Tottenham Hotspur 20/21: WE SIGNED A STRIKER! (I mean, besides Alex Morgan)

Jimy Hendrix

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I wonder if Dele asking random questions about nonsense is a bit he decided to do for the doc or just a thing he always does? I feel like he does it a few times so far and it’s always been him when it happens
 

coremiller

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The first half was alright, I thought Spurs were slightly better although far from dominant, but maaaan, that second half was really dreadful. Despite playing from behind most of the half, they created absolutely nothing and looked like they had no effective attacking ideas at all. Pretty clearly they have not yet solved the major problems from last season. This could be a long year.
 

scott bankheadcase

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The first half was alright, I thought Spurs were slightly better although far from dominant, but maaaan, that second half was really dreadful. Despite playing from behind most of the half, they created absolutely nothing and looked like they had no effective attacking ideas at all. Pretty clearly they have not yet solved the major problems from last season. This could be a long year.
GLC is the new Eriksen. Without him there’s no creativity. And things get dreadful quick.
 

Zososoxfan

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Re the match, I really don't understand why Winks gets so much love. With Hodjberg taking lots of the defensive responsibility, I'd much rather have GLC's creativity and effective pressing, Sissoko's endurance and ability to cover for Doherty, or Ndombele's...potential. Winks certainly has a place in this squad but it's not in the best XI when Spurs can dictate. I also don't think Dier is a better CB than Dav. Le Saux (Sp?) mentioned it on the broadcast, but James to Richarlison killed us all match. Tip of the cap to the Toffees who look really solid and well-coached. As bizarro JV Barca, I still really like Mina and Digne, Gomes is fine but I still don't think he's THAT good--the other 2 are pretty elite IMO. Doucoure and Allan fit in well very quickly. I still hope that Spurs bring in a backup striker. I think Son is certainly capable of doing it, but the broadcasters again got this correct when they mentioned that Son disappeared when he came central. At least Jose tried everything he could this match. Emptied the bench and nothing worked. Have to just tip the cap to Carlo and the Everton players.

Re the documentary, I'm also really enjoying it. "It's pronounced Jose" was even funnier after seeing the meme. Agree with everyone that it's frustrating liking Mou so much. I have a lot of respect for him telling the players that they don't have to wonder if he wants them off the team--he will tell them. With pro athletes at this level, it seems like blunt honesty is almost always the way to go. It's probably as one-sided as the Jordan documentary, but still enjoyable. Levy really has done a wonderful job setting Spurs up as a global club, and all the NFL/concert/general venue stuff just shows that he understood the value of multiple revenue streams.

When Dier broke out into Portuguese, my jaw dropped. Did not expect that.

Agree that Eriksen just wanted out. The most honest part of the document (thru 3 episodes) was Levy holding out hope that Mou could energize Eriksen because he wasn't happy with the offers coming in--quintessential Levy.

I get what everyone's saying about Harry's leadership, but on the Barca podcast I listen to, they talk about Messi's leadership a lot and whether someone more vocal like Pique or MATS should be the captain. The conclusion was that at the biggest clubs, it's frequently the best player that wears the armband and there's not much more to it. That being said, they concluded that Pique should be the captain because he is outspoken, is the leader of the defense for sure, and Messi just isn't that type of leader.

Found it very interesting and somewhat confirming when Mou's staff reported to him that Sissoko is a leader of the locker room.

Son is the man and I love him. Just seems like a very thoughtful guy who's very self aware.

I also really like Dele and I don't think much of what we're seeing is an act. He's just a cool dude who sees a lot of humor in everything. Mou telling him that he's going to ride him hard and that it will be the best thing that ever happened to Dele is just hilarious and completely expected.

Seeing lots of glancing shots of Rose and Foyth make me sad. I like both players very much and hope they get to see the field some this year, although I don't think it's likely.
 

