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Martin Jol Is Not The Long Term Answer For Tottenham

Lucas just can’t see a good way forward for Tottenham and Martin Jol.

Much has been said in the media about the ridiculously disappointing start to Tottenham Hotspur’s season- much has been shouted and thrown at a wall by myself as I watch the matches. There have been last-second collapses, defensive miscues, goalkeeping errors, clear-cut scoring chances missed, embarrassing work by the board, and, of course, our classic poor management. Martin Jol, quite simply, is not good at his job. That is to say, he is not good enough for the job assigned him. It would seem clear, after the way he’s worked the last couple of seasons- doing enough to get us into Europe, but not quite enough to accomplish something truly significant- that he needs to go, and someone with a little more skill must step in.

It isn’t that he’s a bad manager, per se. Obviously, two consecutive fifth-place finishes in the most challenging league in the world will prove that Jol is doing something right. But it’s simply that the way we lose, the way we fall short is the same, every last fucking time. It’s down to either poor defense, a lack of hustle, or an unneeded change in tempo while attempting to hold onto a lead- I can not count the amount of points we’ve lost because a fifth defender was brought on to “shore up the backline” despite our domination of the game.

Jol’s supporters will say that it is as much the fault of Damien Commoli- or even a dirty lasagne- that we are in the position we are in. An obvious disconnect between the board and the coaching staff has lead to some curious signings- Darren Bent for 16.5 million pounds paramount among them. It has even been said that of all our moves this summer, the signing of Gareth Bale was the only move Jol signed off on. And Bale, to his credit, has been phenomenal. But the fact that Kevin-Prince Boateng has played just one match (“unfit” for many matches was the verdict, sketchy though it sounded,) and Darren Bent hasn’t had a regular place in the side speak to the aforementioned disconnect. Supporters will also point to the rabid backing he’s gotten from the players, like Robbie Keane- though Keane is, of course, the captain and obligated to back Jol

With that said, the way Jol has handled the season- the Jermaine Defoe issue, his insistence on keeping an obviously broken Paul Robinson as his number one, the listlessness the team has shown- has been, for me, a sign. Martin Jol is not the manager for this team- not for any team trying to do what Spurs are trying to do. Ajax is apparently after him, which should be a good situation for him- an established team, a big fish in a small pond, and a low-pressure country. For Spurs, though, I find myself wanting more.