£27m would be a decent offer for Luka Modric. The fact is they are not, and that sort of price still isn’t enough for our top commodity. It might seem foolish to call any player priceless, but that’s what Modric is to most Tottenham Hotspur fans. Harry Redknapp described the earlier £22m offer as a joke. I didn’t find it all that amusing and the improved one is still not making me laugh very much.
I understand why he’s tempted by the move to West London. Chelsea are very likely to be challenging in both the Premier League and the Champions League next season. Spurs definitely won’t be doing one of those and are unlikely to be doing the other either. The problem biggest problem I have with this situation is selling your best player to a team you are trying to close the gap on is a massive mistake. The fact the Premier League is now arguably the biggest league in the world means these sorts of transfers will happen more and more often. We have already seen how Arsenal are struggling to hold onto their stars even though they did qualify for the Champions League.
With the reports of Michael Essien being unavailable for up to six months due to a knee injury, Chelsea are even more likely to keep coming back until they get their man. Modric is probably going to official request a transfer soon enough and that will make the club’s position pretty impossible. I like that we are showing resolve and not just rolling over but when a player decides they want to move, it’s pretty pointless trying to force them to stay.
At what is likely to be the peak of his career, a player like Luka Modric should be competing at the highest level possible and winning major honours. It’s just unfortunate for us Spurs fans that he probably won’t be able to do that while playing at the Lane.
From a betting perspective, I like the best price of 11/4 on West Ham tomorrow. That’s not to say I don’t think Spurs can win the game, they most certainly can, but I feel we are a little skinny at 11/10 coming off the back of a demoralising defeat against Arsenal. I realise that game doesn’t mean much in the grand scheme of things but it still wasn’t nice and it will likely give the Hammers a bit more confidence, especially when they are coming off the back of two decent results.
Both Sunderland and Stoke are tough places to go and come away with anything. West Ham are certainly on the up and this is not a great time for Tottenham to have an away game at Upton Park as far as I’m concerned. Scott Parker has carried his excellent form from last season into this and he will be key as far as their chances of gaining their first win this term are concerned.
Spurs do have some positives however, with Luka Modric, Rafael van der Vaart and Vedran Corluka all available for selection having recovered from their respective injuries. Not only am I sure that Harry will be desperate to put things right tomorrow after our midweek result, the majority of the players will also want to give the fans something to be happy about. As much as I can understand the frustration of the supporters that walked out on Tuesday night, it’s not something I like to see and it must be very tough on the players, no matter how badly they may have performed.
I could see this game being a draw, possibly 1-1. Harry’s history with the Hammers will ensure it’s a lively encounter both on and off the pitch. Spurs certainly have too much for the West Ham on paper and could well come away with a victory, I’m just not confident enough to be putting any of my hard earned on them at poor odds. West Ham are coming into a bit of form and will be looking to this game as the one where their league campaign can really get under way.
Oh and by the way, to show I have got a bit of a sense of humour, I’ve used the lovely image our old mate wrighty7 posted on my Facebook wall earlier. The Arsenal fans seem to be getting over excited at the prospect of winning the League Cup when they have never cared about the competition before. Desperate times and all that I suppose. I’ll let them have their moment while I concentrate on more important things such as FC Twente.
Link to live pictures (cheers Danny)
I thought this might be interesting, feel free to get involved. If it works I’ll make it a regular thing during games.
1. Heurelho Gomes
2. Alan Hutton
22. Vedran Corluka
19. Sebastien Bassong
32. Benoit Assou-Ekotto
7. Aaron Lennon
12. Wilson Palacios
6. Tom Huddlestone
14. Luka Modric
10. Robbie Keane
18. Jermain Defoe
23. Carlo Cudicini (GK)
5. David Bentley
9. Roman Pavlyuchenko
15. Peter Crouch
16. Kyle Naughton
21. Pascal Chimbonda
24. Jamie O’Hara
1. Boaz Myhill
19. Steven Mouyokolo
6. Michael Turner
5. Anthony Gardner
3. Andy Dawson
15. Bernard Mendy
20. George Boateng
44. Seyi Olofinjana
11. Stephen Hunt
18. Caleb Folan
25. Daniel Cousin
12. Matt Duke (GK)
8. Nick Barmby
10. Deiberson Geovanni
16. Peter Halmosi
17. Kevin Kilbane
23. Kamel Fathi Ghilas
24. Kamil Zayatte
Bar Hutton in for Ledley, it’s the same side that beat Liverpool on Sunday, fingers crossed for another positive result, COYS!