Zomp

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Kane's team talk is basically


"fucking start fast fucking get the bawl get stuck in come on lads lets fucking goooo"

as he starts clapping faster and faster
 

Zososoxfan

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Kane's team talk is basically


"fucking start fast fucking get the bawl get stuck in come on lads lets fucking goooo"

as he starts clapping faster and faster
First, I doubt they're showing the whole talk. Second, what else is a team captain (as opposed to the manager) supposed to say in a pregame pump up speech? Keep it short and sweet, get me ready to play hard and run thru a brick wall. fin.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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First, I doubt they're showing the whole talk. Second, what else is a team captain (as opposed to the manager) supposed to say in a pregame pump up speech? Keep it short and sweet, get me ready to play hard and run thru a brick wall. fin.
Lloris has been the same thing, but in a French accent so it maybe sounds cleverer. I doubt it's uniquely "Kane's talks are simple" and more "captains do not give pump up speeches of great literary sophistication"
 

Tangled Up In Red

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Serious smoke around Bale coming back (I know, every year)... this time supported by legit ITK. RM paying 1/2 his wage bill while on loan.
Doesn't make a ton of sense, but I love it!
 

Zososoxfan

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Honestly, Levy just needs to get some of his yankee friends on the line, get Bale confirmed for some rounds at Augusta National, and Gareth will swim the channel to come home. Get it done Levy.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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If Spurs get Bale and Reguilon it really does like a team increasingly suited to a 3-4-3 system. Doherty is really a wingback, Reguilon an attacking fullback, and Bale is certainly not the kind of RW that will track back a lot and cover for a marauding fullback in a four man defense.

I think it could work. Play those wingbacks to provide width, give Son/Kane/Bale some license to move around up front or drop between the lines, then have two from Hojbjerg/Lo Celso/Winks as cover in front of a three man defense. I don't see much role for Dele or N'Dombele but this potentially creates the kind of team Mourinho likes - one with a solidly structured defense and enough attacking talent on the field to figure it out themselves. The biggest issues with this kind of system is that you tend to get overrun in midfield and you don't get much chance creation through the center of the pitch (see Arteta's Arsenal). But maybe that's OK as Mourinho likes to play counter-attacking football and Spurs don't really have that kind of creative CAM player anyway.
 

Kliq

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If Spurs get Bale and Reguilon it really does like a team increasingly suited to a 3-4-3 system. Doherty is really a wingback, Reguilon an attacking fullback, and Bale is certainly not the kind of RW that will track back a lot and cover for a marauding fullback in a four man defense.

I think it could work. Play those wingbacks to provide width, give Son/Kane/Bale some license to move around up front or drop between the lines, then have two from Hojbjerg/Lo Celso/Winks as cover in front of a three man defense. I don't see much role for Dele or N'Dombele but this potentially creates the kind of team Mourinho likes - one with a solidly structured defense and enough attacking talent on the field to figure it out themselves. The biggest issues with this kind of system is that you tend to get overrun in midfield and you don't get much chance creation through the center of the pitch (see Arteta's Arsenal). But maybe that's OK as Mourinho likes to play counter-attacking football and Spurs don't really have that kind of creative CAM player anyway.
If Dele goes to Madrid they are basically punting on getting anything out of an attacking CM anyway.
 

coremiller

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If Spurs get Bale and Reguilon it really does like a team increasingly suited to a 3-4-3 system. Doherty is really a wingback, Reguilon an attacking fullback, and Bale is certainly not the kind of RW that will track back a lot and cover for a marauding fullback in a four man defense.

I think it could work. Play those wingbacks to provide width, give Son/Kane/Bale some license to move around up front or drop between the lines, then have two from Hojbjerg/Lo Celso/Winks as cover in front of a three man defense. I don't see much role for Dele or N'Dombele but this potentially creates the kind of team Mourinho likes - one with a solidly structured defense and enough attacking talent on the field to figure it out themselves. The biggest issues with this kind of system is that you tend to get overrun in midfield and you don't get much chance creation through the center of the pitch (see Arteta's Arsenal). But maybe that's OK as Mourinho likes to play counter-attacking football and Spurs don't really have that kind of creative CAM player anyway.
I think it would be very risky to play 3-4-3 with three true forwards AND aggressive wingbacks and I can't see Jose doing it, it's just not his style. Also Spurs don't have the personnel for a midfield 2. Hojberg could work in this system but there's no natural partner for him in a 2-man midfield because none of the other candidates can cover enough ground defensively.

