Tottenham Hotspur played Chelsea for the third time in as many weeks on Sunday. They lost all three matches, most recently 2-0 at Stamford Bridge in what was Antonio Conte’s first Premier League loss in charge of Spurs. That sucked, but probably wasn’t exactly unexpected — Chelsea are just better right now, and there’s not much Spurs can do about that fact except try and get better themselves. If I were Spurs, I would simply not lose to Chelsea. See? Simples.
Over the weekend, my part of the country got a good four inches of snow. That’s not a lot, in the grand scheme of things — parts of the east and mountain west have gotten much, much more already — but it’s the first significant snowfall we’ve had all winter. So when this tweet hit my timeline, it made me chuckle.
This list of Michigan Department of Transportation snowplow names will melt your icy heart pic.twitter.com/RmV4PU8mIS— Alec Stapp (@AlecStapp) January 11, 2022
Michigan is the state just to the north of where I live, and I loved the idea of its fleet of snowplows having individual names — it just tickles me. Do the drivers have favorites? To they fight over who gets to drive “Blizzard Wizard” and who gets stuck with “Sir Plows-A-Lot”? Did they get the idea from Scotland, which has a similarly named fleet of plows? These are mysteries that need answering, but we will not answer them here. Ours is not to know, but merely to appreciate, and to rate Tottenham players to.
Here are your player ratings to the theme of Michigan Department of Transportation snowplow names.
5 stars: Clearopathra
I am in awe of this name. It is perfect.
No Tottenham players were this good.
4.5 stars: (tie) Snowbegone Kenobi / Snowba Fett
Snow puns AND Star Wars references in a department of transportation motor fleet? I’m here for it!
No Tottenham players were this good either.
4 stars: Ctl Salt Delete
Somewhere, a 45-year old father of three who does tech support for the State of Michigan is watching snowplows be dispatched during a winter storm and is nodding sagely to himself as this particular plow goes about its business. Excellent name.
Hugo Lloris (Community — 3.5): A lot of Spurs fans are Mad Online that Hugo watched that Ziyech shot sail into the top corner, but he’s smart enough to know when he has no chance to stop a shot. And Hugo had several huge saves over the course of the match. Yeah, he gave up two but he was very good on the day.
3.5 stars: Rupert Slushington IV
I don’t know why this particular name amuses me but it does, greatly. I hope whoever drives this plow decorates it with a top hat and a monocle.
Harry Kane (Community — 3.5): He scored. Sure, it didn’t count thanks to a super soft hand in the back of Thiago Silva (who commited a much worse infraction on his own goal later in the match), but it was the kind of goal that might have changed Spurs’ fortunes had it stood. Tried to make things happen but got poor service throughout.
Steven Bergwijn (Community — 3.0): Was pretty impressed with Stevie playing as a strike partner to Harry. There were echoes of those classic big-small strike teams from years past and Bergwijn seemed to be forming a decent understanding with Kane. Stevie buzzed around with energy but suffered from the same lack of service that Kane had. Still had two shots, more than anyone else on the team (though that’s thin gruel).
Eric Dier (Community — 3.0): Dier played well in his first match back from injury. Didn’t look especially rusty and was given license to carry the ball out of the back, which was fun even if it didn’t really work. Now get Romero back and let’s let the defense cook.
3 stars: Hiplowpotamus
OK, this is a decent effort at a “dad pun” but let’s face it, “Hippoplowtamus” is a much better pun and was RIGHT THERE you guys come on. Three stars — good instincts, but bad execution. Kinda like Emerson Royal’s crossing.
Oliver Skipp (Community — 3.0): Couldn’t go 90 minutes due to a knock but Spurs’ midfield did look better when he came on.
Antonio Conte (Community — 2.5): If we accept that Gio and Tanguy are now fully out of the picture and the team was carrying a bunch of knocks I’m not sure what else he could do here. Yeah, it was a weird lineup and some bizarre tactics, but you work with the pieces you have, I guess.
2.5 stars: Dolly Plowton
I love Dolly, she’s a goddamn national treasure, and I’m sure she’d be delighted to be so memorialized within the hallowed institution of the Michigan Department of Transportation but this is unfortunately just one of many bad puns shoehorned into an otherwise good collection of snowplow names. I cannot support it, I’m sorry my queen.
Ryan Sessegnon (Community — 2.0): Boy, I really didn’t see what y’all did regarding Sess’ performance. Didn’t think he was a stand-out, but apart from one bad cross didn’t see anything particularly awful in his game. Maybe it’s me? It could be me.
Ben Davies (Community — 2.5): At this point Davies is a better central defender than he is a left back. Struggled with the pace of Ziyech and Lukaku, wasn’t a great option for ball progression.
Harry Winks (Community — 2.5): Spurs were overrun in midfield vs. Chelsea... again. I get that there weren’t many better options, but Winks doesn’t make sense against an opponent where he’s going to have to defend a ton. Only attempted 38 passes.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (Community — 3.0): Hard to give Pierre much higher than this considering how frequently Chelsea bossed the midfield.
Davinson Sanchez (Community — 2.5): Could’ve closed down Ziyech better before his worldy, but I mean it’s a worldy. Got turned a few times in defense as well by Lukaku.
Lucas Moura (Community — 2.5): Came in as a mid-half sub despite carrying a knock, had very little impact on the match.
2 stars: Mr. Plow
I mean, it’s the obvious choice for any snowplow fleet after that absolutely iconic Simpsons episode, but that’s the point — it’s TOO obvious. Gotta work a little harder here, y’all. We expect more.
Matt Doherty (Community — 2.0): Conte had him playing in this weird advanced hybrid flank/central role where he drifted centrally in defense but wide when Spurs were in possession which wasn’t very often. Really feels like he’s getting so much match time because there’s no other option. Wasn’t very good.
Japhet Tanganga (Community — 2.0): Another uncomfortable performance at the back where he really struggled against Hudson-Odoi. I can’t decide if we’re asking too much of Tanganga at this stage in his career or if he’s just not going to cut it at this level. Either way, he probably needs to go somewhere where there’s less expected of him and where he can play, make mistakes, and learn without as much scrutiny. (Based on that, Milan would be a weird fit)
1 star: Dottie
In a list of snowplows creatively named, this one stands out because it just seems... there. I assume there’s some sort of backstory to how “Dottie” came to be (beloved pet? Former DoT employee?), but until that comes to light, it stands out in the wrong way.
No Tottenham Hotspur players were as bad as Dottie the Michigan Snowplow. Sorry, Dottie.
Honorable Snowplow Mentions:
Catch My Drift, Plowdy Duty, Shock and Thaw, Lake Scooperior, Melton John, Aaron Brr Sir, Flake Michigan, Mr. Salty Pants, Buzz Iceclear
Tom Carroll Memorial Non-Rating: