice that I wasn't too keen. She'd just be happy to be there and to have caught my attention. And so on.

There is nothing sexy about Hodgson's men but I quite like that mainly because there's nothing sexy about England these days. All that pomp and expectation that anchored the fabled golden generation to disappointment is gone, although as shared in a previous blog, I enjoyed the delusion that came with the ridiculous notion that this year would finally be the year we do it. Belief is such a powerful emotive. It renders reality irrelevant that all the hope and want is misguided. It fuels you as a supporter and makes the sport you love a far more rewarding experience, even if you end up losing and hurting. You feel more alive for it. Spurs fans know what I mean. England fans of old also.

I can close my eyes and still see Italia 90 like it was yesterday (don't ask me what I was literally doing yesterday though because I won't remember, in fact don't even bother asking me what I did two hours ago, thanks to MDMA and countless summers under the Ibiza sun). That game against Cameroon. There was one moment where I was such a wreck, a ball of nervous nerves nerving, that I walked outside into the garden and wondered around trying to calm myself down from having a heart-attack. Such was the intensity, the hope to keep the dream alive. I returned to glare at the tv again and pray for safe passage into the next round (with thanks to Lineker). My heart pumping and head racing through countless permutations and what ifs and how I'd handle a loss if it happened. All the games we're like that. Euro 96 also. Then it slowly started to degrade, for me any way, with each passing tournament.

I'm still waiting for that moment in the present day, that rush of blood, to have me genuinely jumping off the sofa and screaming at the telly in celebration or frustration. I did lift my hand up when Rooney scored. Worked a treat for me as on the way back it picked up a drink that sat waiting on the coffee table. Good timing. I was thirsty.

That's not to say there weren't any moment of joy. There were moments of actual joy to behold. John Terry. What a moment that was. For a minute I thought he'd score when that cross pinged across the six yard box but it zinged past him. Wouldn't want that now would we. Still, I made a pre-tournament promise that I would not be counting any goals scored by him. Yes, that's right, I don't count goals scored by people of his colour. The colour of hypocrisy. It's an ugly colour.

What about his clearance? I guess we need to be thankful to that bloke that stands by the side of the goal staring into space day dreaming about that other bloke whose job it is to scan the stadium for fit looking female supporters via tv camera. Now that's a job of importance and more importantly, fun. Shame he didn't take a second to perhaps zoom in on the sleepy official with the mundane job, missing the fact the ball actually crossed the line. We all like to laugh at someone having a snooze during the football. But hey, whatever, who cares. Justice for Lampard and all that.

Ukraine did okay. Had a fair few chances, but failed to take them. We had a couple also. A Rooney sitter, Cole with a decent effort. Okay so it wasn't exciting, we're not exciting. Hodgson has the team well drilled (he's got that particular thing trademarked) and organised, even though you suspect a far stronger opponent would not struggle much against our backline with perhaps a clever ball or burst of pace. Just how far stronger other teams are currently is up for some debate. France hardly looked bothered in their game against Sweden, Blanc drawing a blank, distracted no doubt from being linked to the Spurs job. We have that effect on managers.

England work hard off the ball, but we're hardly majestic on it. Aside from Scott Parker who just has to run around to look like something from a 1950's action comic book. But as a collective, we're just very average. We ride our luck a fair bit but as witnessed at club level, this can sometimes be enough for a team to go all the way to the final. The plucky can be crowned kings. It's happened famously at international level also. I doubt very much the England players would turn down the chance for some Greek. The reality is, we'll probably get spanked instead.

Gerrard (to be fair to him) has done quite well, particularity with his deliveries. One of the old guard proving a point. Hart has been kept busy between the sticks and remains quite sharp when called upon to react. Another major positive is the tabloids will have to write positive things about the team through gritted teeth, still probably seething from the irony of being accountable for losing Redknapp the England job and then in turn being responsible for the said catalyst that saw Redknapp also lose his job at club level too. Keep it up Roy. They're hating this.

We're in the quarters so I guess I should stick a smile on it. The glory hunter within me is primed and ready to burst out in a fit of hypocritical giddiness. Sunday against Italy and the prospect of a semi-final against the Germans (maybe) if we win. I might actually sit up, even shift my backside onto the edge of the seat.

