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Tottenham - the top team in London?

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Steve Wilson | 15:28 UK time, Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Those who have no interest in football in London should click away now, but a question was nagging in my mind after the weekend's matches.

I commentated as Chelsea and Arsenal slugged it out on Saturday, the Gunners won 5-3 at Stamford Bridge, and then watched Spurs take on QPR on Sunday.

It left me wondering whether this may end up being the first season in a long time when Tottenham can genuinely hope to finish as London's top club.

Tottenham have had a lot to celebrate so far this season.

Spurs have been in excellent form and have an awesome midfield. Photo: Getty images

Fifty seasons have come and gone since Bill Nicholson's side completed a glorious double in 1961, when White Hart Lane was unquestionably the home of London's top team. And although this Spurs side are unlikely to match that landmark achievement, they are showing signs of becoming the kings of the capital again.

It's actually 16 seasons since Spurs finished a campaign as the highest placed club in London, but 1994-95 was hardly a vintage year for any of the capital's teams. In fact, Spurs fans probably took more pleasure from seeing their old boy Nayim scored a last-minute winner for Real Zaragoza with a shot from the half-way line against Arsenal in the Cup Winner's Cup final than they did from finishing seventh in the Premier League.

The only other occasion when neither Arsenal nor Chelsea has been London's top side at the end of a Premier League season was when Queens Park Rangers finished fifth in 1992-93.

For the last seven years it's been Chelsea; for the eight before that it was Arsenal.

That's enough history - but it does show just what a major achievement it would be if Tottenham can end up above both their main rivals in London.

Chelsea seem to be entering what Carlo Ancelotti would have called a "difficult moment". The Italian's "moment" lasted from November to January last season and probably cost him his job. Andre Villas-Boas will need to ensure his team's current poor run of results ends at Blackburn on Saturday. Without doubt, it is not just Rovers boss Steve Kean who could do with a win.

Villas-Boas came in to the club insisting that just because he had worked for former Chelsea boss and Portuguese compatriot Jose Mourinho he should not be thought of as a Mourinho mark II. He's right - Chelsea may be attacking a little more freely but they are defending in a way that would have been inconceivable under Mourinho.

The appointment of a manager as young and as inexperienced as the 33-year-old Villas-Boas should have heralded a new era - but Chelsea's midfield is beginning to look distinctly ponderous.

Let's play fantasy football - on current form would any of Chelsea's middle men displace Rafael van der Vaart, Luka Modric, Scott Parker or Gareth Bale from your midfield? Not for me, though Juan Mata would come close.

Meanwhile at Arsenal, Robin van Persie continues look like a footballer of the year in waiting. Arsenal have clearly improved as a team since their awful start to the campaign, but not by leaps and bounds. The major factor in their surge up the table has been Van Persie who, as captain, has led by example.

The problem with Van Persie, his contract negotiations aside, is that he missed three months of last season and six months of the season before. No wonder Arsene Wenger decided not to start with him against Marseille in the Champions League on Tuesday - another long injury absence just does not bear thinking about.

Then there's Spurs. Their achievement in qualifying for last season's Champions League overshadowed just about anything they had done in the previous decade or more.

This season I believe they could go one better. Third place, above both Chelsea and Arsenal, is certainly not beyond them.

No wonder Tottenham fans are praying for a swift return to the dugout for Harry Redknapp.

Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    We've had a decent start but I'd still fancy Chelsea to come good. They have to many resources at their disposal not to. I certainly wouldn't be writing Arsenal off either, although one see's their success depending on the fitness of Van Persie and Vermaelen.
    If we could get 20 or so league games out of Ledley King we'll be right up there. Our win % with him in the team is above 70%!
    As a Spurs fan I'm just delighted with the style of football we are playing. The first 45 mins against QPR was just sensational!

  • Comment number 2.

    Spurs are going well at present but given that The Arsenal have had a catastrophic start to the season - and will be without key midfielder Jack Wilshere for much of the season - just look where we are, a win behind both Chelsea and Spurs. Spurs have the game in hand but I don't see them outlasting an Arsenal resurgence although our neighbours might find themselves ahead of the Fulham-based team, Chelsea come the end of the season.

  • Comment number 3.

    Spurs could be the best of a bad lot this season. They certainly are (and coming from the red part of n. london I hate to say it) playing good football, but I worry with spurs if they can go the distance sometimes in games. They are capable of strong 45 mins of football but never the 90.

  • Comment number 4.

    Well you never know. Spurs have had to do it the hard way to get to where they are; e.g. prudent financial management, wealthy owned clubs provoking unrest and having the ability to attract any player with their wage offerings, etc. The Spurs squad is looking near to being very competitive with every other team over the season. A couple of squad additions and luck with injuries could see the team do very well indeed.

    The other London competitiors are still very good - still. I am sure Chelsea and Arsenal will be in the mix for top 6, no doubt. So Spurs will have to ensure they are not reckless in any game whatsoever to ensure a higher position. COYS!

  • Comment number 5.

    Spurs are playing with such confidence & they are side full of experience, which bodes well for the Winter slog. We have no Carling Cup & Harry's no fool for the exhausting European drain. Spurs will never have a better chance to make a serious statement. If we fail, we'll lose all those great, great players. I'm very hopeful though. Good times!

  • Comment number 6.

    Spurs have made a decent start but lack depth. Lose Parker and Modric then who is left in midfield? Lose Adebayor and you have to put up with Defoe who has never struck an understanding with Van Der Vaart. Chelsea may have hit a bad patch but they have massive strength in depth in all areas of the field and only a fool would back against them finishing ahead of Spurs and Arsenal.

  • Comment number 7.

