On the most recent episode of the Spurs News Podcast (which is like a blog but for your ears not your eyes) I said to Matt, my partner in crime, that if someone was to offer us trophies for the next decade but this season was a struggle as we re-build we would all take it. It would be obvious. However the issue with football is there is no guarantees and right now it just feels like all the progress over five years has gone and we are slumping. It is hard to feel despair at that but I do think now is the time for us to hold our nerve and not do something knee jerk like sacking the manager.
I know many want to see a managerial change but as I read these comments I have come to realise no one actually is thinking it through. There is no evidence a managerial change in isolation actually has any impact on a team’s performance and when you look at the problems we have within the squad none of it can be solved by the before mentioned change. Could a new manager make Eriksen no longer want to move his family to Spain? No. Could a new manager resolve the hatred between the clubs hierarchy and Toby Alderweireld’s management / agent? No. Could a new manager resolve multiple players running down their deals as they feel under paid by the club? No. Could a new manager spend freely to improve the squad? Ummm come on, stop laughing, Daniel Levy might retire and be replaced by a guy show likes to spend money… it could happen… stop laughing… but yeah in short, again, no.
So for me we have a very obvious choice and to be blunt our only choice. Back the manager over the disgruntled players and back him by doing what he asks with the players be it selling them or dumping them to rot in the reserves until they leave. The manager himself has talked about a painful re-build and being brave a number of times. Now is that time I think, re-build and change the squad. This summer started it however on a maddening note the players we brought in have struggled with injury. Ndombele playing the most of the three first team signings and he is clearly still adapting and has had a few knocks too. In glimpses though we have seen a real player who I think we can all agree will be a great asset to us over the next few years.
The pain is obvious, just look at our results. If we see progress in terms of the re-build this season though so although stalling we can see some progress I believe it could be short term pain for long term gain. I trust the manager and I suppose that is the main thing here. If others have lost that trust I can understand why you are struggling even more than me right now but try and think about the progress over the last five years. Remember the wins we have had, the games we have played and the amazing times this manager has given us. Focus there and have faith those times can come again. I still believe.