Forza England.



I'm in the mood for the Euros. There, I said it.

From this to now giddy giggles and skipping. I'm going to have to avoid actually looking at the team sheet before kick off and if I can do that then I might have some success in watching the whole game through and actually giving a ****. I prefer the days of delusion when we believed we might win it. The build up to this England game (even with all the controversy) lacks the chest pumping pride and excitement of previous tournaments (I lied about the giddy giggles and skipping - I'm saving them for Apple's WWDC 2012 which kicks off around 6pm GMT and might end up being a worthy escape).

So yes, nobody is expecting us to do much. We're pedestrian at best. Dour and unsexy. Workman like but with the occasional piece of trickery and guile. France unbeaten in twenty-one with plenty to prove. We could still surprise everyone and actually get a result and then that belief might return. Or they could brush us aside which would mean the tabloids unleash headline hell. What's been institutionalised over the decades is that it's all or nothing supporting England, the expectation was that we would always be in with a shout to win it (get knocked out at the QF stage). Maybe beating France will ignite that chest pumping. I'm waffling. I'm trying really hard to find some genuine passion from somewhere. If John Terry scores I might actually throw myself at the tv in protest, with grenade in mouth.

Maybe I should just admit my opinion hasn't really changed, I just want it to change and the fact that I can't even get hyped up about my country sums up how the delusion has transcended to disillusionment. Once upon a time, I'd not have questioned any of it. When your club team is struggling you don't disown or turn your back or lose that love for them (if you're not a glory hunter - although not sure glory hunting comes into it with a national side. You can't pick your nation, you are your nation, at least you're meant to be). Once upon a time I had as much love for the Three Lions that I have for the Cockerel. It's all gone very wrong somewhere and the fact I can't answer it leaves me conflicted still.

This is hardly a rousing pre-match battle cry is it? Sorry. So good luck England, good luck Roy.

Here's to dicking the French. It's got to be worth tuning in just for the off chance that might happen.



This is England

I really do try to care about the National team but the whole Terry debacle and the weakness of the FA and (sadly) Hodgson leaves me further detached from it all with each passing day. I'm sure once the competition starts I'll watch and want them to succeed, but seeing the likes of Terry pull on the shirt, knowing footballers believe and behave themselves to be bigger than the badge on the shirt (even the badge of their country), the fact there are so many fractures within the squad, the politics...where the hell did it all go wrong?

Hodgson was treated with cowardice contempt by the tabloid press when he was given the job and I hope he achieves something tangible to ram it back down their throats. But his squad selection along with the influence of a variety of story arcs - have I mentioned Terry's inclusion yet and the impact on Ferdinand and the Gerrard captaincy? Then there's Carrick, the excess of Liverpool players and not forgetting players who should probably have been included - means all the job actually amounts to is damage limitation until this 'golden generation' are done and dusted and gone for good.

The belly of English football needs gutting. It's feasted for far too long, bloated and tired, sat on a throne nobody bows to any more. We are far too institutionalised to attempt it. 

Where's the revolution?




Dear everyone. Zip it up. Don't mention 'you know what'.


Some bits I missed yesterday.


The FA Letter

The Football Association have sent out letters to all of its managers asking them not to talk about the vacant England job meaning the journalists will have to ask relevant questions regarding team selections instead of citing Harry Redknapp every five seconds. Considering how its only ever Harry Redknapp's name that gets mentioned when the England job is spoken about, I get the distinctive feeling that a certain bald headed spectacled chairman has had a quiet word on the side with the big wigs at Soho Square and asked them to do him (and us) a favour. What with the inevitable on the cards in the summer. So on that bombshell, it's time for all of us to shut up shop and ignore it all until the season ends when it can restart with fireworks and hefty soundbites.

Redknapp and Levy

As if bloggers can be gagged (unless its a Thursday evening and I've paid Madam Majestic a grand to tie me up). Let's chat England job. Redknapp telling us that the chairman wants him to stay but no offer has been made yet (Harry not received a letter? No? Lost in the post?). No summer transfer war chest has been confirmed either. No bombshell here. Would be far easier to retain the manager, not rock the boat. At the same time, an upgrade will hardly be scoffed up if Harry forces our hand. A nice comfortable handover of a side that's taken 3rd place and the FA Cup would smooth things over nicely for the next man in charge.

