In recent years it has been possible to compile Tottenham Hotspur's end of season review in February or March with only a few final details required for completion. However, this year, for the first time in over a decade Spurs went into the final league game of the campaign with everything to play for and their destiny in their own hands. While it was the shortest ever season in terms of games played, it extended beyond the final Sunday as a consequence of the events surrounding last week’s match. Spurs were already assured of UEFA Cup football next season but the possibility of fourth, a Champions League place and finishing above Arsenal for the first time since 1995 were still there to be taken from that final game at West Ham.
While the result of that match and the failed appeal left supporters disappointed, annoyed and frustrated with feelings of injustice, the result of that final weekend must not cloud the fact that Spurs have had a very good season, having made massive progress and the club is standing on the threshold of something very exciting and is in a strong position to compete against the best in the country.
At the beginning of August every fan, if they are honest, would have grabbed fifth place with both hands if it had been offered to them. Martin Jol (Pic: Successful season for manager, Martin Jol) and the players have produced consistent results throughout the season, something Spurs have lacked for some considerable time. There has been a team spirit and application as all worked together to maintain Spurs’ highest Premiership finish.
There were disappointments along the way – the early Cup exits, late goals conceded which cost vital points and the late season injuries to King, Jenas and Mido which along with the mysterious virus/food poisoning stacked the odds against Spurs for their most important game in over fifteen years.
Last August, I speculated on issues where Spurs needed to show improvement during the season to give themselves a chance of success and to progress to a level that was more worthy of a club of the stature of Tottenham Hotspur. Surprisingly, many of those ‘Top 11 Essentials for Spurs’ Success’ were achieved and resulted in Spurs having their highest Premiership finish, 5th, winning more games than they lost, having a positive goal difference and accumulating 65 points, another record for them in the Premiership.