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A crucial week for Spurs

Steve Wilson | 11:08 UK time, Monday, 25 August 2008

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.

Andrei Arshavin

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.


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  • Comment number 1.

    Funny that the Spurs fans and board have not yet mentioned Ramos being shown the door, as Jol was after 2 defeats in 2 last season.
    Spurs` poor start season only further highlights their atrocious behaviour concerning Jol last season

  • Comment number 2.

    It's a fair point about the adulation of players at Man Utd but players like Paul Scholes have proved that it is possible to duck under the limelight should they wish. Of course, that's not to say that they completely escape the media attention but if Berbatov were to sign for Man Utd he would become an excellent squad member - not a star striker.

  • Comment number 3.

    Spurs' actions in all of this only serves to leave bad feeling between all the clubs involved. Reporting teams to the FA and then retracting (in Liverpool's case) will only make teams more wary of dealing with Spurs in the future...isn't it just better for everyone that when a fair offer is made, it is accepted (esp when the player wants to leave) - and then focus on getting replacements quicker.

  • Comment number 4.

    I think Man U rely on Ronaldo more than Spurs rely on Berbatov. New strikers would be nice though

  • Comment number 5.

    Good blog, and I agree with you about Arshavin, with Dos Santos and Modric, they don't need him. I was, however, hoping you'd suggest a few strikers they could buy; for example, Lukas Podolski. He seems avaliable, was one of Germany's best Euro 2008 players, and would get Spurs some much needed goals. Thoughts, Mr. Wilson?

  • Comment number 6.

    I must say non-spurs fans have no idea how terrible we were before ramos came last season. jol was a disgrace. 1 win from 12, conceding goals with a terrible defence and throwing away leads against bad teams.

    we never win against boro and have a poor record in the north east. sunderland at home is a game we expected to win but they are a much improved side and will not be relegation contenders at all.

    ramos won us the cup. first in 9 years and we played some great football up until the carling cup final. after that we understandably lost motivation.

    it is not his fault the strikers have defected. so once that problem is solved and we replace dawson with a decent centre back (because king will not play on a regular basis) and hopefully add an edgar davids type player then we will be fine again.

    by the way if you watched the game vs sunderland either at WHL or on a live stream or extended highlights on football first you would know that after their goal we were the dominant side and have nothing to worry about. their first goal was handball and their second against the run of play. either way there is nothing to worry about. yes you take 46 goals out the team and we will struggle but once we get in some decent strikers we should start to rebuild again. no realistic spurs fan thinks we will come near the top 4 especially after our strikers have gone so just to play good football especially at WHL is our target.

    p.s. bentley's delivery is incredible and just what we have been missing

  • Comment number 7.

    Fair point about Jol, but he had obviously been there longer and football people seem love change.
    Spurs have been caught in the strange position of being a club in transition losing its top players, and a free spending powerhouse complete with lengthy transfer sagas and top 4 expectations. I think they were always going to need time to settle in.
    Top 4 is unreasonable, nay impossible unless one of the big boys falls asleep, but 5th could still be attainable with some squad gelling...and a goalscorer or 6.

  • Comment number 8.

    Well as long as United cough up £25 mill+ then we'll let him go, quite simple really. But if they continue to say they're not going any higher than £20 mill then i'd rather we sell him for cheaper than that to a Barca, Real or AC Milan type of club abroad.

    We don't need a striker ffs, we really need a DM player, if Ramos can't see that then he needs his head examined. It's so blindingly obvious we lack a midfield general, I want us to be looking at players like Gattusso, Senna or even Frings.

  • Comment number 9.

    What about Zokora? I didnt see the game this weekend but he was ball shandy against boro at right back, why would he play there when you clearly need someone to hold the middle together.
    Even at that, iv always found him to lack the dominating streak of great DMs plus he can be a bit hasty going forward.

    What do people who'v seen a lot more spurs games than me think?

  • Comment number 10.

    yea i totally agree with comment number 8. we need some steel in midfield because our midfield is so lightweight. what about xabi alonso? he is spanish too! but then we also need a centre back because dawson is inept - i have been saying this for a long time.

    we cannot however go through a season with only darren bent so a striker is even more of a priority. i suggest 2.

  • Comment number 11.

    The Spurs board need to take the biggest slice of the blame for this debacle. In trying to act all back of the bus with Manchester Utd they have got their fingers burnt by a Manager and board who are much more used to this level of dealings than Spurs. Add that to the fact that Utd are not chasing Berbatov, since he desperately wants to go there, there will only be one winner.

    The fact that the board have tried to hold on for too long is ridiculous. We are now in the position exactly as described in the blog - We have a unhappy star player who is effectively refusing to play (I wonder which club gave him that idea..hmmm) and very little time left with which to replace him. Add to that the effect this has had on the team in the first two matches. A disaster.

    Berbatov should have been sold long before the season started. Levy should keep his mouth shut when making official complaints (after tapping up Ramos) and the manager should have been backed with action rather than posture.

  • Comment number 12.

    "we don't need a striker"? Come again?

    We don't need A striker. We need at least 2. Replacements for both Keane and Berbatov. And we need to find them fast.

    It's been a ridiculous start to the season. I don't know whose fault it is (wow, jumping on the blame culture bandwagon here for a second) but to get to the start of the season with Berbatov not sold and replacements not bought is ridiculous. Last season was a disaster (LC aside) because deals that should have been sorted in the summer were left hanging open into the autumn, meaning that Martin Jol had no authority in the dressing room and the players had no idea who was really in charge and who would be in charge next week. I can't believe the Powers That Be didn't learn from the mistakes of last season that business done outside of the summer months tends to have a hugely negative effect on the club.

    Oh well. I guess if we get it sorted nice and soon it might not be too late to salvage something, but we're probably looking at cups again rather than any great strides back towards the top 5 in the league. I'd settle for it - especially if it were the UEFA or FA cup... but I can't believe we've played 2 games and the season is a write off...

    Here's hoping I'm being unduly pessimistic.

  • Comment number 13.

    @1 - Yes the Spurs board did act disgracefully last season regarding Martin Jol - however, they will not even have entertained the idea of letting Ramos go at any point soon.

    Whilst I thought the side grew under the guidance of Jol, Ramos is the man Spurs wanted, and they will allow him to adjust with his new signings this year. Talk of him going is very premature (even if you are just making a point about the board's behaviour last year).

    What shocked me is that two of our best strikers were shipped out without replacements being brought in. I was vey pleased to see Bent get his goalscoring boots on in pre-season, however he alone will not be enough.

    I wish Berbatov had decided at the start of the season to give us one more year of his sublime football, and give Ramos plenty of time to get a natural successor. It's hardly a shock that he wants to leave for Champions League football, but after stating last year that he would stay past the summer, it's not a great sitution for us to be in. He is a joyous player to watch, and I certainly don't want to see him lining up in the Premiership against us two games of the year (possibly more with cups). Spurs to sell him overseas, that would be the best option ;)

  • Comment number 14.