    Enjoy it while you can, Spurs ... the season has barely begun.

  • Comment number 8.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 9.

    The usual Spurs - BBC love in

    "Spurs have been in excellent form and have an awesome midfield."

    5-1 ?

  • Comment number 10.

    @MCFC_TID: Fair play you did give us a good hiding but you can hardly compare that Spurs side with the one that's won 6 from the last 7. No Parker, Adebayor or King and an out of sorts Modric. City are clearly miles ahead of the rest but this isn't about them. Hope we give you more of a game at Eastlands!

  • Comment number 11.

    Short answer - no. Admittedly they've started well but as is always said with Arsenal, judge them on the season and with a run-in under pressure (lasagne anyone?)

    And as much as I hate to say it, spurs' football hasn't been bad this year with some good 1 and 2 touch stuff. So can I expect plenty of media opinion that "you've got to get in their faces" and "spurs won't like it up 'em"

  • Comment number 12.

    As a Spurs fan I'm used to being pessimistic, but this year is looking good following our shaky start. It's early days yet, sure - can anyone serously believe Newcastle will finish in the top 4? This time last year it was Bolton up there in a CL place and surprising us all, and look at them now, the year before it was Hull - 'nuff said! And yes, Spurs are perhaps over reliant on 5 or 6 of their first 11, but who isn't, aside perhaps from Man City? I remember seeing some pre-season predictions in When Saturday Comes, the Spurs fan had said we'd finish above where our ground capacity suggests we should. At least half the league have a bigger capacity than our 36,000 or so, and thus greater match day income, but no team with a smaller one will finish above us. We'll be top 6 for sure, but let's hope for a continuation of our current form and breaking back into the top 4! COYS!

  • Comment number 13.

    @ JPR60 - yes you may be "win behind both Chelsea and Spurs" but let's see who you've won against so far. Chelsea, Stoke, Sunderland, Bolton and Swansea. Well done.

    However, you have lost to Man U, Spurs, Liverpool (competitors for the CL places) and Blackburn.

  • Comment number 14.

    6. Jet u mention Chelsea having massive strenth in depth, so ok how about this for Spurs reserve team, Gomes (or Cudiccini), Corluka, Dawson, Gallas, Bassong, Kranjcar, Huddlestone, Sandro, Pienaar, Defoe and Pavluchenko, all currently outside the first 11, and all internationals that looks like pretty good strenth in depth to me and add they have a number of promising youngsters doing well in Europe, I would suggest that Spurs bench is the equal of Chelseas at the moment

  • Comment number 15.

    Short answer - no. Admittedly they've started well but as is always said with Arsenal, judge them on the season and with a run-in under pressure (lasagne anyone?)

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Absolutely, it is much more relevant to drag up that non-existant lasagne from six seasons ago and an almost completly different team and manager than to remember Spurs beating a championship chasing Arsenal and Chelsea at the Lane and their main rivals for 4th in man City away in the run in just two seasons ago with pretty much the same team aand manager. I think spurs have shown the can cope with a bit of pressure.

  • Comment number 16.

    As a proud spud, I would say that our chance to grab 4th is now. With such a strong midfield and good defense we are playing as well as I have seen in my 16 years. However, 3rd is asking a bit much. Chelski will come good sooner or later and Roman will flash the cash like he was trying to put out a fire with 100 Ruble bills. But if Harry will go out and bring in Adebayor permanently and a quality centre back then we can snatch 4th and even win the Europa league if Harry will put out some regulars.

  • Comment number 17.

    Absolutely, it is much more relevant to drag up that non-existant lasagne from six seasons ago and an almost completly different team and manager than to remember Spurs beating a championship chasing Arsenal and Chelsea at the Lane and their main rivals for 4th in man City away in the run in just two seasons ago with pretty much the same team aand manager. I think spurs have shown the can cope with a bit of pressure.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Fair enough spurs have proved they can win a scrap for 4th but talking about finishing above Arsenal and Chelsea means being in and around a race for the top; at the moment with the two manchester clubs. And as Hansen and Lawrenson will tell you ad nauseam then you rely on experience and having been there before. We saw it last year with Arsenal - a few bad results and things can slide.

  • Comment number 18.

    I think its important to not that Spurs have done all thes league games without a tried and tested back four. Yes its worked out, but before this season there was in Walker (in contention - and out on loan?) and our first choice centre pairing with such an unpredictably fit King were Gallas and Dawson, both of whom have been injured the entire season.

    Why did we lose the openning two games? Honestly a decent part was being outplayed, although I'm not sure how fair the scorelines were to reflecting the matches. City outplayed us, not sure it was worthy of a 5-1 drumming, and Man Utd looked average against us for the first 60 minutes.

    Another major component I feel to those two early loses were the back four learning to play with each other, learning to anticipate and understand how they each play outside of the training pitch.

    Its interesting to note that since those early two poor showings, Spurs have won 6 from 7 and only conceeded 8 goals.

  • Comment number 19.

    Lose Modric or Bale through injury and Spurs could have a bit of a problem. I still think Chelsea may edge the 'top team in London' tag as once we get to Jan/Feb and Spurs have Europa games, FA Cup games and prem games the freshness of Spurs may diminish.
    At the same t

  • Comment number 20.

    At the same time I wouldn't say Chelsea, Utd or Arsenal are by any means guaranteed a top 4 place either.

  • Comment number 21.

    Tottenham - the top team in London? NO simple as

  • Comment number 22.

    Typical BBC: an article on London's Premier League clubs with no mention of Fulham. On Sunday we will show you why this is a big mistake.

  • Comment number 23.

