So it turns out this is actually 1 year to the day from my first involvement on CFC - A post about my thoughts on team selection for our ill-fated 1-0 loss to Everton at Goodison last season - so I figured I may as well celebrate with a post in the exact same style. Although I will say that it feels a lot better this time around because we haven't just been given a hiding at the hands of Le Arse.
So essentially Spurs are one of the form sides in the whole of Europe going into this match. Bale has been unplayable lately, shooting himself up to third in the Golden Boot race and he is shooting for a club record of scoring in six consecutive league games - a feat that Rafael Van Der Vaart attempted last year but missed out on. I don't really want to focus on Bale because everything's been said to death. Gylfi Siggurdson has gone from zero to hero lately, coming into the side on the back of an injury to Clint Dempsey and a poor showing by Lewis Holtby at West Ham to great effect, scoring twice in the last three games and picking up two assists in the process. He forms a very fluid attacking triad with Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon reminiscent of Chelsea's Hazard, Mata and Oscar of the Di Matteo era but with much more defensive work ethic. Good Lennon has returned and I'm hoping that knock he took in the Inter game this morning was just a very minor injury and he'll be raring to go at Anfield to tear Jose Enrique a new one. He dismantled Monreal in the North London derby and scored a very nice goal making the kind of cutting run we have been crying out for all his career plus it was his fine cutback that led to Siggy's goal against Inter.
All the defenders have been very good lately with Dawson and Vertonghen getting special praise from me after their very good play in the NLD and I feel very confident that they can shackle Luis Suarez between them. Walker and BAE can handle whatever combination of Sturridge, Downing and Coutinho appear on the wings while the Parker/Dembele double pivot is finally starting to mesh which will be crucial against the trio of Gerrard, Lucas and Joe Allen I expect to see. Defoe's return to fitness is a much needed shot in the arm for our attack although CONTROVERSY AHEAD) I would like to see Adebayor get the start assuming he's fit so we can unleash Defoe after an hour to run at the tired, even slower than usual legs of Jamie Carragher and run riot. Lloris is arguably the best keeper in the league and after looking at a lot of the "brilliant" goals Suarez has scored lately...he'll have to do much better to beat Hugo Boss.
At this point the Spurs team picks itself:
Walker - Dawson (C) - Vertonghen - BAE
Parker - Dembele
Lennon - Bale - Siggurdson
Now for a little venting.
The media hype surrounding Liverpool lately is honestly pathetic. They score 4 goals against a terrible Wigan side, 5 against Swansea B and suddenly they're Barcelona, Real Madrid, Brazil and Germany rolled into one. I watched the game v Wigan and honestly, the 4-0 scoreline flattered Liverpool. Pepe Reina had to make a few very good saves and Wigan were a joke defensively. Their goals weren't exactly brilliant. Downing's was a header inside the 6 yard box off a simple lofted cross, Suarez' first and third should both have been comfortably saved while his second from the "amazing free kick" was simply a standard free kick shot that took an absolutely wicked deflection. I honestly hope we absolutely dick on Liverpool on Sunday to finally shut all the annoying fans up. Like, 4-0 or 5-0. Something amazing and that will crush the hopes and dreams of all Liverpool fans worldwide and make them realise they are not what they used to be. Maybe a big win will bring them into 2013 from their little hideaway of 2005.
Spurs fans need to quit the negativity. Sure we absolutely collapsed last year and UEFA/Chelsea dicked us out of Champions League and that hurt. I nearly cried when that penalty went in from Drogba. The fact is, we're better than we were last year and we're only now hitting top gear. Considering that I'm going to go on the record and say I fully believe City can be caught. They're nowhere near the standard they were at last season and we still play them at White Hart Lane and if we beat them then it's well and truly game on. We need to enjoy this and aim for the stars, not constantly be looking in the rear view mirror worried about Arsenal and Chelsea. To dare is to do. The game is about glory and if we keep this up, we're definitely in for bucketloads of glory in the next few seasons! We're arguably the best team left in the Europa League and with Bale's record now clean we won't risk losing him in the later rounds where not having our X-factor could actually matter as opposed to letting him have a rest before a hard run of games and when we take a 3-0 lead to the San Siro against a bruised, battered and disinterested Inter Milan.
COYS! Let's gun for 2nd place and the Europa League! Next year with our new shiny talisman striker playing with Bale, let's try and hunt down United and challenge for the title!