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White Hart Lane's Rancid Atmosphere Needs Immediate Improvement

by Ben McAleer
3 November 2012 31 Comments

BOOO! AVB, how dare you take off a striker who hasn't had a single shot?! BOOO! - As long as this keeps happening at Tottenham, the home form wont improve anytime soon...

I think it’s fair to say one hasn’t seen as bad a performance at White Hart Lane since, well, the first half of the 2-1 win over Queen’s Park Rangers back in September. A Tottenham Hotspur display devoid of imagination and creativity saw them suffer their second successive home defeat, this time at the hands of Wigan Athletic.

The hosts may’ve started the brighter of the two sides, but the early loss of Sandro saw the team as a whole suffer allowing the Latics to really gain a stranglehold on the encounter. James McCarthy and Ben Watson harried in the midfield, Arouna Kone, Franco Di Santo and Shaun Maloney pressured from the front-line and Emerson Boyce and Jean Beausejour were both superb in stifling the threat of Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon.

Many will argue that it was one of those days at the office for Spurs, and while that may the case; those days are becoming all too frequent. Bar the 2-0 win against Aston Villa, the North London side have looked far from comfortable when playing in front of their own crowd.

There was a time when White Hart Lane was a fortress, a place teams would visit expecting the worst and often seeing their fears recognised. However, many of those now making the trip to N17 be it from London, Wigan, Norwich; all arrive at Spurs with a sense of belief that a positive result is a possibility.

A Tottenham Hotspur display devoid of imagination and creativity saw them suffer their second successive home defeat, this time at the hands of Wigan Athletic

This is evident from the fact that, in six home games, Spurs have picked up just eight points from a possible 18, Chelsea along with Wigan the two teams to win at the Lane. West Bromwich Albion and Norwich City were, of course, the other two Premier League teams to come away from North London with a point apiece.

The homes wins came against teams with two wins between them this season and make up two of the current bottom four. While even the staunchest of football fans will tell you the club can only beat what is put in front of them, that’s all well and good when Spurs can’t muster a win in three home games dubbed ‘bankers’ by some – games against West Brom, Norwich and Wigan on Saturday.

You only have to look at Spurs’ away record this season to comprehend the added pressure that comes with playing at White Hart Lane this year. Andre Villas-Boas’ side have picked up nine points from a possible 12 away from home this year, in comparison to the eight from 18 in North London.

With the expectations of the players eased, Spurs can play the football that, although isn’t as pretty as that under Harry Redknapp, is certainly effective when utilised correctly. Unfortunately, the anxiety from the home fans appears to be taking its toll at this early stage.

Andre Villas-Boas’ side have picked up nine points from a possible 12 away from home this year, in comparison to the eight from 18 in North London

While it’s a sign of how far the club has come over the past decade, with the supporters now expectant of three points from every team that visits White Hart Lane, with a new manager and, more importantly, a new system, the wins won’t come thick and fast like some are anticipating.

Unfortunately, it now appears that unless Spurs are 1-0 up within 20 minutes, regardless of who the opponents are, the fans become restless and a rancid atmosphere begins to creep into the stadium. Watching yesterday, it was very much the case against the Latics.

A minor mistake by any player was quickly followed up with moans and groans, coupled with the booing at half-time, full-time and upon Jermain Defoe’s number being called when he was subbed off for Emmanuel Adebayor, didn’t help to ease the heavy burned placed upon the shoulders of the players.

It is setting a dangerous precedent for future home games, especially from the knee jerking fans who have already voiced their displeasure for Villas-Boas. One can understand the frustrations, but his arrival isn’t going to guarantee success overnight.

A minor mistake by any player was quickly followed up with moans and groans

Nevertheless, the only way he is going to sway the doubters onto his side is by performing at home. Any good team will pick up maximum points on their turf on a consistent basis, while adding to the total sporadically on the road.

Unfortunately, for those visiting White Hart Lane, it is the other way round at present and it’s up to Villas-Boas to turn that around, and quickly. It’s time to turn the Lane into a fortress once again and the sooner than happens, the better it is for Spurs.

More stories emanating from White Hart Lane

Toby Alderweireld: Vertonghen’s Best Mate Can Shore Up The Spurs Defence

Thanks For The Goals Jermain, But We Need Adebayor ASAP

Dembélé’s Injury Proves Tottenham Must Buy Willian Or Moutinho

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senior 12:42 pm, 4-Nov-2012

spurs have lost there way yes thay got injuries we allways have had we like to buy players with injuries or prone to them we shop round for cheap players but with all harrys faults he is streets ahead of this man

allan sharpe 12:52 pm, 4-Nov-2012

Its no good blaming the high paying supporters, who watch higher paid underachievers. What comes first, the cheers or the jeers. Spurs have excuses a many at present, but the facts speak as results, they are tottering slop spurs.

