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Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Diluted expectation.

It's been an uncharacteristically low-key and rather reserved summer. We more or less wrapped up our managerial appointment early and saved ourselves a shadow fewer and a 'saga' less than we've known to expect of latter years. We should probably thank the World Cup for this. The fact it's essentially prevented Neil Ashton from inking poison on to the back pages of the Mail has certainly ensured my enthusiasm for the tournament has remained consistent.

Although come next week and we can only expect the usual pathogens to breed more bollocks on to toilet paper and bleed the eyes of the unfortunate reader. We're fully aware of the vicious circle we fall into every summer. Is it a sign of improvement that these calibre of players are happy to join Tottenham Hotspur or that these players are more wiling to use us as a stepping stone to then fuck off into the sunset? Probably the latter.

But Pochettino's short tenure at Spurs thus far has taught me that we don't need to have our manager bleating the same soundbites of league titles and Champions League qualification for me to feel a sense of warmth and quiet optimism towards him, subjectively speaking. I almost feel as though our greatest ever optimum opportunity in which to establish ourselves firmly within the seemingly intimidating presence of the top 4 has essentially been and gone. I don't see this as a negative though.

Our expectations in recent years have poisoned the atmosphere at White Hart Lane. It becomes more of a chore to enjoy a game and this, possibly, may be the first season in many in which expectation is more aspiration. Content at top 6 is bluntly realistic. The competition for the Champions League and its' riches via Premier League qualification seems more than an arms lengths out of reach. Our arguably more modest and realistic goals for the forthcoming season may ease the previous burden of weighted expectation and allow us to thrive in a more structured environment.

So where do our main priorities lie? The recent survey sent out by THST (that you should definitely fill out here if you haven't yet) asks fans where their personal priorities lie for this season. I felt torn on this one. On a previous question I'd answered that I felt '"dissatisfied" at the atmosphere at White Hart Lane at present and, in reality, a good league run would help to an extent to cure this - but only in the short-term. In Fact, I placed the FA Cup and Europa League above the Premier League in preference. Have I contradicted myself? Arguably, but I hate how we seemingly can't have a fairly average run in the league anymore and still have White Hart Lane as a fortress as we did in the past.

Pochettino's appointment excites me. Not because I think we'll be world leaders under him though. We've craved structure and preparation prior to fixtures. We certainly didn't utilize our squad to the full last season under a manager that struggled to know how to implement them best. Hopefully we'll bring more attractive football back to White Hart Lane and with this a snowball effect of injected enthusiasm into the fans that could roar the side on in the league and cups.

A combination of more modest expectations behind a manager that will pay more thorough attention to detail could (again) be a mix we've desperately required. We've finally reached a point in time in which 'how long' our manager will be given has slowly been swept under the carpet, well - for now. For the moment we seem content to sit back and just see what happens, maybe we could enjoy the company of our football team again.

Ben - You can follow me on Twitter here