    Spurs seem to constantly take 1 step forward and then 2 back. With Keane, Defoe, Berbatov and Bent they surely had one of the best strike force's in the premiership. Their problem was always leaking goals. They seemed to have sorted the defence by capturing Hutton, Bale and Woodgate but now they're left with only Bent upfront and had to play a system against Sunderland to accomodate that.

    The blog raised a very valid point that Spurs are going to pay over the odds if they want to sign someone before the deadline closes. Clubs will know Spurs are desperate to sign a striker or two and will just reject any initial offer knowing Spurs will come back with an improved bid. If Spurs don't sign a striker or two before the transfer deadline closes the top 4 will be out of sight by the time the window re-opens after Christmas.

    It looks like this will be yet another season of rebuilding for Tottenham.

  • Comment number 15.

    Number 6 - Stop your crying about the handball, i noticed this at the weekend aswell. Spurs fans crying saying it was a handball, jenas handled it as much as richardson did.

    anyways, spurs are becoming the new newcastle, massive spending and ambition but inevaitably doomed to failure.

  • Comment number 16.

    Nice dig at John O'Shea!

    (I'm sure his champions league medal will make up for it though)

  • Comment number 17.

    Spurs have missed the boat in that berbi was always going to go! Their are not many quality strikers available on the market,so it could be another mid table bore fest ! We should never of got rid of Defoe! Ask any spurs fan who they would rather have up front ;Defoe or Bent ? Modric is going to need a minder in the centre of the park and who,s going to do that job!

  • Comment number 18.

    Man. Utd. have made a bid for Berbatov of 20m and have been told 30m is the valuation for this player. Berbatov must not be sold below his market valuation. Berbatov himself can play this season and next for Tottenham. He is exactly the sort of player Tottenham require and Arshavin would be a big help too.

    Let the board get Ramos whatever players he requires this week. Berbatov will be worth every penny of 25m next year, so why on earth sell him to a top competitor? Tell him he is needed and that he is being held to contract unless his valuation is met. He has become irreplaceable now and must be treated as such. He's far too good to be allowed dictate to further his own ambitions. Hold on to him if at all possible. Jus like Utd. did with Ronaldo.

  • Comment number 19.

    Man. Utd. have made a bid for Berbatov of 20m and have been told 30m is the valuation for this player. Berbatov must not be sold below his market valuation. Berbatov himself can play this season and next for Tottenham. He is exactly the sort of player Tottenham require and Arshavin would be a big help too.

    Let the board get Ramos whatever players he requires this week. Berbatov will be worth every penny of 25m next year, so why on earth sell him to a top competitor? Tell him he is needed and that he is being held to contract unless his valuation is met. He has become irreplaceable now and must be treated as such. He's far too good to be allowed dictate to further his own ambitions. Hold on to him if at all possible. Just like Utd. did with Ronaldo.

  • Comment number 20.

    p.s. bentley's delivery is incredible and just what we have been missing

    What an absolute shambles, terrific point, but he will have no-one to deliver the ball to! If Ramos is smart he'll buy young strikers, up and coming, to replace the 2 27 yr olds, and for GOD'S SAKE FIX THAT DEFENSE!!!! Spurs can attack, always have been able to, and have great attacking midfielders, but without a stable back-line and a true CDM ala Mascherano/Essien/Hargreaves there will be little substance and no progress.

  • Comment number 21.

    Utd and Ronaldo was a VERY different situation, with him signing a 5 yr deal only 8 months ago, and the real reason he went no-where, he's injured until November!!!

    Take the profit, he'll maybe have 1 good season with Utd before he falls out with SAF. And seriously, how can you say that selling to Utd is selling to a top competitor. PLEASE be realistic. The competitors for Spurs will be Everton, Aston Villa, maybe Sunderland, Newcastle and if all the afore mentioned team's christmas' come at once ARSENAL. Dominate THAT group, and maybe then a platform will exist to COMPETE with Man Utd/Chelsea/Liverpool...

  • Comment number 22.

    firstly, if berbatov leaves, then spurs ought to sign 2 strikers at the very minimum. even if spurs sign 1 striker, him and bent up front with no back up in case of injuries is hardly ideal. Besides, bent may have looked good in pre-season, but in both of the premier league games, he has hardly been involved in the game and has looked generally poor.
    Once Berbatov has left, if Spurs can sign Arshavin, Huntelaar and Corluka within the next week then I would be happy with our squad.

    Spurs have to sign a top goalscorer, to replace the 50 odd goals scored from Berba and Keane last season. Huntelaar may be the answer. If we do not sign an goalscorer, the midfield cannot be expected to score all our goals, and relying on Bent would be dangerous. We could be in for a hard season unless we bring in more players

  • Comment number 23.

    The root of the whole problem is chairman, Daniel Levy. He's put our manager in an impossible position and, in the name of getting the best price for Berbatov, has potentially ruined our season. He is a publicity seeking fool who knows nothing about running a football club and seemingly nothing about running a business. Sack him imediatly and get somone who understand what is needed.

  • Comment number 24.

    Oh haven't you heard that Ramos is planning on bringing in Heskey?? THAT should solve the striker problem eh???

    I seriously HOPE that this is a baseless rumour, for all Spurs fan's sakes...

  • Comment number 25.

    would have let Berbatov go sooner if we had Keane. Ramos is going to have to be quick in the transfer market if Berbatov goes. No idea who he should sign, but I hope there are no panic buys

  • Comment number 26.

    totally agree there rob. What can we be thinking in bringing in Heskey for Berbatov??!!

  • Comment number 27.

    Sam, I am a Liverpool fan, but first and foremost a football fan, and cannot for the life of me understand how Spurs can be FREE SPENDING MONEY BAGS one week, then apparent misers the next... Why is Ramos waiting for the Berbatov conclusion to do more business??? Get it done, and make HIM surplus to requirements.

  • Comment number 28.

    I agree with 18/19.

    Berbatov is a professional and Spurs have the right to expect him to act like one.

    I dont see why Spurs should be the one's who get burnt in this whole situation; if Utd aren't prepared to meet their valuation of 30m or somewhere close to that, I believe Spurs have the full right to keep Berbatov at WHL. Once the window closes, Berb will realise that he can either become a professional and start playing or spend the rest of the season on the bench.

    I'm sure he'll change his mood and mind very quickly.

  • Comment number 29.

    As a Manchester United fan I’m really exited at the thought of Berbatov linking up with players such as Ronaldo and Rooney. I'm confident that Berbatov will provide that extra fire power we seem to be missing upfront after seeing him excel in the premier league. After the signings spurs made over the summer I felt they could really push for that 4th champions league spot this season. However they then went on to sell probably their best players Keane and now possibly Berbatov which for me has put spurs back down to a top-flight team. With only a week to go before the transfer deadline they seem have their sights set on Arshavin or Pavlyuchenko, which will be an expensive gamble to whether or not, they can carry on their Euro 2008 form in the premier league.

  • Comment number 30.

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

  • Comment number 31.

