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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Tottenham Hotspur 0 - Aston Villa 0

White Hart Lane

06/02/2010

Attendance: 35 899

Glensider At White Hart Lane

Its 12.00 noon, and we were off on our travels again, once again heading out of Brummagem, heading south down to our nations capital. This fine February Saturday, those nice fixture fixing chappies have deemed that we pay a visit to north London, and in particular the home of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, with whom we've enjoyed quite a few entertaining and high profile fixtures down the years. What with next weekend's trip to South Norwood for the F.A. Cup tie, followed by the day/weekend out at Wembley Stadium come months end, we'll certainly be seeing more than enough of the many and varied streets of London, before the last two and a bit months of the campaign creep up on us. Of course we've also got ourselves a date at Stamford Bridge on the distant horizon, but we`ll worry about that game come late March, right now we're all up for, and fully focused, on the late afternoon/early evening game against Harry Redknapp's lads.

With yours truly being the designated driver today, it leaves me in full and complete control of the music played as we chip away the miles, but even more importantly as far as I'm concerned, it frees me up from any driving responsibilities for next Sunday's tedious haul to Crystal Palace. No wonder I'm in a chipper mood as we speed towards London, and I can well remember thinking how I hoped I was in the same party-type mood as we returned to Brum.

As always, plenty of Villa cars and coaches on the road, plenty of waves, clenched fists, and sounding of horns. Clearly the cost of this spate of London road trips isn't dampening the spirits of the away-day claret and blue army, in fact on the contrary. Buoyed by last Saturdays victory at Craven Cottage, the roadsters look well ready to put in further practice for the big day out on the 28th, by singing and cheering the lads on to another three points at the expense of the Lilywhites.

Confidence was high amongst our fellow Villans as we enjoyed our pre-match refreshments, that is if you can count neat tonic water as refreshments, as was consumed by yours truly.

Neil, not the most reserved of our quartet, was telling three Tottenham fans that no way would they score, and that we'd catch them on the break to take home all three points. Crouch and Defoe would be meat and drink to Richard Dunne and James Collins. They weren't overly impressed.

Unsurprisingly Martin named an unchanged line up following last weeks performance/result, while John Carew was deemed fit enough to make the bench.

Our line-up:- The Evergreen Brad, Carlos, James, Richard, Luke, in midfield Cap'n Stan, Milly, Stewie, Ash, up front Big Emile and Gabby.
On the bench, The Younger Brad, Curtis Davies (good to see him back in the mix), Habib Beye, Sidders, John Carew, Fabian, and young Nathan.

for 'Arry's Lot:- Well Who Really Cares?

We started off somewhat sluggishly, and not two minutes had passed before friend Gary quipped, 'Forget what you wrote Kev, lets get Emile off and Big JC on'.

One of our pre-match concerns had been that the over-lapping Gareth Bale would have a field day against Carlos Cuellar, and in the early stages it certainly looked as if Carlos was in for a busy evening. Spurs pressed forward at every opportunity, but our guys at the back, the meanest defence in the premiership, held firm.

When our back four was breached, Brad looked invincible. He made a fine stop from Huddlestone, but saved his finest first half moment until just before the interval, when Bentley whipped over a free-kick, and King flicked Crouch's touch on towards the top corner. Brad leapt across goal to get a saving touch on the ball, and Defoe blazed the rebound over.

The home lot started singing 'Boring, Boring Villa', but it was clear that they were becoming a frustrated lot, angered and annoyed by their teams inability to break us down.

On the break we had our moments, Richard Dunne almost on the end of Stewart Downing's cross, followed by a penalty claim when Dawson handled Gabby's effort. I've seen them given.

Our best first half opportunity came when James Milner's long-range effort was parried by Gomes, and the keeper recovered quickly to deny Gabby's follow up.

It was a damn good job that that nice man Mr. Wenger wasn't amongst the attendance at the game. As Charlie from Hereford, sitting just in front of us commented, he'd have certainly labeled Spurs a long ball team, regularly thumping the ball forward from their own half in an attempt to find Peter Crouch, who'd knock the ball down or flick on hoping to find Defoe. Watch out Spurs. You'll be next on Arsene's hit list.

The only other real first half incident of note had been a knock to Emile Heskey relatively early on, that saw him replaced by John Carew. Like for like really, so no real concerns.

Half-time came and went, and we started the second half on the offensive, pushing Tottenham back. However as the half progressed Harry's shower came at us again, but it was obvious that it would take something special to beat Brad.

Huddlestone again tried his luck, a drive towards the top corner, but Brad was equal to it, and turned the effort around the post.