Saha and the Gentleman's agreement

I love this one. Apparently Harry (he gets everywhere) and David Moyes agreed that when we played Everton, Saha would not make an appearance, not unless we were down to the bare bones.

"Harry told me if he is short of players he will play but if he is not he might not use him." - Moyes

Probably something that should not have been shared in public considering there is no legally binding contract (it's a gentleman's agreement, right?) and isn't permitted. This was upped and then removed from the Everton website when cited there.  If we start with two up front, expect him (Saha) to come off the bench. If we start with one up front, then Moyes will wont be nodding his head disparagingly with rolled up fist shaking towards Redknapp about something that wasn't even scribbled down and signed on a napkin.


Everton v Spurs match preview here.



We're going to remove Harry Redknapp once and for all


Conference room 23.

Famine - I'm struggling with the character development of Alfie in Eastenders. I don't get why he persists with Kat and her flaky antics.

Pestilence - Sorry what? Eastenders? Don't watch it. I'm more a TOWIE man myself.

War - Great. So whilst you two are busy watching tv I'm getting my arse handed to me on Call of Duty. You two do understand the concept of a clan, right?

Death - Can we settle down please? I'll be taking the minutes.

Pestilence - Do we need to refer to the previous agenda?

Death - No, no. This is an emergency meeting to discuss the Tottenham Hotspur situation. Gentleman, I'm afraid its all gone a little pear-shaped. Famine, take the floor please.

Famine - Yes, well if you would all look towards this power-point presentation you'll see some quite horrific stats.

Pestilence - Is that a Mac book?

Famine - Yeah, it is.

Pestilence - I thought you had an iPad.

Famine - I do. But that's more for Angry Birds and music; David Guetta, Pitbull, One Direction...

Pestilence - Cool. I'm digging that Lana del Rey chick at the minute. Very brooding. What's that app that allows you to stream music?

Death - *cough* Can we please move onwards with the presentation gentleman.

Famine - Yes, so, what we have here is a rather disconcerting trend that shows Tottenham's continued progression under Harry Redknapp. Champions League, followed by 5th and now currently sitting in the top three of the Premier League.

Pestilence - Any chance we can get Jenas recalled?

Death - I'm afraid that's a no. Simply not possible. He's contract working at present.

Pestilence - Shame. I preferred it when we were the Fab Five. Good times, good times.

Famine - Concerning these stats, in terms of output, you'll see I've done us much as I can possibly do with Adebayor.

Death - Good work there, it's not gone unnoticed.

War - It's not deterred them though. He might not be scoring, but Tottenham hardly ever lose games.

Famine - Yeah, well...we all know why that's the case, don't we?

War - What?

Famine - Nothing.

War - No go on, put down those Jaffa Cakes for a minute and just let it all go. You obviously want to say something.

Famine -
Just that if it wasn't for you dropping the ball in the summer we wouldn't have the difficulties we currently have.

Pestilence - Here we go again...

War - What difficulties exactly?

Famine - Look, all I'm saying is, I did my job within the structured time-lines outlined in the business case submitted prior to season 2012. I meet all my objectives.

War - What and I didn't?

Famine - Sorry, someone please confirm to me. Does Luka Modric play for Chelsea? Is Scott Parker rubbish?

War - Come on, I stirred up enough in the summer. I went above and beyond my remit. Try working with the Daily Mail before you get all high and mighty about meeting objectives. I pulled all the strings I could get my hands on to engineer a move. That Daniel Levy obviously has contacts high up.

Pestilence - Can I have a Jaffa Cake?

Famine - If you weren't so busy drinking with your mates instead of putting in the extra hours.

Pestilence - I'll just take one then...

War - Extra hours? I do over-time all the time. Have you seen my travel expenses? I'm a busy man and if I want a cheeky pint with John or Luis then that's my business. I'm allowed a social life.

Famine - Just admit you were distracted on this one.

