My very good friend Jan Juhlin is a committed Scandinavian supporter, who has kindly allowed Spurs Odyssey to use this piece:-
Football is first and foremost about one simple thing.
One simple thing that the fans, the board, the manager and not least the players need to share. The fans have it in abundance. They swim in it, and sometimes itīs even too much but it is their driving force, their engine on their march to crucifixion, with a vague hope of resurrection come Easter.
In fact, we can look away from football and see that the same force transpires through every single engagement. It can be philately, equestrian sports,gardening or even drinking.
Football in its pure essence is about passion.
Sure, call it love if you want to, but I call it passion.
We, the fans, travel from every corner of the globe. We spend our hard earnt cash Hell! We even choose to eat noodles for a week just to be able to afford a trip to some odd place, like Sheffield. We, the fans, strive and do our utmost to catch the game on some useless stream on the Internet with a commentator that brings to mind the two old geezers up on the balcony in the Muppet show.
The one thing that you as a supporter should always be allowed to demand from a team, regardless if theyíre a team of 10-year olds or a team of professionals, is that each and everyone, out of passion, gives at least 100% throughout the game, in every close contact, in every single moment of the game.
This morning I spoke to my team of passionate 10-year olds and told them that I much rather lose 0-6 and know that they had done their utmost, than to lose 2-1 and knew that they didnít give their all, their blood and guts. Rather lose knowing that passion has stemmed from every vein of their body.
Football without passion is for me pure and utter crap. Football without passion is like a pub without beer; like Mr Bean without Rowan Atkinson; like coffee without the Caffeine. Football without passion is pure and utter crap.
With the exception of 20 minutes against Newcastle, Iíd actually say that Tottenham right now, for me, are just not worth it. Iím sick and tired of standing on the barricades like a stupid defender of the faith, shouting and cheering for a team that doesnít look like it gives a flying f*ck about anything. A team without an ounce of passion, nay, letís just say, without passion at all. I couldnít care less about a team like that.
There have now been some 40 days in hell, and my hopes to shout and cheer and smile are as dead as the team that walks onto the pitch right now. The best thing one can say about the bunch of players that walks onto the pitch these days is that they at least have a nice logo and a nice shirt. But thatís it.
And isnít that a bit strange.
If you ask a the common Spurs supporter if the squad of 2006/2007 is better than that 0f 05/06, Iím pretty sure that 95% would say yes. I might probably exaggerate a bit, but I have to make up for the players lack of effort.
Last year we ended fifth. Last year we fought. Last year we won a couple of crap games, out of sheer and true passion. Last year we didnít walk around thinking we were world beaters. Almost every single player showed exactly what we the fans demand Ė passion. P assion.
This year Tottenham consists of a bunch of footballers who think they are good. They actually think they are so damn good so that they donít even have to go into a game giving their utmost, giving 100% true and pure passion. This year Tottenham have loads of talent, and loads of class, but a total lack of passion. The fact is that the teams seems to think that it only has to give their very best in Europe. Grand, cos playing like we are to day we wonít be anywhere near Europe for eons.
This is not about Michael Carrick, itís not about gelling as a unit, itís not about injuries, itís not about a shaky goalkeeper. This is all about a bunch of footballers who have to sit down and think about what football is all about. Think about whether they have the passion. This is about a manager that has to get the players focused; get their fire burning; get their heart pumping; about a manager getting the passion to engulf every single vein. This is all about a board of directors that has to dare to challenge the manager when things get out of hand.
Looking at the core. This is about getting the players to show, feel and perform with that single one thing that they should share with us, the board and the manager.
Itís all about passion
∑ Read the Sheffield United match report here
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