Carew had a half-chance as we came back, but failed to steer his finish past Gomes. Richard Dunne blocked a long range effort from Bentley, and Crouch had an effort deflected just wide.

We had two direct free kicks in decent positions just yards outside the Spurs box, one taken by Ashley, the other by Downing. Both wasted, both curled harmlessly way over the bar. Certainly should have done better.

Defoe took a dive in the box following a challenge from Stan Petrov. Looked a good challenge to me, little or no real contact, but the natives were somewhat riled. Again I think frustration was the name of their game. Via a penalty was probably the only way they'd get on the board in this encounter.

Sidders came on for Stewie Downing, Crouch back-heeled wide in stoppage time, the referee gave us a toot-toot on his whistle, and it was all over.

Plaudits for Brad and his defensive heroes, their efforts/heroics earned us a well deserved, more than useful point. It was edge of the seat stuff at times as Tottenham pressed forward, but hey, quality defending is part and parcel of the game, and a share of the spoils was exactly what we deserved for our commitment and never say die approach.

Bring on Manchester United!! Have yourselves a great week, I'll see you all next Sunday after the Palace cup-tie.

Right, marks out of ten for the claret and blue boys.

Star Player

Brad Friedel and Richard Dunne

Player Ratings


Brad Friedel 10

faultless, invincible, superb

Carlos Cuellar 7

gives me the heebie-jeebies at times, but boy did he battle

Richard Dunne 9

a man mountain again

James Collins 8

brave, committed, a rock

Luke Young 8

another stellar performance for our makeshift left back

Stiliyan Petrov 7

rolled his sleeves up and led by example

James Milner 8

always involved (so what's new?)

Stewart Downing 7

I like him a lot. Sweet left foot. He'll do for me.

Ashley Young 7

not too many opportunities to shine, but never hid

Gabby Agbonlahor 7

kept their defence awake and on their toes

Emile Heskey

replaced early on, cant really judge his showing

John Carew 6

(on for Heskey 21 mins) Off the pace a bit (to be expected), but a handful at times

Steve Sidwell (on for Downing 88)

not on long enough




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The Journalist

Writer: Glensider Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday February 7 2010

Time: 9:56AM

Your Comments

oh come off it, it was definitely a penalty. in saying that maybe you guys could of had one with the dawson handball but that was a tough one, the defoe one wasn't. it was 100% a penalty. credit for the defending and it's a shame we couldn't break you down but that's football.
dwight schrute
even your own mr dunne said it was a pen.
dwight schrute
villa have got to where ny, from what i can tell, suffocating teams. it's anti-football. wish i'd gone to the rugby yesterday instead.
jantheyid
No Yid should be going to Rugby - crazy!!
tommyharmer
Sorry ****e shute but Defoe was going over before there was even contact .
Doug4ever
...that's how bored i was by villa yesterday. good defence, but 11 men should defend well.
jantheyid
Another excellent report but the player ratings are too high all round ,Half the team never turned up today but thank Paul for Dunne and Friedel .
Doug4ever
Villa are *****e - we shat on you for two games and somehow you came out with two lucky points. You have nothing going for you attacking wise and will end up being 7th because you have zero attacking options. Defoe penalty was as stonewall as they come, even Dunne said you had a lucky break and all TV commentators said it was a pen. You lot are *****e!
arpant
Well done Spurs, you did better than last season...you lost this fixture I seem to remember. You should be alright for 7th I reckon. Well done!
olofthegreat
S
rotter82
Some knobjockey yids on here-one so committed that he wishes he was at the rugby and another blaming us for Spurs failing to win-dickheads!
rotter82
Defoe took a dive in the box following a challenge from Stan Petrov. Looked a good challenge to me, little or no real contact, but the natives were somewhat riled. SPASO!!!
arpant
Champions League your having a laff.....
arpant
you shat on us? You drew twice. Get a grip. Let me explain football just a little bit for you as you obviously don't quite understand unlike your boss who spoke well after the game. Ok, now you might need me to explain this a little further for you, let me know if you do, I'll try not to use any long words though. you have to get the ball over the line (that is the goal line - in between the two goal posts, you'll be able to recognise it mate, there is a net behind them and a post above as well - we call that the cross bar, not that isn't because the bar is cross so don't get upset at that) for it to count as a goal. Now if you get more 'goals' (that is when the ball crosses the line as previously described) than the oppo, then you win. If you get the same amount because you can't get passed the oppo defence, you draw and ... oh you figure out how you lose.