    Arsenal aren't even worth consideration in this discussion. they're a one man team, woeful at the back and lack general quality throughout the squad. they will do well to finish in the top 6 given how newcastle are playing.
    Tottenham - top team in London? Yes - definately

  • Comment number 24.

    To be honest, I think to is too close to call at this moment in time. There is very little between the three sides. It will come down to injuries and a bit of luck. The way chelsea are playing at the moment they may well find suspensions starting to bite and being the deciding factor. Arsenal do depend on Van persie an awful lot but then he is pure quality. If he is out again for any length of time then I can see them really struggle for goals. People say about what if we lose modric or bale but forget that when we finished 4th bale only played the last three months of the season and modric was out for several months with a broken leg. We do have some decent back up in midfield. 10 games in though is too soon to make any concreate predictions.

  • Comment number 25.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 26.

    I certainly feel at the moment we are the strongest of the London teams, we've taken as many points as Man City since our 5-1 drubbing, and probably from harder fixtures. An injury to Adebayor could potentially be irreplaceable, not our best player but definitely lacking options up front. If you look at our next few games though, up until the Chelsea game at Christmas we could certainly continue this race, and lead the chasing pace towards Citeh.

  • Comment number 27.

    Quite possible! Not sure why its such a big deal when you consider they are the second biggest club in London after Arsenal. They have been building a good team over a number of years, have big support and excellent tradition. More importantly they are well run at board level. In the medium term they cannot compete with Arsenal as the Gunners have already gone through the financial pain of building a new stadium, but in the long run there is no reason why Spurs should not be able to aspire to being London's top dogs, or at least on an even footing with Arsenal.

  • Comment number 28.

    @ 16: people keep talking about Spurs needing a good CB, but are King, Gallas, Kaboul, Dawson, Bassong and Khumalo really that awful? In the past we've even used Hudd and Corluka in there and not done too badly.
    @ 18: the contrast between the two opening results and the next seven is stark and I don't think it is simply a matter of adding Parker and Adebayor (even though they appear to be 'just what the doctor ordered'). Spurs had a pretty awful summer, dominated by the doubts over whether Modric would stay or leave. Berbatov's departure so unsettled the club that they spent the rest of the year in the relegation zone, and it seems Daniel Levy has learned from that debacle. It seems strange that highly paid professionals should be so psychologically vulnerable, but it isn't just Spurs. Look how Chelsea started off last season; odds on favourites for the title before the 'Wilkins affair' saw their form slide. That's why mischievous people like to sow discontent at targeted clubs, and the media lap it up. Add to this the toll taken by injuries and the African nations Cup in January (far too many players come back crocked from international duty - no wonder its losing the support of club fans). Consequently, I totally agree with...
    @ 24:... that the season is far too close to call. MC appear to be this one's odds on favourites for the title. One suspects that the MU pedigree will see them through to 2nd and Chelsea's resources, on and off the pitch are likely to ensure them 3rd. But what about NU? Nobody imagines they'll still be riding high in May, even their own fans (for the greater part), but who knows. They're steadily picking up the points, have a strong pedigree of eking out results through a cold winter. Meanwhile, Arsenal seem to be over their own appalling start, kind of, but haven't exactly been inspiring, except last w/e. And Spurs seem to be getting it just right; balancing their squad, keeping key players fresh (except poor Walker, who's coping magnificently with the overload, in the absence of Corluka and the need for Kaboul in the middle) and playing some lovely football into the bargain. I'm happy to content myself with that and see where it gets us.

  • Comment number 29.

    Nice to see someone at the BBC finally acknowledge that Spurs are more than just contenders for 4th. The team is currently sitting joint 4th (lets not quibble over 2 points of goal difference), 4 points off 2nd with a game in hand, having played 5 of the other clubs in the top 7. As someone pointed out above, Spurs also have an upcoming run of "easier" fixtures so theres no reason why the current run can't continue.

    Yes, we lost to both Manchester teams, but there were major selection and off-field problems and that was back in August. Unbeaten for 2 months since then and playing some outstanding football. Only the most rabid fan would claim that Spurs can win the title this year, but I can confidently see them finishing 3rd or possibly even 2nd, with a bit of good fortune.

  • Comment number 30.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 31.

    oh and did you consider defence?? nooo. hmm lets see, you have at the back a nightmare of a back four... for spurs sake! kaboul, assou ekotto, dawson and walker. hmmm i think that kaboul and ekotto are just really lazy and koscielny and vermaelen would walk it against them. walker hasnt really convinced me tbh, he was playing average in an awful villa team. plus they just had the cheek to sell hutton to villa, when for me villa could be still a better club if they find one more midfielder. alan hansen even criticised ekotto against everton, and i agreed entirely! plus, michael dawson has never cut it for england and he doesnt command the box well enough. that back four will cost them dearly steven, and yet you only rave about their so called "brilliant" attack. got beat 5-1 by man city btw, aguero made dawson look awful for his goal and dzeko just schooled the whole back four. cant wait steve to see them collapse.

  • Comment number 32.

    @chris weatherall

    I can't believe you actually just accused this reporter of bias, have you read your own comment?!

    1. Ramires over Parker? That would be why Parker won pfa player of the year I suppose
    2. Mata better than bale? I know bale has been massively hyped, but I think the majority of people would still pick him instead.
    3. Does it matter what vdv is classed as?
    4. Wilshere over modric? I hope for your sake you're some kind of ironic comic genius
    5. Don't know if you've even watched spurs in the last year, but kaboul has been consistent and immense. Ekotto may be lazy, but he's played well for the last year
    6. Vermalean couldn't walk into our team because he can't actually walk half the time, too busy being injured. Plus Ledley King is an absolute beast compared to any of your defenders, actually embarrasses them, even if he only plays 3 games a year.
    7. Your villa comment just loses you all football knowledge credibility I'm afraid, 1 midfielder away from being better than spurs?! HA. In that case spurs are 1 ball boy and a physio away from being better than Barcelona.
    8. I can only presume you're an arsenal fan, so you got beat 8-2 btw

    Maybe you should follow your own advice and come back when you've dropped your bias, and stopped being so bitter.

