Results for Spurs vs Liverpool

Performance Check Video: Dele Alli vs Liverpool

12:30 pm


Performance Check

The individual performances of Dele Alli can be reviewed in this video affording the you to stop and start the video looking at the various options a player has, rather than just what he does with the ball.

It gives a chance to appreciate the other players around him and whether they are on top f their game, moving in an effort to provide him with passing options and indeed his own movement to give others passing options.

Video's like this can be invaluable for seeing what a player actually did as opposed to the perception of what he did and it helps to show if a player is creating chances or merely moving a ball on. I have banged on about it enough, end product is what matters and Pochettino seems to hold the same view with his recent comments about the skill shown by Erik Lamela to nutmeg Andros Townsend, who you will not didn't immediately turn round and chase his man!

It isn't always what you do on the ball, what you do off the ball is important and Townsend clearly doesn't do enough, which is purely down to the mentality we coaches look for.

Performance Check Video: Dele Alli vs Liverpool Performance Check Video: Dele Alli vs Liverpool Reviewed by THBlogNews on 12:30 pm Rating: 5

Video: Vincent Janssen vs Liverpool

10:30 am


Performance Check

Vincent Janssen has caught the eye in his appearances so far and looks perfectly at home in the Premier League. He is currently away on international duty with Holland and came on for us when Kyle walker had to go off ill.

As with any striker he needs his first competitive goal to settle him and help him feel this is where he belongs. He impressed Pochettino with his burning desire to come to Tottenham making it perfectly clear and publicly clear this was the only club for him, even turning down PSG to come here. That is an attitude that goes down well with the fans and the manager.

You can analyse his performance through the performance check video below.

Video: Vincent Janssen vs Liverpool Video: Vincent Janssen vs Liverpool Reviewed by THBlogNews on 10:30 am Rating: 5

Video: Josh Onomah vs Liverpool

8:25 am


Mauricio Pochettini made it clear to all players where they stood in the squad and what thye could expect from this season. Several, while hearing what the manager said, didn't appreciate the fact it might have on them, Footballers think they are going to be picked, their performance will change the managers mind.

Youth development is a key strategy at the club and the path for youth can't be blocked. The emergence of Josh Onomah and Harry Winks has helped push Ryan Mason, who I have nothing but admiration for given the part he played in our revival, and Nacer Chadli towards the door. They could be sitting on the bench but if Winks or Onomah are brought on for cameo roles to slowly build their game it sends a clear message.

It is often only then that a player really realises he isn't going to be playing much, that youth is going to be preferred over him. It is up to Winks and Onomah to take their chances this season now..

Video: Josh Onomah vs Liverpool Video: Josh Onomah vs Liverpool Reviewed by THBlogNews on 8:25 am Rating: 5

Video: Danny Rose

7:00 pm


Mauricio Pochettino spoke of the excellent goalkeeping of Michel Vorm and the confidence Spurs have in him during his post match press conference with supporters and when Danny Rose was interviewed after the game he too praised the performance of Vorm, especially in the first half when he felt the Dutchman saved Spurs from being further behind.

Video: Danny Rose Video: Danny Rose Reviewed by THBlogNews on 7:00 pm Rating: 5

Video: Post Match Analysis

5:00 pm


It was a game that the stats said was very even with both sides having 50% of the possession and managing to score one goal each with it.

Liverpool had to rely on a penalty, which as it was given meant Spurs should have have a penalty when Liverpool centre-back Joel Matip didn't just block Janssen, as he is entitled to do, he put both arms around him to hold him back.

Janssen was prevented from getting to the ball illegally and had it occurred anywhere else on the pitch the referee would no doubt have awarded a free kick.

That, as the biased Alan Smith said in commentary was a foul and thus should have been a penalty, which would have given us the chance to go 1-0 up and not have to chase the game. decisions like this change game. Spurs could have been in front, confidence growing and we would not have had to chase the game and take risks, which would have restricted Liverpool to less chances.

The whole complexion of the game would have been different. That was my initial observation anyway, there is no knowing if the outcome would have been different though.

The Sky team gave their version of the events through the eyes of two former Liverpool stalwarts, Jamie Carragher and Graeme Souness.

Video: Post Match Analysis Video: Post Match Analysis Reviewed by THBlogNews on 5:00 pm Rating: 5

Video: Pochettino Press conference, one stupid question

2:30 pm


We had problems with Liverpool's pressing style last season and had trouble again yesterday as they could and perhaps should have easily won the game yesterday.

Walker was ill and only lasted less than half an hour which resulted in us changing our system and Eric Dier being moved out of midfield. This took Dele Alli into an area of the field where perhaps he has less influence at the cutting edge, although some Spurs fans think it is his best position.

We were industrious but created little and were saved by Michel Vorm our much derided number two. Mauricio Pochettino gave his verdict and answered press questions after the game.