3-5-2 would be more likely, with Hojberg, Winks or Sissoko, and GLC or Ndombele in a midfield 3 behind one of Bale/Son/Dele (if he's still here) partnering Kane. This is more like how they played when they successfully used a back 3 in the 2016-17 season, with Eriksen as the third midfielder in front of two of Dembele/Dier/Wanyama and Dele playing off Kane. There was no obvious role for Son in this side, which led to one of Poch's worst decisions when to shoehorn Son into the side he started Son as a left wing-back against Chelsea in the FA Cup semifinal and Son gave away a cheap penalty.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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I think it would be very risky to play 3-4-3 with three true forwards AND aggressive wingbacks and I can't see Jose doing it, it's just not his style. Also Spurs don't have the personnel for a midfield 2. Hojberg could work in this system but there's no natural partner for him in a 2-man midfield because none of the other candidates can cover enough ground defensively.

3-5-2 would be more likely, with Hojberg, Winks or Sissoko, and GLC or Ndombele in a midfield 3 behind one of Bale/Son/Dele (if he's still here) partnering Kane. This is more like how they played when they successfully used a back 3 in the 2016-17 season, with Eriksen as the third midfielder in front of two of Dembele/Dier/Wanyama and Dele playing off Kane. There was no obvious role for Son in this side, which led to one of Poch's worst decisions when to shoehorn Son into the side he started Son as a left wing-back against Chelsea in the FA Cup semifinal and Son gave away a cheap penalty.
That makes sense. Realistically, Bale isn't going to play every match anyway given his injury history. And since Bale and Son could play together in this system pretty well when Kane needs rest or gets hurt you might not need to buy the long sought backup CF.
 

Zososoxfan

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The headlines will be about Bale, but I honestly think Reguilon is more important. I think I've mentioned it in previous Spurs threads, but I think Davies is a very limited player. He's an average (at best IMO) stay at home LB while the game has increasingly become about attacking, skill, and mobility. Those are not qualities I'd use to describe Davies. Reguilon is a goddamned beast and very well-rounded FB. Think Carvajal. Just a guy that will make everyone else look good without necessarily snatching the headlines. As someone who plays FB, I cannot say enough good things about him.

Against Everton, Carlo picked apart Spurs by camping James on Davies' side but deep enough so that Davies wouldn't close him down. He then told Richarlison to run in behind Doherty. Mou had no counter, except to take off Dele (?!??!?) for Sissoko presumably to help cover for Doherty. Mou never really recovered and it's hard not to think other managers saw that and figured they could put a playmaker in a similar position as James and direct playe from there. In other words, Davies' limitations create a huge L-R imbalance that is far too predictable. Mou deserves a lot of blame for not coming up with a counter to this obvious plan, but it also helps when there's at least some semblance of balance and threat from both sides of the pitch.
 

DJnVa

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If Spurs get Bale and Reguilon it really does like a team increasingly suited to a 3-4-3 system. Doherty is really a wingback, Reguilon an attacking fullback, and Bale is certainly not the kind of RW that will track back a lot and cover for a marauding fullback in a four man defense.
The Athletic:

Most likely as the right-sided attacker in a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 (with Son Heung-min on the left), where he would be a big upgrade on Lucas Moura, who currently starts on the right.

Bale can also operate as a centre-forward in a more fluid front three but not as the out-and-out No 9 that Jose Mourinho wants. The manager will still want another striker as back-up for Kane. Mourinho has repeatedly spoken about big clubs needing to have big players on the bench, so he wants the additional competition up front. One side-effect of Bale’s arrival would be moving Steven Bergwijn, signed in January for €30 million (£27.6 million), further down the pecking order.

Pitt-Brooke: The most obvious place for Bale would be in Son’s role on the left of a front three but where that leaves Son — Spurs’ most consistent forward in recent years — remains to be seen. Another option would be for Mourinho to go 4-4-2 with Bale and Kane up front. Managing the relationship with Kane would be interesting too — he’s been the main man almost since Bale left.
 

teddykgb

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I can’t fathom Mourinho shifting to a back 3. Seems more likely he will just play 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 and the fullbacks will stay home for the most part. It’s just who he is. Interested to see Bale playing again, this could be a coup for Spurs.

