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Norman Giller's Spurs Odyssey Blog (No. 194) (25.09.17)

NORMAN GILLER’S SPURS ODYSSEY BLOG No 194
Submitted by Norman Giller

There's an aura about Aurier

It greatly amuses (and bemuses) this old hack that so many Spurs supporters jumped on Serge Aurier as if he was their worst enemy after his brainless red card in Saturday’s helter-skelter match at West Ham.

Many of these were the same people who had praised his classy debut performance against Borussia Dortmund. It will be a long time before I forget his penalty area dummy that left his marker (and the TV cameraman) having to pay to get back into the ground.

Like so many of our politicians, his critics have mastered the art of saying two different things out of the one mouth.

Yes, several of the Aurier challenges – including the one that brought yellow card number two and his exit – were out of the Kim Jong-un school of stupidity.

It led to the Hammers getting an unexpected route back into a game that Spurs were bossing with style and a confidence bordering on arrogance. The choruses of Bubbles were sounding like the last gasps of drowning men.

Suddenly Aurier’s departure gave them hope where there had been despair, brought about by Our Harry’s customary brace and the grace of Christian Eriksen, whose coolly taken third goal seemed to have wrapped the game and the points up like a very early Christmas present. I am expecting the Kane and Eriksen to be too powerful and potent for Apoel in Nicosia on Wednesday.

As our travelling guru Paul H. Smith reports here, they were always a thought and a deed ahead of the West Ham defenders, and while Tottenham can hang on to this holy trinity I am full of optimism for the future.

Note to all those clubs who would love to have them on their books, go away! Mauricio Pochettino is building a great family bond, even digging into his own pocket to take the 50-strong staff and chairman Daniel Levy to a lunch at an Argentine restaurant in London last week. I think he gave Serge Aurier too much red meat!

Aurier got caught up in the at times vicious local derby rivalry in Stratford on Saturday and probably over-reacted to Tottenham fans telling him how much they hated the Irons. Wait until he goes to the Emirates!

What exactly do supporters think we have purchased in Aurier? Are they expecting some sort of a shrinking violet?

More like a shrinking violation. His entire history has been about making his presence felt, both physically and psychologically. A saint he ain’t.

This is the man found guilty of assaulting a police officer outside a nightclub in Paris … celebrated a goal for the Ivory Coast with a slit-throat gesture to the opposition … was suspended by PSG for calling a team-mate a clown and his manager gay … banned for describing a referee as “a dirty son of a bitch” … got a one year suspended sentence for foul play early in his career … and, his biggest sin, once going on record as saying his dream was to play for the Arsenal!

But the bottom line is that he is an exceptional defender, who has an attacking attitude that makes Kyle Walker seem a negative slow-coach.

Let’s not wreck the confidence that is the bedrock of his game. He thinks he is superior to most other players.

This is no bad thing if he provides action to go with his words. He is a full-back who is full on, and we must accept the bad with the good.

With that beard he looks like one of the Three Musketeers.

Their motto, shared by Professor Pochettino, was “all for one, and one for all.” We want Serge to play for the team while retaining his individual flair.

Yes, there is an aura about Aurier


Spurs Odyssey Quiz League

WEEK 7 of the Sports Odyssey Quiz League 2017-18. The rules are simple: I ask one Tottenham-related question for which a right answer earns you two points, and then a related teaser that can bring you an extra point.

The questions are always easy, provided you know the answers!

The winner this season will get a framed certificate proclaiming him (or her) the Spurs Odyssey Quiz Champion, plus a no-longer-in-print autographed GOALS book by Spurs idol Jimmy Greaves and another collectors’ item from my Greavsie collection: Football’s Greatest Entertainers, signed by Jimmy and Tottenham’s Mr Loyalty, Steve Perryman.

Now here comes the seventh question of the new SOQL season:

Who won 30 international caps, scored in a World Cup finals and collected an FA Cup winners’ medal with Spurs? What number shirt did he wear against Burnley at Wembley?

Please email your answers by Friday’s midnight deadline to: soql7@normangillerbooks.com.

Keep a check on your points score, because I can never rely on my server that often loses emails in the ether. Ah for the good old days of: “Answers on a postcard, please.”

I test you with Spurs questions until the last few weeks of the season, when I introduce the dreaded tiebreaker teasers that call for your opinion as much as your knowledge.

But please remember, we are all in this just for fun, with the common bond of admiring all things Tottenham.

Answer to last week’s question was Jan Vertonghen, who saw red in the Europa League quarter-final against Basel. I don’t think I am wrong to say he is the only Spurs player ever to be given his marching orders in a Champions’ League and Europa League match.

First name drawn from the correct answers was Jim Wright, from Plymouth via Hertfordshire, who has followed Spurs since the early 60s. I will send Jim a screen version of my Spurs ’67 book (you might consider buying a signed hardback copy from me at http://www.normangillerbooks.com… all profits to the Tottenham Tribute Trust to help our old heroes).

Thanks for your company. See you same time, same place next week. COYS!

The "Giller Index" - listing all Norman's articles for Spurs Odyssey

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