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Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Guest Post: Brazilian youngsters.

Twitter's a wonderful place. I do invite and encourage those that have yet to sign up to, well, sign up. I have recently been speaking to a Brazilian Spurs fan who, of course, lives in Brazil. With strings of 'ITK' running around every other day or so, another has reported that Spurs have been apparently watching Bernardo. Whether a deal would be pursued I've no idea. But here is brief insight into two promising players, including Bernardo, from someone who knows. The following report below is written by @Harrishotspur Take from it what you will.

-> I've been looking at some players during the Brazilian football season and have made reports on two young lads that I was interested in, and maybe have a chance of going to a top team in Europe. They are called Bernardo and Bernard, ironically. Bernardo plays for Rio de Janeiro side Vasco da Gama and is on loan to Santos and Bernard plays for Atlético Mineiro.

Bernardo is twenty two years old, and has sparkled since joining Vasco da Gama from Cruzeiro, scoring ten goals and assisting fourteen in his first season (when Vasco had finished second in the league). He usually plays at the right wing and often does raids through that side of the pitch, but he can often change sides and play on the left, proving his equality with the left or right foot, but predominantly being a right-footed player.

He is a specialist in dribbling and crossing. Most of his assists came from crosses (high or low) in which he used his flair and skill to beat his opponent and deliver the cross. The crosses are accurate and with a good amount of curve on it, so they are practically perfect. His goals came in attacks through the right and he enjoys cutting in from the left and shooting.

Yet Bernard is younger - only nineteen! - But he is a starting XI player alongside the famous Ronaldinho at Atlético Mineiro, the current team leading the Brazilian League. He has been influential on this sides progress in the league, scoring seven goals and assisting sixteen, but consider the league has only reached its halfway stage. Bernardo was called up to the Brazilian Olympic Team and has impressed the crowd with his appearances.

I'd rate him the "Lennon from Brazil", because his style of play reminds me of Aaron (acrobatic, skillful, agile and quick). I will make more reports on youngsters here in Brazil/South America for you guys to see. <-

As I said, take from it what you will. If you love your South American football then these two maybe two players to keep an eye out for. You can follow @Harrishotspur on Twitter.


Sunday, 29 July 2012

Bale claims Adam went out to injure him, again.

Charlie Adam. Many adjectives spring to mind at the thought of this particular overpaid Scot; I'm still struggling to find a positive one. Adam did little to change the opinions of many, doing his best to ensure Bale will go some-way to starting the season in hospital - a player that Adam wouldn't be fit to lace the boots of, even if found grovelling on his knees, hands together and teary eyed, pleading. I sincerely hope this player experiences a decline that mimics that of former club Rangers and he finds himself where he belongs, 2 divisions below the countries top division - if I'm being kind.

But Bale has spoken out and with true grit and honesty seeping evidently through as he gives the blunt picture of what we've all come to expect of Charlie Adam.

Bale: "I’ve had no apology from him[Adam] and I don’t really want one from him to be honest. That’s what kind of person he is. "Before he snapped all my ankle ­ligaments. I was out for 3 months. One player told me he went out to do the same thing to me again. “From what I’ve seen of him on the pitch, I think he’s a bit of a coward. Seriously, I haven’t ever done anything to him. He’s obviously come for me twice now – and he’s got me twice."

Little will feel Bale is being unreasonable. Those that do will be the minority of Liverpool fans that support the player because of the badge he wears on the front of his shirt; much like the imbeciles caught publicly supporting Terry outside court. I've heard many say they hope to see him pick up a nasty injury when facing us as a result of a challenge. But we're better than that. I don't want us to sink to his level. If he suffers an unfortunate leg break arising from a 50-50 challenge then, well, I guess these things happen.


Saturday, 28 July 2012

The Liverpool Pain.

So after a rather unconvincing draw against LA, we found ourselves playing 'familiar' opposition in terms of Liverpool. They too had found themselves sunning it up in the US with the game likely to have given both FSG and Levy a publicity erection. I use the word familiar tentatively as the sides barely wetted the mouth, let alone anything else, as a mix of youth, fringe and a few first team players started under the heat of the Baltimore sun; but of course this was more than to be expected. 

