Tag Archives: Tottenham

Greedy, Greedy Tottenham

For as long as I can remember, Arsenal have offered massively discounted tickets for the League Cup. This going back to the days of Highbury.

Only on one occasion in memory did we move away from this policy.

It was 2008 and Arsenal face Tottenham in the League Cup semi-final, and Arsenal proposed both clubs offer discounted tickets for all fans.

Tottenham refused, and all fans had to pay normal prices for both legs.

10 years on and Tottenham’s greed has reared its head again.


In the League Cup, both sides share gate receipts – 45% each. Due to this both sides must agree the pricing. If they disagree, the Football League will mediate.

The understanding is Arsenal proposed keeping the current League Cup pricing structure that we had for Brentford and Blackpool. £10/£20 for adults and cheaper for kids. Tottenham have turned this proposal down.

How greedy are Tottenham that they are willing to deny their own fans cheaper tickets for a North London derby?

We are not even talking big money here. The difference just £500k or so. Are Tottenham so desperate for money to complete their over budget new ground that they are willing to screw over their own fans?

Well actually, Spurs have screwed over their fans all season.

We knew back in March that their new stadium would not be completed until October at the earliest. Further delays mean it is 2019, if at all this season.

Daniel Levy et al were privy to the same information as ourselves, et he still sold season tickets for a new stadium that was not yet completed.

He basically took an £80m interest free loan from all Tottenham fans.

The cynic in me says that Tottenham needed this money to pay off bills in an attempt to complete the stadium. They are now refunding fans on a game by game basis. Basically getting the revenue from Wembley sales and returning it to those fans who bought a Tottenham season ticket.

By doing this it controls cash flow, ensuring that Tottenham are not issuing refunds before they have bought in the cash to cover it.

It is a disgracefully greedy act by Levy, tax exile Joe Lewis and everyone at ENIC.

Arsenal are often criticised for having expensive tickets. The media usually fail to mention that we get 26 games for our season ticket.

It seems Tottenham are escaping criticism. Criticism for fleecing their own fans for season ticket money for an unfinished stadium. And now fleecing fans for a League Cup Quarter Final. The press are silent on both.

With recent announcements that a European Super League is back in the table – fuelling further greed from elite sides; even small clubs like Tottenham are showing that all they care about is the bottom line.




Tottenham at their best are equal to Arsenal at their worst

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.


Everton, Matteo Guendouzi, Emile Smith Rowe and more…


We play Everton tomorrow in our 2nd game of 4 in a row at home.

After 2 defeats in the opening two games, we have now won 4-in-a-row.

Victory would propel Arsenal towards the top 4 and would keep the club on course to get around 75 points this season – only once has a club got 75 points or more and failed to finish in the top 4 – ironically Arsenal in 2016/17.

Just as important as the victory would be the first clean sheet of the season.

Arsenal have already conceded 9 Premier League goals this season – the fifth highest in the league. Add conceding 2 against FC Vorskla and it is a slight cause for concern.

There is only so many times you can keep scoring 3 or 4 to win a game before you start dropping points.

I wouldn’t say no to a boring 1-nil to The Arsenal tomorrow.

Matteo Guendouzi

The incredible thing about Matteo Guendouzi was when he came on against FC Vorskla on Thursday, no one saw him as a youngster getting a run out.

Making his debut in that game was Emile Smith Rowe, the 18-year old becoming the first player born after the turn of the millennium to play in Arsenal’s first team.

Guendouzi is just a year older than the Englishman, but the feeling around the pair is remarkably different.

Smith Rowe coming on felt like a kid getting a chance, Guendouzi coming felt like a senior professional coming on.

At £7million, Guendouzi so far has been a terrific piece of business.

Even if he was 22 or 23 years old, we would be saying that Guendouzi  was a great find by Sven Mislintat, coming from the French second division. The fact he is just 19 further highlights how important good recruitment is in the modern era of crazy transfer fees.

He has jumped ahead of Mohamed Elneny in the pecking order, and whilst Lucas Torreira should start ahead of him, his signing and development is going to save us millions in the future.

