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  1. Are Spurs fans stupid? I remember around 7 years ago being in West Ham’s London Stadium for a boring 0-0 draw in December. I was in the home end so had to stay quiet. Lucky that nothing was happening on the pitch so I had no reason to make noise anyway. The London Stadium - suitable for running away? Arsenal were the better side in that we made more half chances and dominated possession but West Ham were, every so often, breaking through and could have scored but they played very defensively so the chances came to nothing. But what struck me was that they just retreated into their defensive shell totally for most of the second half as a draw seemed likely. The fans were screaming at the players to pass backwards, not forwards. I was astonished because Arsenal were not playing well, West Ham could maybe have won by pushing forward but instead the fans badly wanted that point. Lay down and die West Ham were struggling near the relegation spots at the time but Arsenal finished 7th that season. It was only mid-December and nowhere near the last few games where playing for a draw might maybe make sense. Not such a tough team that you should lay down and die against. I have never heard Arsenal fans want their team not to win a match no matter who the opposition is and it reverberated starkly with me. But that seems to be the reality with teams that don’t win things. They are often happy with a draw. Do they really want to get rid of this guy? Now, this is a long lead into Spurs fans seemingly singing Blue Moon on the way back from Burnley and, more surprisingly, to me, turning on Ange Postecoglou for wanting his team to win no matter what. Objectively, beating Man City is good for Spurs long-term and in the short term, could easily get them the Champions League this season. Villa are playing Crystal Palace away who are winning everything at the moment, which, coinciding with Villa’s dip in form, could easily mean a loss. Spurs are playing rock bottom and relegated Sheffield United. Put as plainly as I can, beating Man City gives them Champions League most likely. Your target needs to be the best Put me in their position and I would choose Champions League all day long. To be fair, I have never really bought into the big Spurs rivalry. For most of the time I have been an Arsenal supporter, Spurs were second best and it is only in the latter half of Arsene Wenger’s time that they got on top. But still Wenger won trophies and they more or less didn’t. And they have never been our target because they have never been the best team in the land for my whole time as an Arsenal fan. Spurs fans ambitions may not match their stadium Ange Postecoglou wants Spurs to be the best team in the country. It is the only thing he sees as a manager. He has always aimed at the best and often succeeded as well. There is no other logic in sport. You look at the best and say, if I can paraphrase Liam Neeson, “I have a particular set of skills, I will find you and I will kill you”. Arteta feels the same. He knows who the target is, it is the same as Postecoglou’s – Man City. Arsenal knock the big boys off their perch Arsenal have had Leeds, Liverpool, Man Utd, Chelsea and now City as the acclaimed targets to overcome in my time. Tottenham have had the exact same teams. We have managed to give Leeds, Liverpool and Man Utd bloody noses but Chelsea and City have so far eluded us. If City win this year they will be our targets next season. It is as simple as that. And they will be Postecoglou’s as well, if he is still there. Daniel Levy - his mediocrity is the reason Spurs cannot really challenge? And that brings me to trying to answer the question posed in the headline – Are Spurs fans stupid? They have a manager who has succeeded wherever he has gone. He has them playing attractive football despite their top player leaving. He knows that the only currency a top manager can trade in is wins. He could still get them to Champions League despite the late wobble in form. He was aiming to win the league this year, I am convinced of that, not finishing in the CL spots. I am pretty certain he knows no other way. A team to match his ambition? I am also aware that earlier this season I posted a blog here which estimated that all 20 managers could be gone by around August this year. Postecoglou was rated Likelihood of being fired at 0% the likelihood of leaving 10%. I would put the second figure higher at the moment as many big teams with Postecoglou’s ambitions are looking for a manager. Could Ange slot into Arne Slot's spot? He is a Liverpool fan, what’s the chances of a surprise move if Arne Slot doesn’t work out? He will have offers, make no mistake. His courage in saying that it is not real Spurs fans wanting them to lose may be wrong. Maybe they really would put Arsenal losing over the Champions League. Could they be a majority? If they are they have been deluded by their years of not winning trophies. Beaten down so much that getting in front of a midtable team which Arsenal had degenerated into was considered a triumph? Like West Ham at the start of this blog, their ambitions have been stunted. A collision course with fans? Which means they are not stupid but rather shrivelled into accepting a non-sporting position, that your target is not to be the best, but rather hope that your objective is mediocre enough that you can finish in front of them. If Arsenal are the joint targets next season by being champions (City would still be the benchmark) then that will be Postecoglou’s aim, beat them. But if Spurs fans really want to throw away a Champions League spot then he is on a collision course with them which could coincide with him accepting an offer from a bigger club. And that, to me, is stupid. They have finally got a winning manager who plays attractive football after sterile displays from Mourinho and Conte. And they will toss him aside? How about these two being the new Wenger/Ferguson? Honestly, I hope that scenario is wrong. I would prefer to knock Spurs off their perch just as we did Leeds, Liverpool and Manchester United. How would people feel about a true Arsenal/ Spurs rivalry to match the Arsenal/Manchester United one? With Arteta/ Postecoglou as Wenger/ Ferguson? Rather than the egregious rivalry between Man City and Arsenal which is lopsided, and always has this edge of City’s financial misdemeanours bringing them down, and not genuine football endeavour? Spurs 1st Arsenal 2nd? Yikes! I would not object to that competition, of Spurs being our strongest rivals, of that extra edge pushing us harder every time? Then beating them would be meaningful, parading the bus around North London knowing that it was the Spuds who were second would be sweeter, surely? And vice versa for them. That is the level Spurs need for a true rivalry. It has not happened ever, and if they don’t change their mindset, it never will. Harry Redknapp - give him a call, Mr Levy And so my conclusion is that they are not stupid, just that they have accepted that the top table is not theirs to occupy, they cannot win the league so hoping they can finish above Arsenal is the height of their ambition. They now have a manager who could alter that mindset but I have a feeling he will not be around long enough to change it. But hey, Mr Levy, Harry Redknapp is still around.
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