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Norman Giller's Spurs Odyssey Blog (No. 254) (03.12.18)

NORMAN GILLERíS SPURS ODYSSEY BLOG No 254
Submitted by Norman Giller

Toby or not Toby? That is the question

A bit like Tottenham, I had one of THOSE days yesterday. An early family Christmas lunch took priority, and I spent the afternoon dodging the result. I warned on social media for people bumping into me to arrange their face so that they did not give anything away about the match.

I then rushed home to watch a recording of the game. Slight problem, I pushed the wrong record button and found myself watching Songs of Praise. Hallebloodyujah.

Eventually, I caught up with the highlights (okay, lowlights) on Match of the Day, and I am now typing this under a cloud of depression.

It was not so much the defeat that sickened me as the report of a Tottenham fan throwing a banana at Arsenalís brilliant black striker Aubameyang. It was like revisiting football in the seventies when this sort of odious behaviour was commonplace.

I know it was an isolated incident, but it must be stamped on by the Tottenham hierarchy as they prepare to move to a new state-of-the-art stadium that must not be contaminated by the poison of bigotry.

Sadly, it underlines how racism is creeping back into the game and into society in general. There has been an undercurrent in the vile attacks on Sol Campbell since he was appointed Macclesfield manager.

I did not defend his controversial transfer, but I have always defended his right to choose where he wanted to practice his profession. It was 17 years ago, and still myopic people make abusive attacks on him. Let it go, for goodness sake.

I read Spurs Odyssey guru Paul H. Smithís report of the match HERE to get confirmation that Tottenham were as bad as they appeared in the filleted version of the match on BBC.

It was certainly an odd team selection for the inexperienced Foyth to be preferred to reliable Alderweireld, but we must accept that Pochettino had reasons for his choice. Toby or not Toby? For once, Mauricio got it wrong.

We were singing his praises after the victories against Inter and Chelsea, and cannot suddenly attack him when one of his tactical decisions back fires.

Watching the edited version of the match, Spurs reminded me of Tyson Fury when he was flat on his back in the final round against Deontay Wilder. Like Fury, Spurs have got to get up and fight back Ö starting with Southampton on Wednesday.

A League Cup battle with the Woolwich Nomads is around the corner. It now takes on extra significance. A second defeat would leave us all in a Fury.


WANT to drop hints for the perfect Christmas present? Vision Sports Publishing have produced a magnificent book called THE SPURS SHIRT, an illustrated history of all Spurs shirts (home and away) since the glory-glory days of the 1960s.

The book contains photographs of more than 200 shirts worn by Tottenham legends from Danny Blanchflower and Jimmy Greaves through to modern heroes such as Harry Kane and Gareth Bale.

Spurs Odyssey disciple Tony Sealey has put in overtime helping with the research and he and the publication team have done a wonderful job in capturing the fashion changes. You can almost smell the tradition coming off the pages. What you might call a well-tailored book.

Expensive at £30, but a must-buy for all those who love their Spurs history.

It is an official club publication and will be exclusively available at all official Tottenham Hotspur stores and online at https://shop.tottenhamhotspur.com

Is it a winner? You can put your shirt on it.


Spurs Odyssey Quiz League

Question No 16 in this 2018-19 SOQL season:

Which midfielder has been capped 56 times, and after leaving Spurs won the domestic double in Spain? From which club did he join Tottenham in the summer of 2013?

Please email your answer to me at SOQL16@normangillerbooks.com. Deadline: midnight this Friday. I will respond to all who take part.

This yearís prizes for the champion: A framed Harry Kane autographed picture, two books from my Spurs collection with autographs from Jimmy Greaves, Steve Perryman and Dave Mackay, and (most precious of all) a framed certificate announcing the winner as SOQL champion.

Last week I asked: Who started his career with Bayern Munich, won 44 international caps and against which team did he score a League Cup winning goal for Tottenham?

Most of you eventually got it right after wrestling with my Bayern Munich red herring, It was, of course, Danish international Allan Nielsen, who memorably scored with a dramatic diving header to clinch an injury-time League Cup final victory over Leicester City in 1999.

Please keep a check on your scores. I will be trusting you to count your points as I do not have faith in my email server.

Thank you for taking part. See you back here same time, same place next week. Keep the faith. COYS!

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

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