Can be a very useful asset at White Hart Lane. Luka Modric was spectacular last night, again looking worth every penny of that £16.5m we paid. He looks a lot more effective at the Lane where he probably gets more time on the ball and more freedom but there are no two ways about it, he’s quality.
Obviously, Stoke at home is a game we should be winning comfortably but considering the position we are in currently, the pressure on the players last night was huge. They all stepped up and put in what is probably our best performance of the season so far.
Carlo Cudicini look assured in goal on his debut. The fact he’s played very little first team football in recent times really didn’t show. Dawson and Woodgate are developing a good understanding together and although Ledley is sorely missed, I have much more confidence in this partnership now than I did early season.
Aaron Lennon was busy as usual and took his chance very well indeed. Bentley also had one of his best games in a Spurs shirt. I hope Harry keeps him on the right flank from now on because that’s where all his best performances for us have been. I may have been a little hard on him when playing out of position.
As solid as always was Corluka. I can’t rave about him enough, an absolute snip at £8.5m. The front two played well, Defoe with his goal and Pavlyuchenko often dangerous. I hope he continues to play this well once the temperature rises. Even Akotto and Zokora were largely mistake free.
I loved Harry’s tactic of bringing Huddlestone on in injury time to run the clock down because it takes the fat mug five minutes to bumble his way onto the pitch. Maybe he is good for something after all.
Poor old Gareth Bale, another game he doesn’t start and we win. It’s getting to be more than just a coincidence now!
The hard work isn’t over but the result lifts us to 13th in the table and psychologically I think that’s a big deal. Bolton away on Saturday will be a much sterner test but with Palacios and Chimbonda waiting in the wings, things are starting to look a lot brighter. Let’s hope the players continue this work ethic and stick enough points on the board for us to stop panicking, and then we can just enjoy our day at Wembley.
Merry Christmas everyone. I got a cracking present from the Mrs, the new Spurs Player by Player book, signed for me by one Ricky Villa!
I quite fancy us to get a result tomorrow, Hodgson has Fulham playing as a solid unit but I think they will come unstuck soon and it’s more likely to happen away from Craven Cottage. Their home form was always good, there was just a blip under Sanchez. They are yet to win away this season.
Spurs could be struggling at the back with both Woodgate and King facing late fitness tests. Darren Bent and Jermaine Jenas should be back.
Fulham are without Zoltan Gera.
Spurs have won 5 of the last 10 league games but went down 2-1 at the hands of Newcastle on Sunday.
Fulham are on their best run of form for some time but they are yet to win away from home this season.
Head To Head
Fulham have only ever won twice at the Lane in 29 attempts. If they were to win, it would be only the 2nd time in their history they have completed a league double over Tottenham.
Other points to note
Tottenham have won their last 4 Boxing Day fixtures, Fulham are 0 form 4.
Fulham are managing to go lockdown for 0-0 away from home but there is only so long they can use these tactics and not score before they come unstuck. I fancy Luka Modric to pick them apart tomorrow and Spurs to run out comfortable winners.
Luka Modric 1st Goal Scorer @ 10/1 with Betfred
Tottenham to win 3-1 @ 14/1 with BlueSq
Is Harry actually God? I’ve never believed in God before but I’m starting to see the light.
Since Harry Redknapp took charge.
Drawn 1 (We can allow God an off day)
Before he took charge I was starting to think we would never win a game ever again.
Yesterday’s three points took us off the bottom of the table and although we aren’t out the woods yet, things look an awful lot better than they did a few weeks ago. In fact, it’s like watching a different team.
Modric was immense again yesterday as he has been in every game under Harry. The boy doesn’t stop trying and he oozes class. He controlled the game. I was worried that the £16.5m was way over the mark with his performances under Ramos, it now looks like a snip. Our mate Wrighty7 seems to think it’s because Harry keeps him in the bags under his eyes on trips to away games so he feels safe. I don’t believe this rumour for a second.
Speaking of £16.5m, Darren Bent is looking like he wasn’t so over priced after all. Confidence are what good strikers are all about, Harry has somehow instilled it by the bucket load into Bent. He looks like scoring every time he gets the ball in and around the box, an absolute predator.
Ekotto and Zokora both look like bit parts and we will hopefully strengthen in those areas come January but as long as we continue to rack up those 3pts, they can continue to plug away being average.
Wednesday’s game against Liverpool does scare me a bit, but not as much as it would have scared me this time last month. They out played us in the league game but we still beat them. I’ll be happy with more of the same!