  • Comment number 33.

    Have to say that Parker was a dreadful addition to my fantasy footy team. He's had rave reviews after every match in real life, and I check my points tally to see "2" - i.e. played 90 minutes. Sold him for Gutierrez which nearly kills me as possibly the most overrated one-trick pony in the BPL; even John Terry has got a new "bow down" trick ...

  • Comment number 34.

    @6 Spurs probabaly have the second best depth behind Man City in the whole league! Maybe on par with united. And if you havn't guessed I am a United fan.

    Loving the look of spurs this season and despite the results against the Manchester teams. I think they can beat the big boys this season.
    Chelsea have off-form players (which doesn't seem to be changing any time soon) and Arsenal are re-building, Spurs on the other hand have trimmed the fat and brought in some quality editions. Don't see why they can't be the best team in London.

    @chris weatherall

    If you support either Chelsea or Arsenal. I wouldn't be criticising Spurs' defence if I were you. P.s BAE has probabaly been the best left-back this season and King has been the best center back. Walker's performances so far are definately put him up there too...Not as good as Micah though.

  • Comment number 35.

    It's all about team spirit and confidence. I dont think there's much between Chelsea, Spurs and Arsenal over the long run. But the team that gets it's mojo going the best will finish top.
    Look at Arsenal a month ago in tatters, now it's Chelsea's turn for a crisis in confidence, Spurs will falter too. But I fancy them to finish 3rd 4th and 5th........

  • Comment number 36.

    As an Arse fan I have to comment on Spurs fans general satisfaction with Adebayor. Yes he's a class player when on song, but that canary can go a little sour. It's happened at his last three clubs ( cant remember wot happened before Highbury) that's just the sort of spanner in the works that could derail Tottenham ( sorry for the mixed metaphors)

  • Comment number 37.

    Come the season's end it'll be Chelsea on top of the London clubs, as always.

  • Comment number 38.

    Under any other manager(Particularly O' Neill or Moyes) there could be a fair argument that Spurs could become the top club at the end of the season.
    But they are coached by Redknapp. The man is an average manager who cant clearly has underachieved with an above average team.

    The only real chance Spurs have to overtake Chelsea and Arsenal as London's top clubs is if their managers continue wallowing in their naivete particularly the former who seems to be VASTLY out of his depth as far as the EPL is concerned.

    Its barely November. TOO EARLY to make calls on who's top dog in London. Wait til around March at least and perhaps make the call then.

  • Comment number 39.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 40.

    Spurs have made a good start and are a good team, but its way too premature in saying they will finish higher than Arsenal or Chelsea. They have only made it to the CL once and in all honesty that will probably be their last time, as Man city has definitely taken one CL place. Redknapp will be moving to the England job at the end of the season, and their players won't hang around if he's not there and their not in the CL next season. But they are an entertaining team to watch.

  • Comment number 41.

    Spurs have been playing some magnificent football this season and the midfield is the best in the league with the possible exception of MCFC. My fear (Spurs fan - always worried) is that we lack cover up front. I'd like to see another striker in during the Jan transfer window and Pav to stay. Having said that, our 'up front' options are a lot better than Arsenal, who would be lost without RVP and are likely to lose him to injury or contract uncertainty.

    I hope we top the 'London' group, mostly because - barring miracles - that will see us into the CL. For a team with a small(ish) stadium and a not-crazy wage structure, that would be a remarkable achievement.

  • Comment number 42.

    As an Arsenal Fan all i can say is we desperately need to sign spurs press officer. But the elephant in the room for Tottenham is the new stadium, what happens to the team and the money available for new players then, Arsenal while a little dodgy at the start of the season are really just entering the beginning of the end of the stadium building process.

  • Comment number 43.

    I know people will just say i'm bias, but I still can't help but feel that a lot of these spurs players are overated. Modric may have gotten a £40M bid from Chelsea but that just means that Abramovitch rates him £10M less then Torres. Bale got 11 goals and 3 assists last season in 41 appearances, Walcott got 13 goals and 9 assists from 38 appearances, guess who's PFA player of the year and who's yet to come good and lacking a football brain (coined by ex-spud).

  • Comment number 44.

    this is a better Spurs squad than the one that made the Champs League and failed to make it in the last two seasons. Friedel, Walker, Parker, Van Der Vaart and Adebeyour all better than their previous incumbents. Out of League Cup (good), developing good young players in Europa League, it all looks rosy, BUT expect a huge battle between Spurs, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool, if you assume the two Manc's will stay in top four. Should be an outstanding season that goes to the wire.

  • Comment number 45.

    i like the comment wait till later in the season isnt that the last 6 weeks, when arsenal show the rest of the pl how to shed the wheels off the wagon .?

  • Comment number 46.

    #36. "cliveeta" makes a good point amongst many commenting on midfield and defence. Tottenham have better cover than nearly anyone in GK, defence and midfield, yet up top we're lacking.

    Pavlyuchenko, whilst he can score great goals isn't consistent enough and not nearly a good enough footballer to play in a Spurs team based around quick passing. Defoe, whilst one of the league's best finishers and able to create a goal from nothing, works best when alongside another striker.

