Consent Preferences Spurs Odyssey - Norman Giller's Blog (No. 412 - 05.09.22)
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Norman Giller's Spurs Odyssey Blog (No. 412) (05.09.22)

Submitted by Norman Giller

Energetic,enigmatic Bentancur is the new Spurs Ghost

It is time to sing the 'Ghost with the Most' praises of Rodrigo Bentancur, who is emerging as the quiet tick-tock man of Tottenham. He gave Spurs their tempo against Fulham on Saturday, and will become a vital cog in the Tottenham team as games come thick and fast.

When he and Dejan Kulusevski arrived together from Juventus on transfer Deadline Day in January, it was the Ginger Swede who made the quickest impact. But now we know that the Uruguayan is pure class and ready to take on the 'Ghost' mantle of two late, great masters in John White and Martin Peters.

He mixes elegance with energy and, like White and Peters, has the gift of being able to pop up unseen in positions that nobody else has spotted. The South American was continually probing against Fulham and – with our Great Dane Pierre-Emile Højbjerg riding shotgun alongside him – gave Spurs a monopoly in midfield.

Energy crisis? Our new PM should plug into the driving power of Højbjerg and Bentancur. Both are prepared to run all day and always put the needs of the team first. A metaphor for the challenges that lie ahead for our nation (note from Ed: Norm, stick to football, No politics, please).

Bentancur's style of play – thoughtful yet tigerish when necessary – reminds me a lot of his mentor Antonio Conte, and I am expecting him to play a key role as this Spurs side develops tenacity to go with its talent. He has grown from enigmatic to energetic and we now know we have a new Sours ghost ready to haunt the opposition.

Tottenham Stadium is becoming a fortress and the totally committed Spurs spectators are managing to create an atmosphere that lifts the energy levels and eagerness of every player. There is a long long way to go, but this is the best I have felt about the team for many months. Manchester City at the Etihad on Saturday will test my optimism.

Spurs coulda, shoulda won by at least three clear goals against Fulham. Twice they struck the wood work, twice they netted goals ruled offside by VAR, and Fulham goalkeeper Bernd Leno pulled off a sequence of stunning saves.

The major concern for Conte will be the failure to wrap up the game, and Fulham had our nerves jangling when dangerman Mitrovic plundered a late goal.

Surely it is only a matter of time before Richarlison's enterprise and enthusiasm is rewarded with a genuine goal, and I just hope sad-looking Sonny scores soon before he bursts out crying. We want to see that huge smile back on his face, hopefully starting with the Champions League match against Marseille on Wednesday.

As our Spurs guru Paul H. Smith reports HERE, it was a game that produced yet another record for Harry Kane, who has now scored an astonishing 43 goals just in London derbies alone. Ponder on that stat and realise just how special he is.

Harry was taken off on Saturday to save him for the challenges coming from Marseille and Man City. We want his golden boots firing on all cylinders, and thank goodness he is already estab-lished at No 10 and in his prime. I know, I know … 'kindly leave the page.' COYS!

Spurs Odyssey Quiz League 2022-23

Week six of our ninth year of Spurs Odyssey Quiz League challenges:

Who scored just one goal in 591 games for Spurs and against which country did he make his last appearance in a World Cup finals match?

Please email your answer to me at with Quiz Week 6 as the subject head-ing. 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. That’s when I lose the few friends that I have. But, hey, it's fun. Please join in.

This year’s prizes for the champion will be announced later in the season, but most important of all, they will include a framed certificate announcing the winner as 2023 SOQL champion.

Last week … Question 5 Who has played 58 times for his country, was the youngest ever player for Bayern Munich and what number Spurs shirt does he wear?

Yes, our Great Dane Pierre-Emile Højbjerg, who proudly wears the No 5 Spurs shirt. Loved his goal against Fulham. More please, Pierre-Emile (Danish Dad, French Mum and a Spurs soul).

See you back here same time, same place next week. COYS!

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