Form Guide September 2009
P W D L F-A GD Pts
4 2 0 2 11-7 4 3
1 Cup Match
· August 2009 figures
· Last year's figures
An end to euphoria
September brought an end to the euphoria of August's five-win start to the season with a nasty bump at the hands of the two best teams in the Premier League, Manchester United and Chelsea.
Spurs had celebrated a double award for August of Manager of the Month and Player of the Month (Jermaine Defoe), but those defeats brought questions about Harry Redknapp's strategy of trying to match both United and Chelsea, rather than play to our own strengths. Yet in both games, there were bright spells for Spurs, who took a first minute lead against United, thanks to Defoe's spectacular overhead kick. United took control though, and were in the lead before half-time, before going on to get a third in the second half.
At Stamford Bridge we had three excellent chances in the opening stages. These were chances that any team could ill afford to miss against a team that will be contending for the Premier League and Champions League once again. Needless to say, we paid the penalty, but should have had a penalty when Robbie Keane was tripped by Carvalho. The referee ignored Keane's claims; Spurs heads dropped, and two more goals were conceded.
Spurs fans started to question the wisdom of Keane retaining his place in the team, whilst Peter Crouch generally had to sit out games on the bench. Indeed, Harry had given Crouch a start against United, and Keane played on the left. The strategy ultimately failed, and thereafter, Harry opted for two strikers to start.
We were missing Luka Modric of course, and we look forward to his return in the not too distant future. Niko Kranjcar made his debut this month, and with International pedigree, is sure to be a useful addition to the squad with multiple skills to offer on the left of midfield, or supporting the strikers.
The return to high scoring form came with a great 5-1 win at Preston, which featured a Crouch hat-trick, including that sublime back-heeled goal. That game also saw the return of Michael Dawson and Gareth Bale. Gomes also returned from injury, but has yet to oust Carlo Cudicini from the Number One slot, although surely form dictates he should be there at Bolton.
Jermaine Jenas has made an impressive return to action, and another of Harry's dilemmas will be how to deal with ever-present Tom Huddlestone once there is a fit centre back to replace him at the back, where he has covered the last two games.
The only league points we gained this month were in Saturday's 5-0 drubbing of Burnley, when Keane redeemed himself with that four goal haul to join Jermain Defoe on 6 for the season so far. Peter Crouch has five goals to his name, so the competition is really stiff in this department.
"Audience participation" in the "Spursometer" team and player gradings has proved popular and successful. Crouch has pipped Keane this month for the Player of the Month award. The two defeats have contributed to a 10% drop in team performance levels, and most players' grades have also taken a dip.
All in all, it is fair to say that the early season euphoria has ended, but we are clearly going to have an entertaining season, wich will hopefully include success of some nature. October looks eminently promising with three winnable games to play and a home cup tie against Everton, before meeting the enemy on Halloween. Now there's something to look forward to!
Don't forget to check out the cumulative appearances and grades for the players as the season progresses - below. The grades are based upon a mark out of ten.
...if you want to remind yourself of the matches played during this month, then See the Fixtures page here. By working your way back through the previous month's figures, you can review the performances over the last 9 years!