December 19 2013 Latest news:
By Ben Bloom
Friday, August 16, 2013
Tottenham blogger Ben Bloom looks ahead to the big Premier League kick-off as Spurs begin their campaign away at Crystal Palace.
A word of warning: I am a pessimist. We are not going to win against Crystal Palace on Sunday.
The last time we won our opening game of the season was four years ago against Liverpool.
Keep on going past the horrors of two points in eight games (2008/09) and 12 from 15 games (2007/08), and the statistics reveal we have won a total of two opening day fixtures in the past dozen seasons.
But can things be different this time around? Well it hasn’t been a typical summer for Spurs fans.
I’ve written just over 100 words without mentioning him so I suppose it’s time to bring up Gareth Bale.
Checking the latest transfer gossip on a daily basis over the past month or so has not been fun.
There have supposedly been clues everywhere: new kit unveiling = good, new Twitter profile background = bad. Aside from all that nonsense, every Spurs fan is just hoping and praying that Bale stays.
His head may understandably have been swayed by the once in a lifetime offer of a move to Real Madrid, but if we can keep hold of him, I’m certain there will be no sulking and Spurs will have the best player in the Premier League for another season.
The odd side-effect of the Bale saga is the relative lack of attention given to what has been an unusually busy summer for Spurs elsewhere. For once big deals have been struck early and there are plenty of exciting unknowns.
Will Roberto Soldado prove to be a late developer having returned to the Spain squad at the age of 28 earlier this summer, or have we broken our club record for something of a journeyman?
How will Paulinho adapt to the Premier League with his only experience outside of Brazil having been with two now defunct clubs in Lithuania and Poland?
I can’t pretend to know enough about Nacer Chadli to make any assumptions about the Belgian but I’m nonetheless chuffed to finally see Spurs have options on the wing.
Prediction time. Of course much depends on Bale but let’s assume he is staying at White Hart Lane for now.
As usual we appear to be fighting Arsenal for fourth and we have certainly strengthened better than them. After spending almost £60million the brief is simple: Andre Villas-Boas MUST deliver Champions League football.
Just don’t expect a win on Sunday.
Follow me on Twitter @benbloom2