Lilywhite London 1:01 pm, 4-Nov-2012

Title should read; Tottenham's Rancid FOOTBALL Needs Immediate Improvement!!!

wiltshirespur 1:02 pm, 4-Nov-2012

After West Ham home, which I have already bought tickets for, I am extremely reluctant to go to another home game this season. The atmosphere is exactly as you say, rancid. Its sickening, this is NOT my spurs! Y'know what, I was never a massive fan of Redknapp but I would NEVER, NEVER boo him or the team I love. You anti-AVB spurs fans are entitled to your opinion, but do you think its any coincidence that our away fans, who have been excellent this season, have seen better results than our home ones, who seem to be self-entitled morons who are consumers not supporters, waiting to be entertained and throwing a wobbly every time we are not perfect.

spur1950 1:03 pm, 4-Nov-2012

underharry redcrapp the football wasnt that great ,again you are media driven 3 out of 15 games end last season short bloody memories Redcrapp said we were morons he is right for once media driven supporters believing talksport and sky and papers

wiltshirespur 1:05 pm, 4-Nov-2012

lilywhite london, no coincidence that we've played better away where our REAL supporters have actually BACKED THE TEAM. The job of a SUPPORTER is to SUPPORT. read BAE's tweets over the last few hours, and tell me the fans don't make a difference.

Beano111 1:16 pm, 4-Nov-2012

We want improve until we get a couple of decent strikers and get rid of DEFOE, he should have gone with Crouch, a waste of space the pair of them. Defoe gets one goal in ten-twenty decent shots and a majority think he's great...pathetic, the same as the idiots who keep on booing. in sixty years I've seen ups and downs, but the fan base nowadays is a total disgrace.

DAVSPURS 1:22 pm, 4-Nov-2012

Firstly one thing stands out in every game all these teams including the classy Chelsea have won or drawn in the second half. What this tells me is we are not fit or what i no is going on in football supplements are being swallowed to stop Spurs flying wingers and potent attack our weakness is in defense. This is where Managers are exploiting us and Avb is helping them succed. Let me explain on wednesday Norwich put ten new players against seven of ours one being the inform Bale Dempsey Caulker. Wigan lost on penaltys we lost in five mad mins and a missed penal. What Avb did was use our best defence attack Bale against Norwich witch we lost so this left Dempsey Caulker Bale all weak in the energised battle they would face against full up Wigan. This was what happened we was pressed by three at the back a spring heeled Al Habsi seven floating players set up to play what i call wave football back and forth for 95 mins. This is where Wigan exploited our weak spots 35 year old Gallas over worked Bale Caulker Dempsey and all alone Defoe hemmed in by this wave of seven players. When Avb seen Wigans set up a few of our fans thought he would play Ady and Defoe upfront to cause these seven over energized players more problems he done the opposite and we lost. Chelsea also suffered by playing most of there first team and Utd kids Arsenal suffered from Utds extra energey. So you see somtimes your manager if he does not no why he got sacked will do the same thing again and get sacked again. So i will via your blog tell Avb this Harry learned through many years there are good teams well run and bad teams badly runand teams with little money or fans so if yo are playing them dont look at there players and think i could beat them with tired players and a little strike because you wont and a shock is waiting . This would have bean my team to play Wigan extra energy (swallowed)supplements Lloris Walker Dawson Vertonghan Naughton Lennon Huddlestone Falgue Bale Ady Defoe

John White 1:45 pm, 4-Nov-2012

No one is blaming supporters. But fans are behaving badly, with a remarkable ignorance of what is going on, and toys being thrown out of prams regularly, when support is needed, not just on the pitch but over the internet, as Kyle Walker found to his cost.

wiltshirespur 1:59 pm, 4-Nov-2012

John White I'm blaming our supporters. We have to take responsibility for our performances at home.

spur1950 2:24 pm, 4-Nov-2012

SORRY MATE I AM TOO THAT WAS A F**king DISGRACE by the supporters i hated redcrapp but never have i booed no matter how bad but as i said it is media driven plus the talk sport rest and clearly a lot of these new age suppoerter believe what they read and here!!!!!!!!!!!!

ben dod 2:25 pm, 4-Nov-2012

We were truely pathetic against wigan! No passion,no gyle and no commitment! Tactics are all over the place, why shouldnt us fans voice our opinion? I follow spurs home and away and this has been coming for a few weeks now, winning 1 game at old trafford does not make us great! Need to get rid of shocking players like huddleslow, dempsey and sigurrdsson! Wat is avb doing to our club? I agree that fans should support the team no matter what but when u as a fan can see the freaken obvious, why cant avb see it ?

