Football is a cruel game, and we found that out again tonight losing to Chelsea on penalties.
Going into this game, our 1-0 aggregate lead was our only positive. I mean we went into this game without our best three players (excluding Eriksen), playing against a strong Chelsea XI, at one of our worst grounds to play at. But whilst we did put in an okay performance, and Mauricio along with others fans say we can be ‘proud’, I can’t help but just feel completely devastated at yet another missed opportunity to win silverware with this team and coach.
I don’t want to be too harsh on the boys, but I have to give my opinions on the game. And to put it bluntly, first half we were absolutely awful. Lacked anything going forwards, and defensively struggling. Chelsea were all over us and deservedly went into the end of the half 2-0 up. Coming out second half, not going to lie, I was not expecting anything. With our best players out, and a weaker bench, we had no game changers, other than perhaps Lucas, who still had only just come back from injury.
But to my surprise, we did improve, and it only took 5 or so minutes to get the game back level on aggregate, with Llorente nodding in a good header from Rose’s delightful cross. For the rest of the game it was very back and forth, and we hung on to a 2-1 loss, meaning it went straight to penalties. Any other year we would be through on away goals, but this rule got scrapped this year (of course it did), so the game was to be decided on spot kicks.
Now, I cannot do penalties. I never have been and don’t think I ever will be able to. So going into this I wasn’t happy nor confident, with three of our best penalty takers out.
We managed to convert our first two, with Chelsea doing the same. However it was Dier and Lucas that failed to score, with Dier missing and Lucas’s penalty saved respectively. Jorginho and David Luiz both scored to put the hosts on the night through 4-2 on penalties, with them facing Man City in February. And with my recap on the game over, I want to look forwards, and what I think needs to be done.
Firstly, I don’t want to be ‘proud’. As to be brutally honest, proud doesn’t win trophies. I think we need to invest. I know we have a stadium that’s needs to be paid for, but I refuse to believe we have no money to spend. This squad is so close to winning things, and I think if Poch wants to stay, then we need to back him. Let him bin the players he doesn’t want or feel he needs, and buy players to suit him. We have been so close for the last few years and it will truly hurt if I do not see the best Spurs team and manager I’ve seen for a long time and maybe ever will see not be successful and win nothing.
I don’t know if it is something there mentally that is blocking them, but out of 4 semi finals we have gotten to under Pochettino we have only won 1. However, today I think we were so unlucky to not have three of our best players out. With Kane and Dele still out for weeks to come.
Moving on, it’s simple in my eyes. We need to win Sunday. Losing that eliminates all hopes of a trophy, and to me, that is more important than a top 4 finish. Beat Palace and we are still in the FA Cup. Only 3 wins from the final. It won’t be easy, but the game on Sunday, and the FA Cup is winnable. And if we don’t, well then to me, our season is over in January. But only time will tell where our destiny lies for the remainder of this very up and down season for Tottenham Hostpur. But all in all, this loss will hurt for some time.
As always thanks for reading.