Chelsea at home. What was previously called 3-point lane from the away support had become memories. Mutterings of what was. We'd derailed a highly powered steam train at White Hart Lane and kept it off the tracks for 6 years. In those 6 years, we've experienced immense progression. We've matched the top sides, beating them in some years and established ourselves as one of the top sides in the country.
With great success comes great expectation. Fans become more expectant. We no longer enter these big derby games in the hope of not being embarrassed, but in the hope of finishing with three points more than we started the day with. We expect free-flowing attractive football. We've evolved from our previous eye-sore that we'd put up with for years in the past. We expect to win, every game.
Inevitably, with great success also comes a higher demand for match tickets, Spurs branded items and the like. More fans want to see the side play. Fans are happier to pay out more as their expectation to win grows. Many now visit White Hart Lane for the entertainment, supporting the side comes second to the day out. Criticism is easier to give than praise.
Standing in Park Lane yesterday cemented my belief that we can no longer talk of the fantastic support we offer at games. In the past we'd be used to experiencing defeat at the hands of Arsenal, Chelsea and United but atleast we'd stand there and back our boys until the end; singing relentlessly for 90 minutes. We're never going to compete financially with some clubs, but this is no reason why we can't win the game off the pitch. Our job as fans is to support the side. Support the side when we win, draw and lose. I almost felt embarrassed on Saturday. Chelsea fans, at one point, even coming out with "It's so quiet, it's so quiet at the Lane." This coming from supporters renowned for their lack of vocal support - or so I'd perceived.
We've moved on from times in which starting a chant in the stands was publicly supported through thousands of others joining in. We're now at a time when starting a chant is met with irritated looks. It's easy to sing and praise the side when we're winning. It's easy to sing "AVB's blue and white army" when we're ahead. But the moment we go a goal behind, at any stage of the match, I get the impression the majority are already checking for when the next train is departing White Hart Lane. The flood gates open and we swarm out.
Picture having your boss looking over your shoulder at work. You instantly feel nervous, tense. You worry so much about making a mistake that you don't excel or work to your best. The moment we go a goal behind the atmosphere gets tense and edgy. We find publicly criticising the side a far easier feat to accomplish than supporting them. What good does it bring? More often than not now I believe that many fans would rather sing "I know I am I'm sure I am I'm Tottenahm 'til we lose." It would have more truth in it than any other song.
I still remember being at Fratton Park under Ramos, being 2-0 down and singing Super Tottenham for about 8 minutes. Long gone are those days and long gone is my initial perception that we one of the best groups of supporters in the Premier League. I continue to question why we've become something we hate.