The Jenas Effect.....


Well-Known Member
Jan 26, 2005
Thread starter #1
What have we been missing over recent weeks, is it the Hudd having a stutter in his form or is it Malbranque settling in, the Lennon factor?

Well in my opinion the big player we have missed is JJ, he was in for a lot of stick from most of the Spurs fans due to the fact that when he came here he could not pass the ball five yards, well not to anyone in a Tottenham shirt. He has now settled in to become, begrudgingly in some fans opinions, a first team regular.

The one thing I have noticed over the Christmas period and more recently against <st1:city><st1:place>Cardiff</st1:place></st1:city> and <st1:city><st1:place>Portsmouth</st1:place></st1:city> is the lack of pace in midfield, Murphy and Huddlestone especially slow and cumbersome. With only Malbranque willing to get in the box and drive forward this made the build up incredibly slow.

Without Lennon we lack penetration, however without Jenas we lack pace and late runs into the box as well as a dogged fighting spirit, which I don’t see in Huddlestone or Zokora, and even Tainio has been very disappointing of late.
You will notice that when Jenas does come back Huddlestone will find himself with more time and a helping hand in the defensive duties and hopefully they can form a partnership which is not a diamond but an actual partnership where either one can make the runs.
Jenas is a better player than a lot give him credit for, if anyone watched the last game Jenas played in, which was second half against Arsenal, he made an impression and was the best out of a poor bunch and when Jenas comes back it will not be a surprise to see Spurs form return.
Murphy, another of one of our central midfielders ‘who can play on the left’ was more frustrating than anyone else in the team in recent games due to his severe lack of intelligence. His defensive covering of Lee was nothing short of average and his forward play was just plain idiotic.

When Lee, who by the way has come back quite impressively, makes his driving runs down the line it is the left midfielder’s job to either drop back and support Lee as an option backwards or make a driving run down the line, or at least make him available to a pass. He however decided to hug the closest opposition team member to make him unavailable for a pass, so there is absolutely no point in playing Murphy on the left wing.

Lennon’s return will clearly be a massive blessing, but in my opinion Jenas will be just as effective in Tottenham’s fight for Uefa/Champions League spots. Lets hope Spurs can keep the likes of Huddlestone, Jenas, Lennon and Malbranque fit and hopefully add a left winger to our squad and then I would say why not Champions league football.


SC Supporter
Jul 28, 2005
Also agreed - generally! Most Prem sides would struggle if they were without players of the calibre of Keane, Lennon and JJ for the period of time we have been. I'm not 100% in agreement regarding LYP but at least he doesn't look like quite as much of a timebomb as he did at times last year.

For me, assuming we don't sign a world-class or even international class LM in the next three weeks, a midfield of (l-r) Mallers, The Hudd, JJ and Lennon should cause anyone problems.


MoPo's lover
Apr 28, 2006
Does no-one see a future for Zokora then? I personally think that Zokora can make the lung-bursting runs that Jenas makes and, from what I have seen, Z also seems very pacey, like appears that many have written him off after, what, about 10 - 15 games at most, some of which he played probably still suffering the after-effects of malaria. Maybe this season wont be his, although there's still a lot of games to play - next year may well be.....


Well-Known Member
May 31, 2005
I really hope you are right. I personally think JJ is overated, and the S Gerrard we would like him to be at JJs age would leave him in his wake at absolutely everything he does. I think JJs decision making is poor (but the majority of Spurs players apart from ledley, Berbatov and possibly Chimbonda and sometimes Hudd leave a lot to be desired and thats why we cant keep posession and are easily pressured).
I hope results and JJ prove me wrong.


Grand Master of the Knights of the Fat Fanny
Oct 28, 2004
I don't agree. Whilst I believe that Jenas is a good player and certainly brings alot to the table our form has been unaltered since his absence. Poor away, good at home, that is how it has been after the first few games (where we were poor at home and poor away) We lost at home to Liverpool yet should have taken all three points. This was not due to the team playing poorly but not converting chances into goals.

I really don't know how you can say Danny Murphy has a severe lack of intelligence, it is just nonsense. Every time he has played he has created chances apart from the Cardiff game where chances were few. If anything is lacking in his game it is pace and being played out of position doesn't help. Obviously his cross for Malbranque to equalise against Portsmouth was "idiotic". Have you even watched any of these games you are talking about?

Lee makes only a few forward runs per game, against Cardiff I believe he only made one run and clogged it into the stand. Not sure how you can point to Murphy being at fault here. Malbranque has played on the left wing for the majority of the time prior to Ghaly's injury.

I do agree that we are in desperate need of a left winger but that seems to apply regardless of who has been played on the left with the exception of Lennon and we all know he is more effective on the right anyway.


Well-Known Member
Jan 7, 2007
Its not so much his attacking play that we miss but his defensive work as we just seem sluggish defensively without him. He does have good awareness and reading of the game and his athleticism gives us extra energy in the latter stages. I reckon he's crucial to our team. Sometimes you don't realise someone's significance until they are not playing. He's the perfect partner for Huddlestone as they are total opposites. Jenas's passing is still dodgy though. People forget that he scored something like 8 goals last season that earned us crucial points.