    1) I think that Berbatov should be extremely ashamed of himself after all the Tottenham fans have done for him. He's just in a big sulk and this behaviour surely cannot be impressing Sir Alex.
    2) Don't Spurs have some youth players we can blood for the moment as opposed to playing Bent up front by himself? Lee Bernard, Terry Dixon etc..

  • Comment number 32.

    I really don't buy into the idea that Spurs players stopped trying after they won the carling cup. Proffesional footballers should not be excused so easily, they are paid to win and it is simply not acceptable for them to stop trying with 3 months of football still to be played.
    I think Spurs fans are decieving themselves if they believe this to be the case, using this excuse is just masking over the fact that the club has serious problems. Is Ramos the right man for the job? His record in England, Carling Cup aside, is poor for a club with such high aspirations and significant bank-rolling.
    If Spurs do not sort out their striker issues soon they may find themselves well out of the mid-table european struggles and down in the midst of a very ugly relegation scrap. It's time for a reality check at White Hart Lane.

  • Comment number 33.

    As a life long Spurs supporter i completely agree with post 32.

    The issue at Spurs does not really revolve around whether or not Berbatov wants to go or not but what is happening at the club higher up.

    Why have we let two of our main strikers go without any replacements, and why are we looking to buy an untested mid field player in Arshavin when we need strikers?

    Why did we not just get rid of Berba at the beginning of the transfer market and spend the rest of the timelooking for valid replacements?

    Why have we still got Bent as our main striker when our manager di not even have faith in the player to play him until Defoe was sold and even then did so rarely?

    Is Ramos the manager we need? If we look at the stats it suggests that his record after the Carling Cup is worse than Jol's.

    Has he taken credit for winning the Carling cup when it was Jol's team that got us there and Jol who got us to the 1/4 finals before being sacked?

    Can the Arsenal win and the Chelsea win be explained by poor tactical decisions by the opposing managers rather than tactical know how by our manager?

    He has admitted that we did not have a replacement on our bench when he decided that Berba should not play on Saturday .... surely that is wrong

    How good is his team/ man mangement when our three best strikers want to leave /have left and no replacements have been sorted out for the beginning of the season? Why have we sold our defensive midfielders and replaced them with lightweights?

    More importantly if we continuein the form shown on Saturday we are serious relegation material and this is not right considering we have spent so heavily over the last few years. What is Commoli doing and similarly Levy .... we need these questions answered.

  • Comment number 34.

    My view is that Spurs should sell Berba overseas.

    Whilst a club cannot keep a disruptive player - A disruptive player needs to be shown that if they cross the club... and say they want to leave... be careful what they wish for.

    I am sure they could come to an agreement with one of:
    Barca, Real, Valencia, Bayern, Juve, AC, Inter

  • Comment number 35.

    I think we miss Keane just as much as we miss Berba. Lets face it. Berba didn't really want to be with us last year and only showed up in the big games.
    We should just cut our losses. But I'll be dissapointed if we get a replacement in like Heskey, Forlan or Arshavin. I don't rate them very high. I'd go for the dutch player. You probably know I'm speaking off. I just can't remember how to spell his name. Hunntlar or something like that.

  • Comment number 36.

    1. Spurs under Ramos last season were unquestionably a better team than under Jol earlier in the season. Forget Grant's poor tactics at Wembley and Arsenal playing a less than full squad. Remember the draw against Man Utd where we were clearly the better side and only a last ditch equalizer saved them. That was a full strength opponent with a top-class manager. Ramos shored up one of the worst defences in the Premiership with Woodgate and Hutton and improved the team and showed some brilliant game management.

    2. I understand Keane and Berbatov wanting to leave. Spurs aren't yet a top-tier team.

    3. What disturbs me is how unbalanced the current team is.

    We have a better goalkeeper and good backup; but we've done nothing to further strengthen the defence. Ledley's long-term fitness is an unknown, Dawson is vulnerable and neither Assou Ekotto nor Zkora is a natural full-back. You're still reliant on Woodgate and a currently unfit Hutton. Not enough to compete.

    We have a great attacking/creative midfield. We have a great attacking/creative midfield. Did I say that twice? That must be because we have about 17 attacking midfielders. Not a single bruiser (Zokora, perhaps) who is consistently winning th ball in the middle of the park. In both the Sunderland and Middlesbrough games you just couldn't avoid noticing that they were winning the marginal balls and were more aggressive in midfield.

    Attack. We need two more quality strikers, and a young back-up. That's obvious to everyone.

    4. Let's end on a note of optimism. I think Ramos is a great manager. This is a new team and he and they need some time. Just like he figured things out last season I think he'll figure them out this season. I just wish he'd get on with it.

  • Comment number 37.

    Spus have needed a real midfield general for years. The voids left by Carrick and Davids have never been covered - Zokora has never been up to it and players like Jenas/Modric need enforcers with them.

    I believe that with a good DM then the defenders would have welcome relief and show the form they are capable of.

    Up front the situation is a joke. Again Bent isn't really up to it at a club looking for the top 5 IMO. Some players have their level and perhaps Charlton (or 10-15th pos in prem) is his level. But now with selling Keane, Defoe, Mido and Berba going too - with no replacements at all - we are completely short and relying on goals from midfield.

    Who would i go for???? Havent' got a clue to be honest. Ruud Van Nistelrooy would probably top my list - he should have 2 top class years left in him. Arshavin has Rebrov wriiten all over him IMO and isn't the way to go - particularly at that money. Ashton is OK but injury prone and could be another Bent. Forlan? No thanks. Pavlychenko?? Didnt see all that much to be excited about at Euro '08 so no thanks again.

    I think we'll end up signing one striker and getting another on loan for the season.

    Without a good DM being signed then a top 5 finish is beyond us.

  • Comment number 38.

    On a different note - its all being going on a downward curve since Arnesen left and Commoli came in. Don't rate Commoli at all. Jol and Arnesen seemed a great team and if both had stayed i think we could have champions league memories by now.

  • Comment number 39.

    i dont agree with 33 or 32. jol had lost the plot. it was not a knee jerk reaction to sack him 1 win in 12 matches is poor especially considering the defence were useless.

    yes they underminded jol but the season before we were very lucky to finish 5th having conceded 57 goals and the writing was on the wall.

    ramos is a better coach. there is literally no debate. what he did was incredible last season. i believe if jol had continued we could have been relegated and we def would not have won the cup. JR's record at seville was unbelievable. a 1/10th of the budget of barca and they almost won the league. their football was even slicker and better too.

    also levy has backed the managers over the last 5 seasons ever since santini. we have been one of the biggest spenders in the league. it is well documented and quoted from levy that some of this summers budget was spent in january. yes we have spent 45mil but we have recouped more than 45 mil and cut our wage bill. hence leaving 6 players like boateng, lee and stalteri without squad numbers.

    despite the strings being tightened i still think we will sign 3 players before next week even if berba goes

  • Comment number 40.

    Worrying times for everyone connected with the club but we are strong enough, as a football club, to see it through.

    We'll be back kicking butt in no time!


