ASK any Tottenham Hotspur supporter, it’s not easy being a fan of the North London club.
From the highs of walking out on to the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano pitch for a Champions League final appearance to the lows of the club’s manager stating the substitutes of the RB Leipzig side that just knocked you out of Europe would get in to Spurs’ first XI.
The warning signs were there even at the height of last season’s brush with Champions League glory. Mauricio Pochettino’s decision to return home immediately after defeat to Liverpool was the first warning sign. Months of rumours and internal wrangling about inadequate transfer activity meant there was only going to be one outcome.
Out with the charismatic Argentinian and in with an irritable Portuguese manager desperate to rekindle his former European glory days. Since then it has been nothing short of a rollercoaster for Spurs supporters. Plenty of decent performances but not enough cohesion or creativity in the final third and far too many defensive lapses.
Whatever your opinion of Jose Mourinho (it is worth remembering Spurs’ downturn began with Pochettino still at the helm), there can be no denying Tottenham have regressed under his stewardship. A recent tweet by the Athletic’s Raphael Honigstein said it all: ‘Spurs used to be a likeable team for neutrals.’
Yet, what I hate most about the current situation is not the poor run of form, untimely injuries or split in the fanbase about the manager. It is that the self-belief, verve, passion and energy that lifted Spurs to the top echelons of the Premier and Champions League has been sucked out of the club. All this on the back of one of the most positive periods in the North London side’s history.
It is not that long ago Harry Kane, Son Heung-Min, Lucas Moura, Dele Alli (yes, that positive version of Dele Alli) and Christian Eriksen were carving up defences across the continent. Dead and buried in Amsterdam and staring a European semi-final exit in the face, Spurs dug deep and turned disaster into glory.
There’s little argument that Mourinho’s current setup is a pale shadow of Pochettino’s swashbuckling and counter-attacking unit. Yet, amidst all doom and gloom there is hope.
Steven Bergwjin looks a decent signing and Japhet Tanganga’s raw potential remains untapped. Harry Winks, Ryan Sessegnon, Eric Lamela and Gedson Fernandes are developing into quality attacking player. Yes, the defence needs work, but a busy summer transfer market could alleviate that issue.
Spurs’ mantra reads ‘to dare is to do’. So, now more than ever, it is time to throw caution to the wind and go for it whenever the Premier League resumes.