A pleasant game on a pleasant early evening, colourful clothing, have always liked the blue and yellow, a decent result and everyone leaves happy.
Tottenham 2 Schalke 0
Tottenham (4-2-3-1): Lloris; Naughton, Dier, Kaboul (Fryers 79), Rose (Davies 46); Bentaleb (Carroll 75), Holtby (Ceballos 84); Eriksen (Sandro 68), Lamela (Kane 46), Lennon (Townsend 46); Adebayor (Soldado 46)
Subs not used: Friedel, Fredericks, Veljkovic
Goals: Adebayor 29, Soldado 66
These games are about fitness and improving touch, leaning a new system but also let's not forget the season is a week away, if you are not ready now you won't be ready in a week. The game though is also to learn things, to give debuts to new boys to help them settle.
We learned a few things today. In a match up between Danny Rose and Ben Davies, Rose came out as comfortably the better player, I'm not saying he is, but today he was. Rose was Man of the Match in the first-half, he defended well, showed some good passing, one touch, speed, attacking, he had an excellent 45 mins.
Ben Davies on the other hand put in an adequate performance, competent but in the last 15 minutes he was pretty poor, which isn't down to tiredness as he only played 45 minutes. Obviously he is a better player than he showed today.
Eric Dier had an excellent game and we look to have picked up a bargain. I have banged on we need this boy for two years on Facebook and then on here, today he showed us why. He is a talent to work with and we can give him Europa League time and ease him gently into Premier League action. A season of learning and adjusting for him but he can be our centre-half for the next 10 years if he stays.
Younes Kaboul is back to his old self, not the quality old self but the mistake prone old self. He is good but he s good with mistakes now, just the way he used to be. The time has come to move him on as with only a year left on his contract this will be our last chance to get a fee for him. Where we want to be is at a level above him now and he isn't worth a new contract.
An incident after 70 minutes summed him up. We had a free kick and he stuidly played it to a man with two opponents around him, he had no passing options, lost the ball and they created a chance from that they should have scored. That all came from our free-kick. Two minutes after that Naughton is clearing the dander and Kaboul comes back to get in the way which could easily have resulted in an own goal. That'snot unlucky it's simply bad defending, a lack of awareness, it's not good enough and it's what he was doing last season.
The trouble is Chiriches isn't playing, Dawson is injured and Vertonghen had a tough World Cup, the centre-back area still remains a huge concern. This season looks to be a season of muddle through before buying again in the winter or next summer transfer window.
Adebayor is trying to get his fitness after malaria but he still has to start over Soldado. Both link well with teammates, Soldado perhaps even offers more in that respect and can play higher quality balls, but their job is to score goals.
Adebayor one chance one goal, Soldado two glorious chances no goals and scores from an excellent reaction header that arguably Adebayor wouldn't have. His confidence is a concern, he needed pre-season goals to help settle it and they haven't really been there. A penalty, a blocked shot and a goal off the rebound that hits him pius a reaction header. He'll be consigned to back up striker and what will that do his confidence again, we'll have to wait and see how he copes this time, but it's a worry.
Hotlby advanced his case, as did Bentaleb, Naughton played well, Lennon had another good 45 and we look better with Lamela right and Eriksen in the middle.
An incident in the first half showed why for me, their wide man beat Naughton and simply skipped past Eriksen, fortunately Kaboul cut the cross out but Eriksen out wide is a liability, he was last season, nothing has changed there, when he swapped and went central we looked stronger as a unit.
Lamela does the defensive stuff as well, yet still offers going forward and cuts out the wide problem we had last season, moving Eriksen from one side to the other simply make the right side weak instead of the left side.
Roll on next week when hopefully Hugo Lloris will have had a shave and Tottenham win without having to worry about any close shaves.