Are Tottenham the real deal?
Last year when Tottenham Hotspurs exploded into the footballing world, several were quick to point out that it was merely a fluke.
When Gareth Bale won the PFA player of the year last season, many declared that he was over-hyped.
The protracted Modric transfer saga that plagued all the footballing forums highlighted the fact that most still considered the Spurs a small club; a feeder club to the giants such as Manchester United, Chelsea, their arch-nemesis Arsenal and other top clubs over the world.
However, this season, they have truly turned a corner.
In GK Brad Friedel, they have one of the most experienced veterans in the league. Ledley King, when fully fit, is arguably one of the best defenders England has ever seen; it’s a pity that injuries have plagued him for many parts of his career.
Kyle Walker is, after Micah Richards and Glen Johnson, one of the best right backs currently in the league.
With the likes of Modric, you have a player of immense vision and creativity—EPL's very own Xavi.
Furthermore, you have Van der Vaart, a player of remarkable skill and goal-scoring antics, one of the standout players of last year that left Real Madrid wishing it had not let go of such a key playmaker for a diminutive sum of $8 million.
Emmanuel Adebayor has also proved to be one of the best strikers in this league this season. Despite his share of controversies over the years, he has established himself to be a true striker and oddly enough, a great team player.
His contribution to the resurgence of the Tottenham team cannot be underestimated. Similarly, Adebayor’s partner, Defoe, has also been instrumental in the great run currently being enjoyed by Spurs.
Now with Louis Saha added to the roster, the offence looks better than ever.
Gareth Bale has left all his critics in the dust with his superb wing play and goal scoring prowess. Finally, Spurs were able to hatch on to the deal of the season when they landed the FWA player of the year in Scott Parker.
To those who follow the Spurs game week-in and week-out, his importance is there for all to observe, and in my honest opinion, he has been the best player in the EPL after Robert Van Persie (I’ll also throw Silva in there).
The only other team I can think of in the EPL who have such a host of talents that are able to change the game single-handedly is Man City.
Manchester United have yet to fill the void left by Keane and Scholes, while Chelsea, who seemed to be in resurgence, appear to be struggling again.
Arsenal, unless they buy someone world-class to support Van Persie upfront and perhaps another creative spark to partner Arteta and Wilshire, might be unable to secure a top-four spot.
Currently, Spurs are third in the Premier League table, seven points behind Manchester City, which is not an insurmountable lead.
They have already held Chelsea to a draw while thrashing Liverpool and defeating Arsenal.
The two Manchester clubs were indeed able to take advantage of the Modric saga and the rebuilding phase of the team, but come next round, I cannot imagine those two teams being simply able to walk over Spurs.
Had it not been for some bad luck, Spurs would have won the second game against City.
Somehow, I feel Man City is going to fall from grace, especially with the departure of Yaya Toure for the African Cup and the explosion of egos all around.
Albeit very bold, my prediction for this season is for Manchester United to win the title followed by Spurs to come second.