Drawing Young Boys in the same week as starting a Tottenham blog is an opportunity even Sandra Redknapp wouldn’t pass up. But inappropriate humour may only attract the wrong crowd of random googlers (Arsenal fans with a keen interest in youth team development).
But come on – what a draw! I hear Young Boys are vulnerable to attack if you can get round the back. They have youthful enthusiasm but are prone to ill discipline. They’ll do anything for a curly wurly and a copy of whizzer and chips. Ok – enough. Won’t somebody please think appropriately of the children?
One ‘fact’ gleaned from Wikipedia is that they have an under-21 team which for some reason amused me. They are called Young Boys II. Lou Diamond Phillips plays for them I think. Go for it.
What I really liked about this draw – apart from the draw – is that it finally got me excited about the football season. I had mentally arranged the teams we could get into 3 separate categories of desirability. In the half hour before the draw I ‘did some work’ just to make the time go quicker. 11am saw me perma-refreshing on two different sites so I could find out a crucial 2 seconds earlier. I could tell it was going to be a disaster. I didn’t know whether the worst draw for us was Kiev or Sampdoria – but as soon as we got one of them, I knew they would inevitably be the one my subconscious had most feared all along.
I’m typical Tottenham in that respect. It’ll always go wrong for us. And now we’re trying to come up with reasons why we should be worried about Young Boys Berne.
They have a half English right back who is a lifelong Tottenham fan – so he’s bound to score the 89th minute winner at the lane (you know who you are). They beat Fenerbahce so they must be pretty handy. Their season is already well under way. They have an artificial pitch.
Well yes, but there’s more chance that when we’re coasting he’ll get a rousing rendition of “you’re spurs and you know you are” from his mates. Fenerbahce were down to 10 men. They haven’t won a game in their first three attempts in the league. And this is not QPR and Luton in the 1980s, the pitch will be fine (like it was for England in Russia a few years ago).
The point is that I think we all feel it, this sickly feeling that we might throw it away. To some it’s a lump in the throat, to some it’s an ache in the pit of the stomach. To me it’s a slightly annoying tickly cough. I don’t really think any harm is going to be caused, but I just wish it would go away and stop bothering me because there’s always that chance.
It’s not Berne that worry us, it’s us. Having the easiest draw possible just magnifies the fear because how very Tottenham it would be to have CL football this near only to mess it up? And then to spend the rest of the season up and down the country listening to everyone else rub it in our faces.
Except this time, there is something different about this Tottenham team. They aren’t racked by the same self-doubt that most Spurs teams in my lifetime have been when they’ve threatened to get good. They probably go too far the other way, with Jermain Defoe bigging up our chances of going further in a competition we haven’t actually qualified for yet than Arsenal. It’s dumb, and I personally am resolving (so far quite unsuccessfully on this blog) to mention them less these days – it would be nice to see the players try the same.
Cocky and arrogant and heading for a fall when we don’t win the league and CL double he may be, but JD and his mates aren’t thinking the same thoughts I’m thinking. They don’t think like Tottenham fans because they aren’t Tottenham fans. They’re just very good players who will come unstuck against Barcelona or AC Milan or Werder Bremen or Galatasaray, maybe. But not against this lot. Men against Young Boys.
Unless we balls it up like we’re bound to do. I blame Jenas.