Oh Spurs…

Let's face it, Tottenham are perfectly capable of reversing this tie around, but the last thing a club hoping to convince Harry Kane to stay needed was a defeat in the UEFA Europa Conference League play-off round
They have entered nothing short of a banter-off with Arsenal, with the two north London clubs looking towards the others' misfortune for some level of gratification. You lose to Brentford, we lose to Pacos de Ferreira, and so forth.
Premier League
Slick Spurs close on Champions League places with Norwich win
05/12/2021 AT 13:02
These truly are unique times, and Spurs losing to a Portuguese outfit few had properly heard of – yet who still happily made a video BEFORE the match taking, quite frankly, the p*** out of the club – is not a good look no matter which way you look at it. It’s a tournament largely derided by English football fans, and now Spurs need to overturn a first-leg deficit in order to simply reach the group stage.
“Of course it impacts a lot,” Spurs boss Nuno Espirito Santo said, just days after beating reigning Premier League champions Manchester City. “Nobody likes to lose a game or not play good. The feel-good factor disappears.
“This is football. It is up and down but they have to bounce back. This is what we are going to do.”
They’ll have to bounce back, and quick, or else an embarrassing Conference League exit is on the cards.

We call him Lewand-off-ski…

Get it? We’ve put “off” into Robert Lewandowski’s surname, because he wants to leave, a bit like that time Thomas Muller said LewanGOALski because … alright let’s just move on.
Lewandowski wants to leave! Apparently, supposedly, definitely maybe, with Sky Sports reporting the Polish striker fancies a new challenge after years after picking up titles at Bayern Munich.
The reigning, soon-to-be, and basically perennial Bundesliga champions value the nearly 33-year-old (his birthday’s tomorrow, in fact) at more than £100m, while his contract runs until 2023.

Robert Lewandowski

Image credit: Getty Images

That’s… quite a lot of money for a player of that age, with any five-year deal – as is the done thing these days, typically with the option of an option year – taking him up to (quick maths) quite old in football terms.
A come and get me plea or a message to Munch asking for one final big bumper contract? We’re not entirely sure, but after 11 years in Germany it would undoubtedly be exciting to see him take on a fresh challenge.
The only issue is the depressingly short list of clubs he would likely go to – we’d much rather he turned back the clock and chooses Blackburn.
Darn you Icelandic ash cloud. Darn. You.

Midfield hat-trick

Team trophies = individual awards, or so it would seem, with Jorginho making the final three of UEFA’s Player of the Year award after winning the Champions League with Chelsea and Euro 2020 with Italy.
Yes, yes, it’s an incredible achievement, but it’s difficult to accept that a place in the top three is warranted by way of featuring in two successful starting XIs.
Again, again, that’s not to take away from his accomplishments, he played a role in winning both trophies, but Jorginho was surrounded by two quality teams in order to achieve this impressive double, and sometimes silverware glosses over the assessment of who actually is the best player (If that was the case it would be the same chap every year).
That said, N’Golo Kante will probably win. So let’s zip it, and perhaps be grateful for a bit of variety away from a world where Lionel Messi picks up every individual award until the day he retires and maybe even after.

IN OTHER NEWS

Well done, Klopp

When a manager talks, fans listen. The sad reality in this instance is that it is unlikely all will heed the call – that is no slight on Liverpool supporters, rather a sad acknowledgement that a minority may still ignore the issue – but in Jurgen Klopp speaking out against the homophobic chanting aimed at Norwich's on-loan midfielder Billy Gilmour last weekend, there is a hope the majority will take note and realise there is no need for certain chants.
"Why you would sing a song that is against something in a football stadium? I never got that,” Jurgen Klopp said when sitting down with Paul Amann, the founder of the club's LGBT+ fans group Kop Outs.
"I never liked it and I don't like this. Especially in our case, we have probably the best songbook in the world.
It's easy to decide not to sing the song anymore. I heard it. It's from no perspective the nicest song in the world, so it's not necessary. It obviously makes people uncomfortable of our own fan group. For our supporters group and for me, that means: done, let's go for another one.
"I really think it's an easy decision and should be an easy decision.
"I can imagine now that people out there think now, 'Come on, it's only winding them up' and stuff like this. But that's the problem: most of the time we don't understand."
Amann spoke eloquently too in the video above, and will hopefully have helped supporters outwardly or inwardly brushing this matter aside realise that offending your fellow fans should not be part of the game.
As Amann states, football chants are at their best when wit is involved. This isn’t a call for all chants which aim digs at the other club to be eradicated completely, but a reminder to think twice about those around you – if anyone argues with that, then, well…

RETRO CORNER

On Ali Dia’s 56th birthday, treat yourself to Graeme Souness and Matt Le Tissier recalling a moment that has gone down in football folklore – when Souness signed George Weah’s ‘cousin’ and handed Dia his debut when replacing Le Tissier.

COMING UP

Plenty of football, of course. You have Bristol City vs Swansea City in the Championship tonight for starters, and then in the Premier League this weekend you have Liverpool kicking the weekend off at home to Burnley at Saturday lunchtime, and a Monday Warm-Up that will almost certainly lead on Sunday’s Arsenal vs Chelsea match.
Premier League
'I am not worried about Kane' – Conte defends striker after Brentford win
02/12/2021 AT 22:39
Premier League
Son Heung-min stars as Spurs win to go sixth
02/12/2021 AT 18:50