A crucial week for Spurs
I was commentating at White Hart Lane on Saturday as Spurs lost to Sunderland and after a thoroughly depressing day for the club you have to conclude that the next week could be the most crucial of their season.
As if defeats in their opening two games were not bad enough, the Dimitar Berbatov saga has edged closer to its inevitable conclusion with the Bulgarian staying away from the game. After talks on Friday, Berbatov was deemed not to be "in the right frame of mind" to play.
In his post-match interview, a refreshingly honest but clearly frustrated Gus Poyet made it pretty clear that Berbatov has run out of allies at the club. The only hurdle now is persuading Manchester United to pay what Tottenham feel he is worth - and that might not be easy with Berbatov's value falling by the day.
With this deal it's a buyers' market because United know Spurs need to offload a player who, by their own admission, is now a bad influence in the dressing room. United's own need for a goalscorer should ensure a fee in excess of £20m, but if Spurs want nearer £30m they are in dreamland.
Should the deal go through, Tottenham will then have just a few days, or maybe even hours, to find new faces or hope Darren Bent comes up trumps.
Ideally, with no replacements having been brought in for Robbie Keane or Jermain Defoe, let alone Berbatov, they need more than one top striker. But Spurs will then find themselves in a sellers' market as, with the transfer window on the point of closing, they would almost certainly end up paying over the odds for whoever they do sign.
Zenit Saint Peterburg's Andrei Arshavin has been linked with Tottenham for weeks, and interestingly was left out of their side which played Krylia Sovetov on Saturday. However, I'm not at all sure he is the answer. Arshavin is an excellent player but not a centre forward - the Russian season started in March and he has scored just three goals in the 19 games Zenit have played - and another creative attacking midfielder is not what Tottenham need.
You also have to take into account that if Arshavin were to move to England now, he would be playing an eight-month Premier League season on top of five months of the Russian season without any break, which is hardly ideal.
The same would apply to another Tottenham target, Spartak Moscow's Roman Pavlyuchenko and the fact that Spartak have just sacked their coach could also make it difficult for them to sell.
It all adds up to a monumental headache for Juande Ramos, particularly as Spurs play Chelsea next Sunday. If they fail to take a point from Stamford Bridge, it will be their worst start to a season for 29 years.
After Chelsea, it will be Aston Villa and by then Dimitar Berbatov will surely have been unveiled as a Manchester United player, but how will that story unfold? As the saying goes, be careful what you wish for.
One insider at Spurs told me on Saturday that the Bulgarian is an intensely private individual who detests the attention which being a footballer brings and who is uncomfortable with the adulation. You only have to hear the shrieks of excitement that greet the sight of even John O'Shea walking through the players' car park at Old Trafford to know that at Manchester United attention and adulation are guaranteed.