  • Comment number 41.

    agree with comment 37. carrick was the biggest loss to our team since paul gascoigne left for lazio.

    also davids was probably the best player in the league during his first 6 months at WHL and that midfield was perfect. huddlestone and zokora have been big dissapointments and we need a DM asap.

    i agree that ruud would be a good option. i also said huntelaar would be too. ruud is a bit old and i think our transfer policy is 25 and under but maybe we do need experience.

    CB is also a major issue. dawson is useless. i wish we had sold him instead of kaboul. can anyone tell me why we failed to sign richard dunne this summer? terrible. that must be comolli's fault. it's the martin petrov saga all over again. could be the biggest mistake of the season if we dont reinforce the defence...

  • Comment number 42.

    Am i the only United fan not really excited at the prospect of Berbatov? I know hes a brilliant striker on his day but for me if his minds not on the game then he isnt going to play well! I want someone with commitment and takes pride in wearing the shirt!

    For me United need someone with pace and the ability to hit the back of the net consistently!! Someone such as Huntellar or Podolski....

    For Spurs i feel very sorry. They need to offload Berbatov or discipline him very quickly to let him know who is boss.

  • Comment number 43.

    I write as a Spurs fan and I believe what they need to bring them up with a bump is a spell in the Championship for one season.
    I am sick of their unfulfilled promise. They will not beat Chelsea next week and will be languishing right at the bottom. I cannot see how Ramos is better than Jol who was treated abominably. With him at least Spurs finished 5th twice. The only reason they won the Carling Cup was because Grant fielded a poor side.

    As for Berbatov, he is a whingeing prima donna - good riddance! Why they let Keane and Defoe go I shall never understand. Harry Redknapp appears to have rekindled Jermaine's career and I bet Robbie will do will at Anfield.

    Tottenham you flatter to deceive.

  • Comment number 44.

    Funny that the Spurs fans and board have not yet mentioned Ramos being shown the door, as Jol was after 2 defeats in 2 last season.
    Spurs` poor start season only further highlights their atrocious behaviour concerning Jol last season


    wrong mate, Jol was sacked 12 games in last year... he went at the end of October.

  • Comment number 45.

    Mr Levy - a couple of quick questions. Why do you have Mr Comoli as Director of Football? Why does Mr Ramos speak through Mr Poyet? Why did Mr Comoli sell Mr Defoe when he knew Mr Berbatov was on his way out? Why do you never release news about this mysterious new stadium that is going to be built (we are led to believe)? Why are Spurs now a feeder club to the top four and why every year do Spurs sell their best player (re - Messrs Gascoigne, Lineker, Klinsmann, Sheringham, Carrick, Keane, Berbatov (this is getting tedious now) and expect success?

  • Comment number 46.

    Firstly I don't think Berbatov is the player United think he is and that he will struggle there.

    His ability is unquestionable but I would question his temperament - I have had United fans tell me that Fergie will get the best out of that and that may be the case but he is nearing the end of his career, not some petulant 21 year old who will respond if you throw a football boot at him. So I for one will be interested and unsurprised if he is not starting for United by the end of the season.

    Secondly I agree with a couple of comments on here regarding Tottenham's position - they should force United's hand. There transfer budget for the summer is more or less balanced so bring in a striker now (they need at least one anyway) and then see who makes what move. It is the only way to wrestle control of the situation away from United.

  • Comment number 47.

    There are several strikers Spurs could look towards, it amazes me that their scope has been limited to names such as Pavlyuchenko, Milito, Forlan, Podolski.

    A few others who might have been/might be good investments:

    - Mario Gomez
    - Dean Ashton
    - Rafael Sobis
    - Fred
    - Roque Santa Cruz
    - Giampaolo Pazzini
    - Nikola Zigic
    - Eidur Gudjohnsen
    - Vagner Love
    - David Suazo
    - Guiza (before he joined Fenerbache)

    The list goes on... Spurs easily are capable of signing two of the above named players!

  • Comment number 48.

    I think spurs should sign Samuel Eto after being told he is surplus to requirements by Barcelona manager Josep Guardiola’s. He is a proven world class striker and would definatly be a good if not better replacement for keane or Berbatov.

  • Comment number 49.

    I never fail to be amazed at how so many fans can seemingly see the blindingly obvious and how so many managers can totally miss it. Arrogance, perhaps, but surely so many footballing people cannot be wrong.

    Zokora is not a right-back and is only filling a void left by the injury to Hutton, but why on earth shouldn't Chris Gunter get that opportunity? By putting him on the bench, Ramos is clearly saying that he is capable of competing at this level, and yet seemingly he prefers to take a player out of position to put there. I can't understand it.

    As has been mentioned by so many posters above, we need a midfield general to play alongside either Jenas or Modric. Neither of those can be the hard case in midfield, and neither of them will happily sit back whilst the other goes forward and defend counter possible counter attacks. Also, neither of them can perform the quarter-back role that Carrick could perform; sitting back and using his vision to pick out forward players with superb long passes. Zokora may not be the answer to this void, but either he or Huddlestone are the best we have.

    Us Spurs fan pined for a left-winger, any left-winger, for years. Duff, Pedersen, Downing - I even remember hearing pleas for the club to re-sign Matthew Etherington! Malbranque's work-rate and tenacity papered over the lack of a real left-sided attacker for a season or two, but I can't explain how excited I was when we signed Dos Santos - a genuine, left-footed, forwad thinking player. What does Ramos do? Bungs him up front for the first game and on the bench for the second. It's beyond my comprehension.

    Ok so Bale played against Sunderland, which is at least putting a left-footed player in a left-sided position. But for me, Bale is a left-back, not a left-winger, and whilst he's pretty good out there, how much better would he be linking up and dove-tailing with Dos Santos? Assou-Ekotto has never really done much wrong, but I'm fairly sure having been signed to replace Lee Young-Pyo, he then lost his place back to the South Korean before Bale was signed, presumably to shove the other two into the shade.

    As for Bentley and Lennon, I'm afraid deploying Bentley behind a lone striker, and putting Lennon on the wing, when he is quite clearly a far inferior crosser of the ball that Bentley, is another head-smacking error. Lennon, though quick, I'm afraid to say seems to have been exposed as limited after a smashing start to his career in 2005-06. The only time I have ever seen him really rip into opponents away from the right-wing is the season before last when he was deployed in the hole behind Berbatov and Keane in the FA Cup tie against Chelsea. Against Sunderland I think he would have been far better in that role, and Bentley's crossing may have actually given Bent some aerial service.

    Before even considering selling Berbatov, these are fundamental, and to my mind really simple, obvious mistakes that Ramos is making. The team is totally inbalanced, has not gelled in an effective way, and seems lost at sea. Ramos must have known Keane would leave in the summer, and the world and his wife seem to know that Berbatov is inevitably going to depart. So why on earth wasn't he making plans to deal with these absences in pre-season? At the moment it feels like we're desperately searching for our strongest XI, and until we find it, we are at the mercy of the most mediocre of opponents.

    Yes, I think we should sell Berbatov, and I think some sort of burden would lift from the club the moment he leaves and our bank balance takes a bump.