Lilywhite London 2:35 pm, 4-Nov-2012

If our home supporters can't express their displeasure at awful football and no goals scored at home against the likes of Wigan then we stop being Spurs in my opinion. They have had to endure nothing displays against Norwich and WBA s well and the don't like what they see, what is so wrong. Away support is always different for all teams. As for us being better away because of the support alone, i would argue that AVB sets the team up to play on the break home and away and it's away that it's most effective. At home it invites pressure and heartens the opposition. There are certain standards that are expected by our supporters that things are done the Spurs way at WHL. That's win, lose or draw... If we lose but just defend badly and play a decent game going forward and have ago then the fans would forgive. If you expect them to support a team that plays like that at home without question, i think you expect far too much. It's our right as Spurs fans to expect certain standards, if the team and AVB did their job to an acceptable level win, lose or draw then there would be no issues with home support at all. It's what makes us Spurs to expect the Spurs way, tough if you don't like it.

Lilywhite London 2:45 pm, 4-Nov-2012

witshirespur - Blaming our supporters for the team playing badly is unacceptable. The support has become rubbish because the standard of football at home is also rubbish. You blame the "anti-AVB" element for this but he was always a strange appointment, to bring someone in sacked form our rivals and not expect the fans to wonder if it's going to work out ok is also unreasonable. I want him to be the manager he was supposed to be but besides all that, if the team constantly play like road-kill at home i don't know what else you expect? This is nothing to do with liking AVB or not, this is about certain standards being met and playing in a way that makes us Spurs, even if we lose. To lose like that is just wrong, how else do the fans express their displeasure?

oldyid 2:56 pm, 4-Nov-2012

I do not agree with booing the team so early in the season , but Levy has left the spurs with a big headache,lose Modric and RVD bring in only Dembele, good player but not modric class,even after saying this if you look through the available players we are well under acheiving, as we were lucky for once at old trafford with the win, but apart from man utd who have we beaten, just lower placed teams who should be beaten, them we draw against the poorer teams in the prem the football needs alot to be desired, as AVB has not proved himself since coming to the EPL with us or chelski another own goal from Levy, as Blanc would have been a better choice.

wiltshirespur 3:07 pm, 4-Nov-2012

Lilywhite I appreciate what you're saying, but there is a correlation between support at the lane and the performances, and I beleive it works the other way round to what you're saying. Look at the difference between home and away results in general in the premier league, support makes a huge difference, look at Stoke, magnificent home atmosphere, great home record for a mediocre team. We sing louder and longer and we support the team until our voices are hoarse and until the team gets the message that our passion is unbridled. We support, we do not bitch and moan.

Evadyid 3:14 pm, 4-Nov-2012

Season ticket holder for many years and have seen different styles of management...my concern with AVB is his reluctance to learn. His 5 in midfield away from home works as big teams and home teams attack us more and the 5 in midfield works well. However, he still sits back and makes crap subs when we take the lead and basically bottles it. As yesterday, our tempo was slow at the start of the game and the away teams have the chance to feel their way in with confidence built. He needs to mix up the formation, definitely 2 forwards at home and also to set a fast tempo. Finally realise Walker needs a break and that A consistent captain is a must and I would put Vertongen up for it. All of the above are management decisions and therefore down to AVB and until he does the obvious he won't win te fans-around.

Me 6:15 pm, 4-Nov-2012

The home form won't improve while we pick to defensive midfielders leaving us short of creativity. Our only option is to attack with pace but AVB doesn't want us to do that either. Supporters don't expect wins now, we just hope for them because we know we are not playing a system that works or suits our players.