One reporter asked about Wilfroied Zaha and Alan Pardew's comments that Spurs have been tapping up his player. Tottenham do things the way every other club does things, the same way as Alan Pardew does things. He specifically asked if Spurs were doing everything in the transfer market in the correct way and not tapping up players. After consultation with an interpreter, the simply reply was of course.

What on earth did the reporter expect Pochettino to say? Why waste valuable time in a press conference with an inane question, he should arrive a little better prepared than that.

Video: Pochettino Press conference, one stupid question Video: Pochettino Press conference, one stupid question Reviewed by THBlogNews on 2:30 pm Rating: 5

VIDEO: Spurs vs Liverpool

9:00 pm
You can see the extended highlights, Match of the Day highlights, the BT pre-match build-up, the full first-half, the full second-half and the post-match review at the link below.

Tottenham Hotspur vs Liverpool Highlights and Full Match Replay

Competition: Premier League
Date: 17 October 2015
Stadium: White Hart Lane
Referee: C. Pawson

Spurs vs Liverpool Match Stats

Ball Possession: 48% vs 52%
Shots: 13 vs 12
Shots on Target: 4 vs 3
Fouls: 15 vs 11
Corners: 8 vs 6
Offside 2 vs 5
Yellow Cards: 1 vs 2
Saves: 3 vs 4

Further Tottenham Reading
Surprise surprise motivated Dembele produces MOTM performance - but was it to the detriment of Spurs as a whole?
Fascinating insight into Baldini type role - Spurs have tried to sign Monchi, this article looks at how he approaches the Franco Baldini role
Elements of Sir Alex Ferguson in Mauricio Pochettino - further reinforces that we may well have the right man in charge
Levy is doing it right using a cautious growth approach - how are our nearest financial rivals Newcastle United doing?
Why Spurs should invite David Villa to train with us - would benefit our youngsters a David Villa type training with us for part of each season
Spurs - stadium-led regeneration - there would be no regeneration without the stadium being built

VIDEO: Spurs vs Liverpool VIDEO: Spurs vs Liverpool Reviewed by THBlogNews on 9:00 pm Rating: 5

VIDEO: Individual Dembele vs Liverpool

7:08 pm
The Man of the Match vs Liverpool was selected by former Liverpool favourite Michael Own and he selected Tottenham midfielder Mousa Dembele who was playing as a defensive midfielder.

His individual performance statistics and an individual performance video can be seen below.

Touches: 58
Passes: 32
Pass Success: 90.6%
Shots: 1
Dribbles: 5
Fouled: 1
Dispossessed: 3
Bad Control: 1
Tackles: 8
Interceptions: 5
Clearances: 3
Long Balls: 2
Accurate Long Balls: 2

Further Tottenham Reading
Fascinating insight into Baldini type role - Spurs have tried to sign Monchi, this article looks at how he approaches the Franco Baldini role
Elements of Sir Alex Ferguson in Mauricio Pochettino - further reinforces that we may well have the right man in charge
Levy is doing it right using a cautious growth approach - how are our nearest financial rivals Newcastle United doing?
Spurs - the hardest working team in the Premier League - we outrun the opposition
Why Spurs should invite David Villa to train with us - would benefit our youngsters a David Villa type training with us for part of each season
Lloris agrees Spurs are not clinical enough - Been argueing this for a while and yesterday was further proof
Spurs - stadium-led regeneration - there would be no regeneration without the stadium being built

VIDEO: Individual Dembele vs Liverpool VIDEO: Individual Dembele vs Liverpool Reviewed by THBlogNews on 7:08 pm Rating: 5

Kane, Njie, Dembele

6:00 pm
Kane, Njie, Dembele

I thought the comment after the game about Jurgen Klopp dragging a team down to his level summed the game up today. Obviously that isn't going to be the case long-term, but it certain situations it is needed.

Liverpool today probably out harried us, we had less time on the ball than normal and were not well enough able to handle that really. They stopped us playing too much. I wrote during the week about the old adage of earning the right to play, which we didn't rally do well enough.

The game was one where we simply didn't have enough time on the ball and when we created chances we were yet again not clinical enough. Once again we had players through with only the goalkeeper to bat and we couldn't do it. Where last season Harry Kane was blasting balls into the corner, now they are at least a yard from the corner and that makes all the difference for a goalkeeper. Watching him shoot he just seems to be lacking a little bit of confidence, I think the pressure of not scoring has affected him a little more than he has let on, although I also firmly believe he shouldn't have had to start the season, he should have had a rest after the European Under-21 Championships last summer.

Clinton Njie made life easy for the keeper with his main chance and has a lot to learn. It will have done him good to get 75 minutes or so under his belt and he wasn't giving the ball away so much in the second half. Going forward he looks intelligent, when it time to defend there is a definite weakness. That can and will need to be worked on and he'll know more of what is required next time.

Having written articles last season and this I did find it interesting that both Glenn Hoddle and Michael Owen raised the point about being mentally ready as a substitute. Your game doesn't start when you cross the white line, it starts when you take your subs seat. You then analyse everything, take everything in, check your potential opponents and watch how the opposition, as well as yourselves, are playing. Last season Townsend was generally shocking when he came off the bench, not mentally up to speed with the game at all and Njie showed signs of that today. It took him until half-time to settle.

