Monday, 1 May 2017

Pochettino Fears Hammer Blow to Tottenham's Title Charge

Even as we speak, Pochettino has retreated into a bunker beneath White Hart Lane with the Tottenham tactical brains trust, desperately seeking a plan for how to stop West Ham's rampant strike force. To misquote The Sound of Music, the challenge is how do you solve a problem like Calleri? How, exactly, do you catch a cloud and pin it down?

A Tottenham source revealed, "Poch has had to contend with some great strikers this season, players like Costa, Lukaku, Aguero and Zlatan, but none have presented the same sort of challenge as the West Ham wonderkid."

He continued, "This lad is different because he does the unexpected. Most strikers in the Prem are predictable. Give them a sight of goal and they will shoot. Give them space to run into and they will attack the space. Present them with a chance in and around the six yard box and they will open up the goal by dragging the ball sideways before firing into the net, But not Calleri."

"Look at that Rabona against Stoke! Who else would have tried that trick in that situation? Had it come off, what a goal that would have been. And to be honest, you can't legislate for that level of audacity."

But it is not just Calleri who is causing sleepless nights for the Tottenham boss. Our source contniued:

"Poch also has to factor in Carroll and Sakho. Who knows if they will make it on to the pitch and, if they do, for how long they will last. We all vaguely remember the dangers a fully fit Carroll poses but it is the half fit Carroll that worries Poch. The guy rarely breaks into a sprint anyway so he is unlikely to lose much from his game there. He is such a physical presence that should Bilic choose to use him as a totem pole, there must be a danger that a shot from somebody such as Lanzini might bounce off him and fly into the net."

"As for Sakho, we are worried that he might play in this one as he doesn't have to risk his back on a short flight or coach trip."

Then there is the threat posed by Ayew. "He is fit and fresh after being pulled before Calleri in the game against Stoke. That was clearly a Bilic tactical masterstroke, leaving West Ham utterly toothless up front against Stoke to try to lull Tottenham into a sense of false security."

It is easy to see why Tottenham are so concerned. Kane is, no doubt, studying footage of Calleri hoping to pick up tips on how to improve his game whilst Dele Alli must be hoping to emulate the movement and runs of Ayew on Friday night. It all adds up to a fascinating show down at the London Stadium, the final result of which is impossible to call.

And if Calleri starts, listen out for a new West Ham anthem:

How do you solve a problem like Calleri?
How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?
How do you find the word that means Calleri?
A flibbertijibbet! A will-o'-the wisp! A clown!

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