    More pressingly however, I think Ramos needs to hand each player a little piece of paper, get them to write down their position, and then play them there. We are lacking fluidity, balance and goals. We will win nothing, and qualify for nothing, if we continue in this way.

  • Comment number 50.

    Very much agree with what's been said here.

    Jol had lost the plot. To be fair to him, he didn't have the ability to buy top-class players like Ramos has had. If he'd have suggested a player like Modric, he'd have been laughed out.

    Ramos has a record of doing to Sevilla exactly what we want to happen to Spurs - to bring a struggling side that should be doing better back to the top flight in a highly competitive league. The board are hoping he can just repeat the story.

    The team seems a bit bipolar. Last season, we had fantastic attacking options and a poor defence. Our CFs could have walked in to any top-four club and been welcomed with open arms (as, indeed, seems to be happening). They were at a level far beyond the rest of the team, so everyone thought we should have been in the top 4. Now, we've concentrated on defence, and have a fantastic back four. We even have a fantastic keeper in Gomes. And now the CF exodus is losing all our attacking options, and although we have plenty of excellent chances (the scoreline on Saturday was unfair), we can't seem to knock a goal in.

    We need to bring some world-class CFs in, and fast. I don't rate Arshavin at all. We've been linked with Forlan for over 20mil, and I think we should do it. We're overpaying (he's 29), but that's going to be the story everywhere. Then we need to speed up and bring in another one (Huntelaar would be my choice) - from this mythical "list" Ramos and Poyet keep talking about. We have 5 days left.

    I also think Levy is being far too arrogant about Berbatov. Whilst I don't think he'll fit in there, from what I've heard of his character (doesn't like the bench, likes privacy), he wants to go. Look at what we've done with Arshavin and Zenit. These things are happening everywhere. FIFA should step in and independently impose bans and fines on players, but until they do, we're being arrogant if we think we can fight against the gravity of clubs like Man Utd.

  • Comment number 51.

    If Berbatov doesn't want to play - tough! Don't sign a contract then. I am so tired of the players dictating transfer policy. If Berbatov didn't want to play for Spurs this year (which it seems clear he never intended to), why not ask for a shorter contract?

    I am all for players having rights and power, but that is what the contract is for!

    But, these things won't change anytime soon, and in this instance I think Spurs have been idiots. The second Keane left, they should have been signing class strikers. They knew Berbatov wanted out at that time, and here we are 3rd week into the season and Spurs are playing with Bent?!

    It wasn't as if anyone stole these players from them. They have known about this for months! Blame management, not Ramos.

  • Comment number 52.

    I think Gaffacake should be manager, he/she clearly knows a thing or two! Perhaps all bloggers should post a comment on Gaffacakes detailed analysis!

  • Comment number 53.

    oh, and I'd add that Podolski is a superbly brilliant player. He's got muscle (as have most of the german team), but also technique.

  • Comment number 54.

    sispurs4ever - legend :)

  • Comment number 55.

    We should have signed Martin Petrov, then we would have had a GREAT left winger last year and a happier Berbatov. Berbatov is great mates with Petrov and part of the reason he wants to go to Manchester is to be closer to his Bulgarian pal. I am not surprised that we are near the transfer deadline and have this hanging over our head. Every deadline day, Levy thinks that it is a great idea to do business at the very last minute. He thinks we get players cheaper that way. In reality we often have to pay over the odds and get stuck with players like the poor Polish CF we briefly had (who had a surprisingly good year in the Championship after he left us). I don't know why we don't do a better job of lining up replacements. We should sign players sooner so they have chance to gel otherwise we are doomed to poor starts such as this season. What is Commolli doing? Most of his signings appear terrible and we have probably lost money on them. He should at very least be lining up long lists of players for the positions we need. Hope things get better this week.

  • Comment number 56.

    as a man utd fan, I hope we re-sign diego "sally gunnell" forlan ourselves, and leave you guys with the sulking one!

  • Comment number 57.

    Some fans really do not understand football do they!

    Spurs have tried and failed to sign at least 2 forwards (or midfielders) in Eto' and Arshvin.

    Eto' tuned them down and Arshvin, whether some consider him a midfielder has been priced to highly.

    Ramos obviously wants to play similar fashion to Man U and Chelsea, with one lone striker supported by attacking midfielders form wide, Arshvin on left and Dos Santos on right.

    I actually feel sorry for Ramos, as he has gone about it right way as far as I can see but just missed targets. Idea is get player in to replace someone, then sell other at price u want. However either he has aimmed to high on players or board not backing him for funds, or possibly deal just cannot be completed.

    Now I would suggest damage limitation is vital. I would sign 1 experienced striker and 1 gamble. Experienced one is someone who knows how to play in PL each week, and despite horror by many Heskey is exactly what they need, 1 season allow Ramos to fix next summer or someone to settle, would cost under 10 million, maybe under 5.

    Other striker I would go for Huntlater, gives him time to settle having Heskey and Bent and if he settles day 1, then great other 2 fight for places. I would also on evidence of what i have seen so far this season buy someone to allow Midric to move up pitch, he has been far too deep, and is not built for the defensive side of the game, maybe play him in position thought for Arshvin?

  • Comment number 58.

    Really think it is time to move on regarding King, we really need an influential captain on the pitch. Of our current players maybe Woodgate may be the answer.

  • Comment number 59.

    i believe if jol had continued we could have been relegated and we def would not have won the cup.


    i dont agree with post 39 at all. yes ramos is a better coach but the ONLY reason spurs won the carling cup was due to the complete lack of tactical know-how by avram grant. jol would have won the cup if still in charge.

    not to mention the fact that woodgates goal was pure luck.

    other than that id say ramos won the cup for spurs.......

  • Comment number 60.

    The whole scenario demonstrates yet more Spurs incompetence. If they had decided to let both Keane and Berbatov go this summer, why let it drag out until now, when, as you say, they will be paying desperation money for a striker - Gzregorz Rasiak anyone??

    The other frustrating thing is that it has been obvious to anyone who has watched Spurs play in the last 2 or 3 years that what they desperately need is a defendive midfielder - Diarra from Pompey would have been a far more effective buy than Dos Santos.

    I'm not sure Ramos has got the idea of the Premiership yet.. his Seville team played a "we'll score more than you" type football when the likes of Real Madrid believed in not fielding defences.

    Where's Christian Gross when you need him?

  • Comment number 61.

    Ramos has said he wants an end to this.
    Well, he's got the power to end it hasn't he?
    He can agree to sell Berbatov, or tell him he's stuck with Spurs for the rest of his contract, or when Spurs are ready to sell him.

    Seems like Spurs have weak management.

    GaffaCake is a natural successor to Ramos.

  • Comment number 62.

    As a Utd fan I'd like Berb to come as he's an intelligent player with great vision but Spurs are dreaming if they think he's worth 30mil. Keane was as prolific with a better work rate and certainly more vital to the team and they let him go for 22mil - why didn't they get a replacement for him immediately?

