Tottenham won 3-2 at Southampton yesterday in their first Premier League game since the sacking of Portuguese boss Andre Villas-Boas.
Interim head coach Tim Sherwood was rewarded for his brave team selection with a far better attacking display.
Sherwood has decided to bring in Togo striker Emmanuel Adebayor out of the cold and it has turned out to be an inspired decision.
The former-City striker scored in the quarter-finals of the Capital One Cup defeat against West Ham on Tuesday night.
However, Adebayor went one better against Southampton with a brace. Adebayor even worked hard for his team, which he is not exactly renowned for. Sherwood told Adebayor just to go out and play his natural game and it seemed to work a treat.
Sherwood set-up his team to attack from the off and it produced a marked improvement of their attacking play, especially in the second half. The temporary Spurs boss also decided to field the likes of Erik Lamela and Christian Eriksen, who Villas-Boas did not seem to rate.
The pair are highly-rated and it seems like Sherwood is prepared to give the two talented attacking midfielders a run in the team. Continuity was lacking in the Spurs team, as AVB searched for the right combination in his preferred formation.
One of Sherwood’s decision that paid dividends was to select two up front, with Adebayor partnering Spanish striker Roberto Soldado. Soldado has looked frustrated at the lack of service so far this season at Spurs.
The Spaniard put in a far more encouraging display against Southampton. He created the opening goal and had numerous attempts on goal. He may not have scored, but if Tottenham keep supplying the chances as they did yesterday the goals will come.
His scoring record in Spain was better than a goal every other game and against Southampton he looked like a far bigger threat. Maybe he needs a strike-partner to get the best out of him, or maybe he just needs decent service from his teammates.
Tim Sherwood’s decision was not exactly tactical genius, more like a touch of common sense. Tottenham had no attempts on goal in their last top-flight outing against Liverpool, so it made sense that more attacking players on the pitch would mean more of an attacking threat.
Tim Sherwood is awaiting talks with Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy about what is going to happen in the future. He has neither ruled himself out nor put himself up for the job. Whatever the former-Blackburn boss says it seems unlikely that he will be handed the reins on a permanent basis.
The Tottenham coach has said he does not want the job on just a temporary basis, but for the long-term. He may not have any managerial experience, but he seems to have the club at heart and the passion to do the job.
Sherwood does have the experience of working with the current squad as a coach. He knows the club well and knows the fans. He also seems to be a very popular choice with the fans.
A lot of Spurs fans have come out in support of Sherwood being given the chance, at least until the end of the season. Maybe the Spurs fans have a point. The club are being linked with a host of high-profile foreign bosses in the media though.
However, Tottenham have gone down that route before with the likes of Juande Ramos and of course more recently Villas-Boas. Those appointments did not quite work out, so maybe it is now time for a home-grown boss to be given an opportunity, the last one did not work out too badly for Spurs.
Whoever takes on the Tottenham job will inherit a talented squad of players. All Tottenham need is the right man to pick the right team to get the best out of a group of exciting players, who looked dull under the last regime.
Who knows maybe that man is Tim Sherwood? All I know is that the performance that Spurs put in yesterday was a long way from last weekend’s abject display against Liverpool. The performance was not perfect, but it brought three points and proof that the current set of players can pose a major attacking threat.
Tottenham are currently 7/2 to finish in the Champions League positions, but with the talented players available to the next manager they still have a fair chance of making the top four.
Should Tim Sherwood be given the Spurs job on a permanent basis?