Welp, here we are: The Europa League.
The good news, of course, is that this year there isn’t a Dortmund-style juggernaut hanging out in the Europa League, which means we have a decent chance at making a real run in the competition.
The bad news, of course, is that we’re playing in the competition.
Of course, there’s nothing to be done about that now, so let’s talk strategy. I think we basically play the first team today, rotate the squad for Sunday, and then hopefully rotate for next Thursday again after putting the tie away in the first leg.
To be sure, it’s a calculated risk—if we don’t take a lead back to
White Hart Lane Wembley, this will feel very much like a wasted match for the first team that may well prove costly as we head for the home stretch of the season and our best XI struggle with fatigue.
On the other hand, a win today allows our key players to rest for a full week and a half before needing to be called on again for the Premier League match with Stoke.
What are your thoughts? What team do you want to see today?
NOTE: Thanks to Hoddle reader Alex for catching my earlier error:
@jake_meador "Take the lead back to White Hart Lane" It's Wembley. ;)— AlexTHFC (@alexthfc04) February 16, 2017
I apparently had blocked out all memory of the fact that we played our Champions League matches at Wembley.
On to the Links:
The Short Fuse is handling the result well.
Asamoah Gyan faces ban for “unethical hair.”
Who said it: Jose Mourinho or The Young Pope?
Bob Bradley wrote about his experience managing Swansea.