War - I oversee a variety of work buddy. I don't get distracted. You keep plodding along with your nonsensical roadmap whilst the big boys do the big jobs.

Famine - You know what, screw you and by the way, what is that exactly?

War - What?

Famine -

War - It's a bow tie.

Famine - A bow tie?

War - Yes.

Famine - Jesus wept.

Pestilence - Where? What? Again?

Death - Can we get back to the main agenda please people.

War - There's nothing wrong with bow ties. I'll stick to fashion and corruption of man whilst you stick to overseeing the transfer window.

Famine - I've got two words for you: Nelsen. Saha.

Pestilence - Got to admit, that was a great touch.

Famine - Thank you.

War - Yes, yes. Okay. Whatever. They wanted gold and you gave them rust. Give yourself a medal.

Death - Enough! Please, everyone quiet down for a moment. It's obvious we have to be more decisive here. Long term implementations are not as fruitful as the forecast outlined and we are running out of time.

Pestilence - Guys, guys, hold up, hold up...this isn't good news. I've just checked my Twitter time-line.

Death - If it's Piers wanting his old job back, tell him he's got no chance. I've been made director.

Pestilence - No, no. It's...haha, laugh out loud!

Death - What?

Pestilence - Oh, no, its something else I've just seen. Someone just #FF me and it's Wednesday!

Famine - Laugh out loud!

Death - What was the first tweet.

Pestilence - Oh yeah, that. Redknapp has been found not guilty.

Death - What? How did this happen?

War - Why is everyone looking at me?

Pestilence - Did you not deal with the jury? You we're meant to deal with the jury.

War - That wasn't my task. Surely that's your responsibility?

Pestilence - Yes, normally, but you agreed to support me. You know I spend most of my time down at the Emirates these days.

War - Are you sure you had me pencilled in to cover you?

Pestilence - Mate, check you Outlook calender.

War - It's not there its...oh. It's there.

Famine - I rest my case. Amateur.

War - You know what, I've had enough of your BS. It's not my fault Outlook didn't pop up the calender reminder. How am I meant to know if I don't get the pop-up?

Pestilence - You have that problem too?

War - This laptop belonged to you before it was handed to me. IT gave me this when I lost my Blackberry in Acapulco just after you started working from home.

Pestilence - Doesn't look like they fixed it before handing it over. Acapulco?

War - They have nice beaches.

Famine -
Textbook. This is exactly like the time when Inter were four nil up and you feel asleep. Remember what happened that night?

War - I was on a double-shift. I was tired. It was four flipping nil! And let's be honest here, that match was meant to be your responsibility.

Famine - I had the flu.

Death - SILENCE! I have to report into my direct line later. I need to take something into that meeting, something positive. Has anyone got any suggestions?

War - There is something we could do.

Death - Go on.

War - It's not strictly within company policy.

Pestilence - Oh God. You're going to suggest the locusts.

War - No.

Pestilence - Plague?

War - No, enough with the old skool.

Pestilence - We've got no budget left for the Biblical stuff anyway.

Famine - What then?

War - This will knock them for six. Devastate Tottenham Hotspur once and for all. Their season will spiral out of control in the aftermath and we can finally close this off.

Death - Go on...

War - We're going to remove Harry Redknapp from the Tottenham job once and for all.

Two weeks later.

Conference room 23.

Death - What happened?

Famine - This is monumental, it really is.

Pestilence - It's screwed up England though.

Famine - England are always screwed up. They don't need to be any more screwed up. Anyone can handle that account. We've got interns looking after it ffs.

Death - What happened?

War - What particular detail are we referencing?

Death - The detail concerning removing Harry Redknapp once and for all.

War - Oh that. Look, soz and all, but things happen, you know.

Famine - Things happen?

War - It's obviously Outlook again, this time it's that forsaken spell checker. Gone and corrected my spelling when it wasn't necessary. Got me all confused.

Famine - Spell checker? You're blaming spell checker?

War - Yeah. Blame the IT department too, they really need to look at upgrading. I mean really, Office 2003? Get with the times already.

Death - What happened?

War - I sort of removed the wrong person from Tottenham.

