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Spurs vs. Fiorentina Observations

Tottenham Hotspur fought to a 3-2 win over Fiorentina at White Hart Lane yesterday an an exciting game littered with some defensive mistakes. There were some positives and negatives to take out of the match, although many more positives, so let's get to it.

-Our hero, the CFC, Ledley King was not at his best yesterday. In particular, on the first goal, he completely lost Alberto Gilardino. He was out of position a couple of times and looked slow, and I was baffled that he played for 68 minutes. King is a class player who probably just needs some time to get back into the game, but time is up. The show starts next weekend. I think I want Bassong and Dawson to start against City.

-Giovani Dos Santos was again Spurs' best player. His setup of Pav's goal was outstanding, especially since I've never thought him to be much of a tackler. He set up countless other chances that weren't converted, most notably for Crouch and Keane on multiple occasions. I tweeted out that City, Villa, Everton, and Liverpool fans should be scared if this is the real Gio. A Chelsea fan instant messaged me to say that he was scared too. I've always been of the believe that if Giovani Dos Santos ever starts playing with confidence in big club games, he can be one of the best players in the world. If we get 80% of what we've seen in the last two matches from Gio this season, I think most fans would be satisfied. If what we've seen in these friendlies is the real Gio, or (scary thoughts for USMNT fans) only flashes of the real Gio, he deserves some serious playing time.

-Stop the presses, Robbie Keane has been revived from the dead. Both of his goals were very well taken, but some serious credit has to go to Tom Huddlestone and Jake Livermore for playing the brilliant passes that set up both goals. Maybe Robbie isn't on the chopping block after all? The rags and blogs have linked Spurs to countless strikers in the summer, but it seems Harry is perfectly happy with Crouch, Pav, Defoe, Keane, and sometimes striker Gio. And really, why shouldn't he be?

-I've been busting Big Tom's balls all pre-season, but he looked much better yesterday than he has in previous games. He's starting to move a little bit better and his setup of Keane's goal was fantastic.

-Praise (deity of your choice), Wilson Palacios is fit. He should be an absolute lock to start the opener.

Tom Huddlestone and Luka Modric are both looking good, as are both Gareth Bale and Benoit Assou-Ekotto. This means Harry is going to have some interesting lineup decisions to make against City. I feel like City is going to play two defensive-minded central midfielders and I fear whichever of their endless options they put on the right wing. So, as of today, I would like to see Ekotto at left back, Bale at left midfield, and Modric and Palacios in the middle. I don't think that City pose much of an attacking threat from the center of midfield, so playing two holding midfielders (i.e. Palacios and Big Tom) is unnecessary, and I think we could stand to have a great two way player at left midfield. My thoughts may change as the week goes on, we'll see.

Monday through Wednesday, I'll be posting my three part Spurs season preview. For now, I'm going to watch the Community Shield, then I'm off to a concert. Until Monday...