The Critics Of The Ex-Celtic Boss Had Their Big Night Last Night, Unfair Or Not.

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There was a moment during the Spurs-Chelsea game last night where the commentators quoted Ange Postecoglou’s incredible home team stats.

He didn’t lose a single domestic game at Celtic Park. His record stretched back more than 50 games, including some in Japan. It was an extraordinary admission of this man’s incredible talents as a manager.

But at half time they were dissecting his tactics in a very negative way.

By full time, after Chelsea had won 4-1, Jamie Carragher was ripping them to pieces.

“I’ve never seen anything like it,” he said, of Spurs still trying to chase an equaliser with nine men whilst playing a high defensive line. “It would be risky with eleven men let alone like that.”

These are valid criticisms. These were concerns we all shared, especially in Europe. But this is the first chance the pundits down there have had to pick over the bones of a defeat at Spurs. None of them expect his team to go the distance.

I don’t myself, although he has sorted out a dressing room full of egotists and bent them to his will in a quite incredible way.

The snobbery of it is unreal though. They still sneer at this guy and his accomplishments up until now, as though they were nothing.

I know a few Spurs fans and I told them when he was at Celtic that they ought to come up to Glasgow and watch what I was calling “Europe’s most exciting football.” They didn’t believe me. They do now.

Yet the press down there is getting ready to tear strips off the guy and I actually understand why and I get what they are saying.

I loved that Spurs chased the game last night even with nine men, I loved that they didn’t just give up and settle for a loss … but there were ways to attempt it which didn’t have to leave them so exposed.

I joked last night that Brendan would have found a way, but it was only half a joke. He would certainly have kept it tight whilst trying to pull it off.

The whole game was insane, with VAR again playing a starring role for all the wrong reasons – five goals were chopped off or reversed and there were 21 minutes of time added on – and Ange lamented it in the aftermath.

But he was also at great pains not to criticise the officials, which is probably easier to do south of the border … up here I hated that he did that, I thought that it was madness and I am glad that Rodgers is not the type to stay silent.

When Ange was asked about the wide open style of football he told Spurs fans and the media down there what we already knew; this is how he plays and he’s not for changing it. “It’s just who we are mate, it’s who we’re gonna be as long as I’m here,” he said.

“If we go down to five men, we’ll have a go.”

The hacks couldn’t believe that someone would talk like that. It challenges the orthodoxy. It breaks all the rules. Last night was the first time it was properly exposed by EPL opposition. I fear that this is just the start.

There is a brilliance to what he wants to do, but a naivety as well and although I was rather ambivalent about his success or failure in England, genuinely not caring either way, there is an element of the romantic about what he’s trying to do there and because it’s a good reflection on us if he can make it I think I’d now like to see him pull it off.

But still I have my doubts, and I think that for all their arrogance those English critics are going to eventually be proved right, that such blazing, all-out attack can’t work indefinitely.

Once teams figure it out, there are too many good players and too many good sides down there for blitzkrieg football to deliver the trophies … but I’ll tell you what, it’s going to be entertaining, it’s going to be a rollercoaster ride watching them try it and he’ll never be short of offers.

Because that was crazy-entertaining last night, and it was no wonder that Spurs fans applauded the team off the pitch at the end although they were comfortably beat.

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  • Martin says:

    Spurs have had 4-1 defeats before in less adventurous games. Their fans are getting entertainment. Spurs are not regular EPL winners so the odd loss isn’t what it would be up here. His tactics will continue to work overall against most teams for 1-2 seasons. Then he will move on anyway.

    Let’s be honest, but for the red cards and the flurry of goals ruled out or in or imagined… The outcome may have been different. That the pundits down there attack after his first domestic home loss really says more about them. They don’t like things that challenge their beliefs, so when it went wrong for a game they were always going to see their biases confirmed. Have Spurs ever had as good a run as this season? I don’t know but I’d doubt it.

  • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

    That stupid old clown on Radio Clyde will be creaming himself then no doubt…

    Thankfully not one journalist down there will know of him or any other imbecilic stomach churnalist from up here in this rancid and backward wee football country !

  • Johnno says:

    Watched that crazy match myself last night, and never seen a game like it in my life.
    Couldn’t help myself thinking how I would have felt if Ange took such a same approach for ourselves in a CL match?
    Proud or fuming with such an approach?
    The high defensive line was outrageous, and cost them 3 goals and losing the game eventually, but such poor play in trying to combat it also for such a long period also.
    Yet the attacking instincts as we all know all to well, have been kept well intact.
    Could easily have got an equaliser, and couldn’t deny they were possibly worthy of earning a draw, even with the strangest approach I’ve ever witnessed in trying to do so?
    A roller coast ride for sure under Ange at spurs, yet remains very hard to call, how successful it will be in the end, all the same.
    Certainly stand to get value for money in entertainment value, but could also require a pacemaker for the heart in doing so also

  • Scud Missile says:

    Ange will bounce back,he always does.

  • Bob (original) says:

    Any sport should be about going down fighting for the win:

    not just meekly accepting a ‘respectable’ loss.

    And it makes for entertaining sport as well.

    Hope Ange and his team bounce back immediately.

  • Stephen Mc Dowell says:

    The scoreline says they were comfortably beaten but it was only in added time that the result was secured, Spurs were centimetres away from an equaliser at 1-2 and it wasn’t tactics that beat them it was amateur indiscipline from players who should know better, to keep a team out for as long as they did playing 9 v 11 was incredible and to play like they could snatch a point was to their credit, any other team would batten down the hatches and try to cling on… every team does against us, dull soul destroying negative bollocks, OK so they went down but went down fighting…..and i hate Spurs!

  • goodghuy says:

    Spurs fans applauded them off the pitch because that’s always been their way, they like entertaining football. Ange is a right fit for a club like spurs, and I’ll tell you it was a terrific match last night, it was extremely enjoyable. If they play teams like man city or Liverpool though it could be dangerous, but knowing Ange’s principals he will have a go no matter the opposition. Jamie Carragher is a phenomenal pundit , he knows the game inside out so I’d imagine that’s why he was saying he has never seen anything like it , but watching spurs this season will be excellent for the viewer. Spurs fans want to be entertained so all good if you have a season ticket to watch them.

  • Kevan McKeown says:

    When he swapped goin tae places like R. County, Livingston, Kilmarnock tae name a few and go try the EPL, who could really blame him. He never exactly lied tae the support or fkt off halfway through a season. Ah for one, always wished him well. He’ll find in England, their media and commentators are a lot more pragmatic than the bullshit ye get up here, especially regardin their favourite ibrox club. Ange had tae prove himself up here and earn his rightful credit. Right now, we’ve somebody up here who’s in the door 10 mins and already the media are heapin all sorts of droolin praise and expectations on him. That’s the difference between the football media in England and cloud cuckoo land up here.

  • Michael Rooney says:

    Was amateur hour management.Chelsea can’t buy a win and walked away with a 4-1 because of postecoglous tactics.

  • Kevan McKeown says:

    Don’t think ah’ve ever used the words ‘up here’ so many times in one paragraph. Fkn bad grammar man.

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