Can Ramos build success on a League Cup win?
Tottenham supporters, having overcome their hangovers after Sunday's Carling Cup triumph, will want to believe the Wembley victory is not just a flash in the pan but the start of the long-hoped for comeback into the big league.
Winning a cup can often lead to hyperbole. Remember the great feats Coventry were meant to perform when they beat Tottenham in 1987?
I can recall the then Coventry manager John Sillett boasting at the time that he could shop at Harrods. However, the following season Coventry were dumped out of the Cup by Watford in the fourth round and their subsequent misfortunes should caution against excessive optimism.
Nor did winning the League Cup do much for either Blackburn or Middlesbrough in recent seasons.
The point is that a cup triumph can lead to something if the winning team is potentially a big one and has other things in place. And despite their underperformance over the years, Tottenham, for various reasons, are potentially a big club.
And cup triumphs by the bigger clubs can change things.
At the start of the 1986/87 season, both Spurs and Arsenal got new mangers – David Pleat from Luton and George Graham from Millwall respectively.
Tottenham had the more gifted team, including Glenn Hoddle, Ossie Ardiles and Clive Allen, who scored 49 goals that season. Yet a workmanlike Arsenal unexpectedly beat them in the then Littlewoods Cup semi-final before going on to beat a Liverpool side that was in its pomp and had just done the double.
The cup triumph started the Graham era at Highbury and while the teams he produced never thrilled a neutral, the success he had and the joy he brought Arsenal supporters cannot be dismissed.
Tottenham, however, went into decline. Arguably the best Tottenham side for the last 20 years, having challenged for the league title and both cups that season, won nothing and within months Pleat had departed.
It could be asked why Tottenham’s Worthington Cup triumph of 1999 – under the stewardship of Graham – did not lead to the big time. That year, in fact, Graham was unlucky not to get Spurs to the FA Cup final.
But his teams were not as resourceful as Juande Ramos’ Tottenham side on Sunday, while Spurs fans never took to him, and what is more, he did not ultimately gel with then-owner Alan Sugar.
Interestingly, Graham's successor Hoddle pinned everything on a League Cup triumph. The policy in his first full season was to bring in older players like Teddy Sheringham and Gus Poyet. It seemed to work when his team thrashed Chelsea 5-1 in the second leg of the Carling Cup semi-final but in the final they lost 2-1 to Blackburn.
So can Ramos go where Graham, Hoddle, Pleat and even Terry Venables did not by making Tottenham a bastion of success?
That will depend on the resources he is given and how the board’s plans to either rebuild White Hart Lane or move to a new stadium materialise.
Central to any real Tottenham revival must be regular qualification into the Champions League. The competition brings in huge additional money and puts clubs into a virtual cycle – the more often you qualify, the more you earn, the better players you can buy etc.
Failure to do so in the last decade, after the Champions League was expanded to four English clubs, means Tottenham still have a lot of catching up to do.
However, in Ramos they appear to have discovered a coach who knows what he is doing. His substitutions at Wembley – bringing on Tom Huddlestone for Pascal Chimbonda and playing Steed Malbranque for a time at left back – showed that.
Jose Mourinho had that ability, demonstrated not least in last season’s FA Cup quarter-final against Tottenham when he made replaced Paulo Ferreira with Shaun Wright-Phillips after 34 minutes and rescued a match that looked lost.
Avram Grant, his successor at Stamford Bridge, does not appear to have that touch.
Football, like all sports, is driven by results and it is easy to appear wise if things work and stupid if they don’t.
But Tottenham fans must be take comfort from the fact that Ramos has the touch which most of their recent managers simply did not appear to have.