    Adebayor is playing well and one of the keys to our side; when he's missing we go missing. A proper target man has been our problem since Berbatov left, we're still in this predicament. A top striker in the #9 mould is our top priority for January.

  • Comment number 47.

    Interesting to see that the BBC have upped the stakes in their Totteringham love-in. For each of the last 15 years, at this time of the year we have heard about how the balance of power has shifted in North London, with Spurs set to overtake Arsenal. This year they are going to top Arsenal and Chelsea.

    If van der Vaart and Modric both stay fit (and, an even bigger if, they stay past the end of the transfer window), then Spurs have a decent shot at top 4 and/or overtaking Arsenal or Chelsea. If either of those two gets injured, they will struggle. If they lose both then the team looks very ordinary.

    #14 your back-up XI doesn't look anything special to me, particularly as Dawson and Gallas will spend most of the season in the treatment room with Ledley King.

    Of course as #42 has pointed out, the big question is how will Spurs manage the move to a new stadium to replace their current outdated home. Unless they bring in a sugar daddy then it is going to have a huge impact on the team. They deserve credit for trying to live within their means, but even had they managed to move into the White Elephant, it would have put pressure on their budget.

  • Comment number 48.

    gunnerslovver2007, are you really trying to say that Torres is worth the £50 million paid for him, he's not even one of the top ten strikers, and Walcott ahead of Bale?, now you really do have me laughing. Wow, Walcott scored two goals more than Bale. No hat tricks against Inter Milan though. Decent player but basically a flat track bully.

  • Comment number 49.

    @43 I agree.

    But they are both good players and would still make everyone's starting 11s bar City's.

    Young v Bale is debatable.

  • Comment number 50.

    Its funny how spurs fans say they lost against the 2 city teams due to the players they had missing. Arsenal have had 3 defenders out all season and still have kept 6 clean sheets. The 2 bad defeats Arsenal have had came against Utd away and Lpool at home yet they had 7 first team players unavailable. No excuse, Arsenal's squad isn't as strong as we would hope but any team would miss 7 first team players. Both Arsenal and SPurs are on good runs with similar form and i expect both to be fighting for 4th spot just ahead of Liverpool. At the minute i think Spurs have the edge simply because they don't have the distraction of the CL. Having said that, with Wilshere and Sagna back in the new year and Vermaelan keeping fit, Arsenal have a great chance of getting 4th but again it depends on keeping key personnel fit.
    To answer the question, yes, they could be Top team in London this year but they arn't the top team in London at the minute.

  • Comment number 51.

    I'm Manu fan but I've got huge respect for Spurs how did Harry managed to build this team and keep hold of his players and they gonna get only better and better pavluchenko will probably get sold there will be some money available I think players are happy at Spurs and they know that something special it's happening at this club they changing from a decent team to one of the best in Premier League

  • Comment number 52.

    Being a Spurs Fan, I am delighted by the current form being displayed since the first two games.

    However I am worried by the "Easier" run in to Christmas, Last season Spurs only beat Birmingham, on the last day of the season after drawing with them at home, lost and drew to Blackpool & West Ham... All three were relegated, that was 6 points out of a possible 18.

    Further to that we lost and drew with Wigan, and did manage to beat Wolves and drew again. that completes the Bottom 5 on last season's table. so in total 11 points from a Possible 30!!

    I hope the team has learnt from last seasons mistakes, I completely understand why Harry is resting the Main 11 in the Europa League and I have been Surprised in a very good way to the standard of the youngsters. It is very promising. The experience they will be getting is invaluable. so if there are injuries I do not feel as worried about the back up. it might give a kick up the backside to a few fringe players because they may be overlooked by the hungry youth players.

    Special Mention must go out to Kyle Walker this season Played nearly every game. and still looks fit as a fiddle. very high tackle success percentage as well was 88% before the QPR match. and he says that he needs to improve defensively!!

    Hopefully having Parker, who has suffered the taste of relegation, will pass on his experience to the rest of the squad so we don't suffer the same kind of results as last season.

  • Comment number 53.

    @51
    Spurs have done well to keep hold of players like Bale and Modric but do you seriously see these players hanging around when the likes of City and Barca come knocking? (i know modric had the chelsea saga this summer, but can spurs hold on to him another summer?) As good as spurs are they wont start winning titles due to the money available to City and Chelsea and the presence of Utd. Rednapp can spin that spurs are on the verge of greatness but that only holds for a short time with players. Ask guys like Nasri and Cesc.

  • Comment number 54.

    Spurs are doing well, there is no doubt about that. They are playing some nice football and getting good results (minus the Manchester clubs) ... but it is way to early to say they are the top team.

    They seem to have good players and cover for most positions but what is the difference between this current team and last seasons team? I'm not sure of everyone that they have brought in but it hasn't come on leaps and bounds has it? Adebayor is a great addition but no long term solution. Old Rubber Face himself said there was no way they could keep him long term. His wages are probably more than the combination of Defoe + Pavlychenko + VDV!!!

    Are Spurs playing well? Sure are. Are Chelsea and Arsenal (who i support) playing well? Still up for discussion. The rankings will only be decided come May!!!

    On a side note @ Brookspurs - Saying Vermaelen was too unfit to get into Spurs team? You have Led-Legs King!!! Yes a commanding CB but can he even train more than twice a week???

  • Comment number 55.

    I still fancy Chelsea to finish as the top London club, but to see Tottenham putting together a string of convincing performances after the uncertainty surrounding Modric, and key injuries that clearly affected those early results, is good to see.

    For me, I generally think Tottenham can challenge for the title over the next few years. The issue is that until they can maintain a top-four position consistently, players such as Modric and Bale will be linked with other clubs who have the capital to capture their main rivals' best players.

