The greatest Tottenham Hotspur team in a generation. Their best start to a campaign in Premier League history. A manager who one media outlet declared had the best vision and impact in the Premier League.
Yet they sit 5th in the Premier League and are heading out of the Champions League.
Their best team in a generation is about to go trophyless for the first decade since World War II. Their last trophy was 10 years ago – soon to be 11.
Mauricio Pochettino is in his 5th season at the club, and over the summer failed to sign a single player.
Tottenham at their recent best are Arsenal at their recent worst.
Between 2006 and 2013, Arsenal went through a horrendous time.
8 years without a trophy, hardly signing any players, crippled by a huge stadium debt and viewing top 4 as a success as a trophy. These all led to fans turning on the manager, on the club, and on the owners.
But Tottenham are 10 years without a trophy, not signing any players, crippled by a huge stadium stadium debt (which is still unbuilt), and top 4 is being seen as a success by fans, the club and the media.
For so long, Arsenal were mocked for getting out of the group stages of the Champions League, and then knocked out at the first round of knock out games. But here we have Tottenham about to be knocked out at the group stages.
Coming up are Barcelona and Inter Milan. You could argue that the UEFA Champions League fixtures have not been kind to Spurs this season, but they are crashing out of the competition.
During the awful 8 years between 2006 & 2013, Arsenal got through the group stages, no matter how difficult the opponents were.
ENIC took over at Spurs in 2001. Since then it is just 1 trophy. A single League Cup.
You compare that to Arsenal’s horrendous period under the ownership of Stan Kroenke and Kroenke Sports Enterprises.
Kroenke bought his first shares in April 2007, at the beginning of Arsenal’s trophy drought. He has since overseen the club win 3 FA Cups.
SO Kroenke ownership (alongside Ivan Gazidis as CEO) is considered bad (3 FA Cups in 11 years) whilst Daniel Levy is considered a genius – despite having delivered just 1 League Cup in 18 years.
As a side note, 3 FA Cups in 11 years for s club the size of Arsenal is not good enough.
It does baffle me the praise Tottenham have got in recent years.
Words such as “success” have been labelled to the current team. But what success have they exactly have?
They finished above Arsenal twice, they finished 3rd in a 2 horse race, and they put the pressure on Chelsea. Then you have Harrry Kane’s goals and having the most players from any side in the World Cup semi-finals.
It really is not much success to shout about.
Lets go back to Arsenal.
Between 2006 & 2013, Arsenal finished above Spurs 8 out of 8 times. We made the Champions League 8 out of 8 times. We made the Champions League knock out stages 8 out of 8 times. But this was (rightly) not seen as a success.
It was a period of failure.
2006 – 2013 was the worst period in Arsenal’s recent history. You have to go back to the pre-Graham period between 1980 – 1988 for a similar period of no success.
Just the 8 years. That is how long Arsenal went between trophies under Arsene Wenger. That was Arsenal at their worst.
Tottenham at their best are 10 years without a trophy, and Pochettino is creeping up on 5 years with no silverware himself.
At their best, they are the equal of Arsenal at their worst under Arsene Wenger.
A final thought.
If Arsenal finish above Spurs in the 2018/19 season, and Spurs do not win a trophy the 10’s decade will read:
Arsenal: 3 trophies; finished above Spurs 8 times
Tottenham: 0 trophies, finished above Arsenal twice
Yet the 10’s will go down in history as a tough decade for Arsenal. Whilst for the greatest Spurs team in a generation, it is seen as a hugely successful generation.
Let’s actually change the title of the blog.
Tottenham at the recent best are less successful than Arsenal at their recent worst.