I have to say, the Lo Celso adoration is really strange to consistently read as a neutral. I’ve never watched Spurs play and found him anything but average but you guys seem to love him and usually close fans have better instincts. It’s just so jarring to read come up sofrequently
 

Zososoxfan

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The Athletic:



Some of that is spot on, but some of it isn't at all. Kane, Son, Dele, Bale, Lucas, and Bergy is a crowded attacking crew, but not impossibly so. The cream will rise and the bottom 2 will likely not play nearly enough to their liking. Since Kane is the only true Striker, he won't be used as an AMF. Dele is probably the best AMF on the squad and while that's where Bergy has played some, I've seen better performances from him on the wing. I think Son is actually serviceable as the backup Striker. Last year he showed he can handle hold up play reasonably well, and he's lightning fast and makes smart runs in behind. The best way to think about Spurs formations is how aggressive Mou wants to be. 4231 is his most aggressive as he deploys 4 players in attack (3-1), 433 is balanced (3 true attackers), and 442 is conservative (2 true attackers). It's best to think about who can play what role in each setup. Here's my best take on it, noting that I didn't focus too much on having the best player for each role listed first:

442
LMF - Son, Dele, Bergy, Sess(?)
RMF - Lucas, Bergy, Son
Second Striker - Dele, Bergy, Bale
Striker - Kane, Son

433
AMF - GLC, maybe Dele/Bergy?
LW - Dele, Son, Bale, Bergy, Sess (even less likely here than as LMF in 442 above)
RW - Lucas, Son, Bergy
Striker - Kane, Son

4231

LW - Bale, Son, Dele, Bergy, Sess (I'm essentially trolling at this point)
AMF - Dele, GLC, Kane???
RW - Son, Lucas, Bergy
Striker - Kane, Son

I can’t fathom Mourinho shifting to a back 3. Seems more likely he will just play 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 and the fullbacks will stay home for the most part. It’s just who he is. Interested to see Bale playing again, this could be a coup for Spurs.

I have to say, the Lo Celso adoration is really strange to consistently read as a neutral. I’ve never watched Spurs play and found him anything but average but you guys seem to love him and usually close fans have better instincts. It’s just so jarring to read come up sofrequently
I agree that he won't play 3ATB, but Mou has shown he's not interested in having both FBs stay home. Last year's strategy was to get Serge the ball as high up the field as possible. This is a terrible plan on many levels, but there's no doubt that Mou made this Plan A-H. Getting another well-rounded FB on the opposite side will allow the team to be much more fluid L-R and when Reguilon pushes high, Doherty will stay home and vice versa.

WRT GLC, all I can say is watch him more. He's one of those unique players that opens up the field in the attacking third. He's incredibly technical and finds good passing angles. He's also an outstanding presser. He's probably at his best in a somewhat unusual role that allows him to float between the midline and the attacking box and find spaces, but he's certainly good enough to play as a true CM and IMO also good enough to play AMF. IOW, he's a gifted attacking CM or an AMF that hasn't had enough time at the position yet to determine if he's good enough (CM/AMF). I'd like to see him and Dele get some matches together to see if they combine well and have chemistry. Because if they can find some success in the middle along with Kane, that will open up the wings and be a real balanced attack.

All of that is mental floss though, because Mou will sit deep in a 442 and hit on the break with Lucas on the right, le sigh.
 

coremiller

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It looks like Bale is happening. Whether it's a good deal IMO depends on the financial terms, of which I've seen varying reports. But it's an odd thing for Spurs to focus on. Wide attacking players is not really a weakness of the current squad with Son, Bergwijn, Lucas, and Sessegnon. Bale is an improvement, sure, but he's an expensive short-term fix and Spurs have bigger needs at other positions where I wish they'd invest long-term resources.
 

Kliq

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It looks like Bale is happening. Whether it's a good deal IMO depends on the financial terms, of which I've seen varying reports. But it's an odd thing for Spurs to focus on. Wide attacking players is not really a weakness of the current squad with Son, Bergwijn, Lucas, and Sessegnon. Bale is an improvement, sure, but he's an expensive short-term fix and Spurs have bigger needs at other positions where I wish they'd invest long-term resources.
I agree with this in general; I'm psyched to have Bale back but it wasn't necessarily a weakness this team had that needed to be addressed. That being said, my biggest complaints for the team heading into the transfer window was for Tottenham to upgrade their fullbacks and improve the midfield. With Hojbjerg they added an upgrade at DMF, and with Doherty, and hopefully Reguilon, they will have upgraded the fullback positions as well. That is a pretty successful window, all things considered. If they get Bale on a sweetheart deal and he is suddenly a world class player again, that is just an added bonus. The big question will be how does this team play under Jose and how successful will they be?
 

