Inside Lane: A Spurs fan reflects on Juande Ramos’ reign at Tottenham

12:15 19 February 2014

Juande Ramos spent a year in the hot-seat at White Hart Lane and is now preparing to face Tottenham with his current club, Ukrainian outfit Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, in the Europa League

Juande Ramos spent a year in the hot-seat at White Hart Lane and is now preparing to face Tottenham with his current club, Ukrainian outfit Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, in the Europa League


Tottenham blogger Henry Tribe looks back on Juande Ramos’ time at White Hart Lane as the Spaniard, who is now in charge of Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, prepares to face his former club in the Europa League tomorrow.

He was in charge of Spurs for two days short of a year, and many regard his time at Tottenham as a forgettable interlude in between the successes of the Martin Jol and Harry Redknapp eras.

What you cannot deny is that Juande Ramos is the only Tottenham manager in the last seven to win a trophy – and that should not be dismissed lightly. Just ask Arsene Wenger.

My own memories of him are mixed. He was brought in as the Spanish saviour following the undignified sacking of Jol - an episode I still think of as one the darkest in the Daniel Levy reign.

The game against Getafe was one of the strangest ones I can remember, as rumours spread around the stadium that Jol had already been sacked.

A man who had led us to two consecutive fifth-placed finishes, and was enormously popular with the fans, deserved better.

But Levy craved Champions League football and in his mind Jol had taken us as far as he could. Perhaps he was right.

Ramos came in on big wages and with a good European pedigree, having won the UEFA cup in the previous two seasons, and he set about trying to turn around our terrible start to the season.

He overhauled the diets of the players, and ketchup was famously banned at the training ground. His more authoritarian approach seemed to work initially and none of us will forget the 5-1 mauling of Arsenal in the League Cup semi-final.

He didn’t just break the hoodoo, he smashed it. We hadn’t beaten Arsenal for eight years, and we’ve not lost to Arsenal at home in the Premier League since.

Being there to watch Spurs beat a very good Chelsea team at the new Wembley remains my best moment as a Spurs fan - and the fact we came from behind and scored an injury-time winner was the icing on the cake.

Ramos had an abundance of riches up from with Dimitar Berbatov, Robbie Keane, Darren Bent and Jermain Defoe but his downfall was a lack of decent, fit centre-backs.

No-one doubted the quality of Ledley King and Jonathan Woodgate, but I think that final was pretty much the only time they ever played together!

We won just three league games between the cup final and the end of the season. Then there were the summer sales of Keane and Berbatov, which he can’t be blamed for. And, when Roman Pavlyuchenko was signed as the replacement for the best strike partnership we’d had in the Premier League era, it’s no wonder we infamously only got two points from the first eight games of the 2008/09 campaign.

When he returns to the Lane next Thursday we should applaud Ramos for delivering us a trophy, but without sounding flippant that’s all he achieved.

‘Arry came in and showed that a squad of predominantly British players liked an arm around the shoulder, being told to express themselves on the pitch, and the occasional dollop of ketchup.

Five years later, perhaps AVB should have taken note.


Latest Hampstead & Highgate Sports News

Yesterday, 14:34

Spurs played out their second goalless draw in the space of five days after a 0-0 tie against Bournemouth on the south coast. Here are five talking points.

Fri, 16:00

Spencer McCall is immediately targeting a new objective – avenging Hendon’s opening day defeat to Worthing – after their FA Cup dreams evaporated at Boreham Wood.

Fri, 07:00

Hampstead & Westminster captain Toby Roche has set his side the target of joining club hockey’s European elite after emerging as the league’s surprise package this season.

Thu, 22:30

Mauricio Pochettino says he is happy with Dele Alli’s goal return and insists the midfielder should not be expected to score as regularly as a striker.

Thu, 14:16

Mauricio Pochettino feels summer signing Vincent Janssen might be putting too much pressure on himself as he bids to end his dry run in front of goal, and the Tottenham manager says the Dutchman simply needs some encouragement and patience.

Thu, 12:00

A fixture between Toulon and Saracens is always billed as a blockbuster – and Saturday’s pool three Champions Cup opener certainly lived up to the pre-game excitement.

Wed, 21:51

Arsenal’s first match against Bulgarian opposition was a successful one, as Arsene Wenger’s men ran out comfortable 6-0 winners on matchday three of the Uefa Champions League group stage.

Wed, 17:00

Hendon boss Gary McCann admits he is “embarrassed” by Hendon’s lowly league placing – but he expects it to change as players return from injury and suspension.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Most read Hampstead & Highgate sport


Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot


Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more. Boots is the number one choice when it comes to purchasing daily essentials.

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now