Me 6:19 pm, 4-Nov-2012

The difference in home and away form has nothing to do with the supporters and everything to do with teams attacking at home and defending away from home. If attacked we can score, if we have to attack defending teams we can't. Booing at half time and full time only is not a problem, it doesn't make the team perform worse. An adult should be able to react to it in a positive way and be spurred on to do better by it. He has a weak character if he can't and will never be a winner.

spur1950 6:23 pm, 4-Nov-2012

spurs fans its OUR RIGHT to expect certain standards and playing in a way that is SPURS ,where have u been for the last 30yrs remember MAN IN A RAINCOAT OR NEILL OR CLOSET GOONER REDCRAPP PLEASE 3 wins in 15 after christmas and the football wasnt that great matter fact some of it was crap WOLVES,WIGAN,STOKE AT HOME SPRING TO MIND ,people seem to be fed on media,talk sport garbage that they believe and from day one they have been on at AVB ,prime example today one of the prats northern dick Micky Quinn said AVB has decimated redcrapps side ,since bloody when, ledders retired our main c/h who played 20 games because redcrapp run him into the ground we have lost " world class playerS in RAFFA and MODDERS and got DEMPSEY instead was this AVB fault was it AVBS fault that harry also got rid of fringe players like pav,kranks,Corluka,dos Santos and left us with young kids carroll,falque,caulker,still learning their trade People on web sites and a the ground turned on Pav like redcrapp did he scored more goals than harry luvin crouch,defoe,keane put together ,but because harry couldnt stand him the press took the piss without any comeback Here some points About STANDARDS AND options like 442 or 4321 or 433 it doent matter if a team like WIGAN or WOLVES come here and win because WIGAN DID LAST YEAR ,they stopped Bale and Lennon played 5 at the back with 4 in front and because our midfield was devoid of quality after Sandro went off therefore gaps opened up in the middle Hudd and Dempsey,Walker,Caulker were pretty awful. Wigan just shut down Lennon and Bale with 2 players on each and knew we had nothing else in central midfield Where as last season we had class in Modders and RAFFA AND LEDDERS SOMETIMES REDCRAPP WITH ALL THESE CLASS PLAYERS WON NOTHING won nothing won nothing AND WAS UTTER CRAP AFTER CHRISTMAS winning 3 in 15 so much for standards and free flowing football Defoe splits loyalties yesterday he was crap crap crap touched ball about 5 times during the WHOLE game ady came on and immeadiatly put them under a bit of pressure and had more touches ,and we havnt had his services because he basically plays up! making out he has a bad back or something else out for 3/4 of this season so far ,so what does AVB do TO mix up the formation with what HUDD,LIVERMORE,DEMPSEY SLOW PONDEROUS AND KNOW IDEA HOW TO BREAK TEAMS DOWN. SO WHICH teams do we have the devine right to beat WOLVES,WIGAN,STOKE AND ALL THOSE TEAMs below us you expect us to beat we didnt last year and finished 4th just with a far far superior team than now . He has limited resources and injuries prevail also me personally i thought that Friedel has been at fault ,he shot stopping ls just like others but his pace coming off his line ,his constant lack of challanging for crosses yesterday springs to mind also have a look at the goals to his left hand side no movement pretty awful really i thought he should have saved or made some attempt at all three especially the MATA one but u lot rarely criticize him because of the harry connection Yes i exspect fans to critise but this is ridiculas ,chants of you dont khow what your doing to Defoe going off he touched the ball 5TIMES IN 80MINS HE WAS GARBAGE LAST SEASON he never got a kick u never moaned then or booed no matter how crap and we were !!! because loads of have believed in the media and talksport and sky over AVB and what a GOD the gooner luvin twat was !! who nearly wreck us how about trying to sell Bale buying Campball,Nevelle and James and not rating Suraz,Lorente,Falcao when he had the chance and asking if RAFA was any good or buying Sandro but never mind our free flowing football was every game even with 3 wins in 15 what utter crap! coys!

TTID 1954 6:53 pm, 4-Nov-2012

"The great fallacy is that the game is first and last about winning. It is nothing of the kind. The game is about glory, it is about doing things in style and with a flourish, about going out and beating the other lot, NOT WAITING FOR THEM TO DIE OF BOREDOM." D.Blancheflower True then true today

steve 9:00 pm, 4-Nov-2012

I have been a season ticket holder for years over spurs and pay good money for my season ticket every season and i personally think us spurs fans show the team excellent support home and away,, but i also think that after 15 /20 minutes of the game if the team are showing no sign of heart or determination to win the game then we have every right to start booing,, they all get paid a shit load of cash for what they do and if they cant be asked to give 100% every game then expect the crittercism. And why the fxxk AVB is not playing 4,4,2 at home against very average teams like wigan i will never know.. COYS..