In truth, the game didn't give much too much away. Liverpool kept the ball well in patches with Spurs' pressure catching them in possession on occasion. The game lacked any real cut chances. Lennon having our best chance with the goal wider open than Pompey's exit door, the ball bouncing just out of reach from his size 3 boots with the winger managing to scramble the ball back onto the post. Turning off at that point would've been the best move. The game dried out quicker than the pitch that was being played on but, of course, hindsight's a wonderful thing.

If I were to take a positive out of a fairly flat and lifeless game it would be that, defensively, we looked more comfortable. We had numbers back and, bar a few lapses in concentration, looked solid. Although I do feel that we remain vulnerable to a nippy winger but the more we practice the better we'll become, I have faith. What did grind my gears a little was the fact we opted to go long on occasion, despite having 5 in midfield. I'm unsure as to weather the heat and the dodgy pitch played some part in this but it's not something I'm keen seeing.

After sweating enough water to ensure a small country never goes thirsty again, we now have a trip to New York to face the Redbulls. The US trip has proven to be a good workout for the squad as our season opener away in Newcastle edges nearer. I know, I can't believe I quoted Family Guy either.


Thursday, 26 July 2012

Fans Caught Crying Over Bale's Exclusion.

It came with little surprise to see a fuss being kicked up concerning Gareth Bale's inclusion in the starting XI to face LA Galaxy the other night. The same player that has missed out on playing for Team GB because of an injury. Ironically, the same fans that deem him 'overrated' seemed to be grabbing Kleenex after Kleenex as they cry around the circumstances in which Bale is not involved in Great Britain's Olympic football team; the absolute pride and joy of the nation now apparently. I know, tragic. Despite, understandably, seemingly incredibly biased, I never felt Bale had a case to answer as to why he wasn't featuring alongside the superstars of Team GB.

Bale was injured right up until and after selection for GB's team was made; he never once actually ruled himself out of being picked despite this. It's similar to any other tournament. It's usually rare that a player is picked for a World Cup or European tournament when they are injured indefinitely during the time of selection. I struggle to understand why this particular circumstance should change for the Olympics. It's a first time people now seem upset that Bale has fully recovered, do they want him injured or what? It seems as  Kyle Walker has also gone missing under the radar, seemingly, as he too found himself missing the Olympics because of injury but started in LA also.

Oh sorry, we're talking about Bale aren't we.

Spurs have recently released a statement regarding the 'issue'

For the avoidance of any doubt and on a point of absolute clarity and transparency - Gareth sustained an injury as he built up his fitness ahead of joining up with Stuart Pearce's side. MRI scan reports were sent to the FA medical team on 29 June (2012).

He was subsequently not selected on the basis of this injury and the inability to predict recovery time.

This decision was not taken lightly and made only after consultation with Team GB's medical team, who were in agreement after seeing the medical reports.

At no time was Gareth made unavailable for selection. Indeed, Gareth made clear publicly on numerous occasions his desire to compete for Team GB and was extremely disappointed on hearing the news he would not be fit to participate.

He is now focused on and determined to get fit for the season ahead and to this end we have brought out an additional member of our medical team on tour, dedicated to Gareth's recovery.

We are dismayed that some have sought to make wrongful assumptions about Gareth's particular situation and that such positive news surrounding his recovery is being highlighted in this manner. We trust that this statement now clarifies this matter once and for all.

I struggle to take any team Stuart Pearce is managing with any sort of enthusiasm and with much seriousness. But, in truth, there's no case to answer here. Scapegoats already being sort after. Let's just get the season under way please.


Wednesday, 25 July 2012

AVB's tough test.

Withdrawal symptoms had more than taken its' toll as I already find myself with itchy feet, eagerly anticipating the start of what should be another interesting season. A dodgy fan underneath my laptop ensured that my chances of watching the LA game fell at about 32%. Nevertheless Tottenham's pull on the heart strings saw me up at 3, just on the off chance I could see the game; I got lucky. Although, I left the match report for @Charlie_Bowsher.

The following match report below is from 


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With my alarm set and rearing to go I awoke for 3.30am for AVB’s first competitive fixture on the USA tour. With the Modric saga casting a shadow - once again - over the proceedings it was a chance to see how new signings Jan Vertonghen and Gyllfi Siggurdson would impress as well as what formation AVB would adopt. With a starting XI of; Cudicini, Walker, Kaboul, Vertonghen, Bassong, Townsend, Livermore Sigurdsson, VDV, Bale and Defoe, AVB documented what he had made his name with at Porto blending both youth and experience to good effect.