One week earlier.

The FA: Ladies and gentleman, the new manager of England...Kevin Bond.





Previous episode:

The Four Horsemen of the Spur Spurcalypse



It's about the shirt

Just remember people. Its about the shirt. What will be will be.

Can't deny Redknapp of the England job. Would make more sense for him to take it at the end of the season. Harry made a point of citing the support he's had from the club during the court case. I hope that counts for something but its hardly the end of days either way. I guess my gut instinct is there's no immediate need for him to replace Capello. It's dependent on how England approach Tottenham. One thing is for certain, I do not believe for a second that Levy has not planned a contingency or two for this scenario. Probably earlier than most expected (the summer being the prudent window for movement) but he'll have our backs covered. Managers, they come and go. We should be grateful that after a decade of mistakes we found swagger and consistency with one that was quite unexpected.

Like I said, it's really in the hands of the FA now. If they request to speak to Harry and want to offer him the job and want him to start it now then we get to see that contingency play out. I will love to see how they deal with the pay-out. If the offer is for the summer, then I'm hoping the distraction does not unbalance the manager and players - even though the sensory overload of news and opinions has already flooded all areas of the press (who adore him and will be relentless in their pursuit).

This is the job he wants more than anything. He simply won't say not to it. If asked.

Best to remember we're not a one-season wonder. We've been on the up for a few seasons now. We're in fantastic shape and the next man in will have one of the best sides in the country to manage.

I'm getting ahead of myself. All that's happened for the minute is Capello has gone. Until the next chess move, we wait. Many seem to have brushed aside the possibility that the FA might look elsewhere.

Newcastle on Saturday. That matters more than anything else at the moment.




International break killed the Tottenham blogger

International break is the bane of blogging. I usually take the opportunity to write without the anchored constraints of what is expected during a busy build up to a Spurs match. But alas, could not even inspire myself to muster up something (anything) to drown out the snoring that accompanies another England match. The North London derby seems a world away now, so far in fact, I almost expect to trip over a Betamax copy of the 2-1 win whilst searching for the remote control. Has anything of note happened in the past week?

Paul Gascoigne opened his heart for the Guardian. Harry Redknapp cited Cahill and how we are still interested in signing him. Some no mark made a joke about Spurs playing like girls. What like Arsenal's silverware hauling ladies team? I don't get the joke. But I do get that his team choke more often than a casting couch starlet. No laughing matter on the pitch, no laughing matter off it, it seems for anyone in red and white these days.

So to answer my own question, no. Not a lot has happened in the past week. I'd recommend that Gazza interview. I idolised Gascoigne back in the day, even when he wore the black and white of the Toon. They don't quite make them like that these days. Robust, cheeky and brilliant. Mackayesque (with smiles) no head screwed on with an additional destructive personality. The lack of head being screwed on and his personal issues his downfall off the pitch and arguably on it, although injury plight punctured his form. He still entertained, he still carved out moments of sheer magic. Clown prince of football he was called once upon a time back when it was pranks aplenty in amongst the powerful driving genius of his play. Tragedy aside, he's the type of player that would rekindle my love for internationals. Instead we have Theo and Jack. Sad face. I love you Paul and I miss your ilk.

As for England (might as well), we drew 2-2 and we qualified and I still don't seem to give a **** about it. Rooney gets sent off and there's discussion on how we plan to cope with his suspension. Does it matter if he plays or not? We never seem to do well either way. This disenchantment I have for the national side, I wish I hadn't. Maybe when the old guard are finally gone I can push on rediscovering my love for the Three Lions. Then again, if Redknapp takes over...well, that wouldn't be too bad. If anything, just to see how the media treat him in comparison to his red carpet VIP currently. Elsewhere, Bale scored for Wales and Rafa played 78 minutes for the Netherlands. The latter a minor miracle.

At least now we can start looking forward to Newcastle away. We never seem to get much up there. We seem to get bossed and for a long time it was a guaranteed defeat in the league. Okay, so they're in form and unbeaten but perhaps punching above their weight akin? Pound for pound, we should be able to contain them and beat them. Should. Sandro and Parker in the middle, Modric free to dink and dictate...we need to be looking at the three points. More on that later in the week when it's clearer who will be available for selection.

