Friday, January 25, 2008

Three steps required to beat ManUre

When the draw for the FA Cup fourth round was made I admit I was a little worried. Firstly Spurs needed to beat Reading away, and if we managed that we'd then have to travel up to Old Trafford for an inevitable spanking.

Well, we did beat Reading and we now need to head up north to Manchester. However, what has changed was the small matter of demolishing ARSEnal on Tuesday. Suddenly we're world beaters and confidence is sky high! So surely we can now beat ManUre... it is the FA Cup after all?

Well whether it's an FA Cup tie or not, I do now think we could perhaps make a game of it on Sunday. I think our most realistic chance of progressing to the fifth round is to do so via a replay. So, although ManUre have won 14 of their 16 competitive home matches this season, how can Tottenham earn a replay on Sunday?

Well as far as I'm concerned there are three things that matter: defending, finishing and the wind.

As we did in the second half last Saturday against Sunderland and again for the majority of Tuesday night's epic against ARSEnal, we need to be resolute in defence. We need to close opponents down, throw bodies in front of balls, concentrate for all 95 minutes or however long the game goes on for, and generally defend effectively. ManUre have some of the best attacking players in the world - somehow we need to keep them under control. Although our defensive record has been pretty poor this season there are a couple of positives: firstly we are definitely improving and secondly we have only conceded three goals in our last four visits to Old Trafford.

Secondly it is vital that we are clinical up-front. I often moan about Tottenham not taking their chances, but a Gooner friend of mine has spent the last couple of days going on that Spurs only had five shots on Tuesday night and scored from all of them (he must have missed Berba hitting the post, JJ hitting the side netting, Malbranque's second half shot, and Defoe's late chance). Anyway, we were clinical on Tuesday and we need to be similarly so on Sunday. We don't have a great scoring record at Old Trafford. I seem to remember that in the last four seasons, we've only managed to score from a free kick and from the half way line, and the latter was disallowed by an inept referee.

Finally, we need to hope/pray for a fair wind! I'm not advocating that we need a blustery day to put the ManUre players off their game - I'm talking about a bit of luck, some good fortune, the magic of the FA Cup... or whatever else you want to call it.

Do I think we'll win? No. But I do think if we approach the game professionally and confidently we could push ManUre and potentially earn a replay? Yes definitely. Remember that it's been a few years since Ramos has lost a cup match. Some of our best performances of the season have been in cup games - on our travels in the cups this season we've managed three wins and two draws from five matches.

Let's not be too worried. We stand a decent chance and I'm sure we'll give a good account of ourselves.



Anonymous said...

Don't think we'll win? May get hammered? Call yaself a supporter? Tosser

poyetothepeople said...

A sensible article...perhaps too sensible! After the gooner drubbing we Spuirs fans have been allowed to dream the ability of our players to perform at their very best and rout all comers. "Sure. Dream on I hear you say.." but that's precisely my point. The Man U match couldn't have come at a better time for us...the players are on a high and on top of that key plyers like Jenas and Lennon are coming into top form(all hail Professor Juande!) and this presents an opportunity to test themselves against the very prove to themselves and the footballing world that depsite all the strife Spurs are on the up...and this is the FA CUP, where only 90 minutes matter. We have a better strike force than them...

Their midfeild better only because of one Ronaldo(but i'll but Tainio on to kick the sh*t out of him like he did with the Gooners!) Otherwise Hargreaves, Carrick etc are good but not great. I don't believe we have anything to fear, nor indeed do we have anything to loose(Ramos knows that)...

We'll be up for this one...let's take them on their homeground..forget reputations, forget stats, forget their strengths...if we play with the collective energy, togetheness and skill we did on Tuesday..THEY will have to worry about US...


nwspurs said...

who better to tell how we can draw than the north west cockerel iam surrounded by em even me window cleaner is a manx supporter i predicted 3.1 to spurs but i was 2 out i predict 2.4 to spurs so if iam 2 out that meens it will be a draw 2.2 then we will win at spurs 3.1 thats how we get a draw the cockerel crowing still

Anonymous said...

grow up stupid ..
if you were 2 out on 3-1 then 2 out on 2-4 makes it 2-6

ManU 2-6 Spurs, it is then!!