Dele Alli is learning it isn't so easy to score in the Premier League. His quality is there for all to see and the volleyed backheel to nearly play a man in went largely unnoticed, if that were a Brazilian we would be raving about it.

Man of the Match was Mousa Dembele, who apart from aerially was superb defensively. Again last season I felt he was best as a defending defensive midfielder, he simply isn't creative enough further forward. He made several important challenges to win the ball back and snuff out chances, he, Dier and Bentaleb form a solid three for that position. He can have more impact on the game in that holding role, rather than the link midfield role where he slows play down or out wide as part of the attacking quartet.

Perhaps we saw a performance today that said I don't want to leave Tottenham.

Further Tottenham Reading
Elements of Sir Alex Ferguson in Mauricio Pochettino
Levy is doing it right using a cautious growth approach
Spurs - the hardest working team in the Premier League
Why Spurs should invite David Villa to train with us
Lloris agrees Spurs are not clinical enough
Spurs - stadium-led regeneration

Kane, Njie, Dembele Kane, Njie, Dembele Reviewed by THBlogNews on 6:00 pm Rating: 5

Spurs vs Liverpool - The Stats

12:22 pm
A brief statistical look at today's Tottenham Hotspur vs Liverpool game.


Last 20 home games: WON 55%, DRAW 25% and LOST 20%

Last 20 home games: Goals For 34, Goals Against 23

Last 6 games: Shots on target 36, Off target 32

Last 6 games possession: 65% 50% 56% 57% 46% 54%

Last 6 games corners: 36

Last 20 home games vs top half teams, WON 9, DRAW 4 LOST 7

Last 20 home games vs teams below us: WON 15, DRAW 2 LOST 3


Last 20 away games: WON 40%, DRAW 25% and LOST 35%

Last 20 away games: Goals For 20, Goals Against 26

Last 6 games: Shots on target 36, Off target 29

Last 6 games possession: 34% 63% 44% 55% 62% 49%

Last 6 games corners: 45

Last 20 away games vs top half teams, WON 6, DRAW 4 LOST 10

Last 20 away games vs teams above them: WON 1, DRAW 8 LOST 11

Tottenham vs Liverpool

The Game Outcome Percentages
Home win: 57%
Draw: 24%
Away win: 19%

Further Tottenham Reading
Elements of Sir Alex Ferguson in Mauricio Pochettino
Levy is doing it right using a cautious growth approach
Spurs - the hardest working team in the Premier League
Why Spurs should invite David Villa to train with us
Lloris agrees Spurs are not clinical enough
Spurs - stadium-led regeneration

Spurs vs Liverpool - The Stats Spurs vs Liverpool - The Stats Reviewed by THBlogNews on 12:22 pm Rating: 5

Predicted XI vs Liverpool

11:15 pm
Predicted XI vs Liverpool

Another TV game and an early kick-off as we take on Liverpool at White Hart Lane. The team will once again pick itself except for the suspension to Eric Dier which creates a bit of a problem.

Hugo Lloris will be behind the same back four of Kyle Walker, Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertobghen and Ben Davies one assumes. Harry Kane will be up front with Nacer Chadli, Christian Eriksen and Erik Lamela behind him.

The only question is the makeup of the defensive midfielders, one in a holding role and one in a link role. Ryan Mason, Nabil Bentaleb, and Mousa Dembele have all been injured while Eric Dier is suspended. 

Mauricio Pochettino revealed that Mason and Bentaleb are expected to be back in contention next week, this week is a week too early for them.

"Nabil Bentaleb, Ryan Mason and Heung-Min Son are still out but this is the same from a few weeks ago and this is the news. 
"Son's injury is in his foot but it's okay. We are happy with him and maybe in one or two weeks he will be back. He's near to coming back and start training with the group.  
"Mason and Nabil are close. Closer than Son. Maybe they will be ready for the next game or Bournemouth."
Mousa Dembele is only just returning from injury and while it could be tempting to move Toby Alderweireld into a defensive midfield role it makes sense to retain the defensive unit that is doing so well together.

Dele Alli now looks sure to fill one space ahead of Tom Carroll who, if Dembele is ready, may have to settle for another substitute appearance. I don't see Milos Veljkovic or a Development Squad player being brought it for such a game.

A Lloris, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Dembele, Eriksen and Kane spine is still strong. Alli showed responsibility against Manchester City when the match day experts were expecting him to get overrun up against the likes of Yaya Toure and Ferandinho, yet he performed the role admirably. Either he or Dembele may be asked to take the more defensive role with the other playing the link role.

Predicted XI
Lloris (c)
Walker Alderweireld Vertonghen Davies
Dembele Alli
Lamela Eriksen Chadli

Subs: Vorm, Trippier, Wimmer, Rose, Townsend, Carroll, Njie

Predicted XI vs Liverpool Predicted XI vs Liverpool Reviewed by THBlogNews on 11:15 pm Rating: 5

Brendan Rodgers sees a tough game ahead with Spurs

8:30 am
Brendan Rodgers knows his Liverpool side are in for a tough encounter at Anfield with a win putting them just a point behind us but a defeat leaving them seven points adrift.

