Friday, 20 May 2011
Luka's final lap?
The mood before the Liverpool game was rather flat.
Compared to this though it was 23 Christmases and a couple of millennium eves rolled into one big celebration of hope and glory.
Birmingham at home. It even sounds flat. A flat fixture full of flat vowels.
Astonishingly, though, both teams have something to play for - one of only two Premier League fixtures to fall into that category this weekend.
For them, it's a battle against relegation that they should never have been dragged into.
For us it's the unseemly scramble for fifth that we should never have been dragged into.
I think the majority of Spurs fans want us to clinch it and, next season, fancy us having a good go at winning it - whilst acknowledging that it may well have some (though not a catastrophic) effect on the league campaign.
(Incidentally, I was out on Wednesday night - not that easy to find a pub showing the Porto v Braga final, I gotta tell ya. Still, different story next year...)
It would also be nice to finish above Liverpool again. And, even more basically, it would be nice just to win our last home game, to make it to victories on the trot and to send plays like Luka Modric away for the summer with the feeling that this is a team going places - not a team that huffs and puffs to a dire 0-0 draw at home to bloody Birmingham.
We want Europa League football, but we don't need it. What we need is to be convinced that the underlying trend for Tottenham is still up. We need to look like a team ready to compete in a newly and loosely defined Big Six - although the likelihood is that there could even be divisions within that little lot.
And after the game, of course, the main event: the lap of honour - and all eyes on Luka for any signs of a goodbye.
If he bursts into tears, throws his shirt into the crowd and makes sure he's the last to leave whilst waving furiously to all four corners of the ground, you can bet that not one kick of the preceding 90 minutes will make it into any of the next day's match reports. Not that I'll be reading them. I'll be hanging from a lamppost.
(Incidentally, if you Google 'lamppost', just to check if it's one word or not, the first story you're directed to is this)