After the fun FA Cup 3rd round knockout game, it was back to the long-standing affair of the Carabao Cup semi-finals.
Which is a bit like comparing the T20 Cricket World Cup to a Second Division County Championship match in April.
In fact, this similarity to cricket doesn’t end with the square… sorry… two-legged affair between London rivals Chelsea and Tottenham. Just as it started for England Down Under, Spurs lost to Carabao Ashes after three halves of football.
So maybe it saved face by shooting the fourth half? At that point, Chelsea put N’Golo Kante on to throw their little dobbers.
To be fair, however, no one really likes January. The only respite for many, given that we are so broke, we cannot afford to throw more garbage in the Christmas belly.
At White Hart Lane, the New Year saw a Cup outing at this Kings Road pitch. Followed by a derby in North London, a trip to Leicester, then against again, who is it… oh, Chelsea. Guess that’s why they call it the Blues?
Yes indeed, this month is a real test for the Lillywhites. But can they improve the atmosphere around their magnificent new stadium? Let’s see…
First there is Antonio Conte. An inspiring man, sure, but he doesn’t really hang around when he doesn’t like the way things are turned out.
At yesterday’s press conference, he looked like the cat who got the cream, who didn’t pass the sniff test. “I have no expectations,” he told the assembled crowd. What looks like Hope is going to be the first name on the team sheet.
Then there’s Fabio Paratici, who arrived last summer as director of football and orchestrated the appointment of the man who was to lead Spurs to an exciting new future. OK, this man was Nuno Espirito Santo. So that did not happen.
But what about the goalkeeper he found in Serie A? Pierluigi Gollini? Yes, the Pierluigi Gollini who became the culprit of Chelsea’s decisive first goal.
Which means finally, and let’s be honest, first, there’s Daniel Levy. The president and the face of the ENIC owners, who made the trend on Twitter, acquiring a hashtag and the word “OUT” in the process.
If his time at Spurs – which set is to be considered a half-full glass, surely? – taught us one thing, and that is that he prefers attention to be firmly focused on the playing field.
In fact, it taught us more than one thing. HE HATES DOING BUSINESS IN JANUARY. Well, all things considered, if he’s going to release that hashtag and keep his manager inside, he’s surely going to have to break his own rules.
And turn her dry January into a purchase January.
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