Is a prolific striker the missing piece to Harry’s puzzle

by Marc Sibbons

Thursday, February 24th, 2011

Tottenham’s 3-1 defeat at Blackpool last tuesday was certainly a shock to most neutral fans, but not to the Spurs faithful. Over the years, Tottenham’s consistency in the league has proved their biggest problem, where it seems they are accustomed to great results followed by a relatively poor one the following game all to often. Tuesday night proved that. From grinding out a superb win over European giants AC Milan at the San Siro to being easily beaten by an impressive but relatively unknown Blackpool side at Bloomfield Road.

One area of the pitch that is of the greatest concern was the inability to finish the multiple chances we carved out throughout the game. The front line seems to be displaying a lack of confidence in front of goal, conveying a potential drawback in finishing matches off and relying heavily on the influential midfield to win games.

During the Blackpool game, Spurs bossed the possession in both halves and managed a total of 25 shots, with 10 of those on target. With 10 attempts on target you would expect Jermain Defoe and Roman Pavyluchenko to finish at least 2 or three or them with ease. However, we managed only 1 goal during the whole game courtesy of a deflected strike from Pavyluchenko. Guilty of missing 2 or 3 massive chances, the Russian striker was certainly not at the races today, and the same can be said of the massively off form Defoe.

Furth more, the lack of firepower from the strikers has not just been evident in this match, but all season. Between the three strikers Redknapp has at his disposal (Defoe, Pav, and Crouch), they have came up with a mere 7 goals between them all, with Defoe the most guilty. The diminutive striker has failed to hit the net in all his 12 premiership appearances this season, which marks a poor return for arguably our most natural finisher. Bearing in mind his campaign has been plagued by injuries this term needs to be considered, but Defoe just doesn’t seem to be improving with match fitness.

Whilst I rate Defoe, and realise he can still play a big part in our premiership and European assault this season, it is clear that we need another top class finisher to complete the puzzle and have 4 strikers at our disposal once again.

The reliance of the influential Rafael Van Der Vaart was for all to see at Bloomfield Road. I feel we are putting too much pressure on his shoulders to score the goals this season, which is ultimately sparking the repeated, niggles he receives during matches. With our goal shy strikers continuing to disappoint in front of goal, VDV’s presence in ‘the hole’ is vital to us cementing fourth spot.

Gareth Bale’s absence also doesn’t do us any favours, so his return is key to regaining the best possible ammunition for the strikers to start scoring again. Creatively in the midfield is not a problem; our midfield is arguably up there with the Premiership elite with VDV, Bale, and Modric pulling the strings, but we are certainly craving a world class striker to finish of the chances we create.

I don’t think it needs a loud speaker down Harry’s ear to realise that the forward line is in need of a revamp come the next transfer window. After all, he tried and failed with big money moves for Sergio Aguero, Diego Forlan and Giuseppe Rossi which indicates he knows there is cause for concern on the scoring front. Whilst I think the three strikers listed above are out of our reach financially, I think more realistic options would include the likes of Sevilla’s Luis Fabiano or Porto’s Hulk. And please, please, please can someone tell Harry not to buy another midfielder! he’s obsessed!

Any ideas on what strikers Harry should target come the next transfer window? and who should make way for these signings, if any?


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  • Bill

    You really should have someone proof read for you. I stopped reading because of your inability to properly use the English language.

  • gettingthereslowly

    On a nother night defoe ,pav and crouch would of scored a hat full and when that happens all will be forgotten!

  • Greavsy18

    That’s exactley the problem, they had plenty of chances and DIDN’T score. Any striker (or person) can score on”that day” we need a striker that takes a 100% chance EVEN when It’s “not that day”…

  • Marc Sibbons

    thanks for the feedback guys. Where did i go wrong then Bill?

