Friday, August 13, 2010

Spurs' Goals for the New Season

Another summer anticipating new signings at White Hart Lane draws to a close with nothing to show, as yet, but expectations for the new season remain high. It will be difficult to maintain the level of consistency shown throughout the greater part of last year when European games are added to the fixture list but that’s what Tottenham have been striving for over the past number of years. It’s fitting that Tottenham embark on their first season in the Champions League in the year that marks the fiftieth anniversary of Spurs’ greatest ever year and team – the 1960-61 ‘Double’ side. The team that earned Spurs a place in the European Cup and did so much to emblazon the name of Tottenham Hotspur across Europe and worldwide.

As the legendary Bill Nicholson said, “It's magnificent to be in Europe and this club - a club like Tottenham Hotspur - if we're not in Europe, we're nothing.”

Once again Spurs have that chance in Europe’s top competition and the opening matches of the season will go a long way to define the success or failure of the season that lies ahead. Failure and we could repeat the Everton scenario of their Champions League year, while success opens up bold, new horizons. There are the crucial qualifying games against Young Boys Berne to reach the group stages of the Champions League and three vital Premier League games before the end of August. Last year Spurs took nine points from the corresponding fixtures and to maintain a position in the top four that level of consistency is going to be vital. To fail in these games could really dampen the spirit of optimism surrounding the club and spectators as the season opens.

To date, transfer activity for Spurs has been limited to rumours of possible targets and probable departures. Presumably, the Chairman will be activating his usual ‘’ policy once he is aware of Spurs European status in the last week of August – Champions League or Europa League.

Spurs immediate goal for the season must be to reach the group stages of the Champions League with a long term objective of building on last season’s progress by maintaining their top four position. However, that will not be an easy task with Manchester City signing players for fun and lavishing excessive salaries upon them while Liverpool are determined to revitalise their flagging fortunes under Roy Hodgson and are fortunate to have retained their star players. If Spurs are unable to achieve these short and long-term targets Daniel Levy may regret his unwillingness to speculate in order to strengthen the team this summer.

There is much to look forward to this season and there is a great buzz of expectation around the club at this moment in time. Spurs are in their strongest position for many years and it is to be hoped that they will progress to an even higher level and by next May will have some silverware to show for all their efforts.

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