    I think it is important that Spurs get a decision sorted on a new ground in order to generate further income; they need to hold on to their own, and introduce other, top quality players, they need to be able to manage their squad accordingly to ensure strength in depth is not compromised (I wonder how long players such as Jermaine Defoe, Roman Pavlyuchenko, Niko Kranjcar etc will stay knowing that they are not first choice?), and the big question is, what happens if Harry Redknapp is offered, and then takes the England job?

    Spurs definitely have the ability to become London's top dog... I just think it relies on a few factors. I hope they manage it as their success, and the way they play their football, can only be seen as a massive positive for English football.

    http://thethoughtsofphil.wordpress.com/

  • Comment number 56.

    It just shows how poor the EPL is, when Spurs are being touted as top 4 material, yet Real Madrid never left second-gear in their home and away demolitions of them in the CL. Real (who are even better this season, the last) have had tougher games against La Liga strugglers, like Racing and Real Sociedad.

    This leads to the conclusion that, even if Spurs were the best team in London, they'd still be a bottom 3 team in La Liga.

    You only need to look at the Spurs squad to see how average they are. Half of the Spurs squad would struggle to hold down a place in the starting XI of ''The Coach and Horses'' on A Sunday morning. Scott ''journeyman plodder'' Parker, Tom Pubblestone and Aaron ''headless chicken'' Lennon, being amongst the most obvious examples of these players.

  • Comment number 57.

    Spurs have a great side, they did last season and its better this season with Adebayor and Parker in it so they are definitely in that challenge for the champions league places. If you judge it on one game, Spurs 2 1 Arsenal, Spurs had won 5 on the bounce, Arsenal completely out of form and missing too many players and had a very tough Champions League game in the week compared to Spurs sending their reserves to a Europa League game. All that and we still could have got a draw out of that game and it took a handball goal from VDV and a super strike from Walker to win it. Based on that, I dont fear Spurs one bit. But its all about consistency, come the end of the season the most consistent team wins the league, the second most consistent finished second etc. If Spurs, Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and dare I say Newcastle manage to keep their players fit, keep their minds right, and keep putting results together it will be a fantastic battle.

  • Comment number 58.

    zzzz you need new material....getting kinda boring.

    The mention of: skysports, pub standard, trundler, something about dogs and milk, modle pro to follow.

  • Comment number 59.

    Wait a minute?

    Are people seriously talking about Spurs as title challengers? Is this Comedy Central?

    Do people never learn their lesson? Every October or November, people claim about half-a-dozen teams will be ''title challengers'', because people don't seem to understand how a 38-game league works.

    We all know it's going to be between City and United, with Chelsea looking increasingly - albeit amusingly - unlikely to mount a challenge this season, due to their mediocre team being glaringly exposed for the second season running.

  • Comment number 60.

    Spurs have made a decent start but lack depth. Lose Parker and Modric then who is left in midfield?

    good point sandro has come on leaps and bounds and is just starting to get fit he can replace parker without question, but i dont see any replacement for modric in the squad. spurs needed to buy a striker badly in the summer they just could not get the big name or indeed the right man.

  • Comment number 61.

    Its a nice idea, but you can only say that once the season is tied up. Until then, it's down to form and injuries.

    If Spurs are to take the top spot in England, they will probably need to invest, and not just to ensure they can keep Bale, Modric and Van Der Vaart at the club.

    But if they do come above their local rivals in the league, it can only add weight to their call for the Olympic stadium, and Harry's call to England (or at least Team GB).

  • Comment number 62.

    "It just shows how poor the EPL is, when Spurs are being touted as top 4 material, yet Real Madrid never left second-gear in their home and away demolitions of them in the CL. Real (who are even better this season, the last) have had tougher games against La Liga strugglers, like Racing and Real Sociedad.

    This leads to the conclusion that, even if Spurs were the best team in London, they'd still be a bottom 3 team in La Liga."

    DON'T FEED THE TROLL

  • Comment number 63.

    @ The_soul_patch_of_David_Villa

    So one minute you're basing Spurs La Liga chances on two Champions League games last year and next you're saying we don't understand how a 38 game season works??

  • Comment number 64.

    getting back to the article i think the margins are closing on spurs getting closer to both arsenal and chelsea big time if spurs dont drop silly points against some of the so called smaller fish in the league as they did last season(champions league season) then maybe just maybe they could finish above those two then there is a definate argument

  • Comment number 65.

    @ The_soul_patch_of_David_Villa

    So one minute you're basing Spurs La Liga chances on two Champions League games last year and next you're saying we don't understand how a 38 game season works??
    ----------------------------------------------------------

    dont try and understand Soul_Patch, no one can. I wonder if hes worried about his clubs weekend encounter with "The New Inn"

  • Comment number 66.

    zzzz you need new material....getting kinda boring.

    The mention of: skysports, pub standard, trundler, something about dogs and milk, modle pro to follow.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------

    yeah no kidding, you need a new gag man. being saying this for weeks now.
    I'm off to "The Dog and the Pond" for a tipple this lunchtime, as i've been a consumate pro all week ;-)

  • Comment number 67.

    Spurs challenging to be the top team from London just goes to shown how competitive the EPL is now. Chelsea and Arsenal were out in front but Spurs have added quality to their ranks and closed the gap somewhat.

    The EPL is just proving beyond all doubt that it is THE best league in the world.

  • Comment number 68.

    My apologies I forgot to mention the usage of comedy central, but hey there is a new mcnulty blog up, be prepared to see more of the same. If he hasn't already (I haven't checked yet). He will prob bring up la liga in that blog too.....somehow

  • Comment number 69.