In the mean time, check out The Fighting Cock website and register for the forum. If you've not heard the podcast before, then listen to episode 11 for some NLD glory. We're not recording this week. Blame international break.



Back from Berlin

Guten Tag. Berlin was superb. If this was a travel blog I'd chit chat about their impeccable transport system of trams and buses, wide roads and the cycling lanes that cater for the exceptionally fit females and the exceptionally lucky males.

Graffiti on the East Side, Oranienburger Straße Playboy bunny streetwalkers (I only bantered with them, honestly), fantastic quantities of beer, beautiful local women, hidden day time canal bars, clubs and drinking till 5am. Not forgetting Currywurst. And 30 degree heat.

Did I mention how exceptionally fit local women in Berlin are?

On arrival back in Blighty I've had to quickly scan the various hotbeds of discussion (mainly Twitter and Glory Glory) to find out what I've missed during the days spent fleeing various seedy establishments that were meant to be lap dancing clubs that turned out to be brothels controlled by the Russian Mafia.

I've probably missed countless references by ITK community members citing 'We might be interested' and 'it's 50% going to happen' but I'll just day dream and make up soundbites of information in my head and I'm sure I'll have all their shared insider knowledge covered off in seconds.

As for the news that hit the mainstream and worthy of a word or two...

Joe Cole

The legendary 'calculator of probability' has been dusted off once more whilst the cheap headline hugging journos and enthusiasts perpetuate ITK nonsense that we're interested in the player for a cool £3M. I say nonsense because from our perspective, it's deep in the realm of unnecessary. Another central midfielder who can play out on the flank, sort of. Ta, but no thanks. We got us a collection. The club have dismissed it, which is strange because that sort of adds weight to the probability of it being discussed internally then rejected. Otherwise, why not just release a statement on every slice of nonsense that's published?

I say nonsense (again) because, well, tbh there is no requirement for the calculator of probability to be used when Joe Cole's name is mentioned. If he's available, by default, no matter the variables - Harry Redknapp's name will always form the basis of the formula. It's a 'textbook' Harry signing on paper. If this was any other club it would probably happen even if there was no point to it. If it did happen and he signed for us; riots.

Jamie O'Hara to Wolves

Talk of it being official but won't be until either Wolves or Spurs say so (that's the only ITK that matters). Yes, Jamie has a big heart and he gives it 100% with his energy and desire and the constant running around. But that's hardly reason enough to retain him, aided by his various dips of loyalty when out on loan. For back up, for squad depth...we need something better than what he can offer. He'll do well at Wolves. Players who are tagged with 'big hearts' (and nothing more) tend to be players that perhaps lack other vital ingredients to be more than just cover for a first teamer.

Martin Jol

Welcome back. Good to have the big man in the Prem again. Less pressure than previous jobs, no disrespect to Fulham. Their fans will adore him. But let's end this fallacy about his ability. Sure, Comolli undermined him, the Berbatov saga didn't help either. But BMJ struggled a little when it mattered most. We'll never know how it could have panned out had he been supported by chairman and DoF. All we know is that in Germany and Holland he's not made gigantic leaps forward in management progression. You might want to hug him more than you'd want to hug Harry, but he might not offer much more than the statistically better Redknapp. Shame Harry doesn't have the personality Martin does. If he had, well, you work it out.

Old man Brad Friedel

Not much to say about this one. We let our loan keeper go. We need a third man with gloves, so we sign one. I still think Gomes will retain his place in goal. With CC and Friedel looking to impress in training, the
pressure is on for a better more consistent standard to be produced by the Brazilian. Unless I have it completely wrong and Brad has been offered the number one jersey, CC is number two and a young keeper is set to be promoted or signed for extra extra cover. Answer will present itself at some point in the next two months if the erratic Heurelho is sacrificed and sold.

