Sloppy Spurs can't break down Harry's pragmatic team

Posted by Dan Fitch

Wow. That was an hour and a half of my life I'll never get back. At least I can take consolation from the fact that I watched Saturday's 0-0 draw with QPR from the warmth and comfort of my local pub. I imagine that watching that muck and having to contend with the bitter cold would have been an utterly horrific experience.

It's hard to know exactly what went wrong. Spurs just didn't seem up for it today. You might have thought that certain players would be pushing themselves to prove a point to their former manager, but instead everyone seemed strangely apathetic.

This was a careless performance, as if the team thought that all they had to do was turn up and they would win. The ball was given away needlessly. Everything was sloppy.

No one was really very good, but Emmanuel Adebayor had another noticeably poor game. As long as Jermain Defoe doesn’t get injured it might not be the worst thing in the world if Adebayor does go to the African Cup of Nations. Spurs looked far more potent with Clint Dempsey playing behind Defoe in the three games that Adebayor was banned for than they have since the Togo striker returned.

That said, Adebayor could have scored were it not for a great double-save from Julio Cesar, who tipped a long-range effort from Defoe against the post, before spectacularly thwarting Adebayor from the rebound.

Had that gone in then you suspect that Spurs could have scored a hatful. Instead it ended up being the Tottenham’s best chance.

QPR packed the midfield with a 4-5-1 formation and worked hard to deny Spurs time on the ball. It was a reminder that Harry Redknapp’s teams don’t always play football that is easy on the eye. His Tottenham team were often breathtaking, but then there's not many managers who could make Luka Modric and Rafael van der Vaart look dull. Saturday's QPR performance was a throwback to the more pragmatic style of play Redknapp adopted at Portsmouth.

The best you can say about today is that at least Spurs didn’t lose. Tottenham’s unbeaten record was stretched to seven games and although Chelsea won, Everton dropped two points.

It’s coming up to the time of the season where games against the teams at the bottom of the table aren't as easy as they were a couple of months ago. QPR are fighting for their lives and if they are to stay up they will have to become one of the form sides in the country.

On that note, it might help if Adel Taarabt passed occasionally. There had been the odd moment when I've regretted the fact that Spurs sold the Moroccan, but it was hard to feel that way Saturday.

Amazingly talented he may be, but that talent is blighted by his ego. I have seldom seen a more selfish player.

Spurs are better off without players like that. The team might not have gelled today as we know it can, but the era of the individual is over at Spurs.

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