Guys, some of the arrogance - no more than I expected to be honest - is beyond belief. This was a mustn't lose for both teams, neither team lost. Move on.
The Fear
Let me explain something to you The Fear - its called playing football, being progressive, TRYING to win a game, something you lot wouldnt have a clue about. If your happy to watch that ***** your team play then your a bigger muppet than I already think you are. I know which team I would rather watch
arpant
you see my little friend, if you have to resort to petty name calling then you really are very sad and very arrogant. We didn't play well yesterday, we drew. Is that why you are upset, you couldn't beat a team who were having a very off day? Diddums.
The Fear
A very off day? lol - OK you believe that if you like my v small friend
arpant
Defensively you were excellent, but we have to consider the two games as four points lost this season, such has been our dominance in both
oxfordspur
Well that Dunne certainly told porkies on that "penalty". The actual words on the radio were thought it was a "nailed on penalty" So that it. Very iffy ? As for petty name calling, doesn't that make Dunne and people like the dated Doug4ever , in your parlance a liar or does it work only one way? It's called a decision as at least one is veither deluded,visually challenged or less than truthful.
oldun
Yes any team can play with 11 men behind the ball why dont we all play like that.
arpant
typical spurs fan comments from typical spurs fans, something reminiscent of short man's syndrome. Angry at the world for what they are (or in their case the dross they chose to support instead of a decent London club), and mouthing off like they are as big as the biggest (Chelsea, Arse, even us compared to them). Facts are, we've not been scoring much in the league of late and we didn't really show up, but if their team IS so amazing and deserves that 4th spot then they should've scored, no use giving all the if's but's could've would've tottenham charlie abuse, I mean you DID only just about beat Leeds defence, so how could you expect to get a sniff out of ours?
BeardMasterFlex
For a game so hyped before hand it was a bit of a damp squib in the end. A sterling defensive performance from Villa which fully warranted the point. But considering that a Villa victory could have put some distance between us with that game in hand to show less ambition then Hull, Stoke and Wolves was confusing, that said MON definately followed through on his game plan and did a number on us. The positives are we didn't lose and a technically still in the race but I can't help feeling that we lack the guile to break the top 4 (probably to be expecting when considering how the 'same' team performed last season) and you lack the ambition and firepower to do it
Phartman87
never never never a pen, Defoe is a cheating diving ****, simple as. The Dawson one with Gabby was definitely handball, clear as day, some refs give it others don't. Fab away resilience by the Villa, on a lucky day we'd've nicked it but never mind. We were good without being spectacular need goals but we're on a decent run. We can beat Man U on weds, looking forward to it..........
Jongekki
Why are spurs fans season in season out such a bunch of *******? They make Chelsea fans look like a class act
rotter82
Goals on sunday...Peter Taylor and Kammy said Defoe dived.
claretandbluearmy
Had the misfortune of going to that pokey little ground again I sat amongst the deluded ones, discusting facilites and how they get a safetly certificate I am stunned. Game was poor, Long ball to Crouch at every opportunity, deluded Spuds screaming rubbish at every move.Then the natives decide to attack women and kids at the end, it happened in front of me and my host, a Spurs shareholder and lifelong fan who was discusted with the behaviour.
trekker
claretandbluearmy - "if Spuds are the finished article why are lying in 5th and not getting wins when playing their rivals" I think I answered that by saying we lacked the guile to break the top 4 this year, I believe that to be a symptom of a lack of balance up top so when teams sit back and we can't get behind them we resort to long balls to Crouch. Gudjonsen is probably the type of player needed to bring the midfield closer to the attackers but not of the quality needed. If you read my post I don't think I was gobbing off at all. Just my honest opinion on both teams
Phartman87
Well organised but ageing defense. MON has built a strong hard working team that has only one word of description required = INDUSTRIAL - but good luck they will alwasy spring a break away win here and there, but this is not football...All I hear from Villa is how arrogant we are, yet all I see is a perfectly balanced group of Villans with a chip on both shoulders. Get over it fellers you're not good enough!
michael.thfc
Gosh, that took some wading through. Thats the comments not the report. Anyway, great report Glensider thanks for that! Am loving reading them.
revdpete
"sh-i-te" villa didn't lose. "world's finest" spurs didn't win. get over it.
benji_starsky_avfc
Guys did you hear something? No? Best ignored then.
revdpete
michaelspud...So are spuds good enough??? exactly, Spuds have achieved nothing yet again and yet again they couldn't beat the Villa. Spuds are as good as they are going to get, Villa have room for improvement.
claretandbluearmy