Leandro Damiao

If I've learnt anything from You Tube videos it's this: don't take it for granted that what you see is what you end up getting. Had that been the case, then Rebrov (pre-you tube but movie files did the rounds at the time) would have decimated the Prem with his trickery and outlandish finishing, Kuyt was a rampaging goal-machine and Berbatov only scored tap-ins. You'll have seen the linked goal video before. A collection of deft finishes with some daft sitters to balance it all out. Honest footage, if anything. Excites then leaves you scratching your head.

Lazy linkage (i.e. Diarra)

Over at Real Madrid Lassana Diarra has handed in a transfer request and wants to return to England. I'm going to refer back to the calculator of probability and the Harry Redknapp formula for this one. Ex-Redknapp signing, ex-Spurs target therefore we must be interested in him. This will blatantly lead the way for Sandro to be sold to his rightful La Liga home. Either that or we're all set for a 0-10-0 formation next season.


Spurs player.

Latest Harry quote

“It’s been busy – I’ve been busy doing nothing really, we haven’t got anywhere. There’s been lots of phone calls, lots of talk in the newspapers but we’re really at the moment not close to making any signings and certainly not looking to sell any of our better players.”

Who needs the 'In the Know' latest via message boards when we get it delivered out in the open without the cryptic messages by the gaffer? You would hope it's nothing more than disinformation (apart from the bit about not selling). You would hope the directive from Levy to Harry is to keep it all hush hush and say alot but actually say nothing. Which is what he's done here.

Unless he's telling the truth. If he is, imma buy me a crack pipe.


Crap transport system, crap national side. I know as a supporter I'm meant to support but I'm without the desire to do so at the moment and I've been soulless with the international set-up for some time. Hope we do well, hope we qualify. Just not a fan of some of the players or the football and it's politics. I hope there's some rejuvenation at some point in the future. Crazy to think at one point in the past England was as important to me as Spurs.

I think that covers it. Did I miss anything?



Berlin women: High percentage of 8/9 out of 10s.




Oh God, it's that time of the month

International Break is upon us. Last time out it was a rather productive time with this blog as I side-stepped the England circus with a six-parter (that acted as filler for the lack of newsworthy Spurs news) which included musings and anecdotes about the 1991 season protests outside the High Court smashing up Amstrad computers, how and why I (and you) started supporting Spurs, a mention of Stratford, defending Robbie Keane and one or two other more random subject matters to polish it all off before the Prem returned. Click here for the final part and links to the first five - if you fancy reminiscing. Full links below.

Not sure yet how to best handle the time that will see Wales and Ghana share the headlines with Fabio and his army of stuttering, spitting and soulless Lions before we return to all things THFC.

Although I might find myself forced to follow and report on England thanks to the following:

Dawson, Lennon, Defoe, Crouch. All in the squad. Congratulations to Walker for also making it. Back to the aforementioned four. I promise you all, if we lose any of these players to injury I will systematically remove body parts from World Cup Willie and send them to the FA until they do the right thing and return the Tottenham representatives, boxed up in cotton wool and feathered pillows to Bill Nicholson Way. Yeah, World Cup Willie, you heard that right. He's old, his bones are brittle, but he still feels pain.

If that wasn't bad enough (the Spurs players selected in the squad, not the fact that I have the World Cup '66 mascot imprisoned in my basement), it's Wales which means it's Bale which means they're hardly not going to play him. So that's almost half a  team we've got out there risking it all for national duty. There's also van der Vaart with the Netherlands, who isn't even fully fit. I could go on, I won't. I need to stop thinking about all this to aid with subsiding the heart convulsions. I need to relax, and possibly attempt to detach ever so slightly from it all. Again.


International Break Diary II...on it's way.



International Break Diary

Tuesday, October 5 - Tuesday, October 12

International heart-break

Tottenham till I die

A spoon full of sugar makes the Venables go down

FAO Sullivan, Gold and Brady

In defence of Robbie Keane

Boycott England




Harry and England

In the aftermath of the England game the other night (did you watch it? lol if you did) one or two Spurs fans are looking just a little too far ahead into the future and are asking the question:

Harry for England? The actual message board question was 'Replacement for Harry?'. International break is over, right? Almost. Last word on it, I promise.

I'll ignore the 'who would replace him?' variation because that would be ridiculously premature and arguably redundant. And tbh, we won't be replacing him when/if it happens. We'll be upgrading. I would hope.