Brendan Rodgers sees a tough game ahead with Spurs

"We'll look to win it as it will just put us a point behind them and also keeps up the momentum. If we don't win the game, it just puts pressure on the other fixtures we'll have in the rest of the run. 
"It will be a great game with two teams in good form. They come back off a good result [winning the North London derby], and for us, the way we've been working has been a real highlight.  
"We played very well against them earlier on in this season and their philosophy is still the same; they want to press the game and dominate the ball, and for us it's similar so it will be a very fascinating game."
Tottenham are in a different place now to where we were at the start of the season or last season so those games will have little bearing on the result. Tottenham will of course want revenge being a team that know there roles now and have got behind the manager and his methods. The results against Arsenal and Chelsea show Spurs can mix it with the top four clubs of recent years so it should be a close encounter.

"Every game is different. Last season we went away and won at Tottenham, even though we arrived at White Hart Lane without a good record there.  
"We've now gone there again this season and been very convincing in our victory. It's been the same at home, but we know in the context, it will be a very tough game."
Naturally he was asked questions in the press conference about the Match of the Day winner of the Goal of the Month competition for his effort against Chelsea, Harry Kane.

"He's shown all his life he's a finisher. He's got different types of finishes. When you play a high-pressure game, you need your striker to run and press - he leads the line very well in that aspect. 
"You have to pay attention to threats. He is good around the box and he's always looking to get a goal. 
"But our focus will very much be on our own game and we've got a very talented group here who have been performing well and we just need to find that clinical edge at the top end of the field.  
"The balance defensively in the team has been great, and we've worked on that, now we just need to finish our chances."
It promises to be a fascinating duel and one of a number of big games Spurs have got to play. We still have to play Man City and we go to Old Trafford as well as visiting a Southampton team doing very well. There are only 14 games left so points are becoming even more important at this stage of the season.

Brendan Rodgers sees a tough game ahead with Spurs Brendan Rodgers sees a tough game ahead with Spurs Reviewed by THBlogNews on 8:30 am Rating: 5

Spurs Outclassed

8:48 pm
Three years verses three weeks so the result was no surprise but the manner of it was, Liverpool were simply better all over the park and in their approach to the game. They outclassed Spurs.

Spurs Outclassed

Liverpool started in exactly the same way they started games last season, come out fast, catch teams cold, knock them immediately out there stride so they it feels like they are playing catch up just to start the game, grab an early goal or two and control the game from there.

Mario Balotelli, who is twice the striker Emmanuel Adebayor is, should have put Liverpool one up in 2 minutes but a fine Hugo Lloris save prevented that and then he headed wide when he could have done better. They ripped us apart with ease the whole game and those remaining few who still think Younes Kaboul is a rock in defence need their heads examining.

You can not have a defence if one member of it throws everything out of kilter. After his last two performances he shouldn't have been playing in my book, Dier should have been at centre-back with Kyle Naughton restored to right-back. I can understand why Dier was kept at right-back of course but that meant playing Kaboul and a quality side exposed him for what he is, a liability.

Liverpool used our own high pressing game and we couldn't cope with it, we had no time on the ball at the back and had no composure, back was the sideways passing, yet Liverpool simply passed the ball around at the back when we did try and press, we couldn't get near them.

Spurs had 61% possession and created chances almost by luck. A good long ball from Bentaleb did put Adebayor in and he should have scored. However he put the ball way in the sky and onto the roof of thenet in an effort to lift it over the keeper. Another long ball in the air to Adebayor which everyone missed fell to an onrushing Chadli. He struck it powerfully straight at the keeper, one touch and he'd have had it on the floor to pick his slot, he had the time.

After failing to take those chances to square the game it was over really, we never looked like creating much and they looked like creating whenever they wanted to.

Andros Townsend made a greater impact than usual, he received the ball, lost it and they scored. Left-back Moreno running from midway in his own half into the penalty box unchallenged to hammer it into the far corner. Etienne Capoue was running back but not sprinting until it was too late and Younes Kaboul simply didn't come across. It was the softest of goals after gifting them a penalty at the start of the second half.

They could and should have had more while we were mentally shot to pieces. Lot's of work to do on the training ground and work to do in the transfer market before it shuts.

Spurs fans won't like Jamie Redknapp's tippy tappy comment but I can see where he is coming from, Spurs did look a tippy tappy side today. The international break and the it's up to Sunderland on Saturday 13th September when I'm expecting to see Federico Fazio in our defence.

Spurs Outclassed Spurs Outclassed Reviewed by THBlogNews on 8:48 pm Rating: 5

VIDEO: Spurs Attacking Play

10:30 am
Ahead of the tie against Liverpool today let's just remind ourselves of the attacking football Pochettino's men produced against Harry Redknapp's Queens Park Rangers.

