AVB may well be getting a Whitehartbrain thank you letter in the post soon, after Stoke’s resilience the Villa performance was all any Spurs fan could have asked for, it was utter domination from the 1st to the 90th minute. The perfect boxing day hangover cure quickly turned into a late Christmas present as Bale put a hat-trick past the impressive Brad Guzan, topped off with Defoe’s 10th in the league. The teams true Christmas spirit began to shine through, unlike Villa’s previous opponents we decided not to embarrass the young team in this holiday season, of course we could have done… Rather we simply sent them on their way, knowing we could have scored 9.
Much like Villa were beaten by 8 goals in the match prior to our fixture, Sunderland have shocked the Premiership with their performance against City, for the right reasons this time though, beating the Manchester team 1-0 on boxing day to send them 13th. Whether the backlash will be good or bad for the team is yet to be seen. Their confidence may be high but we have a tendency to start the game at a high tempo which can catch complacency out.
Our often criticised rotation of central defenders has been working for AVB it seems, three consecutive clean sheets we could only dream of a few months back, and these have been with the help of all four currently fit centre backs. Against Fletcher it will be interesting to see whom the manager decides best matches up, BAE has been talked about returning for this game, if this is the case expect to see it be Vertonghen and another at the back.
This seems like an appropriate time to discuss Danny Rose, perhaps scoring ‘that’ goal actually hindered the young mans progress at Spurs, he was tipped for the top for many years only to falter a tad when getting there. This year however, playing as a full back, he has impressed a lot at Sunderland and even at Spurs. There was talk about a permanent move however Levy is savvy and will not let Sunderland take him for anything less than his valuation of a good, young, English player. I fully expect to see him pushing BAE next season for a place in much the same way i hope Naughton does on the other wing.
Sunderland will prove more of a test than Villa did in every aspect, their manager is intelligent and will no doubt see us as a scalp to be had after Man Cityn and Southampton. Bale is clearly enjoying life at the moment, a new-born at home and some of his best performances yet at work, the Welshman fully deserves the accolades and has already beaten his goal tally from last season. The midfield has a few to choose from now and the return of Parker has already impacted the teams final 10 minuets… It is no surprise the clean sheets have started as Scotty has returned to the side, his impending impact was clear even a week and two games ago.
The new year is nearly here, which means one thing for Spurs fans… We have to wait a month until we can even consider the possibility of acquisitions. Still, this didn’t stop the tabloids teasing us with stories of a classy Dutch attacking midfielder joining the ranks… It worked so well last time but Wesley Sneijder and VDV are two very different players, for one Sneijder would command a wage upwards of £100k a week which seems a little our of our range considering we already have one top earner in Adebayor, any arrival of the Dutchman would surely mean the end for Ade.
3 unbeaten, 3 clean sheets, we get the win in the north-east and we can cement 4th and pull away from the pack, they all have tough games so this is the perfect opportunity. AVB will know this and hopefully the team do at Saturday lunchtime.