New Member
Apr 26, 2004
Good point and Hudds has looked a little sluggish of late he would be rested for certain games if he was at Manure etc


New Member
Jan 13, 2006
Lacks the ingredient which, mistakenly or otherwise, i believe seperates us from 'the four'....composure. Maybe with age/ experience. But a lot of people have been saying it for a long while. The time is now.
(I did spend a long while defending his prospects last season....i do however believe Zokora is a step up. A step up to CL? Don't know)
Apr 10, 2006
I can't help thinking that the references to jenas are a case of looking at things through very rose tinted glasses. Jenas has his moments for Spurs some have been good others bad but in terms of his loss and future return being the link to our form and its ups and downs are tenuous to say the least.

He is neither a Roy keane nor a Steven Gerrard type of player who truly influences games with his presence and to imply that he does is wide of the mark. Again I say he still does offer another option in midfield which is pace and the occasional forward run but with nothing like the impact of the two I have mentioned as real examples of influence from midfield.

Lennon has been missed on the other hand as he is our natural outlet short of a straight punt up field to our forwards, something we are forced to do too often which results in lost possession.

Murphy has failed to nail down a starting spot anywhere in the midfield whilst in a similar time span Lennon and now the Hudd have managed it. This is because Murphy doesn't have what we need in midfield although probably still has enough to play in the premier league.

Tainio seems to have lost his way this year and I have been disappointed on the whole as he has not improved on his scoring ratio this season nor has he given us the bite that in a good number of games last season he did.

I don't believe Tainio has suddenly become a bad player but a succession of injuries and illness haven't helped him. In addition, if I were to play him I would generally only put him on the left of midfield as he is capable of more than Murphy or Davids in that spot and does tend to protect the full-back a little more than Murphy atleast.

Zokora has still flattered to deceive a little but has shown in patches what he is capable of. For him a couple of poor games and a high profile mistake like that of the Liverpool game have blinded many who not so long ago were saying what a class player he was after the besiktas game for example. He will come good I am sure but I actually think he is played in the wrong position with Hudd. I would play him infront of Hudd as he is capable of making forward runs as he has shown many times. This would also create a little more space for the Hudd as currently those two tend to both fall back onto the centre-halves and effectively crowd each other out too much when they are played as they currently are together.

Lee I feel gets a lot of unfair criticism on here and is infact fairly solid as a full-back. Sure he makes mistakes but few other than ledley seem capable of recovering as quickly from them. I give you stalteri as a contrast. He when beaten stays beaten.

Lee is improving his delivery of crosses and now gets height and pace. All he needs to learn now is to wrap his foot around the ball and he will be providing good service.

The other interesting thing about him is that he has steadly learned to go at the other full back and does get past him with his little step over trick. If he fails he then looks for a simple ball to maintain pressure but the key is he has held possession well into the half of the opposition which gives the defence and mifield time to get their shape further up the park. So this is positive for tottenham. He's is older than Ekotto so eventually the frenchman will I suspect gain the spot but right now they both are closely matched and far better than many left-backs in the EPL.
Dec 5, 2006
I agree that Jenas will make a difference, but he is not the long-term solution. I'm reposting this from the other day, as it's relevance is clear in response to your article.

We only really need one player. But a very specific player who will bring this team together, get the most out of teammates, switch our away form around and, most importantly, Captain the Club.

Ledley is captain by default. As Mr. Spurs, he was the natural choice. But he is not, by my eye, an inspirational, driving captain and he does not control our midfield. And there lies the problem.

The player we need is an attacking-minded CM with the voice that makes everyone listen and follow. In his team, you don't drift into right midfield when positioned on the left; you don't rely on a half-time team talk to gee-up the team; and we, as supporters, don't get 'the feeling' that we all get (you know the one) synonomous with games like these.

You can bring in all the quality you like, the voice of this team will not grow any louder. And subsequently, our undoubted quality will never be fully effective and our win ratio on days like these will not improve. Players like Jenas, Tainio, Zokora are just not stepping up to the plate. There is no Boss. Players like Reo-Coker will not solve this problem. Someone in the mould of Gerrard preferably, otherwise a Lampard. (Jenas should be our Lampard, but he hasn't shown me anything to convince me that he is willing to step up yet.)

We NEED this guy, it is massively important. And aside from glaring left-sided deficiencies, this should be our absolute priority. English, French, we shouldn't be fussy, although he must be an excellent communicater. But he must be brought in. Money/wages no object; he will be the most important player in our team.

...Until we address this issue, unobserved by many, I fear we won't fulfil our brimming potential, both individually, and as the great team on paper we are all waiting to come to fruition.


Active Member
Feb 24, 2004
Jenas has been raved about by every manager he has played for including Bobby Robson who has managed some awsome players in his time, the fact the he has been a captain at Newcastle and Forrest means he has a big influence both on and off the field and at 22 / 23, maybe the overhype of him makes people expect too much (see joe Cole). I think the boy needs time and now with Zakora, he doesnt have all this burden on his shoulders. Between them they will come good, im sure of it


Well-Known Member
Feb 23, 2005
It is easy to miss someone like Jenas when he has not played for a while- we forget his faults. He has talent but has not progressed to the stage where he can dominate a game in the way the top midfielders do.
Hudd needs a rest but I think he is the one with the most talent and the best Carrick replacement, to build the team around and we need to find the best partner for him. I think Zokora is the most likely of the players at the club, even though he has been disappointing of late


New Member
Apr 16, 2004
So, Malbranque, Hudd, JJ, Lennon (L to R)?
I think that's probably my first choice midfield at the moment.
Jun 25, 2005
about time people started talking about JJ... He is the engine of the the team and it's his running that allows us to play. I agree with your write up.

DZ and TH are both holing midfileders where as JJ is the forward force. the problem we have is that we have no quality cover for him.