VIDEO: Spurs Attacking Play

The tally so far is played 4 won 4 scored 10 conceded 1 which warrants a 'mixed start' in the world of Paul Merson. Clearly he means performances but Spurs played with 10 men against West Ham so had to totally alter the way we play, thrashed QPR and had virtual second XI's out against AEL Limassol.

A lot of fans complain on forums about the number of backward passes players make, especially Aaron Lennon so I thought it would be a good idea to have a look and see what the statistics reveal.

Our two full-backs, Dier and Rose pass forwards 54.95% and 53.85% so very similar, both centre-backs are similar too, Kaboul 77.9% and Vertonghen 76%.

Spurs central midfielder Etienne Capoue passes forwards 60.71%, Nabil Bentaleb 61.81% and Mousa Bembele 47.83% our wide attackers Lennon 43.75%, Erik Lamela 34.72%, Andros Towsend 42.86% and Nacer Chadli 32.14%.

Early days but rather surprisingly Aaron Lennon passes forwards more than our other wide men and the game he played in we only had 10 men against 11 whereas when Townsend played in the same game he played against 10 players.

The video below is only just over 4 minutes and centres on our attacking play rather then match highlights, goals or individual performances so most of the passes seen are forwards.

More of the same will be very nice thank-you.

VIDEO: Spurs Attacking Play VIDEO: Spurs Attacking Play Reviewed by THBlogNews on 10:30 am Rating: 5

Eriksen - We will do better on Sunday

10:30 am
Christian Eriksen knows only too well the problems associated with moving clubs and it can be a daunting time for youngsters. These guys may be professional footballers but they are still just young men with feelings.

Happy Spurs

Liverpool have bought 9 players, Tottenham bought 7 last summer so it's a nice easy story for the media to raise at a press conference, they have an angle on Liverpool and there will be countless comparison articles and speculation.

“It is true that we went through [what Liverpool are now facing] last year. It will depend on what team they have and what the new players are bringing in. Everything has to fit. 
“Sometimes you are lucky and sometimes you are a bit unlucky. Last year we made some really good signings, I think. We were just a bit unlucky that nothing really ended up in a big thing. Of course, that can happen with Liverpool as well so sometimes you are lucky and sometimes you aren’t.
“I came late so for me it was a bit different. The first guy we signed [Paulinho] will have seen six other players come in and that was probably a bit weird for him. They are the new faces they have to see and it is a big deal when new players come in. 
“When I came in, the four or five players before me I saw like everybody — they were all new players to me.  We have a good group, though, so I haven’t seen any problems with anybody.”

That last sentence s the key one, the group needs to get on, yes there have been strike partners who don't talk to each other off the pitch who have worked on it but it better to have a cohesive harmonious group. If you have that then there is less likelihood that new signings are going to struggle. It's far easier to settle if you are happy.

“When you make your away debut you have to sing. I sang a Danish song from Nik and Jay. How does it go? Nobody in England would know it. I’m not going to sing it again! 
"You get nervous and a little bit scared when you are standing on a chair in front of everybody but it is a fun thing and it is only going to help the group.”

It may seem a trivial thing to some but it's a quick and easy method of bringing a player down to earth and breaking initial barriers. Everyone has been through it, been laughed at and joked about. It integrates you with a group because everyone knows how nervous and sometimes silly you feel doing it, they have been there themselves.

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With a happy group of players under a manager they like the Danish midfielder is hoping for better results against the top teams this season.

“In those games against Liverpool we weren’t at our best, that is fair to say. Of course, we hope and I think we will probably do better when we play them on Sunday. It is going to be a different type of game.”

Better results look assured, they couldn't have been much worse to be honest and they are not game we want to relive, nor should we, they are the past,we have a future to look forward to.

Christian Eriksen was speaking at the announcement of EA SPORTS' partnership extension with the Premier League.
Eriksen - We will do better on Sunday Eriksen - We will do better on Sunday Reviewed by THBlogNews on 10:30 am Rating: 5

Pochettino - Our method is easy

6:30 pm
Mauricio Pochettino says Tottenham Hotspur have an easy method pf playing football ahead of the English Premier League (EPL) clash with rivals Liverpool at White Hart Lane on Sunday.

Mauricio Pochettino - Our method is easy

Liverpool thrashed Tottenham twice last season which is a big thing for the press but not for Mauricio Pochettino as he prepares for the televised game on Sunday.

"The past is the past. I don't want to remember the past. It is a new season, I think a different style, different philosophy. Liverpool invested a lot of money this summer and we went another way. 
"We believe in our squad and add some players for the balance. Two different ways."

You can't change the past but you can change the future, it's the way successful people look at things, once the past has gone you need to let it go or it will pull you down. Spurs fans were not impressed with Danny Rose last season but four times during the summer Pochettino told him he could play for England.

The result, he signed a new 5-year contract, has started the season like a new player and has already received that call up to the senior squad for the upcoming fixtures. The boost to his confidence has been immense.

