NORMAN GILLER’S SPURS ODYSSEY BLOG No 355
Submitted by Norman Giller
Gareth Bale, buoyed (or boyo-d) by the Wales’ Triple Crown triumph, came into yesterday’s match against Burnley with all the fire and fury of his Welsh rugby idols. A self-confessed disciple of the 15-a-side game, he watched the 40-24 destruction of England on Saturday and it put him in just the right mood for the Tottenham game.
Sport at top level is all about confidence and self belief, and after months of concern about Gareth’s attitude we now know that he has found his mojo… just in time for the business end of this surreal season.
Oh what fun the critics have had knocking the Spurs/Bale reunion, many writing the bold loan deal off as a disaster and a waste of Tottenham’s money. One idiot even wrote that it was as if a Rolls Royce had turned into a banger (uh, it may have been me).
But Gareth is determined to have the last laugh, and he has now won the full confidence of manager Jose Mourinho. Three goals and three assists in his last four games has shut up the moaners and the groaners; well, most of them.
It is the dream we have all had coming true, Sonny, Harry Kane and Bale raiding in unison. What a nightmare for rival managers trying to work out defensive tactics to try to stop the three of them.
Our guru Paul H. Smith (who predicted 3-0) reports on the demolition of Burnley HERE and the prominent part played in their downfall by Bale.
Later, Dele Alli joined the party, fresh from his magical performance against Wolfsberger last Wednesday. The thought of Sonny, Kane, Bale AND Dele operating together at peak power would be like playing poker with a full house or – talking Gareth’s second language – winning the Grand Slam with all cylinders firing.
The crushing victory over Burnley came just in time to stop the social media lynch mob in its tracks as they closed in on Marmite Manager Mourinho. They had been fired up by five defeats in six matches, not willing to take into account that Spurs were the superior side in three of the matches they lost.
There was not a whimper or a whisper from the keyboard warriors yesterday. I hope they now put the rope away and get on with giving Jose and his team the support they deserve as they go flat out for the trophy double of League Cup and Europa League, and that fourth place in the Premier League is still not out of sight.
Sorry Scotty Parker, but it means flattening Fulham on Thursday. COYS!
We continue to tick off the matches on the way (fingers crossed) to silverware in what is the Centenary of the 1921 FA Cup win, the Platinum celebration of the 1951 Push and Run title, the Diamond Jubilee of the 1961 Double Year, the Ruby anniversary of Ricky’s ‘Goal of the Century’ in the 1981 FA Cup final triumph, and, of course, the Pearl anniversary of the last time Spurs won the FA Cup in 1991.
These are the fixtures facing Spurs to the end of March. Added to the minefield of the North London Derby are the home and away Europa League matches against Dinamo Zagreb. …
Thur 4 Mar Fulham (away, 6.00, Premier League)
Sun 7 Mar C. Palace (home, 7.15 Premier League)
Thur 11 Mar Dinamo Zagreb (away (TBC), 8.00 Europa League, 1st leg)
Sun 14 Mar Arsenal (away, 4.30, Premier League)
Thur 18 Mar Dinamo Zagreb (home (TBC), Europea League, 2nd leg)
Sun 21 Mar Aston Villa (away, 7.30, Premier League)
I wonder what mood we will all be in going into April and the League Cup final at Wembley on the 25th?
I feel much more confident now that the real deal Bale is back with us. COYS!
The 26th week of season seven of the Spurs Odyssey Quiz League challenge. A quick call-over: There are more than 40 of you jostling for first place, including two-times champion David Guthrie, 2019 title holder from Down Under Graham Eyre and reigning Quiz Queen Emily Hadjinicolaou. All of you have got every question right and have each amassed a maximum 75 points. I will be “sorting you out” in May with my killer tie break challenge. Meantime, this week’s question is:
Who has won 87 international caps, wears the same shirt number as Bobby Smith and Martin Chivers, and against which club was he sent off for the first time in his career playing for Spurs in 2008?
Please email your answer to me at SOQL26@normangillerbooks.com. Deadline: midnight this Friday. I will respond to all who take part.
The rules are the same as in previous seasons. I ask a two-pronged question with three points at stake – two for identifying the player and one for the supplementary question. In the closing weeks of the competition I break the logjam of all-knowing Spurs-history experts with a tie-breaking poser that is based on opinion rather than fact.
This year’s prizes for the champion: a Harry Kane framed and signed photo two, books from my Greavsie collection with autographs from Jimmy Greaves, Steve Perryman and Dave Mackay, and, most important of all, a framed certificate announcing the winner as SOQL champion.
Last week’s SOQL question: Which striker had a loan spell at Manchester United while at Spurs, and from which club did he join Tottenham in 1980?
The answer: Garth Crooks and Stoke City.
See you back here same time, same place next week. COYS!
Top of page | Spurs Odyssey Home Page