The game started with me head butting my laptop in order to gain connection and I joined just as Gareth Bale led a charging run to the left byline and delivered a low cross to nobody. Bale, described after the match by AVB as “physically a beast,“ looks to have bulked out a bit. Spurs looked to be playing a 4-3-3 with Livermore and Sigurdsson working deeper behind VDV in the middle of the pitch.

Spurs started the brightest with long range effort from Andros Townsend and Jermain Defoe, testing Perk in the Galaxy goal. After 20 minutes it was new signing Sigurdsson who acted as the talisman providing a deep cross which Bale headed home powerfully. This sparked L.A. Galaxy to life who started to keep the ball, playing in the area in front of the defence and behind the midfield which, without Scott Parker or Sandro, looked incredibly vulnerable. It was only when the opposition began to spray balls behind the new high line which AVB has implemented did things start to fall to pieces.

After failing to clear the lines from a corner, the ball was squared to centre back Lopez who had a simple task of slotting in from 10 yards to equalise. A lack of communication between Jan Vertonghen and Younes Kaboul led to poor attempts at playing the offside trap allowing us to be exploited through simple over the top balls. Furthermore Bassong - playing in the position of left back - was absolutely appalling, this meaning Vertonghen had to cover both centre back and left back - something fixed at half time with the arrival of Benoit Assou Ekotto.

Spurs managed to hold on until half time, Kyle Walker saving us repeatedly after Keane was set free one on one. The only other concern was that of VDV being substituted before half time with a groin injury yet replaced by the equally skillful and masterful Jermaine Jenas who faded into obscurity quicker than last years X-factor winners. AVB rang the changes at half time in an effort to overturn our woeful defensive display in the first half. Lennon came on for the impressive Townsend and BAE for Bassong.

The second half was a lot more impressive BAE providing stability to the back line and looking a lot sturdier and less exploitable. Defoe had an early chance set free by a long ball from Kaboul and rolled his shot narrowly wide of the post. Bale was then denied a penalty so blatant the challenge bordered on assault, Martin Atkinson’s American cousin clearly in charge of this one. Bale continued to look dangerous and pulled the ball back for Sigurdsson who missed virtually an open goal.

As the game progressed as did the substitutions; Harry Kane on for Defoe, Kyle Naughton on for the injured Kyle Walker and Michael Dawson on for Younes Kaboul. Spurs continued to press with half chances a plenty however L.A. Galaxy stood firm. Tom Huddlestone came on late on for Livermore, David Bentley for Bale and Tom Carroll on for Sigurdsson. A late deflected Lennon volley was the closest Spurs came to finding a winner with further penalty claims from Kane waved away.

Despite the poor defensive display in the first half, overall, this was a decent display from an off form Spurs side in blistering heat against an on form L.A. Galaxy side. We were lacking some key players as well the likes of Sandro and Parker whom both would’ve had a positive impact on the side as well as Adebayor as Defoe looked isolated at times. The back line can be improved and worked on over the remainder of the pre season fixtures as well as more transfers incoming that would improve the team, the likes of Moutinho, Damaio and Lloris all targets.

Steven Caulker, Sandro, Dos Santos and Danny Rose are all featuring at the Olympics and so could be part of AVB’s plans next season yet were absent last night. On a positive note, Sigurdsson looked threatening and played numerous fantastic balls into the box, something which Spurs lacked last season. Bale looked impressive and Vertonghen looked very comfortable on the ball which would fit in to AVB’s philosophy of a high back line.


Sunday, 22 July 2012

Luka's affair.

Ahh little Luka Modric. A magician on the pitch, the Paul Daniels of our midfield. I can only reminisce reciting similar phrases about a particular Bulgarian forward a few years back. Just like the 'saga' surrounding Berba's disgruntled exit, the Modric situation is starting to get Lionel. It's been widely reported of the break down in relations between Levy and the Croat; the love - hate affair I didn't think I could take another summer of. After gossip of a secret affair with Chelsea last year, Modric is now experiencing a fling with Madrid with the view of foreseeing a new life in Spain - he was even spotted enjoying a meal out with the Spanish capital's representatives, forbearing the little attempt we're making in trying to keep him. We're happy to let him go, but only on our terms.

