Tottenham Hotspur v West Ham United - Capital One Cup Quarter Final

Any games on today?

Meh, not much beyond a few KNVB Beker and Copa Del Rey games. And Palestine plays Kuwait in a friendly. Good luck finding that match on TV.

What’s the big story?

I think a lot of people are sussing out what’s going on at Spurs at the moment. Tim Sherwood seems to be angling for the job, but now everything is uncertain with Tottenham’s 2-1 loss to West Ham last night in the Capital One Cup. Here’s the Guardian:

“The players are professional enough to get on with it and I’ve just tried to steady the ship,” Sherwood said after his team blew a lead by conceding twice in the last 10 minutes. “There’s obviously upheaval when your manager leaves … you’ve been used to him and his voice. It’s a new voice now. It would be good to get it resolved for the football club’s sake and the players’.”

Meanwhile there are credible reports (I’m serious) that Spurs are sniffing out Ajax manager Frank De Boer. And while it is in some ways a fantasy appointment, Spurs chairman Daniel Levy should be aware that De Boer is not a buy and sell type of guy. He’ll need to be on board with Director of Football Franco Baldini in a way that Andre Villas-Boas clearly wasn’t if this is going to work. Then there’s the tricky question of whether De Boer’s right hand man and Arsenal legend Dennis Bergkamp goes to work at White Hart Lane.

Any other news?

Andres Iniesta will likely see out his career at Barcelona, as the 29 year old gets a contract extension to 2018. Sorry, every other club.

Some signs now that all is not well at Chelsea Football Club under Jose Mourinho. Matt Law reports on some tension in the team over squad rotation and constant tinkering. And after Mourinho cancelled the Chelsea Christmas party, Ashley Cole, who it’s believed was joined by Ryan Bertrand and Andre Schuerrle, was photographed attending Arsenal’s little costume party instead.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has some strong words for Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan: ““My only conclusion when I look from the outside is that you have a business guy, who is operating the club and knows absolutely nothing about football. He is someone who has obviously been a very successful businessman in his life and congratulations, but football is like no other business.”

And Wayne Rooney should be back and fit in time for the holiday schedule, says David Moyes.

Any fun stuff?

Kolarov with a nice hit in training. Not quite as nice as Young’s hit in real life.

Any good reads?

Owen Gibson lauds FIFPro’s move to reform the transfer market, particularly in the area of third party ownership of player economic rights:

Fifpro’s real concern lies with the flaws in a global system that has been warped out of recognition by third-party ownership, in which several individuals or companies can own the economic rights to a player imported from, say, South America or Africa at a young age, and agents who collectively earn more than $750m from the game annually.

Third-party ownership is outlawed in English football but, while Uefa and Fifa have said they are committed to banning the practice, it remains commonplace across Europe.

Comments (9)

  1. Don’t understand all the backlash against 3rd party ownership. It allows smaller clubs to obtain bigger talents, and there is sufficient risk on the 3rd parties. Why all the hate?

  2. Frank de Boer and Dennis Bergkamp make a hell of a team. If this happens can we get Jack van Gelder to announce their arrival at Spurs?

    I’m not sure how likely Dennis is to go to an English team, however, since his fear of flying may preclude him from traveling abroad for cup matches… Not that Spurs will have to worry about that next year.

    • Yeah, not like they have a train that goes to England from mainland Europe or anything…

      • Sure, let’s look at the recent clubs Tottenham has played recently abroad.

        Tiraspol – 1,675.3 miles
        Tromsø – 2,151.1 miles
        Machachkala – 2,665.2 miles
        Dnipro – 1,493.5 mi

        I bet those are pleasant little train rides.

        • Take away 300 miles and you have the distance to those places from Amsterdam.

          What’s your point again?

          • I said England, but I meant it in the context of Tottenham, which should have been apparent based on the second bit. Ajax are a Champions League team. Teams in western Europe tend to make up most of the teams in the CL.

            Barcelona – 955 miles
            Glasgow – 726 miles
            Milan – 670 miles

            So the average distance from Amsterdam to their CL opponents is significantly shorter than London to the remotest Eastern Europe.

            If we look just at the groups there is an average difference of ~1350 miles per trip.

          • As of right now, Ajax is a Europa League team.

            Still not seeing your point. Amsterdam is fractionally closer to some of the farther reaches of UEFA than London. If Ajax progress in the EL, they could get teams like Dnipro, Kazan, Trabzonspor, Donetsk etc in the next rounds. How’s that any different from what Tottenham dealt with this year? Will Bergkamp not travel with the team?

            Should also be pointed out that last year, Spurs were in a group with Lazio, Pana and Maribor. Just because they had to travel a lot this year doesn’t make it par for the course. Porto’s gotten Zenit in the CL group stage 2 of the past 3 seasons. It happens.

          • The group phase of the Europa League would increases the number of those trips. He often did not travel with Arsenal for Champions League games, so it is quite probable he wouldn’t travel with the team. Regardless, the Spurs job is a step down from Ajax so i would say the argument is merely academic.

    • De Boer is too good for Sp*rs.

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