    Spurs since the first two games, have been in great form. Adebayor and Parker have made a big difference to the side and have added a bit more strength to the backbone of the team. That combined with getting a reasonable amount of games out of King (who is showing just what a shame for both us and England his injury problems have been) just gives us a better and more competitive shape and team.

    I honestly think Spurs have overtaken Arsenal in terms of quality of squad although Van Persie is truly world class. I think an example of this is recent major signings - I wouldn't swap Adebayor, Van de Vaart and Parker for Gervinho, Arteta and Benayoun. I don't think many neutrals would either.

    Chelsea are still very strong (and I really like Mata), it's just a question of if AVB getting them to play his way is going to cause some teething problems (which it looks like it will). This may give Spurs an opportunity this season.

    It obviously is far too early to tell and the league table always speaks for itself at the end of the season so we will see. The biggest question for me is Spurs beating the teams we SHOULD beat, if we had done that last season rather than drawing or even losing games against sides really struggling we could have been in CL. If Ledley or Parker are on the field, I hope their leadership and experience will make this less likely to happen.

  • Comment number 70.

    My apologies I forgot to mention the usage of comedy central, but hey there is a new mcnulty blog up, be prepared to see more of the same. If he hasn't already (I haven't checked yet). He will prob bring up la liga in that blog too.....somehow

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    yeah saw it, hes not been on yet. Can just hear it now "SAF is a pub standard manager, for the Rose and Crown". he makes me laugh though....

  • Comment number 71.

    The_soul_patch_of_David_Villa wrote:

    Wait a minute?

    Are people seriously talking about Spurs as title challengers? Is this Comedy Central?

    Do people never learn their lesson? Every October or November, people claim about half-a-dozen teams will be ''title challengers'', because people don't seem to understand how a 38-game league works.


    -------------------------------------
    So true.
    So typical of PL followers. Spurs - Title challengers? Purleeeeease

    They'll even convince themselves that Newcastle are title challengers just to convince themselves that the PL is "unpredictable".

    Even more laughable are Harry Redknapp's answers to the press. e.g:

    Press: " Harry, where do you think Spurs can finish this season?"
    Redknapp: "oh, we'll be right up there"

    Right up where Harry?
    4th? 3rd? 1st?
    Even he isn't deluded enough to believe Spurs can win it.

  • Comment number 72.

    @71

    There are very few (if any) comments on here stating Spurs are title challengers, its more about finishing above Chelsea and Arsenal which most people are assuming means 3rd/4th.

  • Comment number 73.

    The Spurs are great to watch at present. I dont think you d get a razor blade between the 3 of the Clubs at present. None are brilliant, none are poor. Theyre all just pretty decent and a million miles away from Man C and quite a few hundred thousand for Man U. Redknapp has done well for Spurs and if he goes, they may suffer. The difficulty for Spurs and Arsenal is that a few injuries knocks the wind out of both teams sails more so than it does Chelsea. I would say though that Chelsea face more acute problems than the others as their decline has set deeply in and the old guard there need to be elbowed aside. A tough ask after what theyve achieved in the last 6 years or so. Arsenal and Tottenhams biggest issue is keeping the players they have. None of this makes for a very healthy outlook for the3 London Clubs.

  • Comment number 74.

    And Soul_Patch is back as Pique the Plodder......

  • Comment number 75.

    63. At 10:23 3rd Nov 2011, CalrissianShark wrote:

    So one minute you're basing Spurs La Liga chances on two Champions League games last year and next you're saying we don't understand how a 38 game season works??
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    No, the maulings which Los Merengues handed out to Tottenham Pubspur last season, only serve as a stark indicator of the gap in class between Real Madrid and Spurs (bare in mind, that Real are better than last season and Spurs are worse).

    While I wouldn't categorically state that Spurs would be a bottom 3 finisher in La Liga, all the indicators would appear to suggest that to all the aficionados of the beautiful game.

    In terms of the league season, this same crazy talk happens every year, around about October or November. When teams have only played about 10 games, then of course the table will look tight, due to the lack of points available to accrue.

    What bamboozles me, is that it happens every single season. Albert Einstein - a consummate pro in the physics world - once said ''the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."

    That's exactly what the Basset Hounds do year after year, voraciously lapping up the Sky Sports milk.

  • Comment number 76.

    The_Hacienda FAC51 wrote:
    And Soul_Patch is back as Pique the Plodder

    ------------------------
    Hey, I'm very much my own man.

  • Comment number 77.

    75. At 11:00 3rd Nov 2011, You wrote:

    *bare in mind
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    *bear

    I ''bare'' my mind often enough of BBC blogs.

  • Comment number 78.

    the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

    yeah but the law of averages says you will eventually get a different result.....

  • Comment number 79.

    That's exactly what the Basset Hounds do year after year, voraciously lapping up the Sky Sports milk.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    i've never seen a basset hound drink milk

  • Comment number 80.

    Soul_

    I understand you're upset because your boys got beat 0-3 by City in their own back yard last night, but come on.

    Would you not agree that Spurs have closed the gap between themselves and Chelsea and Arsenal?

  • Comment number 81.

    79. At 11:05 3rd Nov 2011, The_Hacienda FAC51 wrote:

    i've never seen a basset hound drink milk
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Here's your average Sky Sports subscriber listening to Jamie Redknapp:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Vxj5IZEuN0&feature=player_embedded

  • Comment number 82.

    I am loving the fact that Spurs are doing well and haters will always hate.

    Even Jesus had his detractors so I am not surprised that the modern day prophets at Spurs are getting some stick.

    In a thousand years time we will all be saying the Spurs Prayer and reading the Gospels according to Bale, Luka, Rafa and Scott.