claretandbluearmy - room for improvement? Oh yes 17 goals at home this season - you need to effing improve mate! Its OK we have only knocked in 28 so we cant do any better - donut
arpant
Your player ratings make me laugh. Your back 4 all deserved 8's. Friedel deserved a 9. Were the rest on the pitch? Milner 8? HAHAHAHA.
WhiteHartSpur
Be realistic Villa fans from far and wide, you were lucky in both games to leave with a point. Yes, we shouldve won and can't say much if we don't score. But even you lot can't deny that we outclassed you for 175 mins over the 2 matches. This time you were going long ball every minute but were getting nowhere with it. We dominated you, just admit it, like I admit when Utd dominate us.
WhiteHartSpur
People are aware there is a site called Vital Spurs, right? Honestly guys, focus your energies on your own team rather than the oppositions...your players will react better to proper support
Francobaresi13
Deary me... Some people are really rather silly and childish aren't they? Hilarious. Even resorting to slagging off the Brummie accent. Yeah because that's really relevant when discuss the merits of two football teams isn't it?!?! Run along now little boys.
Adam Deuce
According to the Actim index Villa have 5 players in the top 25 Spuds have 2 . Gabby is 4th while Defoe is 7th "facts" so all your rambling and bragging amounts to nothing . You Rave on about the game at Villa Park but you got your equaliser after Dawson controlled the ball with his hand . p.s and Defoe dived .
Doug4ever
All this post has become is Spuds slagging off Villa. Yesterday Villa went there with a game plan, to get a draw. It worked. So spuds had loads of chances. they cant have been very good is all im saying cause it ended 0-0 lol. The first match, Spuds only dominated in the last 30 miutes, from what i recall you acually cheated to get your goal with Dawson handling it to control it and then volleyed it in. Thats the only way you can score past us. Spurs fans really need to get a grip.
VillaSlice
Busted :-)
arpant
I hear they are still playing and Spuds still haven't scored. Par for the course then.
HeathfieldRoad1874
well said villaslice. and imo, villa's gameplan made spurs look, really really good. if milner,ash, gabby and down were to asked to attack freely with less tactical discipline, it will be a different story.
Gruck
I was very disappointed with the mighty villa yesterday. They came to the lane looking for a point and got it, well done. The only thing they will not get 3rd or 4th playing like that. As was pointed out in the article defending is part of the game, everybody understands that but MON's game plan showed very little adventure. Against one of the 4 teams in for 4th place as the press call it, would it not been better to have to have tried to win the game. Also what happened to these wonderful group of england players that villa have? on yesterdays showing Agbonlahor has gone backwards from the last two times he has played at the lane when he was at times unplayable. Ashley Young was poor, Bale had him in his pocket and he did nothing, Milner is said to be regarded as this great midfield player who is going to push Garrard, Lampard and Barry for their england places, not on that showing, Hudd was by far the better player on the day. Finally Mr Downing, I am yet to see the man have a good game, the man is a "Show Pony" I am so pleased Spurs did not sign him. If the two games between Spurs and Villa had been boxing matches, Spurs would have won both games on points, Villa showed little or no adventure in both games. Sorry not good enough!!!!
Ox Yid
Sigh. You know I thought this network was home of intelligent, articulate supporters who enjoyed a bit of banter. But some of this is just plain boring childish tot for tat. As for "fans" who have so little to say about their own team on their own threads and so have the need to "assault" en mass the thread of another team just mind bogglingly pathetic. Guys they really are best ignored. But the write up from Glensider is good don't you think!
revdpete
Always good, you are correct revpete, I don't praise enough about what I get out of this great site, the articles are excellent and some of the posts are great to read, I tend to use the site to blow off my frustrations about how Villa are playing, some things are good like the defence and the quality of players we have now, but the lack of goals is getting a bit scary now
ant1ant1
Ho ho...a 1-1 victory and then a 0-0 victory...Spurs fans are a desperate lot. A midget and beanpole forward line....a real deadly duo ! Thing is...Villa played below the standard they are capable of, Spurs were about as good as they can be...and they couldnt do it...as usual. Villa are a far better side than Spuds... VILLA = ARSENAL SPURS = BIRMINGHAM *****TY HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA !
MASON_PARKER
