Tottenham fight to keep Premier League season alive

If you are changing your diet to lose weight or gain muscle, then it’s okay that sometimes you don’t necessarily enjoy the meals you eat because they will be bland or you are pushing things just because they are. nutritious. “Cool, I’m going to shake that vomit-flavored protein in five seconds flat if I really have to, for the greater good ‘.

But if you eat those bland meals that are supposed to make things better but taste like garbage and also make you more unhealthy, then why would you continue to persist with them?

That’s what it feels like watching Tottenham play scoreless football under Jose Mourinho in an effort to end their trophy drought.

Mourinho’s philosophy is simple: win or fail.

He sets up his teams in the hope that they will make fewer mistakes than the opposition, but he has found this to be more difficult to implement in a team like Tottenham than the European conquerors he was usually in charge of ( although Spurs reached the Champions League final a few months before his arrival). It’s easier to defend his way to the top with John Terry and Ricardo Carvalho than with Eric Dier and Davinson Sanchez.

But this is a team Mourinho insisted he loved, wanted to part ways with Chelsea and Manchester United but couldn’t afford. He was born in the summer window with Seven signatures of the first team despite the pandemic hitting Tottenham’s finances.

Daniel Levy’s reluctance to give up Tanguy Ndombele when his head coach has also paid off, with the midfielder having a stellar season, and his confidence in Dele Alli could prove to be beneficial again. Make no mistake, it’s Mourinho’s team and then some – it was widely considered that he had his “dogs” in lilywhite when things were rosy in the fall.

According to Opta, only one side in Premier League history has depended on strikes from a duo more than Tottenham with Harry Kane and Son Heung-min, who have scored 71% of Spurs’ goals this season. Now Kane is injured and the wheels are threatening to drop like they did last season (take a look at that big red track on the spreadsheet linked above).

Mourinho’s entire reign at Spurs has been based on guesswork. How far would you go to win a trophy? Do you watch turgid football every week and end up lower in the table with a lot fewer points for a League Cup whiff? This is the path we are taking.

It wasn’t even that long ago that Spurs were seen as true title contenders. But instead of following some big wins and great performances with more of the same, Mourinho’s side fell further and further back until the nice margins needed to win that way were so slim that you would be. mistakenly to think that Tottenham weren’t trying to win at all.

Now they’re eight points off the top, four points off the top four – with a game in hand, but obviously well below Liverpool. They are just three points ahead of Arsenal, an unthinkable situation after the North London derby in December when top-of-the-table Spurs sidelined rivals, who languished in 15th, by 11 points.

A big week against Brighton, Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea and West Brom could decide Spurs’ goals for the second half of the league season – will they step up again and fight for a Champions League spot, or will- do they fall back into the midtable pack and put all of their eggs in the trophy basket? If they can’t get past two top teams with the word “Albion” in their name and a team whose new manager has barely had time to discuss tactics with them, then there is only one. only answer.

Jose mourinho
Great mood | Clive Brunskill / Getty Images

The saving grace is that two of these matches are very winnable and there is a clear quality in the squad despite Kane’s injury. This has been largely overlooked all season and must suddenly kick in with Mourinho’s approval.

If fans had been allowed into stadiums last year, then maybe Spurs would have had a little more adrenaline and momentum to attack – because I can assure you fans wouldn’t have accepted some of these performances. But it’s a problem every team has had to face, and it’s a problem Mourinho has failed to overcome. It’s all up to the manager.