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That is the different philosophy he talks about improving what you have rather than spending on big name replacements as Liverpool have done with Balotelli.

"I haven't an opinion about that. The only thing is that he is a very good player, a star. For England, for our football, it is important that star players come here. 
"Mario Balotelli is an unbelievable player and that he has very good skill and, okay, it is important for football and for Liverpool, not for us."

West Ham kept their grass as long as they were legally allowed to do for the visit of Tottenham, not something you usually think about as a fan, but Pochettino explanation of the Tottenham style explains why.

"It is an easy method. It is not a difficult method. Our philosophy is play football along the grass, make good combinations, work hard and, at the moment, they are happy."

The players are happy and Pochettino doesn't mind a practical joke with them like the one he pulled on Danny Rose telling him he was being sold instead of the real news that he had been called up by England.

The game against AEL Limassol for a largely second string reminded everyone that passing alone is not enough, the work rate has to go with it then the better chances come and more of them. As long as the players enjoy working hard then the squad has the quality to do very well this season.

Pochettino - Our method is easy Pochettino - Our method is easy Reviewed by THBlogNews on 6:30 pm Rating: 5

Liverpool visit The Lane

4:30 pm
Almost a perfect start to the season, I say almost as we have conceded one goal in our four games, but we have won the lot and in the embryonic stages of the Premier League table we sit on top with six points.

Liverpool visit The Lane

When Mauricio Pochettino was going to be appointed the research into him certainly made me think we had found the right man for the job, as articles at the time explained. He was a manager who players get on with, who plays a system that gets the best out of players, who would dampen expectation, build something and be around for a while. He was I felt the manager Daniel Levy had been searching for to stick with.

While most felt we would now need adjustment time to a new system I speculated that it wouldn't take the season it took Brendan Rodgers at Liverpool because the Tottenham players had played a version of his system before. The Andre Villas-Boas version contained many of the same things, the high line defence, the formation and the high pressing.

Pochettino has added the fitness to play the system, added speed when we have the ball from the pedestrians we were before, increased the intensity of the high press and added attacking ideas so bereft under AVB. The interchanging front four forces defenses to constantly have to make decision and the more they have to make the more likely they are to make mistakes.

It is early days and not a time to get carried away. The players are still learning the system, what to do in certain situations, both with and without the ball. When Liverpool visit The Lane on Super Sunday both sides will get an early test to tell them where they are this season.

Liverpool had a fantastic season last season and know their system well now but are not expected to reach those heights this time around, except perhaps on Merseyside. They have of course lost Suarez and nobody quite knows how that will affect them. Take Gareth Bale out of our team and we struggled, take their world class player out of their team and they could well struggle too, mind you I don't care about his reputation, Balotelli is hugely talented and a major player to replace him with.

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When the Italian grows up, whichever club he is at will have a world class striker so for me £16 million is peanuts for him. Like I think Diego Costa will do at Chelsea, Balotelli will thrive at Liverpool and bang in goals, but hopefully not this week.

Few would have complained if Liverpool had won the title last season and Stevie Gerrard could have picked up the trophy, he is one player who deserves it. You have to applaud and respect his loyalty in an age where it is unfashionable.

Last season we expected a thrashing at Liverpool with the side totally disinterested in the game and simply going through the motions until the seasons end. This season there is uncertainty in both camps and that makes for an intriguing tie that it's impossible to predict the outcome of with any certainty. It's a benchmark test for both teams.

The Liverpool captain acknowledges it will be a different Spurs but is confident they can take three points off us, as he told their club website reporter James Carroll.

"It's going to be very tough. Tottenham away is a difficult match. They've started the season really well, have a new manager and have their confidence and belief back. 
"We'll have to perform at our maximum to get the result we want, but we're going to go there for three points and we're confident we can get them."

A well known system missing it's star goalscorer verses a new system that has started encouragingly. It's not a tie to fear this year but one to savour.

Will the game keep our feet firmly on the ground or will the game simply raise our expectations to their usual level.

Liverpool visit The Lane Liverpool visit The Lane Reviewed by THBlogNews on 4:30 pm Rating: 5

Spurs play hide and seek

8:08 pm
The expected happened at Anfield, Liverpool turned up Spurs didn't. Another shambolic performance from players who didn't want to be playing. Being picked for Spurs at the moment is more like a punishment that a reward.

Now if I wrote about every mistake you'd be reading this for a week and quite frankly the situation is not about individual mistakes it's about attitude. I have discussed recently how attitude affects the way you play, how if you are not 100% focused and up for the game or the club then even if you try your best it is still a sub standard performance. You lack that vital spark, the anticipation, the sharpness, you lack the edge.

Liverpool showed it in abundance, the Spurs players showed their hearts are not in it. Where Liverpool anticipated, we reacted and so they beat us to everything. The catalogue of errors we saw again was only to be expected, as was going behind as a result of our left sided weakness.

Mentally there are some serious problems at Spurs. What you need to ask yourself about that game is who didn't hide? Not who didn't make mistakes, who didn't play well, but who didn't hide.