Between Guendouzi and Ainsley Maitland-Niles we have two quality young central midfielders. Even if their potential is to only become squad players, that will result in about £50m worth of talent for just £7million.

Guendouzi still has plenty of rough ages to be polished, and it is too early to compare him with the likes of Cesc Fabregas and Patrick Vieira; but if he stays injury free (Abou Diaby, Jack Wilshere) and motivated (Denilson) there is no reason he can not reach the top.

Emile Smith Rowe

On Emile Smith Rowe, he had a great little cameo.

A lot has been talked about recently of young Arsenal players leaving the club in their droves.

Stephy Mavididi (Juventus), Marcus McGuane (Barcelona), Chris Willock (Benfica), Donyell Malen (PSV), Kaylen Hinds (VfL Wolfsburg), Daniel Crowley (Willem II) and Vlad Dragomir (Perugia) to have left the club in the last 12 months for a new challenge abroad.

Instead of it being a negative that Arsenal have lost these players, I actually see it as a positive.

Arsenal are either offloading, or not getting in the way of players who are simply not good enough, and ever really likely to make it.

Someone like Mavididi was let go because Arsenal had Eddie Nketiah coming through. Nketiah is a year younger than Mavididi and ahead of him in the pecking order.

Smith Rowe would have ended the Arsenal careers of a few players who were older than him.

On the list of players who have left, you have to think him coming through was why we did not work harder to keep Chris Willock or Daniel Crowley. He has also now moved ahead of Joe Willock – who is older.

Just 18-years old, he showed some nice touches. At times his passing was a little heavy, but I look forward to watching his development – both in the Europa League and against Brentford in the League Cup.

We have some very good youngsters coming through and are reigning Premier League 2 Champions (U23). If we have a talented 17-year old breaking through who is better than a 19-year old within the squad, we have to make the tough decision in the best interests of the club.

New Spurs Stadium

Over the months I have tried to keep abreast of what is happening at the Spurs stadium. This is more to do with my day job than my interest as an Arsenal fan.

It was well known back in March that there were major problems and that it would not be ready for the start of the season. Despite know this, Tottenham still sold season tickets based on playing at the new ground, and created an advertising campaign that the new Tottenham Stadium would be the only place in London to watch Champions League football this summer.

There has been more than one major issue during the complex build, and the chaos is starting to make national news.

The root of the problems is in how the deal to build the stadium was structured.

Normally with a build as big as this, you leave it to the experts. You appoint a main contractor to oversee the entire project, sub contract the packages out, and maintain full operation control of the build. All the “client” does is visit the site, keep an eye on things. Arsenal did this with Sir Robert McAlpine and the Emirates Stadium.

Teamwork and exemplary management made sure the award-winning Emirates Stadium was in a league of its own is the quote that go’s alongside details of the project on the McAlpine website.

Tottenham chose to have direct commercial relationships with individual subcontractors, which also meant it appointed Mace as construction manager rather than overall main contractor.

Some subcontractors have felt they were being “pinched” by the terms of these direct deals with the club. Tottenham pushing down the prices despite the cost of builds in London increases.

This led to some trades acting purely in their own interests, rather than also considering overall project progress, which led to further complications and delays. Cutting corners. Rushing jobs to get out of there.

Up against things financially, they did not want to spend any more time or resources on the project then they had to, and their work was unsupervised with Mace only able to “advise” subbies – normally onsite the main contractor would be at the top of the pyramid, in charge of all those below them. Instead everyone reports directly into the Tottenham project management team.

In construction, there is a long held theory of buy cheap, buy twice. It feels like by pushing down sub contractors and going for the cheapest possible options, the overall project is actually going to be way over budget. And it already extremely late.

At the time, Daniel Levy probably felt he was getting a good deal on the stadium, but as costs move past the £1bn mark and the stadium set not to open until 2019, the cheap route has ended up the wrong route.

And by maintaining full control, it seems the financial punishments for late delivery of a project that a main contractor would be liable to pay do not exist.