How is this for a movie pitch? Synopsis: Set in picturesque Bolton, where the wind from the Pennines blows down your neck like a drunken bint in a mini-dress, our heroes go for a crazy afternoon in the North West still trying to piece together how they got there. Mike Tyson’s tiger fails a late fitness test (it’s a shame...he would have added considerable bite to the midfield) and the guys spend the rest of the afternoon looking for the missing Wilson Palacios. Unfortunately, Lee Chung-Yung is released from a car boot and wins a penalty.
It’s okay to be disappointed, but to lose perspective is less clever. Spurs' pulsating win over European Champions Inter Milan cannot be overshadowed by Saturday's reverse against Bolton. A fairly predictable hangover cannot spoil the greatest night out of your life.
The defeat comes with a few asterisks for me. The ‘we lost, we were shit argument’ belongs in the playground. Sandro was poor losing possession on the first goal, but Davies was still clearly offside (add that to the Nani farce and Mike Jones' comedic refereeing performance against Everton and Spurs are on a run of poor decisions). Where do they find these officials – Moorfields Eye Hospital? Are these the guys seeing-eye dogs refuse to work with?
Assou-Ekotto gave away a clear penalty for a push on the underrated Lee, but frustratingly this is the same foul that is perpetrated every week against Peter Crouch and waved away by the men in black. Two great goals by Hutton and Pavyluchenko provided late hope...it’s just unfortunate we were caught on the counter for the fourth goal while pushing everyone up for the equaliser. Winning and losing high-scoring games is Tottenham football....you have to embrace the madness or go elsewhere. It’s in Spurs' DNA and has been the same since the black and white days.
Overhearing some Spurs ‘fans’ simplistically pinpointing Bill Gallas for the defeat is tiresome and ill-informed. He was excellent on Tuesday yet the praise was not quite as forthcoming. I’d understand to a degree if Gallas lost the ball that led to a goal or gave away a penalty, but to lambast him and overlook the ever-woeful Wilson Palacios is perversely selective. Redknapp’s frustration at Wilson’s now customary slovenly display saw the Honduran hauled over to touchline in the first half and substituted for the second. I’m sorry, but for the last year Palacios has been taking money under false pretences.
Bolton, for their part, played well. They are a good team with a manager I believe is destined for great things. Owen Coyle performed wonders at Burnley and he is now energising Wanderers. Spurs could do a lot worse than install him as Redknapp’s eventual successor. This is, however, a 'win some, lose some' league this season (Chelsea apart) and incredibly Spurs are still sixth heading into Sunday’s games with two home matches ahead in the next week. So don’t be too downhearted. This half-empty glass will most likely be half full next Saturday night.