Who stood up to be counted, who wanted the ball, who was making an effort. make an effort on your own you'll get nowhere, you may even look bad yourself, but if you don't hide you are of a mental makeup Spurs need.

We witnessed that you can not simply send a team out with no idea of what they are supposed to do in 'this weeks' system. It doesn't work and is asking for a beating. A team with a plan will always beat a team without one, a team with a plan will always beat 11 men playing as individuals.

I expected 3-0, just about but not really acceptable in the current climate. 4-0 is not nice. Jan Vertonghen was delighted to get off but the manner in which he decided to depart was an insult to Tottenham fans. Letting the physio know he is injured and can't carry on, no problem, couldn't put weight on the foot, no problem.

Hang on a minute I'm walking off normally without a care in the world, I'm injured, I'd better start limping and put a bit of a show on. Sorry Jan you were fooling nobody.

Now I'm going to highlight a player most won't because most will probably think he did nothing wrong and look to the glaring errors to complain about the obvious, but I highlight this not to single out the player for special criticism but to highlight a point. The player in question is Glyfi Sigurdsson.

Spurs play hide and seekI will say that Sherwood should not have picked Sigurdsson to play in the role he did, he is, with a lone striker, a number 10, however so is Eriksen.

What Sigurdsson can not do is defend, he showed against Benfica in the same position that if you put him under pressure defensively he can't handle it. He likes time and he likes it in the opponents half so Sherwood made a blunder with that one.

The point though is that Gylfi hid during the game. When the ball was passed to him he simply wanted to give it to someone else even if that was the guy who had just given it to him in time and space. That shouts out clear and loud, I abdicate responsibility. I want someone else to take responsibility so it doesn't look as if I am making a mistake.

Players who take responsibility makes mistake, there isn't a footballer alive who doesn't. But if you don't take responsibility then you are nothing as a footballer. Dembele had trained all week he should have been playing in that role, not Sigurdsson.

Aaron Lennon gave up today, he was dejected, he was another that after we were 2-0 down wanted to be somewhere else, he even walked back on one occasion when he was beaten, he couldn't be bothered, and this is a guy who tries all the time, sometimes successfully, sometimes unsuccessfully.

When a player like that drops his head you have serious problems, every player who drops their head heaps pressure on those whose head doesn't drop and that is usually the defenders. They have to undergo a siege because of the ineptitude in front of them and they then of course get crucified for those mistakes as if it were their fault.

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Soldado was up front and the nearest player to him was 40 yards away, he had no hope whatsoever. That is a crazy way to play, we haven't a hope of doing anything like that and Soldado is on a hiding to nothing, no wonder he looks totally pissed off. At one point he chased 3 passes in the Livepool half and when none of the midfield had pressed up he stood there with arms outstretched as if to say what the hell is going on.

Personally I don't blame the guy for thinking I've had enough of this. I'll single out as everyone else will Hugo Lloris for praise. We forgive his usual mistake because at least he has professional pride. He may well be leaving at the end of the season but he is showing Jan Vertonghen how to do it.

Thank goodness all the top teams are out the way now so the players can coast along and not look at potential hammerings each week. The seasons end was a long way away at the beginning of the dreaded March, now there is a glimmer of hope it won't seem so long. The results matter, of course they do, but they don't matter and haven't since January.

Now is a time for a sensible approach rather than the usual and predictable knee jerk he made a mistake he must go mindset. It would be pretty pointless calling for Tim Sherwood's head as well as what do we do then, play with nobody running the show at all for the remaining games.

The interim role always had the potential to be painful and so it has proven. It is a time for head down, baton down the hatches and wait for the storm to pass.

The can't be a supporter around who doesn't know we are waiting for the World Cup, if if any didn't the performances of some of the players should tell you, as they are saving themselves.

Spurs play hide and seek Spurs play hide and seek Reviewed by THBlogNews on 8:08 pm Rating: 5

The trilogy - Part 3 Liverpool

7:00 am
Yet another TV game sees us embark on the last leg of the dreaded three, The Trilogy - Part 3 Liverpool. March was going to be the month that ended our season although in all honesty it ended when we plumped for an interim manager with no experience.

The trilogy - Part 3 Liverpool

I can understand the reasoning behind it and expect to see the benefits of the approach next season under the new boss. For now after defeats to Chelsea and Arsenal we head to Anfield where a Liverpool side await us who have smashed 20 more goals than Chelsea and 8 more goals than free scoring Manchester City.

At home Liverpool have hit 42 goals in 14 Premier League games, just over 3 goals a game which is 2 more than we have scored all season.

A drubbing on our own patch should ensure that not too many players go through the motions so we can expect to see an improved performance. However we are all at sea defensively and rely on a bit of individual quality to get by.

Before we embarked on these 3 games, from which we needed a minimum of 7 points, thrashings were a distinct possibility. That duly arrived in the first leg when we thrashed ourselves against Chelsea. Embarrassment was spared with an improved display against Arsenal but woeful finishing cost us dear.

