A new Star Wars movie doesn't come around very often these days, so it's worth devoting a theme or two to the cause. Remember when you were a kid (and it doesn't matter how old you are now) how much you loved those lightsaber battles in Insert-Your-Favorite-Star-Wars-Movie-Here? And you went home and thought long and hard about how if YOU were a Force user, what color your lightsaber would be?
It's okay to admit it. I will. I spent long hours as a kid debating what color I should choose. Maybe I'd come up with a NEW color not seen in the films! (Mine was neon pink – hey, it was the early 1980s.) Well, whatever color you chose, it was probably wrong. Here are the player ratings for Tottenham Hotspur's 3-0 win over Norwich City to the theme of lightsaber colors.
5 Stars: Green
Remember the first time you watched Return of the Jedi? You spend most of that opening half hour just waiting for Luke to switch on his lightsaber, knowing that he must have a new one, since his old one disappeared (along with his hand) in Cloud City. And then he does, and it's GREEN! This was the first time anyone had considered that a lightsaber could be anything other than blue (for good guys) or red (for bad guys). It was an awesome reveal. Sure, the prequel trilogy showed lots of green sabers, but that Jedi reveal was incredible, and for that reason green sabers are the best.
Harry Kane: We had a discussion in the writer's room about why Harry Kane doesn't seem to receive the adulation that other top strikers get in the Premier League. We decided that it was because Harry doesn't usually score "thunderbastard goals" but chooses his shots carefully, works equally hard to hold up the ball, and brings other players into the offense. After a brace where he earned and converted a penalty, and also scored a super-accurate individual goal, it's gratifying that even Spurs' harshest critics have stopped referring to him as a "one season wonder." A superb effort against Norwich from our best attacking player.
Erik Lamela: I didn't say much about Erik Lamela in the reaction thread (writing post-match threads with a quick turnaround is hard, you guys), but Lamela was sublime on Saturday. He didn't score, but his pressing, vision, and footballing intelligence were all on display against Norwich, and he was a big reason why we dominated large stretches of this match. That rabona attempt, had it gone in, might have rivaled that OTHER one he had last season.
Dele Alli: Lost amidst all the praise that has been showered Alli's way is the fact that he's still just 19. I think over the past few matches he's kind of shown his age: sometimes he was very good, sometimes he was not so great, and sometimes he would do something kind of ridiculous that would make you stop and remember that, yeah, he's still 19. Against Norwich, Alli put in a gorgeous through-ball that set up Kane's first, was the last to pass to Kane for his second, and looked engaged and attentive throughout. A very good match.
Hugo Lloris: Hugo's reputation as a shot-stopper came to the fore as he had a number of fantastic saves, most crucially the double-stop in the second half. Spurs' back line didn't let many good chances through, but what did get through Hugo was more than equal to. Hugo got a shutout on his birthday, which was also neat.
4 Stars: Blue
The original. The classic. The blue saber is the mainstay color of the Jedi forces. Luke had one (first). Anakin had one. Obi-Wan had one. They're pretty, clash dramatically against a Sith blade, and a solid choice for the discriminating Jedi who doesn't necessarily want to stand out from the crowd. Wield a blue saber and you say to the world that you don't need to call attention to yourself; you're that quiet, unassuming guy in the background and you're still a motherf***ing Jedi. I guarantee that Daniel Levy would have a blue lightsaber.
Janby Vertonghweireld: Until one of these guys does something to differentiate himself from his central defense partner, I'm just going to give them joint ratings. I'm running out of ways to say "these guys were really good" every week.
Mousa Dembele: Essentially won the midfield all by his lonesome, which should now be considered "par." Still struggling to figure out how neither AVB nor Tim Sherwood could figure out how best to use this guy. He's monstrous.
Ben Davies: A very nice match from Davies, who didn't do any one thing outstandingly well, but just put in a very solid all-around performance. Had several good tackles and was tidy in defense. I expect him to be rested on Monday, but based on his last two matches I think he's earned the right to start over Rose for the time being.
Tom Carroll: ALL HAIL OUR LORD AND SAVIOR TOM CARROLL. No, seriously, he didn't play long but he had a very good impact, and not just because he scored a worldy. If Mousa can't go on Monday, Tom's first off the bench to fill in for him. While he won't shove anyone off the ball, his range of passing and vision will, I think, serve him well against a team like Watford. Regardless, after that cameo, he's earned a start.
3.5 Stars: Purple
People are split on the purple lightsaber. Only Mace Windu had one, and reportedly only because Samuel L. Jackson wanted to be a Bad*** Jedi Motherf***er. Fair enough. That purple saber was certainly striking and distinctive, though I still wonder why Windu was the only one who was bad*** enough to warrant one.
Christian Eriksen: I hear people say stuff about Christian Eriksen and I don't like it. Christian no longer has to put this team on his back and score goals for Tottenham to be good, but he's still the engine that makes this offense run. I thought Eriksen was quite good against Norwich, if quiet. Quiet is fine. You don't have to be amazing every match to have an extremely beneficial impact for your club. Bench him, and I guarantee our offense would be missing that spark that makes things run so effectively. There is nothing wrong with having a quietly effective match, and people who say that Eriksen needs to be benched because he's not playing well are wrong.
3 Stars: Red
Ahh, the trusty Sith saber. Red is evil, as anyone who isn't a Liverpool or Arsenal supporter will tell you. Though I never understood why all Sith sabers had to be red – surely someone with that black a heart could come up with a black saber, or dull yellow, or some other menacing color? (Yes, Snoho, I'm sure there's an explanation in one of the books somewhere, but I never actually read any of them.) The other thing about the red sabers is that, in the Star Wars universe, if you wield one you're going to die, without question. In Star Wars, Good always triumphs over Evil, because Evil is dumb. Also, #neverred.
Kyle Walker: A three-star rating in a match where we played really well for large stretches is still really good. Kyle wasn't particularly dominant, but he was fine. Some pretty good passes, a tackle or two, nothing particularly egregious or dumb defensively. A good, solid outing.
Eric Dier: Solid enough, defensively sound enough, good enough. He broke up play, was fairly tidy with his passes, and didn't really do anything wrong. Picked up a yellow for a pretty dumb foul, but we've all kind of come to expect that from Eric. I had no issues with his play.
2 Stars: White
With apologies to my 10-year old daughter and all Ahsoka Tano fans out there (yes, the Clone Wars is canon), the white saber is boring. Maybe they'd look cool on the big screen, but choosing white when you have a (presumably) full color spectrum to choose from says either "I don't care enough about my saber to pick a side" or "I'm color blind." Ahsoka is still awesome, though.
Nope, nobody was a two-star performer in this match.
1 Star: Orange
I've only ever seen the orange saber in video games – I know they were available in Knights of the Old Republic, and I think they were in the Jedi Knights series, though maybe only in Jedi Academy, I can't remember. Either way, they sucked. They were dull, boring, and looked like a creamsickle. Even if you stop to consider that orange might even be an option in the films, orange would be firmly on the "Sith end" of the color spectrum. Congratulations, orange saber-wielder. You're Diet Kylo Ren.
No Tottenham Hotspur players were as terrible as an creamsickle lightsaber.