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|Last Season - Slippery slope||Position: 14th|
Prodigal son Glenn Hoddle was booted out in September after failing to bring the increasingly distant memory of the glory days back to White Hart Lane and Director of Football David Pleat stepped into the breach as caretaker manager, again. Spurs got off to a great start under his stewardship but the 2-1 derby day loss to Arsenal marked a down turn in fortunes and Spurs slid down the table, hovering above the relegation zone. Pleat brought in Jermain Defoe to boost his strike power and then lost Frederic Kanoute, who suddenly decided to go off and play for Mali in the middle of the Premiership season, but it was in midfield that Tottenham really needed reinforcements. A mediocre season can be summed up by one memorable game. Leading 3-0 at White Hart Lane, and looking in total control, Tottenham allowed themselves to lose the game 4-3 to ten-man Manchester City.
|Transfers - In and Out|
Pedro Mendes (FC Porto) - £2million
Noe Pamarot (Nice) - £1.7million
Paul Robinson (Leeds) - £1.5million
Callum Davenport (Coventry) - £1.1m
Noureddine Naybet (Depor) - £700,000
Rodrigo Defendi (Cruzeiro) - £600,000
Timothee Atouba (FC Basle) - Undisc.
Michael Carrick (West Ham) - Undisc.
Sean Davis (Fulham) - Undisclosed
Erik Edman (Heerenveen) - Undisc.
Marton Fulop (MTK Hungaria ) - Undisc.
Leigh Mills (Swindon) - Undisclosed
Edson Silva (PSV) - Undisclosed
Reto Ziegler (Grasshoppers) - Undisc.
Spase Dilevski - Free
Helder Postiga (FC Porto) - £5m
Stephen Carr (Newcastle) - Undisc.
Gary Doherty (Norwich) - Undisc.
Darren Anderton (Birmingham) - Free
Shwan Jalal (Woking) - Free
Sergei Rebrov (West Ham) - Free
Christian Ziege (M'gladbach) - Free
Mark Hughes (Northampton) - Loan
Mark Yeates (Swindon) - Loan
Danny Foster - Released
Lars Hirschfeld - Released
Gustavo Poyet - Released
|First Choice XI|
GK Paul Robinson; RB Paul Ifil, CB Ledley King, CB Noureddine Naybet, LB Erik Edman; RM Simon Davies, CM Sean Davis, CM Pedro Mendes, LM Johnnie Jackson; CF Robbie Keane, CF Jermain Defoe.
|The Gaffer - Jacques Santini|
Santini guided France to Euro 2004, winning 15 out of his first 17 games in charge, but when the French Football Federation failed to produce a new contract he decided his future lay elsewhere and joined Tottenham after the Championships. The former St Etienne manager slots into a continental style set up at White Hart Lane, along with sporting director Frank Arnesen, so it's unclear how much input he will have on the purchase of new players. Instead he will concentrate on coaching what resources he has at his disposal with the aim of emulating his achievement with Olympique Lyonnais - where he won the French Cup in 2001 and the League championship the following year. Santini is an ambitious man with over 20 years of coaching experience who admits he has always wanted to coach in England.
|Player to Watch - Pedro Mendes|
Mendes joined Tottenham from European champions Porto in a deal which saw £7million misfit Helder Postiga go the other way. Mendes will offer Spurs another option in midfield and the Portugal international will probably fill the holding midfield role that was glaringly problematic last season. He held a similar role at Porto and played in virtually every game of last term's Champions League campaign, also starting the 3-0 victory over Monaco in the final, and was an integral part of the side that won the Portuguese Campeonato Nacional. The 25-year-old can defend the back four but his ability on the ball also enables him to get forward and should link up well with Sean Davis in the centre of the Tottenham midfield. He is very disciplined tactically, which should suit his new manager, and he likes the odd hearty challenge, which should suit the fans. Mendes could form the platform for a decent performance by Spurs this season.
|Young Gun - Stephen Kelly|
Kelly came through the youth ranks and made his senior debut for Tottenham in a 1-0 defeat to Charlton Athletic towards the back end of last season. He had previously been on loan at Watford, Southend and QPR and his Spurs bow meant he played in all four divisions in a calender year. An injury to Steven Carr gave Kelly his chance at right-back and led to 11 impressive Premiership appearances as the season drew to a close. That form earned the 20-year-old a call up to the senior Republic of Ireland squad for their clash with the Czech Republic. Kelly has played a part in Tottenham's pre-season programme and with Carr moving to Newcastle the promising youngster may get his chance to cement a starting berth.
|From the Terraces|
Tottenham will almost certainly finish mid-table as in seasons before. However with the new continental set-up we should be in for a treat with a decent cup run. Jermain Defoe will score bags of goals this season. I hope that there is a new approach to our art of defending as we need to stop our leaky defence falling into old habits.
As a long suffering Spurs fan who can remember the days of the eighties and early nineties, I now see a structure in place that is looking forward and not backwards. Spurs have not really had a decent manager since Venables left and the coaching department, particularly in the area of defence, has also been inadequate.
The management have got rid of a lot of the deadwood and have opted for youth. I am probably right in thinking that the oldest player is Dean Richards followed by Jamie Redknapp. The rest are young players who will benifit from this season ready to go forward to the next. Maybe the glory days are not too far in the future.
|Best - Top half||Worst - Same again|
Things can only get better for Tottenham this year. The new structure is finally in place, after nine months without a manager, and the trio of Frank Arnesen, Jacques Santini and Martin Jol are all highly respected figures in the football world and will be expected to live up to their reputations. The additions of Pedro Mendes, Erik Edman and Paul Robinson add competition to the areas of the team that badly needed it. Provided the first choice eleven can remain fit for the majority of the season, Spurs can hope to make some progress - although silverware is doubtful.