Our Poor European Form

Discussion in 'Spurs Chat' started by SUIYHA, Feb 17, 2017.

  1. SUIYHA

    SUIYHA Well-Known Member

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    I originally posted this in November on the Glory Glory forum - http://www.glory-glory.co.uk/community/threads/our-poor-european-form.8754/

    It seems more applicable than ever tonight, having just lost to a mid-table Belgian side. This has been going on for a long time now, even before Poch, and I'd like to get to the bottom of things. Keen to hear your thoughts.


    A lot's been made of Wembley, injuries and Moussa Sissoko, but I think we need to take a step back and consider just how long our poor European performances have been going on for now.

    When we qualified for European competition for the first time in ages in 2006, Jol's team set a British record if eight consecutive wins in the competition, a run that was only ended when the eventual winners, Sevilla, were given a ridiculous penalty when we were leading at their place. The following season we lost to Getafe in Jol's last game, that was only our second European defeat at the Lane in our entire history up to that point (the other being against Real Madrid in 1985). We had plenty of memorable European nights over the next couple of years, with those wins over the two Milan clubs in the Champions League being the pinnacle.

    But since that Champions League campaign six seasons ago, something has been badly wrong. Even putting aside the facts that English teams are generally not as dominant in Europe as they were a few years ago, or that we've rested players in the Europa League, we've been unusually poor in European games.

    Over those six campaigns, I'd ask you to think of how many really impressive Spurs performances there have been. We've stuck a few past a few part timers from Eastern Europe at the Lane a couple of times, but how many times have we come up against credible opposition and risen properly to the challenge?

    Beating Inter 3-0 was great, but that Inter team was terrible and finished 9th in Serie A and they still spanked us 4-1 in the return leg. It was also good to see us win against Fiorentina and Monaco last season. But other than those games? I can't think of anything. Meanwhile, we are usually being well beaten by every half-decent team we face, whether it's Dortmund, Fiorentina (2015), Besiktas, Benfica or Basel...even Dnipro gave us a real scare and we lost to Anderlecht in the group stages last season. Let's not even talk about the time we finished behind Rubin Kazan and PAOK Salonika and failed to get out of the Europa League group stages.

    Yet in that time, we have had fantastic results against all of the big teams in England, we outperform many teams domestically who outperform us in Europe and we've seen plenty of our players excel for their countries. We look to be far stronger on paper than we're demonstrating in European competition. This seems to be a far deeper issue than Pochettino or any of the players. Why do you think we're struggling so badly?
     
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  2. stevenurse

    stevenurse Palacios' neck fat

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    I can only think it's a mentality thing. English teams have rarely done anything of note in the EL bar Liverpool last season and when Chelsea won it with rafa who was desperate for any silverware to save his reputation.

    I think it's a cultural thing in this country. Its seen as a joke and almost a punishment to be in. I used to love being in the uefa cup. It had prestige and was something you'd really get up for. Can't remember who it was against but remember berbatov scoring a wonderful volley at the lane after chesting it up, or his goal against besiktas away (y) Great nights.

    Whether it's an ego thing and the players feel they are too good for the competition and therefore treat it with some kind of distain I don't know but you never see the same level of aggression and spirit during these games.

    Walker is the worst culprit for me. These games roll around and he changes. I can't put my finger on it but something is different about him.
     
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  3. mpickard2087

    mpickard2087 Fantastic Member

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    Mentality, particularly for the Europa League matches, is the main problem.

    But, and I doubt this will be popular, I also don't think that we, and by extension English football, are as good as we think we are. Especially tactically. Teams who we enjoy a massive financial advantage over seem to be better drilled and able to carry out their game plan.
     
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  4. jurgen

    jurgen Busy ****

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    Wes Morgan, premier league winner. That's English football. No wonder we fold at the sight of a well drilled technical team...
     
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  5. yankspurs

    yankspurs "We're not a selling club"

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    Nail. On. The. Head.
     
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  6. yankspurs

    yankspurs "We're not a selling club"

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    This was Walkers first European start since 2015. Sooooooooo you want a rethink on that?
     
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  7. Gaz_Gammon

    Gaz_Gammon Well-Known Member

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    We have never won in Belgium, two draws, three defeats.


    Suck it up ye self entitled bunch.
     
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  8. rocklink

    rocklink Well-Known Member

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    Bad coach , bad tactics, poor setup ... that is all ... how come clubs like atletico madrid or sevilla enjoy so much success than spurs? Difference is coach .. that is all !!
     
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  9. Mullers

    Mullers Unknown member

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    Jol and AVB took the Europa seriously and we got to two quarter finals under them. All I'm going to say is Poch and the players aren't the only ones responsible for our lack of success in the Europa and other cup competitions.
     
  10. Monkey boy

    Monkey boy Well-Known Member

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    I've said it for years now, we just aren't clever enough in the use of the dark arts with last night being the prime example.

    The referees in Europe and in particular the Europa league are so poor anyway that it's almost impossible to gain any momentum at any point during the game as the referees just constantly blow their whistle which in turn breaks up the game and allows the opposition to roll around on the floor for 2 minutes at a time.

