Chugging along. Plugging away. Making ends meet. Doing the business. 5th in the table and a mere 5 points below Chelsea means the league is up in the air and the top 4 are as vulnerable as ever. I likey!
4 wins, 2 draws and 2 losses… and we’re still in 5th? Arse and Man United (3rd & 4th respectively) have dropped a few unexpected points keeping us in the mix of things. Thankfully. But it’s wins like the one at Craven Cottage, home of the Fulham sore losers, which mean we’re doing something right. Okay, it wasn’t a pretty victory but at the end of the day, it’s all about those three vital points. In the near future, those very points will be an integral part of a collective figure which will dictate if we play Champions League football next season, in-flow of money for the club, new bandwagon supporters and last but not least, the possibility of adding another VDV or “flair” player to the squad.
So now that we have the midfield doing the job our strikers are contracted to do, it’s safe to say that we are able to score (I was a bit hesitant typing that). Even more importantly, we are able to hold the ball for long periods of time; crucial to success in Europe, and potentially at San Siro tomorrow.
Still, something’s not right. Harry needs to address the defencive issues within the squad. We need to rewind back to a time when White Hart Lane was a sealed fortress. I think the main point of concern is the fact that we don’t have a consistent pairing at the back. It takes time and communication to build the trust between the center duo. “I cover you – you cover me” type of unspoken promises.
Ledley seems to be nearing the end of his career. It’s a heart-breaking matter and I don’t know how I’d feel without him on the bench. But it’s only a matter of time before he will have to give in to this chronic injury and take a bow.
So is Ledley the cause of our lag at defence? Not quite. He plays when he can (and is stellar at such efforts) but it is hindering any potential of a blossoming defencive partnership. Bassong needs time on the pitch. Gallas definitely does as well (it’s no secret he’s rusty). If the players don’t have time to strengthen their partnerships, it pretty much leaves us open and vulnerable in one of the most critical positions on the field.
Remember the “2 points from 8 games” season? Our fight to claw back from the dead was aided by the very fact that we went on a record clean-sheet run. Gomes was in superb form, having developed an understanding with the two center-backs and vice versa. That is what we desperately need today.
Kaboul should return soon from injury and Dawson needs a bit of time, but we have players who can establish themselves and secure regular selection. I am concerned that Ledley’s involvement in the team might prevent that to a certain degree. Do I want to see him go? Of course not! Am I sick of seeing us stupid goals conceded? Yes. Ledley does little wrong when on the pitch; he is naturally gifted like that. Since we have brought in Gallas, we have Bassong, Kaboul is beginning to flourish and it’s only a matter of time before Dawson returns, then would it be wise to keep throwing Ledley into the mix?
I’m not so sure anymore.