You'd have thought it would be clearer than water by now that you mess with Levy at your own peril. Modric of all people suffered at the hands of our Chairman, being locked away from Chelsea until September finally rolled upon us; the summer long will he/won't he soap opera concluded and we won. Levy's tough stance on the price in which we value Modric has seemingly triggered Madrid to have a quiet word with our Croatian to try and ease his path to Spain. Kicking up a fuss, refusing to train and rumours of a slagging off of our "chicken badge" once again.

"I think Modric is wrong,” AVB is reported as saying . “This will go against him. He has worsened the situation with what he's doing and now the chairman (Daniel Levy) is very angry.

"This is also not a good time for Daniel Levy, who is in the USA at the moment, because his wife is ill."

"He's good, very good,” he added. “I tried to sign him last summer for Chelsea. He will be a big loss.

“He's a player who can make the difference, who gives a lot of clarity to the play when the team needs it and who can play in several positions.”

Modric was fantastic last season. He didn't dwell on his obvious disappointment at not getting his move across the capital and proved why we were so adamant of keeping hold of him. The player can leave, we're resigned to it. But he leaves for the price we demand. My concern is this will pan out like the Berba tranfer did. A stalemate for the next 5 weeks before Madrid finally caving and paying the price we value Modric at. I'd like to think that we've learnt from that ordeal. We took a massive fee but the side was left crippled. 

I can already feel a sense of Déjà vu.


Wednesday, 18 July 2012

AVB pictured in a hotel with Hulk

In terms of this current window, all things have mellowed out of late - for the time being. AVB had recently stated that he hopes to take the majority of his finished squad to the USA this coming weekend, keeping us - the fans - well and truly immersed on the edge of our seats hoping to stumble upon the next deal to follow Vertonghen into Spurs lodge.

After Redknapp's dismissal seemingly buried deep into the past, I gather the sense that we as fans all find ourselves back onto the same page. We were all reading the same book with Harry, but we found ourselves spread across different pages; some wanted him to stay, some wanted him out and some weren't too sure what they wanted (I'd personally tick this particular box). Levy has ensured that we find ourselves reunited and fully behind Andre Villas-Boas. Although, after the picture below showed AVB apparently rather content at being caught pictured with Hulk, we're all a bit up in arms as to what to make of it.

I'd do my best to banish any link with Hulk. As talented as the guy is I can't help but form the impression that the hype surrounding the forward eclipses his actual ability. For the money that would be involved, it wouldn't also surprise me for Spurs to be blown out of the ocean when/if the financial side of the deal was ever discussed; it would be like a real life metaphorical version of The Perfect Storm. It's also well documented that Levy is the man behind our moves and for the meeting to be so public would suggest that this is nothing more than an honest catch-up between two former colleagues.

Two guys meeting for a drink whilst Hulk is in London for the Olympics or simply caught in the act discussing a move to Spurs? Maybe the two had a fling back in Porto and are discussing whether they can cut it long distance? In all, it's hardly Abramovich on his yacht, is it?

[Picture courtesy of @in_a_mosh]

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Friday, 13 July 2012

Adrian buy-out clause met.

A rather dismal and anti-climatic end to a season that initially promised so much left us reeling on how it all went wrong. The pain of watching Chelsea soak up the glory that denied us a fully deserved place in next season's Champions League still brings with it great pain. Although, the AVB/Levy ever-seemingly revolution has done its' best to dampen that pain as we look to begin next season on a brighter note than how the last one ended.

Believe it. We're still weeks shy of August yet we've signed two players. I don't believe a transfer window can ever be classed as a success or failure until the players brought in have performed. I retain my reservations but, at the same time, find it hard to ensure my expectations are dampened; forgive me. You can define 'good' times in a host of ways. Champions League qualification, a piece of silverware. But we'd all agree that the good times at Spurs are few and far between. The promising thing is that we've finished 4th twice in the last three years highlighting immense progression of a once mid-table and arguably futile side.

So with our only notable first team forward in Defoe becoming heavily linked with Reading recently, this only opens up many doors for tabloids to link forward after forward with Tottenham Hotspur. Whether that's good or bad is your decision. I mentioned last week we were close to signing Adebayor. But today, Marca - a Spanish tabloid - reported that Atletico Madrid believe that we've met the 18m Euro buy-out clause for their 24 year old forward Adrian. The credibility of this report is something to question, just as the forwards ability. I admit to not having great knowledge of the striker but on paper his season reads 19 goals in the season just gone. 