Liverpool have two deadly strikers, both of which we would have liked. Alas Harry Redknapp turned down Suarez and we some reason we didn't go after Daniel Sturridge who I thought at the time was exactly the striker we needed. We missed the boat on both counts.

Naturally the press have dug out a player who was linked with both clubs to say joining Spurs was the right decision while Brendon Rogers can say joining Liverpool was the right choice. You wouldn't expect Gylfi Sigurdsson or the Liverpool boss to say any different would you.

“At the time, I was really happy to come to Tottenham,” Sigurdsson said, “And I still am.

“I’m really enjoying it. It’s a fantastic club and in the last couple of seasons we’ve shown the ambition to become better. Hopefully in the next couple of years, it will be really good.

"Because they didn’t qualify for Europe, Liverpool are playing one game a week and it’s benefited them quite a bit, because they’re fresh and ready to go in every game.

“It will be a disappointment if we don’t finish higher than fifth.

"We brought a lot of players in last summer and we know it’s going to take time. It depends on some of the players coming in — some of them fit in straight away, some need a few months or a season just to get used to English football. That’s life.

The trilogy - Part 3 Liverpool"If we can finish in the top four, it will be fantastic.

“Would continuity help us for next season? I don’t see why not. There are fantastic players here and we have good staff all around.

“If we start next season well, then everything is possible. Most of the new players will be in their second season so they will be used to English football by then and they will have settled in.”

Ever desperate to create stories linking two clubs together when they are playing each other the media have come up with a transfer battle they claim we are winning.

The 21-year-old Lazio youngster Ogenyi Onazi is apparently the player involved in the tussle. Spurs are of course in desperate need of a box to box midfielder, only having a plethora of them on the books.

Back to the game though and recently I have been pointing out how well Liverpool have been doing at half-time (top of the league by a distance) compared with ourselves sitting a lowly 10th. Liverpool have been winning 21 of their 31 games at half-time, we have been winning 8.

At home Liverpool have been winning 13 and drawing 1 of their 15 games at half-time. Away from home Spurs have been winning 4 and drawing 8 out of the same number of games. Liverpool have a half-time points tally of 69, Spurs have a tally of 39. Of that Liverpool's home tally is 40 points and our away tally 20 points.

I think you can say statistically we are up against it, oh and Liverpool have been winning at half-time and won 11 games of the last 12 at home. They have also won their last 7 games home and away and have scored at least one goal in 93% of their home games.

Luis Suarez has scored 16 goals at home, Daniel Sturridge 11 followed by Gerrard and Sterling with 4. Away from home Emmanuel Adebayor has scored 7 goals, Paulinho 4 and Roberto Soldado 2.

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Goal Scoring Time Stats

Spurs have not scored a goal in the first 15 minutes (only team in the league) and have conceded 3 in that period in our away games while Liverpool have scored 7 and not let in any at home.

From 16 to 30 minutes Spurs have scored 2 and let in 1 away from home while Liverpool have scored 10 and let in 3 at home.

From 31 minutes until half-time Spurs have scored 4 goals and let in 3 away from home while Liverpool have scored 13 and let in 1 at home.

In the second half from 46 until 60 minutes Spurs have scored 5 and let in 7 away while Liverpool have scored 8 and let in 3 at home.

From 61 to 75 minutes Spurs have scored 6 and let in 1 away while Liverpool have scored 2 and let in 3 at home. Statistically this time is our best opportunity in the game.

From 76 to 90 minutes Spurs have scored 4 and let in 4 away while Liverpool have scored 4 and let in 3 at home.

In summary away from home in the first half Spurs have scored 6 and conceded 7 while Liverpool have scored 30 and let in just 4 at home.

In the second half Spurs have scored 15 goals and conceded 12 away from home while Liverpool have scored 14 and let in 9 at home.

Liverpool have scored the opening goal in 13 of their 15 home games while Spurs have scored the opening goal in 6 of the 15 away games. Liverpool have held the lead 13 times at half-time at home compared to Spurs 4 away from home.

That should keep all you stattos happy.

Liverpool may well field an unchanged side, Spurs have their usual spate of injuries and late fitness tests but Lamela, Capoue and Chiriches are out, Dawson probably won't be fit enough so will start on the bench, Adebayor is hoping to recover from the ankle knock he received against Arsenal while Kyle Walker is unlikely to be available either.

Tottenham lineup therefore may look something like this.

Hugo Lloris
Kyle Naughton Younes Kaboul Jan Vertonghen Danny Rose
Aaron Lennon Mousa Dembele Nacer Chadli Christian Eriksen
Emmanuel Adebayor

Substitutes: Brad Friedel, Michael Dawson, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Nabil Bentaleb, Paulinho, Andros Townsend and Roberto Soldado

The reverse fixture didn't go so well.

The trilogy - Part 3 Liverpool The trilogy - Part 3 Liverpool Reviewed by THBlogNews on 7:00 am Rating: 5
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