We must open today’s Hoddle with a song dedicated to Son Heung-min.
Ramble of the Day
I did ramble about Toby Alderweireld’s social media about three months ago, but I must do so again. Why?, you’re probably not asking because you’ve skipped to the comments. Well, it’s because he’s changed it and I miss his old ways.
He’s recently just posted either pictures of himself playing games with sometimes funny captions, like “Ho ho ho, five zerooo” after yesterday’s match, or pictures of his baby, which is obviously nothing to complain about. What he hasn’t posted in a while is a video to preview a match, and I’m guessing it’s the end of a short-lived era.
He posted the first of these videos before the match at Manchester United this season, which Spurs won 3-0. Alderweireld was correct in saying “big game coming up,” because it very obviously was.
That first video set the tone, essentially. He saved them for the bigger matches, like Champions League days and encounters against top six opponents. In addition to the weird and seemingly obligatory pictures of things, sometimes himself, superimposed on other pictures of himself, he brought us reminders. Before Spurs lost to Barcelona at Wembley, he made sure everyone knew “we are Spurs.” It might not have been a great day to be Spurs, but Alderweireld never hid his identity.
Ahead of Tottenham’s 2-2 draw at PSV Eindhoven, Alderweireld had another reminder: “we come to win.” It obviously didn’t work out in Spurs’ favor, and I recall cracking a joke about how Alderweireld should tack on a scene that says “but tying is okay, too.” (It clearly was okay; Spurs did make it out of the group, after all.)
He shared his last reminder, and last video, before Spurs beat Chelsea 3-1. “Winning isn’t everything,” he noted, “it’s the only thing,” and it was the thing that happened at Wembley that day. Though the video reminders have ended, I hope Alderweireld still provides them at training, especially this one. I want to believe it’s the reason why Spurs have been on a winning streak.
Overall, Alderweireld posted five videos on Instagram, and posted a pretty even record. Spurs won twice, against United and Chelsea, lost twice, to Liverpool and Barcelona, and tied once at PSV. Those videos will be missed.
tl;dr: Remembering the Toby Alderweireld pre-match video.
Links of the Day
Napoli boss Carlo Ancelotti said the referee refused to act after Kalidou Koulibaly was subjected to monkey chants during the team’s 1-0 loss to Inter Milan.
Chelsea fans have once again been accused of chanting anti-semitic messages, this time during the team’s 2-1 victory over Watford.
Today’s longer read: Paul Brown on the former British tradition of playing football on Christmas Day for FourFourTwo