With Abramovich clinging on to the hope Di Matteo can repeat another fortuitous season with around £40m invested in Hazard and Marin, it only leaves the option for investment to ensure we are not left in the shadow of what could've been. Levy knows he's taking huge gambles this summer. Exciting gambles. Gambles that need to be taken. Only the season will tell whether they pay off, whether it's this season, the next or those following that.

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Sunday, 8 July 2012

Tottenham close on Adebayor

Fantastic. Possibly the same word that our media-loving, tactically inept, one time godfather and ex-gaffa 'Arry would've described Adebayor's currently sole season at Tottenham; I wouldn't hesitate to use the same word. The guy wept a reminiscence of Dimitar Berbatov and has been the forward that we'd lacked ever since the Bulgarian departed White Hart Lane.

The City reserve forward, and former prime suspect to the V sign from many of us, reflected the 50 Shades of Grey novel; he read the game with particular ease and evidently enjoyed every moment. With a midfield that gave a new definition to the overused phrase of "free-flowing" attacking football, Adebayor's prowess up front alone truly got the best out of them. It's fair to say that the resurgent Tottenham that rose from the dead after being killed off twice by both Manchester clubs was partly down to Adebayor, along with a few others. In truth the only thing working against the Togolese would probably be his age; football years dictate that 30 is 'old,' with Adebayor being 28 years young.

In a season that totalled 37 appearances, Ade contributed 18 goals and 12 assists reflecting a fantastic season for the forward and a great piece of business on behalf of Levy for Tottenham - the latter proving little surprise. Although, not quite reflecting Levy's statement of bringing through a younger generation of footballers, mixing experience in the side with youth (as we did last season) has proven to be the best way forward. Players learn from players everyday and with many younger players likely to take heart from both Levy's and AVB's statement's upon the latter being appointed, there's the hope that a chance could be there for the taking for these players who will look up to these experienced heads and learn off them.

Manchester City are seeking a £5m transfer fee for Adebayor. Wages, according to Sky, are not an issue and the Togolese is keen to return to Spurs. I know, I'm still waiting for this great "player revolt" as well. Turns out we've got players that want to actually join us, who'd have thought.

There is speculation that the sole reason the deal has yet to go through is that Levy, unbelievably, may be trying and negotiate a lower price for Ade given that he quite likely wouldn't be able to recoup the money in the future. It's like the Parker scenario all over. And, like the Parker scenario, I expect the deal to go ahead. Spend the money, get the player in, move on. If only it was that simple.


Thursday, 5 July 2012

Rafa's a goner.

So Andre finally got his desperately needed Sig after stealing him from beneath the noses of the Scousers. One can't but help and think that AVB had discussed transfers and possibly had a deal agreed with Levy largely prior to it becoming "officially official." Thankfully the attention surrounding the position of top dog regarding our managerial situation didn't escalate into a saga. Now we have to wait another month and half to finally wrap up the Vertonghen deal and for Modric to leave; bit of ITK there.

Closely joining the news that Sigurdsson had joined our ranks was news that Spurs had submitted an offer for the Brazilian Oscar. Initially I wrote this off as "garbage," "modern day lazy journalism" and "moronic." I don't claim that this deal will definitely go through but it appears to have gathered pace and has some substance behind it, from what I've heard. My problem with this news is where does this leave our beautiful Dutch man in Rafa.

With Sig and Rafa already commanding identical spots on the pitch, Oscar would only add further competition for this attacking midfielder role. It's fair to say that speculation surrounding Rafa's immediate future has been thrown into dismay and the Dutchman himself has done little to dampen it. He's already flirted with the prospect of moving back to Germany and has said he'd be open to finishing his career in Holland. This has come after he claimed last year he'd happily finish his career at Spurs. Oh how the mind wonders.

Rafa's sale would also fit snug in line along the clear intent from Levy to develop players and "nurture young talent" whilst also largely emphasising the importance of "future progress." It does play on the heart strings a little with me. It's evident that Van der vaart loves the club; of course I use that word lightly. But he never fails to give his all when on a football pitch. He appreciates the fortunate position he's in and I'm sure he anticipates what the near future holds for him.

Good players come and go but the cockerel on the shirt will forever remain.


Tuesday, 3 July 2012


So I read with shock on my face, after rummaging around, to find out that Andre Villas-Boas had become our head coach - anyone know the difference between a head coach and manager? Okay, if you didn't see this coming then you've had your head knee deep in the saw dust I spent hours sweeping away today. The story had an engine attached to it so loud that I hear poverty-ridden kids in Brazil even knew AVB was set to be our man.