Going back to 'Harry for England' I'm going to go ahead and briefly cover this because it's Harry and he's our manager, rather than caring about the international scene (I'll do my best to humour that part).

England then. Pressure on Fabio, lack of viable English managerial options - it's an obvious conclusion being made by the bored - be it one that we shouldn't really be discussing or considering. Because the gaffer and ourselves have plenty to be concentrating on. Although some would say Harry is flirting so much with the idea of leading the Three Lions, that he's already got one eye on it, and thus, there's a very subtle degradation of focus on THFC. Not sure I quite believe that (stretching it a little).

Personally think the (England) pool of players we have isn't that great in terms of balance. We should just sacrifice the next 2/3 years and try and bring the yoof (some of which is excellent) through and build a new foundation. But there's time for that in football management games. Dropping players that the media want you to play even though for example the player(s) might be completely out of form and at the same time humiliated on the front pages is oh so quintessentially English. There's that and the fact that although our yoof is excellent - there are gaps in other prominent areas in the squad. Take the forward positions. We called up Kevin Davies. I rest my case.

So, for the sake of argument, let's just pretend the question was pertinent to the present. Harry - viable option or not?

If the FA had bollocks, perhaps, but take a look to the recent past. They never gave it to Big Sam (thank ****) because he would have been far too vocal and probably would have wanted to dismantle and rebuild the England set-up from top to bottom. Which is probably what needs to be done, just not with someone who introduces American Football tactics in the opposition box. Instead they went with the safe yes man choice of Steve McClaren. A man so scared of getting wet he used an over-sized umbrella to mug himself into the next century with. Fabio then followed and even one of the best modern day club managers - a man who has won everything domestically - is struggling with this poisoned chalice.

Harry has a reputation. Supposedly, allegedly, and all that. The press love him right? Sure they do, what with his infinite amount of sound-bites and his column in The Sun. And the fact he's not too shabby with the love-hugs and man management skills. But they would jump all over allegations and investigations because that's what they do and I reckon the FA would not want to risk the gutter press going all out to f*** them over. Unless there's been a clear-out of the Jurassic mentality possessed by the FA dinosaurs of old, with plenty of daring new-blooded hopefuls. I can't see a change this significant. Would be pleasantly shocked if I was wrong.

We've gone with a foreign manager (again) because we have no faith in the English ones. That's as daring as they've got thus far.

I guess it comes down to this: Is there another Englishman who could do the job?

There was something on Football Weekly (James Richardson's splendid podcast) this past Monday that cited (German I think) players who went on the lash at a club opening a few days before an International/club match - and over here in Blightly, the press were calling Hart a disgrace for getting pissed 7 days before last nights game. The footballers who went to the club opening - not so much a single word printed about it. Completely irrelevant to the media and the people. Just not important.

We're all guilty of the same head-shaking when we see our players roll out of a club smashed out their faces. The tabloids have turned it into an art-form. I can already see the NOTW gearing up for another one of their under-cover operations.

So does Harry want it?

Of course he does. He's said as much. It's no big secret. And if the media left him to manage, then perfecto. But that's just not going to happen. In fact, he's said it to people who have been quite happy to share said information (okay, so I've heard it second hand, and it's bordering on let's not dwell too much on this because it will take me months to wash off the dirt).

And telling everyone, be it directly or otherwise, endears himself to all that believe that he would do a grand job. You want something and tell people you want it when you know deep down there's no chance of getting it. The association made between Harry and the job is enough to feed his ego and keep us all talking. And that might be the only thing he's interested in.

I'm hoping all this it put to bed and he just concentrates on defining his legacy at club football by continuing our charge into an anchored Top 4 position for Spurs. More importantly, it's about leaving the club in a solid state so the hand-over is seamless when he does step down for whatever reason. No more transitional seasons please.

The only thing I'm interested in is Tottenham. Levy might be thinking contingency plans, but I'd hazard a wee guess that the Jan transfer window for a top class striker is weighing on his mind far more than tittle tattle message board discussions and tabloid gossip.

Okay, well that's it re: England. I'm done with it now.

Roll on Fulham.