    Best case senario is either they force an unhappy player to stay and hope he knuckles down or sell for less than their valuation and they desperately give the entire transfer fee straight over to a Spanish or Russian team for a player that is worse than the 3 strikers they let go in the first place.

    I hate to say it but the transfer debacle at WHL this summer is another in a long tradition of board bungles that stretch back to the 80's - not signing Beckham, letting Gazza go, illegal payments in 94, Hiring Graham, Sugar letting Teddy leave for next to nothing because he didn't think he'd be playing past his early 30's, and then signing 31 year old Les Ferdinand for 6.5mil with the highest wages at the club... the list goes on and on.

    It seems Spurs are doomed to be run by people who not only don't have the club's interests at heart and know nothing about football but are seeming inept at running a business as well.

  • Comment number 63.

    As a Chelsea fan, this has to be the best time to play spurs and I'm thankful we have that at a time where they are in disarray.

    As a spurs fan I'd be frustrated that they haven't sold Robbie Keane with a ready made replacement. Arshavin is too much of a gamble to replace the space left by keane and potentially by Berbatov.

    As for some of the other strikers mentioned, Huntelaar is being courted by Man Utd, Real Madrid, and previously by Arsenal so its a bit of a long shot Spurs will get him - I wouldnt rule it out though, as I didn't expect to see them sign Dos Santos.

    As well as the lack of transfer activity in the past couple of weeks, I'd be frustrated by the fringe players they have in reserve who are adding to the wage bill - Lee, Rocha, Boateng, Gilberto, Ghaly etc

  • Comment number 64.

    There is a sense of deja vu about all this. Spurs procrastination last year in dealing with the Jol situation, along with his blind allegiance to Robinson, resulted in the main goal of the seaon being out of reach way before Christmas. That' when the rot set in for Berbatov.

    Now another season is in danger of slipping away quickly for the sake of a few million, or, more likely, protection of inflated egos.

  • Comment number 65.

    if I was a spurs fan*

  • Comment number 66.

    I agree with what number 57- So_Cal_Dandie said:- about ramos trying to sign lone strikers for a competing formation to the likes of Man Utd and Chelski.
    Ramos has tried.. but it hasnt worked out.

    I reckon that Man Utd have made a £19million bid for berba with add-ons based on goals scored and first team apperances, going upto- and around- £23million, ramos and the board are stalling to try and find some1 to replace him.. NO CHANCE IN GETTING MOST THE PLAYERS EVERYONE IS SAYING! Ashton- West Ham cannot afford to sell, Santa Cruz- new contract and dedicated to the club, Mario Gomez- says 'i want to stay at stuttgart and win the league', Vagner Love- not good enough..

    Ok so now, your probably shouting... 'alright then who smarty pants?!'
    Well.. i agree that possibly: Rafael Sobis, Falcao, David Suazo, Pazzini.. however these players are all a bit of a gamble... its a different/ stonger/ faster ball game in the BPL that they have to adapt to quickly.
    Podolski- wants to stay on one more season.. BPL clubs- aren't going to want to sell to league rivals (especially at the end of the window- where they cannot spend the money!!).. I GOT AN EXAM TOMORROW.. AND I'M MORE WORRIED ABOUT THE STATE OF THE CLUB THAN MY EXAM.. but thats not your problem..

    SO: Kanoute, Fred, Zigic (Last-Resort), Owen (on free next year).. theres very few.. thats whats so worrying.. so maybe berbs will be staying..
    DO your research AND THEN come back with ideas...

  • Comment number 67.

    I think Ramos is under a lot of pressure and you would expect Spurs to be challenging with the likes of Arsenal and Liverpool for Europe.

  • Comment number 68.

    Martin Jol was unfairly sacked but that is all in the past now.

    What Spurs fan's should be more worried about is that dork Commoli and how much influence he still has.

    A man who spends £17m on Bent and backs it up with Essou-Akkotto and Boateng as the finishing touches to a team to challenge for 4th shouldn't be allowed anywhere near a club, let alone be director of football.

    Ramos did a great job at Sevilla, no one can deny him that, the question is whether he will be able to replicated it at White Heart lane.
    He DIDN'T achieve much on the pitch last year, poor league form, albeit some great cup performances.

    Ramos has a history of being able to do it in cups, a la Benitez, looking at Ramos's record in the Spanish Cup and UEFA Cup, it will now be his job to prove he can make it over the finishing line in the league after coming close in the 2006/2007 season.

    With time, he should do well but only IF he does actually have full control of transfers, buying and selling, yet playing four attacking midfielders in the midfield four like he has done in the past 2 games is ridiculous.

  • Comment number 69.

    Firstly, espana08 - writing words in capitals doesn't make your arguments any stronger. Writing your arguments logically would do so.

    Secondly, good blog - but perhaps there has to be greater criticism of Ramos/Spurs here in terms of their strategic planning. After selling Keane and Defoe, and surely recognising that Berbatov was unlikely to be a long-term fixture, a sensible board and manager may have tended to buy a striker earlier in the summer, rather than wait till now, as Steve Wilson correctly states 'a seller's market'.

    In 2008 Spurs have signed Dos Santos, Modric, Bentley, Hutton, Woodgate, Gomes etc - did no-one stop and think at any point in the last 9 months that a striker may be useful?!

  • Comment number 70.

    I'm bemused by the amount of fans on here who seem to have already decided that Gomes is a top class keeper. He's done ok so far but lets face it, he'll make one or two big errors over the next few months and then we'll start hearing how much people wish they had Robbo back.

    I'm also not sure where the idea that Spurs have a top class defence comes from? Woodgate is the only defender at the club who comes into that category. You need 4 players to make a defence!!

    I do agree that Spurs did have a top class strike force but seeing as Ramos is only too happy to let them go this is no longer the case. The cracking strike force is basically what kept Spurs above the other mid-table teams and without them, they are barely in that group.

    The likes of Sunderland, Fulham and Wigan have bought well and will be up there in the midst of it all whilst Aston Villa are surely the favourites to get the 5th spot after some great summer strengthening. And that is all without the likes of steadily improving Newcastle, and the reliable contendors of Everton and Portsmouth.

    Spurs will be down there with West Ham at this rate, worrying times indeed.

  • Comment number 71.

    With the creativity in Spurs midfield I think they need a classic centre forward who will be in the right place at the right time and finish off the chances created by Modric, Giovanni etc. One name springs to mind..... Michael Owen! His is a proven goal scorer in the Premiership and at international level. With his contract up next year Spurs would be able to get him far cheaper than Arshavin and then they could concentrate on getting a holding midfielder like Barry? With the £20mil from the Keane sale and £25mil+ from the Berbatov sale I'm sure they could cough up the 18mil Villa are asking for.

  • Comment number 72.

    As much as I admire Berbatov's skill, I detest his attitude. That's not the way u should act when ur paid in excess of 80grand a week and are worshiped by thousands of fans!