    Yesterday's ref was particularly bad in just about every call he made culminating in the ridiculous decision to stop play when their defender was rolling around on the floor after absolutely no contact from Kane.
     
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  11. SUIYHA

    SUIYHA Well-Known Member

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    That's the obvious conclusion, but I still wonder. Liverpool reached the Europa League final last year and Man City got to the Champions League semis only losing to the eventual winners by a single goal - we finished above both of these teams and could do so again this year. And whilst Arsenal are guaranteed to get battered by a big team every time they reach the knockout stages, they've been efficient in getting out of their groups, beating the likes of Bayern, Dortmund and Napoli recently to do so.

    I can count the number of our good European performances against vaguely credible opposition on one hand - I'm not even talking about the absolute elites, I'm literally talking about Basel, Besiktas, Fiorentina, Monaco, Leverkusen and Benfica. I know Monaco beat Arsenal two years ago but I can't help but think most of our PL rivals would have dealt with these teams.

    IMO we need a new tactical approach. We need to have a different game plan for European games than what we play in the Premier League. I think we need to prioritise technical flair and skill in a counter attacking game, over the high line and pressing based style that we usually have, especially as refs on the continent seem to blow for literally anything.
     
  12. shelfboy68

    shelfboy68 Well-Known Member

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    Much like the national side as well then.
     
  13. Shea

    Shea Well-Known Member

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    I think it's clear we're not going to win the Europa playing like this

    I half wish we'd just finished bottom of our group and not had to waste our time with the trip to Belgium if we wasn't going to take it seriously anyway

    I think there's a strong possibility Gent will play out of their skins at Wembley and we will again be lack luster and probably fail to do enough to get through. If that happens then we really would have been better off just dropping out of Europe all together instead of wasting our time in the Europa

    I hope we turn it around and make a decent challenge for the trophy but it looks highly unlikely right now
     
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  14. SUIYHA

    SUIYHA Well-Known Member

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    I think it's also worth noting that all of our extended European runs in the last few years have been driven by our best technical footballers relishing the occasions and producing moments of magic to win matches. Berbatov and Keane in 06/07, Bale/Modric/Van Der Vaart in 10/11 and then Bale again in 12/13.

    At the moment, I'm wondering in our team who is going to step up and take that mantle. Eriksen didn't even start the last game, Lamela is injured, Son is too inconsistent, so who's left? Alli is the only one really but trying to play him out wide really didn't help at all.
     
  15. djw1973

    djw1973 Well-Known Member

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    From a Sky article:

    Since August 2014, Tottenham have won just once in 15 away games against the other teams currently in the Premier League top six.

    That streak reflects a wider issue Spurs have in big matches since Pochettino's appointment. Their record against Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal across all competitions plus Champions League fixtures reads: nine wins out of 37 matches.

    That is the essence of the problem; we aren't any good against the top teams and haven't been for a very long time. The best teams spend money, have experienced winners in the team and tend not to sell their best players. On the other hand we are run very well financially - and that is it.
     
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  16. jonathanhotspur

    jonathanhotspur SC Supporter

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    Federico Fazio on the PL:

    "Getting used to the Premier League was hard for me, they play a different football. There is a lot of 1 on 1s, a lot more space, less tactics, a lot less tactics. We can say they don't work on tactics at all. It's all about physical attributes. The team has to be healthy and be in form, then the difference is made by the individual ability. The fans enjoy it but there is no tactics and planning.

    http://gianlucadimarzio.com/en/roma...iga-while-adapting-to-premier-league-was-hard
     
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  17. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

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    I think it's a combination of things, and @mpickard2087 has touched on it. The mentality thing is crucial in this, and it clearly emanates down from Pochettino. The way he approaches European competition clearly sends off a "this is not a priority" vibe. Then you have the inevitable compromise of rotation, no matter how minimal, when you are a club like us that hasn't got many top class players, and those that rotate are nowhere near, then compromise will occur.

    So you have the mentality thing, then you have inevitable performance compromise, and then you have the fact that for many of the opposition this is a much bigger deal, a chance to scalp a bigger fish, give their fans something to cheer, and often European teams, even from outside the big 5 leagues, but especially in are tactically no mugs.

    I think the first thing Pochettino needs to address is the mentality thing though, no matter who goes out on that pitch, and generally it's the regular first teamers that need to made to realise that this isn't a fucking freebie night off for them, the kids and reserves generally try the hardest to impress, they have got to be fucking at it.
     
  18. mattbrakeuk

    mattbrakeuk 60% banana

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    Not having it, I definitely saw a white board and coloured magnets in the dressing room, unless like me they use their whiteboard and magnets for making smiley/frowney faces.
     
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  19. JerryGarcia

    JerryGarcia Dark star crashes...

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    Under Jol and Redknapp we played 442 with fast wingers, I wonder if that has anything to do with it?
     
  20. Gaz_Gammon

    Gaz_Gammon Well-Known Member

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    You can train a monkey to play football, but with the wrong attitude he will prefer to peel a banana.

    You cannot train attitude, it's easy to confuse mentality with attitude.
     

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