Spurs are no longer chasing Liverpool

With the toughest month of the season coming up with Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool to play as well as Benfica in the Europa League last 16 Spurs can ill afford any more injuries.

Kyle Walker missed the Cardiff game after also missing out on Thursday and although he has reported for England duty he will not be playing on Wednesday against Denmark because of his hip injury. Spurs Head Coach Tim Sherwood has already admitted he won't be fit enough to represent his country but is hopeful he will be fit enough for the Chelsea fixture coming up next.

Kyle Walker misses another England game
Kyle Walker misses another England game

Andros Townsend will sit out England training today after playing yesterday and Christian Eriksen has a back injury and will not be fit enough to play for Denmark Sherwood also confirmed.

"Kyle won't be fit to play for England, he's not fit to play here today so he won't be fit for England either."

He was asked if Walker would link up with the England squad as they are training at Tottenham's magnificent new training complex.

"I'm not sure but he probably will as they will be training at our complex in the early part of the week.

"We're just hoping to nurse him back to fitness for next week, so we'll see how that goes.

"Christian Eriksen won't be ready for Denmark either by the way, after his back problem."

Sherwood is also hopeful of having Younes Kaboul back for the Chelsea game but is less certain on Eriksen being fit.

"We're getting healthier in the squad. Hopefully by next week Younes Kaboul and Kyle Walker will be fit enough, and possibly Christian."

Tottenham continue to hand on by their fingertips in the fight for fourth, sneaking a nervy 1-0 win on Sunday in another unconvincing display. Tim Sherwood has not given up hope and why should he with 3 big coming up that will decide the season.

"That's our goal [Top 4] but its huge ask and we are not giving up, we believe we can do it. Its tough, we are in the fight, Everton, even Newcastle probably. What we want to do is muck up as many other people's seasons as possible and enhance our own and we are going for it."

Has he forgotten Manchester United or just decided they are out of it!

With 10 games to go things are hotting up, time is running out. Spurs are no longer chasing Liverpool, it's Arsenal in their sights now. Both sit 6 points above Spurs who actually need 7 points to overtake them.

For that to be a realistic possibility Spurs have to beat Arsenal and or Chelsea and Liverpool. A minimum of 7 points will be requires in these 3 games to close the gap and start applying some pressure.

A solitary point against Chelsea, and none against Manchester City, Liverpool or Arsenal plus a Cup defeat when clearly second best is not encouraging.

"Sometimes when the expectation is not with you, it can make it a little bit easier" Sherwood said.

"In those games against Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool, perhaps the pressure is off us a little bit and we can cause a surprise. We’re looking to mess up as many people’s seasons as we can, and enhance ours at the same time.”

Should he then just stick to one system for those games. Paulinho had another anonymous sideways and backwards game, why has he started passing back to the half-way line instead of passing forwards?

Townsend did what Townsend does, shoot into the stands when he should pass, it can't be match fitness anymore. He just seems more interested in playing for himself than the team and that is a bit of our problem.

Zeki Fryers is new in the team and whilst his positional play defensively was better than Rose he at times kept giving the ball away and once smashed it into Dembele. The players half the time simply don't know what they are supposed to be doing.

There doesn't seem to be any plan. It is almost as if eleven men have been sent on the field to go and do your own thing. Fortunately we have some quality within the team and occasionally it comes to the surface.

A bit of individual skill, although this time it was a team move, and we score but we still do not create enough. A shame after his mid week performance that Eriksen was injured. It can't help though chopping and changing the system all the time. Sherwood has started games with a 4-4-2 approach, used a 4-1-4-1 and also a 4-3-3.

Tim Sherwood keeps changing systems
Tim Sherwood keeps changing systems

That is asking a lot of the players. Put them in a system and they know what to do, they can adjust and improve as they go. Keep giving them new systems and it's like starting all over again.

“The system depends on the personnel,” Sherwood said. “Andros Townsend and Aaron would be more comfortable with 4-4-2, because they like to get the ball wide and run at defenders.

“But it depends. I’m very flexible and I can adapt with the players who are available. Sandro wasn’t ready to start today. I didn’t want to risk him because we’ve seen him break down in the past."

It is alright devising a system to beat an opponent but continually changing means players can't get used to playing one way. We saw a whole lot of passes going astray where players weren't on the same wavelength. You can't have players stopping mid match to think what day of the week it is, oh yes Tuesday, it must be this system.

Let's hope for a bit of individual skill to win us the 3 big games.


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