Lilywhite London 10:01 pm, 4-Nov-2012

Not a fan of Harry then spur1950? It's not purely the media, although i don't like their anti-AVB stance you cannot constantly compare the last period of Redknapp's time with anything or everything AVB does. We still finished 4th as we did the season but one before and those two finishes have been our highest since the Premier League started. That counts for something surely? You obviously don't like the guy but you cannot take it away from him that he got us higher up the league than anyone else in 20 odd whatever years it is. I don't think Redknapp was a god but he had taken us to new hights, like it or not. The reason why Arsenal fans are generally so forgiving of Wenger is because of what he has done for them in the past, ok that's not the same as Harry but he was our most successful Premiership manager and during this terrible run, overall we still got 4th. The fans know that we have been a mid-table mediocre side almost all the time since the Prem started and that 4th twice is pretty bloody good. That's why they didn't boo to the same extent they do with AVB when we lose. I like AVB as a bloke but he has done nothing for us or in English football yet. Considering he is also effectively a Chelski reject, comparing the crowd reaction to playing like pig sick at home under him compared to Redknapp doesn't make sense... No matter how much you clearly hate our former manager. You're talking more about your dislike of Redknapp rather than anything else. Get some perspective eh?

Lilywhite London 10:16 pm, 4-Nov-2012

wiltshirespur - There are loads of amazing fans around the world who sing their hearts out for the love of their teams but still get nowhere and lose more than they win. I'm sorry but i don't think there is a direct correlation between the crowd and results but it obviously helps a great deal, not arguing with that. However, the fact is, if you're crap you're crap, no matter how loud the fans sing. If winning games was mostly about crowd support rather than the players and/or manager, there would be conference sides winning the Champions League!! If the team plays to an acceptable level win, lose or draw the crowd will sing and never boo. Play like a pub team and they boo and hiss at this level, just the way it is... It's tough at the top.

Lilywhite London 10:23 pm, 4-Nov-2012

TTID 1954 - So glad you dug that famous quote out. It says why we support Spurs, we lose that notion and we lose our identity as far as i'm concerned. All those fans happy to accept boring football at WHL had better learn that quote off by heart. Or alternatively, go away and support some other half-arsed side with no tradition of doing it in any way in particular. Please GO AWAY.

mattspurs 8:11 am, 5-Nov-2012

If you watched man u v arsenal on saturday u could here the scum fans more than the man u fans and they lost.....!!!!

Lilywhite London 10:53 am, 5-Nov-2012

mattspurs - Away fans are like that. The Arsenal fans also respect Wenger when we have had about 100 managers since he's been there, that can galvanise their support when they lose as well. Personally i think it was about trying to show RVP what he was missing as they are totally gutted about him going there. Lets see if they sing like that at home playing terribly to a team like Wigan and losing. There is no comparison with the two situations, i wish people would stop comparing our crowds on Saturday... It's total bollocks!

tim 11:58 am, 5-Nov-2012

The players dont want to play for avb, just like the chelsea players, he is upsetting players behind the scenes, hes ruined walkers game, hes messed lloris adebayor and dawson around, and more rumblings are going on, which we will hear of soon, i know its wrong for players to try to get the manager the sack, but it happens very often, and they know the chairman will act quite soon, before it gets worse, the players dont want him, and now the fans dont, its chelsea all over again, he will get the sack soon, and steffen freund will take over, who i rate a lot higher than avb, the players respect him and the fans love him, come on levy, you know it makes sense.

Andy 4:41 pm, 5-Nov-2012

Let's face it, Wigan were better than us. We've been punching well above our weight for a few seasons now, maybe we are just finding our real level. I think us fans are being slightly deluded if we think we are any better than the performance on saturday showed.

Lilywhite London 11:49 pm, 5-Nov-2012

Andy - you don't finish 4th 5th and 4th and have the run we had in the Champions League if you're merely "punching above your weight". The new manager seems to have stifled the team a, taken their swagger away by boring them to death with tactics possibly? i dunno what's happened but we have a good quality squad and one that should not be playing like that at home to a team like Wigan, no disrespect to them. Harry was supposed to be a tactical dinosaur.. I'd rather be a dinosaur and play the way we did most of the time under Redknapp than put up with this boring crap... Too many people play Football Manager these days which will never simulate man-management properly and make people think they can manage a real team!! I kid you not, AVB partly learned to manage playing that.. don't it bloody show eh??

Bunny 9:02 pm, 9-Nov-2012

I'm a Stoke fan, and our home support has been average for 2 years now, apart from a few exceptions. Still better than most, but nowhere near the bearpit most think.

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