    As for spurs though, I think you might find that Arshavin WILL end up at Tottenham, and they might sign ONE striker in my opinion...why? because, when Ramos was at Seville, he sometimes played with just Kanoute up front and 5 in midfield. I wouldn't be suprised seeing him repeat that, with the quality players spurs have.

  • Comment number 73.

    rob2991, why on earth would Barry leave Villa for Spurs? Secondly Newcastle are trying to convince Owen to sign new deal never going to sell, and even if they did he needs partner!

    Come out fo the clouds and be realistic

  • Comment number 74.


    Yes, there is 100% agree that the board at some point should have bought a striker at an earlier point, but to be fair.. berbatov didnt really strongly indicate that he wants to only play for man utd.. we still dont really know.. he says its his dream.. but he hasnt said.. right thats it. im going.

    If we don't find a replacement, do u think he will stay? I think he might. but the fans are quite against him.. until he starts scoring goals and rescuing us.

    We need a DM and a Strong Lone striker..but first comes first.. a striker.. that can adapt quickly and put the goals away.

  • Comment number 75.

    '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.'

    This situation has been completely set up by Man United in order to get a player for the price they want to pay for him. By constantly releasing statements about their interest in Berbatov, they have unsettled the player to ensure he plays up and becomes worthless to Spurs. It's disgusting that United get away with this season after season and all too regularly at Spurs' expense. How many times did Sir Alex express interest in Carrick before he eventually put a bid in, which then derailed Spurs for months while they adapted to the loss of their star midfielder. Why should United be able to dictate the transfer market at the expense of smaller clubs, not for sale should mean not for sale to United either. I'd sell Berbatov to a club in another league for half the price rather than let Sir Alex get his way.

  • Comment number 76.

    HERE HERE! tyler9481

  • Comment number 77.

    Berbatov gets paid a large 7 figure salary. This is his job and he signed a contract, I cannot believe his attitude. Coming from Bulgaria Im sure that even if his family were well off he must of seen the majority of his countryman struggle to get by. Who does he think he is?

    What Ramos should do is play him every minute of every game because that way he will have to listen to what the Spurs fans think of him unless he changes his attitude and actually plays well.

    The other alternative is play him in the reserves and let him train with the 2nd team for three years. Spurs win support for every football fan who is fed up with the primadona premiership players (Ashley Cole, Adabayor, Drogba, Ronaldo, Terry etc,etc!)

  • Comment number 78.

    Bit bizarre that apparently Berbatov is "an intensely private individual who detests the attention which being a footballer brings and who is uncomfortable with the adulation". He seems more than happy to do adverts for a certain Bulgarian bank, which are available to view over the internet, and more than happy to set up a soccer school in his name in his native Bulgaria. Surely a shy, retiring wallflower would shun the limelight altogether?

  • Comment number 79.

    So_Cal_Dandie - I take your point about Barry, it would be a sideways move, i was thinking out loud. With Owen i was just suggesting that he is the type of forward that would be ideal for spurs. On the other hand Martins could be a more realistic option for Spurs, i know he is a different type of player compared to Owen but im sure he would do a good job for Spurs.

  • Comment number 80.

    Seems to me the 2 forwards in question probably know more than us supporters do.
    Rat's of a stinking ship etc....So as we have always done since the 80's
    another mediocre season, until the board is replaced we will always suffer and not break the top 4.
    Anyhoo, being Spurs I predict we beat Chelsea this weekend 2-1.
    Feel free to heap praise upon me come next Monday,but I will not accept the managers job till Commoli and co leave.
    Sorry I believe we will beat them just watch.

    If we lose and we won't be kind with the insults and profanity or I'll be off like Keane (who is looking like the 7 jinx is kicking in) and Berb (sell him to Barca so I can still appreciate his skill without cursing him)

  • Comment number 81.

    Great post @49. The real body blow for spurs of course was losing Frank Arnesen. Our dealings in the transfer market have been mixed and confused since his departure.

    Ashavin? too similar to Modric. Pavlyuchenko? didn't he keep missing all those chances for Russia - and being linked with a last minute move for Heskey goes against all logical thinking.

    A solid midfielder was always a clear requirement and yet nothing happens in that area. I'm still waiting for Carrick and Davids to be adequately replaced, so I don't expect any satisfactory movement in replacing Berbatov.

    I recall how Orlando Engelaar excelled at the Euros and was almost Carrick like in his approach. Could have been signed at an inexpensive 6m too!

    Of course it is astonishing how clubs fail to address the obvious.

  • Comment number 82.

    I don't think Utd have acted any worse than any other big club in regards to stating an interest. Its not against the rules of the game to publicly state your admiration for a player - certainly not tapping up anyway.
    And I don't really think Berbatov should be vilified either - he's not done a Sol Campbell!

    The bloke's in his late 20's, he's aware that he's got 2-4 years of peak football in him and his ability means he can play for teams regularly playing in Europe and challenging for titles - whether it be Utd, Barca, Milan or whoever, and even more aware that his current club now seem to be some years away from even getting in the Champs League, let alone having a chance of winning it.

    You can't blame him for being ambitious.

  • Comment number 83.

    Surely questions need to be asked of Tottenham's academy. That, or their scouts. Where's the chap who found berbatov in the first place? Everyone listing names of already proven strikers can go on dreaming because this is a time to unearth new talent.

    alternatively, i'd go for obefemi martins and

  • Comment number 84.

    I don't know...there seems to be so many rumours and so many clubs home and abroad chasing all the same set of players!. I'm more concerned as to how badly managed the whole scenario is, where we are now starting a new season without two of the best strikers and now one gone and the other not wanting to play for us with other things on his mind and us running around desperately trying to get the best deal we can after losing the first game of the season and we still have no idea who we are buying and what partnership and whoever it may be has yet still to settle in anyway. What a shambles,..its not like we have had the whole summer to sort this out properly..typical only 'professional' football can carry on and conduct a business like this. In the meantime our competitive edge has diminished even with the other signings and injured players back, we have already lost ground and will be on a clawback situation which is not fair on the other players and signings that the management can't get its act to together and then if we do not progress in or towards europe again then more players will be off to play for a club that knows where its going and can actually organise itself before the bloody season starts!.

  • Comment number 85.

    spurs to get a top 6 spot let alone challenge for 4th with just darren bent as their only striker.


    its gonna be a long hard season for spurs even if they do replace berbs

  • Comment number 86.

    Oh yeah that would fit, why oh why oh why would Newcastle sell Martins? Oh yeah, we'd sell him the day that we tie up the signings of Kaka, Messi and Ronaldo. Keep dreaming boys!

  • Comment number 87.

    players like Berbatov are worth 5 million, tops.

    Saying he's worth 20 or 30 million is showing exactly what is wrong with football these days.

  • Comment number 88.

    I fancy Spurs to go out of the UEFA Cup at the first hurdle on current form which will be quite frankly exactly what the team deserve for the way they have performed since February.

  • Comment number 89.

