Tottenham supporters have been hugely downbeat in recent times after seeing their side suffer a second consecutive Premier League defeat at the weekend.
Mauricio Pochettino’s men went into their clash with early pace-setters Liverpool off the back of a surprise 2-1 defeat at the hands of Watford in their previous league encounter, and thus seeking a response at Wembley against Jurgen Klopp’s side. Yet Spurs were second-best throughout at the national stadium as goals from Georginio Wijnaldum and Roberto Firmino set the visitors on their way to all three points, and although Erik Lamela got one back late on for the North Londoners, it wasn’t enough to prevent a second straight loss.
Thus, there have been many disappointed and frustrated Spurs fans up and down the country in recent times, several of whom are likely to be intrigued by recent comments from Sky Sports pundit Graeme Souness, who has delivered a damning verdict on Spurs by saying that Pochettino’s side are ‘standing still’ following a summer of no transfer activity.
And while Spurs fans may well agree with the ex-Liverpool star, it is arguably worse than he makes out, as it’s arguable that Pochettino’s side aren’t standing still, but are actually regressing in terms of a Premier League title push.
Ultimately, Tottenham have become one of the best teams in the country under the Argentine’s guidance in the last few years, finishing third in the 2015/16 campaign behind Leicester City and Arsenal, before ending up as runners-up to champions Chelsea the season after.
And in finishing third last time round, many felt that Spurs were one of those sides that could well challenge for the title, but the fact that they finished 23 points behind champions Manchester City last season suggested that they had actually got further away from bringing the league title back to North London.
And the early stages of this season, as exemplified by their side’s struggles against Liverpool on Saturday, suggest that they aren’t standing still but actually getting further away from the country’s elite.
Remember, Tottenham finished above Klopp’s side last season in the Premier League, but they were comfortably second-best at Wembley on Saturday, with a 2-1 scoreline perhaps flattering Pochettino’s men given how dominant the Reds were for large periods.
And while they deserve immense credit for winning 3-0 at Manchester United earlier in the season, their other results in wins over Newcastle United and Fulham were far from convincing – yes they deserve credit for winning those games, but those displays appear to have been a sign of things to come based on their last two performances.
And while Souness is right to criticise the club for not bringing in that extra player or two to boost the squad heading into the campaign, despite how good the Spurs squad is on paper, to suggest that they are ‘standing still’ seems wrong, as by standing still in football you are seemingly going backwards given other rivals often improve season-by-season.
This term for instance, Chelsea and Liverpool have started with 100% records and look in fine form, yet both finished below Spurs last season – in fact, Pochettino’s men were unbeaten in the last three meetings against the duo prior to Saturday’s defeat at Wembley.
Thus, given they didn’t sign anyone but also didn’t sell anyone over the summer, it’s arguable that they have indeed stood still while their rivals have strengthened and made changes to improve, but by standing still, Spurs have actually regressed.
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