DJnVa

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It looks like Bale is happening. Whether it's a good deal IMO depends on the financial terms, of which I've seen varying reports. But it's an odd thing for Spurs to focus on. Wide attacking players is not really a weakness of the current squad with Son, Bergwijn, Lucas, and Sessegnon. Bale is an improvement, sure, but he's an expensive short-term fix and Spurs have bigger needs at other positions where I wish they'd invest long-term resources.
Yeah, lots of English sources now flipping over to "deal is done" type of tweets.
 

Tangled Up In Red

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One thing to consider is that part of the challenge of playing Sonny as Kane's backup is how much it weakens us on the wing. Getting Bale may afford Son to slot in to the 9 role (though they should still be looking for a target man b/u).
Reguilon is so very needed.
 

scott bankheadcase

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I think even with all of this, you're going to see a striker come in as well. Whether it's a real name like Belotelli or a couple million deadline day deal on someone like Bad Dost, someone else is coming on that front.
 

Tangled Up In Red

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Reguilon completed more dribbles in La Liga last season (49) than Davies has managed in his entire 129-game Premier League career at Spurs (45).
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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I can’t fathom Mourinho shifting to a back 3. Seems more likely he will just play 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 and the fullbacks will stay home for the most part. It’s just who he is. Interested to see Bale playing again, this could be a coup for Spurs.

I have to say, the Lo Celso adoration is really strange to consistently read as a neutral. I’ve never watched Spurs play and found him anything but average but you guys seem to love him and usually close fans have better instincts. It’s just so jarring to read come up sofrequently
Shifting to a back three would definitely be a departure for Mourinho. But I don't think he has ever regularly fielded a 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 team with two wingers as attack oriented as Son/Bale and with two fullbacks as attack-oriented as Reguilon/Doherty. His preference has generally been to have one winger and one fullback more defensive. So continuing to play 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 while replacing his harder working winger (Lucas) with Bale, while also replacing his stay-at-home fullback (Davies) with Reguilon, would be a very big departure in its own right. I'll guess we'll find out!
 

Zososoxfan

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One thing to consider is that part of the challenge of playing Sonny as Kane's backup is how much it weakens us on the wing. Getting Bale may afford Son to slot in to the 9 role (though they should still be looking for a target man b/u).
Reguilon is so very needed.
Agree with this. Son is in the best XI regardless of formation. Bale hopefully becomes an elite option at wing to give Kane and Son some rest. Dele will get PT anyway because he's the best central option at AMF, with Bergy and GLC the only other viable options. All that said, Bale should be considered a luxury, and no way should Spurs pay more than 50% of his wages.
 

coremiller

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This would be a super-fun team and it's what Frank Lampard would do if he were managing Spurs, but there's no way Mourinho plays this attacking of a lineup. He will plug in at least one more defensively-oriented midfielder.

Also, Spurs have crazy fixture congestion this season with the compressed PL schedule + Europa League (starting with 9 matches in the first 22 days). Mourinho has never been big on rotation, but he's going to have to this year just out of necessity so we may see a lot of different lineups and formations, especially early in the season.
 

DJnVa

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Because he speaks Portuguese and is a cunt??
More or less. He, according to Mourinho, is the only one that relishes a fight on the field.

I don't want to render all discussion boards moot by saying "The manager always knows more", but someone like Mourinho is clearly a WIN NOW kind of guy. There's gotta be a reason he plays him, no?
 

Zososoxfan

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More or less. He, according to Mourinho, is the only one that relishes a fight on the field.

I don't want to render all discussion boards moot by saying "The manager always knows more", but someone like Mourinho is clearly a WIN NOW kind of guy. There's gotta be a reason he plays him, no?
I don't even know what you're trying to say here. Managers almost always have reasons for their decisions, I'm questioning Mou's reasons for starting Dier over Dav. Furthermore, with Mou being such a WIN NOW type of manager, why's he playing Dier--who's doing well, but still very much learning on the job and giving away unnecessary pens. So while Mou gets to see them both in training and certainly has a fuller picture of who's better, what's the point of this thread if we're not going to ask questions like this.