    On a side note BBC please bring back 606- you made a massive error getting rid of it. I have been on other forums and they are for want of a better word- toilet

  • Comment number 83.

    great, but i've still never seen a basset hound drink milk

  • Comment number 84.

    80. At 11:11 3rd Nov 2011, Zeemo wrote:

    I understand you're upset because your boys got beat 0-3 by City in their own back yard last night, but come on.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Villarreal were robbed. Savic should have been sent off for elbowing, and the Balotelli penalty incident was a joke!

    If Savic had correctly received his marching orders, then I have no doubt that Villarreal would have gone on to win that match.

    I don't Spurs have closed the gap. Chelsea's team is full of over-the-hill plodders who wouldn't look out of place huffing and puffing for ''The Fox'' on a Sunday morning.

    I think Arsenal will finish above Spurs, as Spurs are just going through a purple patch due to the pub-standrad teams they are playing in this run of fixtures.

  • Comment number 85.

    robbed 3-0? please go back to the home, they are looking for you.
    Maybe Villa(not)real are the pub standard team here, and City brushed them aside in their stride (this from a United fan as well)

  • Comment number 86.

    83. At 11:14 3rd Nov 2011, The_Hacienda FAC51 wrote:

    great, but i've still never seen a basset hound drink milk
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I've never seen Mount Kilimanjaro. That doesn't mean that it doesn't exist.

  • Comment number 87.

    I've never seen Mount Kilimanjaro. That doesn't mean that it doesn't exist
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------

    yes because of course I see the parallel there. you need work on your metaphors fella.
    maybe if you used cat in your cheesy milk lapping sky comment it would be more pertinent.

  • Comment number 88.

    THE SOUL PATCH OF DAVID VILLA.........Since when did LA LIGA have anything to do with Spurs finishing 4th????????. But whilst we are on the subject of LA LIGA did u see last nights display form VILLARREAL not exactly a glowing advert for the league was it. And yes im aware VILLARREAL were missing players but thier attempt to make a contest of the game was dreadful to say the least,they showed as much commitment to the cause as a TURKEY on xmas eve......

  • Comment number 89.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 90.

    88. At 11:23 3rd Nov 2011, dur1 wrote:
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    A half-strength Villarreal were robbed by bad refereeing decisions. If Savic had been correctly sent-off early in the first half, then Villarreal would have gone on to win that game.

  • Comment number 91.

    Under Redknapp they've always been a very exciting team.

    I hope they re-book their place in the CL again. I hope Bale keeps his form and scores even more great goals.

    Couldn't imagine the PL without them and Arsenal. Actually I could, it was back to 2005 to Mourinho the machines' Chelsea 'grind out the league', with ManU doing 'the rest'. I feel bad in saying this since I always appreciate a good defensive-based team, but defending is so last decade.

    Blackpool did the PL proud.

  • Comment number 92.

    @84.....Pub standard sides???? and arsenal havn,t, SUNDERLAND,STOKE,BOLTON ETC , and of course CHELSEA and the chelsea fans would probley agree that the way they defended on saturday they were watching a pub team.Would love to meet u face to face and knock some sense into u

  • Comment number 93.

    87. At 11:23 3rd Nov 2011, The_Hacienda FAC51 wrote:
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I just showed you YouTube footage of a Basset Hound guzzling some milk from a mug.

    Just because you haven't personally seen something, doesn't alter the evidence which is available.

    Just like the existence of Mount Kilimanjaro.

  • Comment number 94.

    It's frustrating that so many people can't tell the difference between saying Tottenham have improved to the extent that they're genuine challengers to Chelsea and Arsenal, and saying that Tottenham are miles better than those teams.

    We're not going to win the league, although we're capable of the continuous improvement that means we can maintain a challenge for the title in a few years time.

    We're not better than Arsenal or Chelsea, but are considerably closer to them than we've been at any other point in the last 10-15 years and can be justifiably considered as on-a-par, at least with Arsenal, when considering the relative squads.

  • Comment number 95.

    A half-strength Villarreal were robbed by bad refereeing decisions. If Savic had been correctly sent-off early in the first half, then Villarreal would have gone on to win that game.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Villareal are worse than Otelul Galati. You have to expect it though, they're a team like 18 others who are simply in business to make up the numbers in Spain. Nothing more nothing less.

    Zero points after 4 games shoes how poor they are.

  • Comment number 96.

    Spurs seem to be a team cobbled together with bits of string and chewing gum - it's held together this long, but it won't last.

  • Comment number 97.

    Villareal are worse than Otelul Galati. You have to expect it though, they're a team like 18 others who are simply in business to make up the numbers in Spain. Nothing more nothing less.

    Zero points after 4 games shoes how poor they are.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    wait for the consumate pros, pub standard comment due anytime now.

  • Comment number 98.

    @..96... Think your sounding rather worried about spurs,grabbing at straws to find a genuine argument to back up your silly statements. You say it won,t last long, but you havn,t 1 piece of evidence to back up that statement. So maybe you can tell us all why you think it will fall apart. Anyone can come out with sweeping statements saying this and that will happen,as i said me thinks its all wishfull thinking cause you are actually worried and long may that last.....

  • Comment number 99.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 100.

    Soul_ wrote:
    If Savic had correctly received his marching orders, then I have no doubt that Villarreal would have gone on to win that match.
    ------------------------------------

    Yeah, and if my aunty had a pair she'd be my uncle.

    Balotelli is a consummate pro. He would never go down unless he was really fouled.......

    No sorry, couldn't do it. I'm not like you Soul_.
    I'm too honest. You're right the pen was a joke.

    Didn't see an elbow though.

 

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