  • Tim Kiek

    Totally agree on this one pal. Three off-form strikers, though to be fair to Crouchie, he has pretty much created all of VDV’s goals this season. Would also say that Defoe has never been a ‘natural finisher’ in the same way an Owen was/is. He has always been a bit of a blaster, so looks great when it comes off, but when not on form it can be a bit painful. Would be interested to see how many goals he has scored in the six yard box – not many would be my guess… and his woeful penalty taking also portrays a player who isn’t that ‘natural’ a finisher. Amazed Spurs didn’t get Suarez. Surely would have gone to them over Liverpool, though I may not know the full picture here!?

  • AntiOnan

    Bill..then don’t bother reading 95% of what is posted here or anywhere

    I gave up nitpicking many years ago as the current schooling system re English is a joke and don’t get me started on that rap crap.

    We need a physical target man who can make an impression (literally) and score regulatory and is aged 18to26…that makes about 3 in the world on my count and NONE cheap

  • Stan

    no, you need a left back as yours is crap, and a keeper, as he is also crap.

    So you are basically 3 players short of being a great side. Unfortunately for you lot, Chelsea will get their act together, City will spend more and get better and Arsenal & United will continue to dominate. So Europa League here you come!

  • Dan der Vaart

    You really should have someone proof read for you. I stopped reading because of your inability to properly use the English language.

    Hmmm – Shouldn’t that be… I stopped reading because of your inability to use the English language properly?

    You tit… It’s an article, not a binding legal contract! It’s so poorly written I can understand a single sentance.

    On topic, I think Luis Fabiano is just what we need. We may even need two new strikers come the summer, or at least give Kane a chance of brreaking in to the squad.

    Bill – I hope my grammer is acceptable for you, as you are some kind of literacy king, I’d hate to disappoint you.


  • daddywoodland

    The up side to such a poor show from our striker force is that our midfield have proven they are up there with the best in the league.

    The change in formation hasn’t helped either but I think we will be looking at 3 strikers and VDV next year. If we can trim the squad as well it might free up a few bob to fund the wages we need to get a top quality striker.

    It is important to remember that we can only afford one though!

    First up, ship out Pav. He has talent but doesn’t work hard enough and is too selfish within 30 yards of the goal.

    Next I’d ditch Defoe. Whilst he’s the best of our three he’s only any good with a run of games and that’s not guaranteed. Also can someone please teach him the off side rule! It’s getting beyond a joke.

    Thirdly Crouch offers us something unique in Europe but this is the only reason I’d keep him.

    In comes one star man. Hulk sounds realistic although I haven’t seen much of him he’s highly rated. Fabiano and Forlan are just too old in my eyes.

    Next I’d look at Asamoah Gyan. Sunderland are skint and he looks more consistent that Defoe.

    Andy Carrol would have been the perfect fit for us but at £35m was way overpriced. If we’re going to replace Crouch I’d be looking at someone hard working, cheap and able to head the ball. Elmander or Kevin Doyle. Not spectacular but proven as a lone front man in the Prem, which is worth a lot.

  • Ben McAleer

    Yes, we’ve been crying out for one since the tail-end of last season. The signing of VdV, as shrewd as it was, is a temporary solution to a permanent problem. In January we almost signed Charlie Adam, granted a good player, but one we so desperately need? I wouldn’t mind him at Spurs and I think he can add some serious quality in depth whilst allowing Harry to ship out the inconsistent Jenas. Hulk, Fabiano, Falcao, Llorente, Benzema – 5 names off the top of my head I would love to see lead the Spurs line. Get rid of Pav straight away but keep Crouch and Defoe IMO

  • Marc Sibbons

    See i think we should keep Pav, as yes he goes missing throughout games, but he is capable of coming up with a goal out the blue unlike Defoe or Crouch. However it seems he is has had enough of sitting on the bench and reports say he is off come the summer. That leaves us with just Crouchy and Defoe (Keane is surely long gone now). The names mentioned by Ben Mac would be perfect, i’d add have any one of them to lead the line. Good shout by daddywoodland about Gyan, he looks like a real find this season and could be affordable is Sunderland decide to sell.

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