    Spurs' actions in all of this only serves to leave bad feeling between all the clubs involved. Reporting teams to the FA and then retracting (in Liverpool's case) will only make teams more wary of dealing with Spurs in the future...isn't it just better for everyone that when a fair offer is made, it is accepted (esp when the player wants to leave) - and then focus on getting replacements quicker.
    I don't think Spurs have done anything wrong in this case. Berbatov is their star player and they obviously wanted to keep hold of him. I'm a United supporter, and despite the fact I'd love him to come to Old Trafford, the fact is the Champions have unsettled him and I don't think it was handled in the right way - especially after they bleated on at FIFA about the Ronaldo saga. Put it this way, if I were a Spurs fan I'd be very angry indeed. However, the Spurs management must take some criticism; unlike Ferguson who sought direct contact with Ronaldo and finally convinced him where he will have the perfect environment, Ramos remained tight-lipped and told his star player to sulk on the bench.

  • Comment number 90.

    It's tempting to criticise Ramos' for his hand in Tottenham's transfer dealings but in actual fact, the people upstairs are the ones responsible. I think we may have a situation where the manager has limited influence over the ins and outs of the squad.

    Ramos seems a smart guy, so it's strange to me that Tottenham are never associated with quality defensive players. Yes, when all (or most of) their players are fit, they have a very impressive back-line; King, Woodgate, Bale and Hutton but, owing to injuries, these four are rarely in the same line-up.

    Also, Heurleho Gomes is not a goalkeeper who fills me with confidence. He reminds an awful lot of Dida in that he's capable of the sublime and the stupid in equal measure.

    Ultimately, the problem with Spurs is a longstanding one. Since the dawn of time, Spurs policy has been one of ''you score two, we'll score three.'' IF Ramos can shed this mentality, he'll go a long way towards improving Spurs.

  • Comment number 91.

    re comment # 82


    It works both ways. If it is as simple as you make out - Spurs let Berbatov go for a fair price - then why is it so hard for Utd to accept that (anywhere between) £60-90m is more than fair for C Ronaldo and you should just 'let him go'?

    As much as Berbatov can achieve at Utd, Ronaldo can achieve the same at Madrid. At least that's how he feels.

  • Comment number 92.

    comment 59. yes grant started with the wrong players but chelsea have world class players in every position and they are all as good as each other.

    but would jol have beaten man city away when they had won their first ten games at eastlands? i dont think so especially not with 10 men.

    jol would have probably have made defensive substitutions and we would have lost in extra time if not sooner. facts were we bossed man city around, kept possession and that was because of ramos.

    do you remember the fa cup match at stamford bridge against chelsea when we were 3 - 1 up with 30 mins to play? what does jol do? he brings off lennon and berbatov. inept tactician.

    facts are apart from last season its now almost impossible to compare ramos and jol because we are a totally different side without berbatov and keane who would as other people have said walk into any of the top 4 sides.

    in ramos we trust. blame should be apportioned elsewhere but not to juande who is a proper manager

  • Comment number 93.

    Never mind about Berbatov, he is a great but sulky player and a disaffected player is not worth the shirt. My gripe is letting go a player that was settled and a great squad member Robbie Keane. Liverpool's unsettling the player has done Spurs inmeasurable harm. It is difficult to see just who will score the goals in this current side but for certain it won't be that waste of good air, Darren Bent. I agree that he should be picked for England as he would feel right at home in that team of losers.
    As far as Ramos goes, only time will tell but for me there is only one man who can bring back the glory days - COME BACK TEL!

  • Comment number 94.

    The fact is that if we take the last dozen or so matches fater the Carling Cup along with these two this season then Ramos is not doinmg any better than Jol. Lots of people have commented on him wanting to play a new system of one up front but if you were at the match on Saturday , it was absolutely clear that there is at best a HELL OF A LOT OF WORK TO DO IF THIS IS TO BE SUCCESSFUL. .

    It was also clear that our creative midfield did not have a clue and that as pretty a player Modric is , he is not yet up to speed with the Prem League and is a lightweight , time will tell if he is any good for us but he has to learn that he cannot ball watch and must get stuck in and tackle. Having said that he was not the only midfielder to make that mistake.

    Similarly if we are to play five across the midfield then we need to stop the wingers from cutting inside and running into cul de scak.... it was pityful

    It is also clear that if you are playing one up front no matter how good they are you need back up.

    Regardless of whether or not Bent is good enough ( and scoring a hatful against Leyton Orient is not an indication of your form in the Prem ) If Bent is injured then who do we rely on?

    Dos Santos is only 19 and has just come into the side . If we had players that were coming through the ranks then surely Ramos would have had them on the benc h, but he did not. This is not rocket science

    Commoli certainly has something to answer for as he is responsible along with Levy for securing the players Ramos wants but at the same time to allow Defoe and Kean leave without any replacements is scandalous.

  • Comment number 95.

    "Should the deal go through, Tottenham will then have just a few days, or maybe even hours, to find new faces "

    Yes, and then you and your fellow media outlets can go about illegally tapping them up on behalf of clubs like Man Utd

    You should be thoroughly ashamed of your role in this sorry year long affair

  • Comment number 96.

    Spurs fans , of which I am one for all my sins, are an odd bunch.

    There are people on hre who are so blind they believe tht Martin Jol 'won the Carling Cup', with 'his team' and seem to think that he was unjustly sacked. This is thundering ignorance, and reflects woefully on their own memories and football knowledge. Jol manaed to beat one member of the top 4 in the whole of his tenure - Chelsea in November 2006,Aaron Lennon getting the winner. Ramos not only held Titlewinners Man Utd at home (and may have won the CUp tie with them last January, had it not been for the inept Dawson), and beat both Arsenal and Chelsea in a final. Ramos also knocked out Man City on the way, when that team was performing well at home. Jol would never have dones this - his team's form was relegation form, and also crucially lost to Getafe - Spurs first loss at home in Europe for decades - which set Spurs up for a rougher ride later in the UEFA Cup.

    No doubt these morons who seem to want Jol back unfiarly dismissed Sunderland and Middlesborough, saying they would be easy victories for Spurs. Move aside: there are no easy games in the Premier League, and there is no room for 'fans' with no kowledge of the game.

  • Comment number 97.

    Berbatov not gone yet!
    The most pathetic character in the history of the PL. Get rid of him NOW.
    What a lousy character. I'm surprised any club wants to sign him!

  • Comment number 98.

    Tottenham should sell Berbatov £20m plus O'Shea, get Marco Pantelic £15m + Super-sub Real Madrid Gonzalo Higeuén £17m, they form deadly front partnership. that would be smart investment intead of gambling £25m + fancy salary on Arshavin alone.

  • Comment number 99.

    And I thought only us Gunners had problems! It seems Chelsea is the only club in London serious about the premiership this season. While I sympathise (no kidding) with spurs fans over their predicament I say; pray, cast an eye over at the emirates and see that you are not alone in team/player mismanagement. Lets see how these blundering clubs finally get it right, if at all, this season.

  • Comment number 100.

    Agree with all who say he should be kept unless united meet our evaluation.End of.Even pay him and keep him for the rest of his contract.Its time something should be done with these players who sign contracts and few months later decide to leave for greener pastures.


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