Ox Yid, you sum it up perfectly and eloquently. You say, and I quote, 'They (us, AVFC) came to the lane looking for a point and got it, well done'. Correct sir! A game plan, for one particular game, the game plan succeeded, we returned back to beyootiful Brum with a point, and denied your lot the opportunity to extend your slender points lead over us. It is we, I would suggest, who ended the ninety minutes plus, the far happier of the two camps. That your shower failed to capitalise on your bulk of the possession, was not I can assure you down to 'boring, boring Villa', but to the very fact that you were unable to put into effect a plan b, when your high ball to Crouch routine continually failed you, due to the domination of Richard Dunne and co at the back. You lot are always full of hot hair and arrogant bluff, and as you surely know by now, those traits will see you achieve sweet nothing. There's what, 13/14 games left to play, and it is those games, and the action out there on the field of play, that will determine where our respective clubs finish in the 2009-10 premier league table. Hot air, bluff, arrogant swagger, could have beat ya/should have beat ya, counts for absolutely nothing. Action not words my White Hart Lane friends. The sooner you Spurs lot realise and accept that, the less bitter and disappointed you will be at your continued trait of falling short. On with the rest of the season, and may the better team reign supreme. Good Luck on your ever on-going quest to step out of Arsenal's shadow by the way, and thanks to all you White Hart Laners for reading my article. The viewing numbers you have helped me post will help me tremendously in my discussions with Jonathan Fear, as I attempt to secure a Vital Villa company car in which to carry out my travel to Villa away games.
glensider
I would just like to point out out of all those excellent Spuds players, A poor lowly Villa player was ESPN man of the match.
claretandbluearmy
I think this from The Sunday Times says it all really. "For all that Tottenham talk of qualifying for the Champions League, ambition continues to stride ahead of achievement. Shunted out of fourth place by Liverpool before this late kick-off, Spurs remained a point adrift at full-time, held at home by a team who state their intent on the field rather than off it. Admirably resolute in defence and swift in attack, Aston Villa have bettered Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool this season. This scoreless draw was no better than par for their steady course toward Europe. Already in the League Cup final, Villa's game in hand should propel them beyond Tottenham, who have gathered just eight points from 24 against top-seven sides and appear increasingly to fit the description of flat-track bullies"
Adam Deuce
I saw that Adam, you couldn't tell a Spuds fan though, they'd say Arsene Wenger had written it!!
claretandbluearmy
Some of the Villa posts in the last few days are ridiculous, you really are a spiteful fickle lot arent you?
HuddersfieldYiddo
And i agree with Ox, you fully deserved your point - your defence is one of if not the best in the league.
HuddersfieldYiddo
At least we can wait till next season to hear how great and amazing spurs are. UTV!!!! wish i still lived over there I would love to be able to go back to wembley.
revival4us
Hit you peak, you play this great football?? Yet like you said you couldn't break our defence down...Does that mean you passed it around in front of our defence? nice one... Hang on, fair enough you 'dominated' both games against us, yah? But does that make you better than us? NO, or on that we're better than chelsea, united, as good as liverpool, and arsenal?? hmm...doubt that right? since we've got no hope for 4th according to some of the arragont yids, yet we've not got started this season like we did last! got a run of 13 games were 12 are ones we should win! (minus cup games) a chance of a trophy, decent run in the fa cup...but it seems we've angered Spurs fans, because they can't beat us on poor days, when they're at there best! Ignore them, let them get on it, and remind them how good they are when we've won the carling cup! fa cup! and bagged a champions league spot next year, UTV!
AvdomFc
As I said in my last post, its all the 'if, would've, should've, could've' tottenham charlie short man syndrome comments. Blaming Villa's 'lack of adventure' for their own teams failings, spurs are a bunch of overpaid primadonnas who think they belong in the top 4. A place they have NEVER finished....fact!
BeardMasterFlex
12 matches out of 13 that we should win.These could be the ones we slip up on,lets not start counting chickens just yet.
Pking
Excellent report Mr G, sterling stuff and a well earned point against the 'Galacticos' of WHL. LMFAO! Some people really do have delusions of grandeur. We should offer our pity to such an awesome team who fail to break down an under par Aston Villa and repeatedly fail to do anything of any note in the league, well, the law of averages says they must get it right one year, but if that will be in the Premier League remains to be seen.
steff_the_villan
Pking, thats why i said 'SHOULD' we're villa! nothings simple, but we do need a good run at some point this season...and it could be in them games! even Birmingham had a good run, its what we need to end what could be a great season! but unless im wrong, we have never won a match in march under oneill have we?
AvdomFc
Well this season we may be able to trump never winning a match in March by not scoring a goal in March
ant1ant1
Another great report, thank you Glensider! Must say our defence was brill! Yids defence wasn't bad either, their goalie and the Ref kept them in the game, as did ours. Would rather have that Beanpole Crouch on our side than Heskey or Carew tbh, his distribution and flair on the ball puts them to shame!!
Charizma
 

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