After initial expectation vastly outweighed the feeling of surprise after this appointment, my first gut feeling was excitement. Despite his rather abysmal spell across London, after arriving with expectation matching the combined weight of JT's lovers on his shoulders, I can't help but feel optimistic on this appointment. Maybe it's the hunger or lack of sleep. Maybe it's the halo effect derived from Andre's dashing looks. Or maybe I'm just purely blinded by hope that Levy knows what he's doing.

It's been well-documented, and more recently now than ever, that AVB likes to play with a particular style. From what I gather he's a man that likes to play his own game more than defending against the opposition's. He likes flair on the wings, 3 centre midfielders and a "complete forward" up top. Yes, I quoted FM. This is something that we've pleaded/moaned/cried out for. It's a system which our players can truly flourish in. What I also noted was one sentence that Levy made in his statement regarding AVB's appointment supporting this; "He has an outstanding reputation for his technical knowledge of the game and for creating well-organised teams capable of playing football in an attractive and attacking style." This wasn't something that AVB accomplished at Chelsea and I stuck to my guns when I first claimed,last summer, that AVB and CFC could end badly. I took great joy out of it as well. Great joy indeed.

So, where do my reservations come from? I think the perfect word to sum up this appointment is "hopeful." It's incredibly hard to identify how AVB will cope at Spurs and, despite the theory seeming positive, Levy knows this is a huge gamble but one I'm happy he took. My worries arise from a scenario in which we are 6th/7th come January and 10 points from 4th, for example. Are we willing to stick it out with him or are we going to find Levy photographed in Spain again looking to lure another manager to the helm? (Reliable sources have informed me that Levy's recently been seen on Abramovich's boat thanking him personally for buying out AVB's release clause from Porto.) We can become an impatient bunch, but I'd hope we'd give him time. The guy will face many comparisons in the press to their beloved 'Arry, this is almost inevitable. His mental strength will be tested. One defeat and  the many cliché's involving "inexperienced" and "to young" will fall hard on to the shoulders of the Portuguese. 

I have a few, limited, reservations but, for a pessimist, I find myself optimistic on this appointment. The guy won't nail it in a season. We may have to settle for a less than successful year next year in the hope that the long term will see us flourish towards the top end of the league and come closer to flirting with silverware than we have done over the last 20 years. 

We may even find ourselves singing "We want you to stay, we want you to stay, Luís André de Pina Cabral e Villas-Boas we want you to stay" in a few years, although I doubt it. 


Sunday, 1 July 2012

Announcement Imminent.

So by the time this is published a new day, more than likely, will be amongst us. With premature minds already dreading the thought of another Monday morning wake-up arriving just around the corner, Under Armour - Spurs' new kit manufacture as of this forthcoming season - may have softened that blow; note the strong emphasis on the word "may."

Talk regarding our next managerial appointment has been flooding message boards and back pages for weeks now. I'm finding the whole ordeal becoming more of an irritation than anything and we still have a whole summer window to come yet and, while Luka Modric remains a Spurs player, it will never be an easy one. Great. There has been strong Eye Tee Kay rumours that an announcement regarding a couple of player signings and a managerial appointment would be put on hold until atleast July 1st. This would make sense, with the transfer window having (up until now) not actually officially opened despite clubs already making their moves to snare players already, no players can be unveiled until now.

With Under Armour the new official kit manufacture of Tottenham as of this summer, players can also not be seen sporting their brand until the Puma deal expires. There is also the notable absence of shirt unveilings. Under Armour UK have tonight tweeted that "Tomorrow (Sunday) is an exciting day. That is all" dropping the biggest hint yet that an official announcement possibly regarding shirt's for next season. Although I would find it rather odd that Spurs wouldn't announce the date when the shirt designs for next season will be released to increase anticipation amongst us but, at the same time, I struggle to see it as a coincidence that this 'exciting day' will fall on July 1st. What may proceed from here - possibly as early as Monday - would be the uncovering of a new man at the helm to lead the club and also confirmation of the signings of Vertonghen and Sigurdsson.

Maybe I'm delirious and sleep deprivation is causing my mind to believe it's being logical. It's been a long summer and the window's only been open 5 minutes. I'm off to bed, I'm confident this ordeal will be wrapped up early next week.

A brief moment of optimism there, deary me I must be tired.