Tim Sherwood has been a success

Daniel Levy knew he was interim, Tim Sherwood knew he was interim, Louis Van Gaal knew he was interim, 50% of Spurs fans knew he was interim, the Tottenham board knew he was interim and now finally the press have caught up, they now know he was interim.

Tim Sherwood has been a success


The news that Tim Sherwood has been told he will not be retained as manager next season is no surprise, that has been the Daniel Levy plan all along as regular readers will know. It would have taken an exceptional set of results for anything else to happen. Naturally Tim Sherwood would give it his best shot to achieve those exceptional results and force Levy to consider keeping him.

It was not to be as the players soon decided that Sherwood was not for them and downed tools. That ended any chance he had. He was handed an 18 month contract to avoid the media labelling him Interim Tim. If news of Daniel Levy offering him his old role back are accurate then it ought to be disappointing for Spurs fans if he doesn't take it.

He transformed the development of youngsters at Tottenham using loan spell to give players maximum development opportunities. A youngster in a fresh town, with a fresh set of players, fresh tactics and having to fight for a starting place to play meaningful competitive football is always going to develop quicker then someone remaining with a development squad.

He would have hoped his stint as Head Coach would have been as equally as successful It had it's ups and downs but it always has to be looked at knowing it was an interim post.

The successes, well Emmanuel Adebayor has been a roaring success clearly showing Andre Villas-Boas he was wrong to send him training with the kids and refusing to intrgrate him into first team plans. Christian Eriksen is another who has flourished, Nabil Bentaleb is a quality player in the making and Hugo Lloris has shown an attitude few can hold their heads up and match.

While a few others have tried, shown glimpses, nobody else has really shone consistently. Drawing on his youth development background Sherwood's greatest success is arguably the introduction of unknown teenager Nabil Bentaleb. Thrust into the fray as a substitute against Southampton he was an instant success, impressing Gary Neville who though him a star in the making commenting to the nation, he looks as if he has been playing at this level for years.

Bentaleb's role has largely been confined to that of a defensive midfielder although he played further forward against Newcastle and was involved in three of the four goals. Quite why some Spurs fans have been complaining about him is a mystery, it smacks of a lack of understanding of a players role within a team system.
His doesn't create any chances some complain, well of course he doesn't he's a defensive midfielder, Sandro doesn't create chances, Scotty Parker didn't create chances, it's not the job. He plays the ball sideways, well that's what he is supposed to do, switch play or pass to the creative players.

The role is to make a three man defence when the full-backs push on, to shield the centre-backs, to intercept through balls, to push the ball carrier wide, to win the ball and give it to the creative players in the team, to be available to receive the ball, to take a pass from one side of the field and spread it to the other side, the pivot for switching the point of attack.

It is a role he has generally done very well at and against Benfica in the away leg he put in an outstanding display, pinging the ball wide to Nacer Chadli, Townsend or switching play to Aaron Lennon and Naughton. His introduction this season argurs well for the future especially as he is expected to go to the World Cup with Algeria.

Harry Kane is another to split Spurs fans, whilst young I had not seen enough to think he could make it at Premier League level. Tim Sherwood has given him cameos and started with him against Benfica in the home tie. In the away leg he came on and transformed the game in the air, heading on for Chadli to score twice.

His performance against Sunderland suggested he does have a future. His first Premier League goal will have done him a power of good so we can expect to see him again in the remaining five games. I look forward to watching him again in the remaining games.

Nacer Chadli has started to blossomed under Sherwood, having learnt what he requires he has begun to deliver. He has prospered since moving inside, getting in the game more but still has to develop his creativity there. He scored from out wide against Newcastle and Benfica so offers options.


Christian Eriksen showed glimpses early season but didn't seem to have the trust of his manager and had to force Sherwood to keep picking him, just the way it should be. His form towards the end of the season has been excellent as a result and now he is starting to look like the player we though we had bought but hadn't seen.

He offers creativity and goals going forward as well as free-kicks while, as is often the case with his type of player, turns off defensively. Liverpoolwas a case in point, not tracking Johnson and putting the defence under pressure they shouldn't have been under. Spurs had the same situation last season with Gareth Bale. He was asked to play further forward to maximise his attacking ability and released from an element of defensive duties.

Risk vs reward, more creativity vs less defence, a bit of a trait with us at the moment. It worked because he carried us. This season overall it hasn't as we have conceded far too many goals from the left flank.

I did wonder whether 18 year-old Serbial Milos Vejkovic would get a cameo against Benfica in the away leg but we have had to wait until the Sunderland game to get our first glimpse. Hopefully he'll be given a bit more time in the remaining five games as he is arguably the brightest prospect we have, a centre-back to follow Steven Caulker into the team.

From a youth development viewpoint Tim Sherwood's brief reign has been a resounding success. It will not be easy to find a man of his calibre to run the academy structure if he doesn't take the role. Many won't be, but they should be disappointed is he doesn't.



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