Not many people can spend £100 million, lose 6-0 to a top half rival and still be smiling a mere two weeks later. David Moyes and his new signature look - The Vacant Gurn© - might at least attempt it should the opportunity present itself. Which it probably will.
Andre Villas-Boas had many reasons to smile though after Sunday’s clash with poor, troubled souls Sunderland. Lewis Holtby found himself consistently picking sublime passes to an energetic Jermain Defoe, who probably should have had a hat-trick, had it not been for a scuffed shot and some wobbling woodwork.
Aaron Lennon reminded many of his presence and dedication to the cause with another strong performance and a wink to Roy Hodgson, while goalscoring man-of-the-match Paulinho - despite his inability to convert the easiest of his chances - is starting to look a right troublesome threat going forward.
Mousa Dembele also apparently turned his beast mode on, while Etiene Capoue was sturdy and capable at the back. Even Kyle Naughton impressed. Kyle Naughton!
All was not perfect though. A 2-1 away win might not be entirely pleasing on paper against a side that had mustered two wins in 14 games prior to that point, but for those Spurs fans watching it was enough to get them leaping out of the armchair and shouting positives at the telly, something of a forgotten reaction since last season.
Indeed, despite having to overcome a disappointing Hugo Lloris mistake (that ding on the head may still be causing a few brain rattles), Spurs dug deeper than a diglet to overturn a 1-0 deficit against a side who gave Chelsea a good few scares earlier in the week.
It brought back a feeling of sturdiness and steel that was ever present in Tottenham’s footballing brand last year, but which has clearly been lacking thus far.
Since the Welshman-who-shall-not-be-named departed for that evil Spanish footballing monster, Spurs have seemingly been lacking in a bit of determination. Evidence lies in games against West Ham, Newcastle and Manchester City that they had lost a bit of edge, with heads dropping, game-plans melting and slow, lacklustre performances prevailing.
Media outlets and some fans blinded by their inky lights were all suggesting that this was no great surprise; Gareth Bale was carrying the team last season and the rest of the squad were actually as we see them now: average to ‘all right’ at best.
With a made-up sword dangling over his head, fuelled purely by some newspaper puppets and nothing more, AVB was apparently “fighting for his job”. And yet, now, after seven points from nine - including an unlucky draw at home against Manchester United - and two away games against tricky opponents under new managers who are already fighting for their lives, all of a sudden the focus is on Tottenham’s excellent away form, which includes five wins and a draw from eight games.
With the halfway point of the Premier League season drawing very near, Spurs now find themselves three points off second place in what is a ridiculously tight top half. With a tasty looking home tie coming up against goal-mad Liverpool, followed by games against Southampton, West Brom and Stoke, it is not hard to envisage a good run of form similar to what has occurred in the previous few seasons, under both Villas Boas and Harry Redknapp.
Add the fact that Arsenal are due bouts against City and Chelsea in the not too distant future and, poor goal difference and hypothetical 7-0 thrashings aside, suddenly things don’t look so bad for Andre Villas Boas.
Spurs have the luxury of being able to quietly go about their business over the festive period. If they can maintain a decent run for four or five games (plus turn in a good performance in the FA Cup against Arsenal), their season may not end up quite in the doldrums many were predicting about ten days ago. The P45 can stay in its ring-bound, Tottenham-branded moleskin folder for now. Although a hair-cut for AVB wouldn’t go amiss.
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