Ed. Good stuff from a game none of us could watch.
A trip through London gave me and my family a chance to see Spurs play Watford. My wife took some great pictures, which I will try to post soon, including Walker's cross. Sorry this is a late but where I am staying lost the Internets yesterday. Also apologies for typos and errors.
First half (4-3-3?)
Spurs created very few chances in the first half, and the combination of Livermore, Jenas, and Tom Carroll provided no transition through the midfield. It was hard to tell if they were playing 4-3-3, and if they were it was a mess. The midfield trio seemed to be interchanging, taking turns playing high. Whatever it was, it wasn’t working. Defoe was isolated and a number of times, Kaboul was visibly frustrated when there was no movement from the midfield three, and was forced to send long hopeful balls toward Defoe. Bale and Lennon played a least 20 minutes inverted, Bale created a couple of half chances from the right. In person, it is easy to see why Harry and now AVB will want to move Bale around so much. He is such a physical presence and so assured in the attack from anywhere on the field. While Naughton looked very comfortable in possession and was solid in defense, he offered very little going forward. The high was apparent, with Kaboul and Gallas spending much of the time in the opposing half. Gallas continued to impress in the preseason, and moved well.
Second half (4-2-3-1)
*Bentley on late for someone
Walker, Vertonghen, and Sigurdsson at half. And Cudicini.
Walker’s introduction immediately made Spurs more dangerous, and his play with Lennon on the right wing caused Watford trouble. Predictably Walker set up the first goal, blasting by his marker and placing an inch perfect cross through to Defoe who nodded it into the net. Bale and Lennon stayed very wide, hugging the touch lines, which created space through the midfield. Vertonghen took advantage, carrying the ball quickly through midfield a number of times, once finding Bale with a beautiful 40 yard pass, that freed Bale down the left wing and led to a dangerous cross. Watford was also slow to close on Vertonghen and he was able to move with the ball into shooting range, blasting the ball off a defender for a corner. He played like a man competing for a job, and will the way Gallas is moving this preseason I believe he is. Sigggurson was every bit as good as the previous preseason matches, with one sublime turn pass a defender that almost resulted in a goal.
*The thrill of getting into the second row of the traveling fans section never really went away for me, as this was my first time seeing Spurs in person.
*Kaboul, Benny, Lennon played the entire match, and 80 minutes for Bale. All looked ready for Newcastle and this was the best Lennon has played in the preseason.
*While Defoe has his issues, no one can question how hard he works in the offseason. He was match fit with little rust.
*When the second half began, Spurs were attacking the travelling section, who took great joy in booing new Watford keeper. Manuel Alumunia, and singing "Almunia, Munia, what’s the score" after Defoe’s goal. My ten year old loved booing Almunia. I was so proud.
*Speaking of my ten year old, he informs me that Siggursson has replaced Bale as his favorite player.
*Overheard: "This high line is going to get fucking murdered by Newcastle" "Here comes Bentley, what rubbish."
* I loved Vicarage Road. Three utilitarian stands, facing the team benches and what looked like a construction waste site (one time the ball fell into that deathtrap and I feared for the ballboy’s safety). The visiting concessions was like any high school concession in the US. I did not try the curry pie.
*For a friendly, Spurs fans were in good voice. Whenever the Watford crowd made any sort of noise, the Spurs fans had a loud response. Once the Watford mascot (a hornet) began to beat a drum, causing Spurs fans to chant Tottenham in rhythym. Once he (it?) realized that he was basically leading Spurs cheers, he stopped.