There's been a lot of discussion about the Fiorentina - Tottenham Hotspur matchup in the Round of 32 ever since the draw, and these discussions have generally included words like "balanced," "evenly matched," "entertaining," or "fun." Well I'm here to dish out some truth that cuts through all of that big media jargon, with their fancy words and spel cheiking editors. Truth with a capital "T."
And the funny thing? It's a Truth we all know. The Best Team in the History of Time - Fiorentina, OBVIOUSLY - are going to batter this little London outfit, and they aren't even going to have to work that hard. As surely as the Florentine skyline remains beautiful, and as certainly as the sun radiates from each and every one of Giuseppe Rossi's holy orifices, it is equally unquestionable that we, the chosen people, are going to spank these fancy sports chickens into an alien time zone.
Fiorentina are in a crazy moment of form, going undefeated in their last 8, and are still fresh from rediscovering Mario Gomez and the electric debut of Mohammed Salah. The viola are full of technical players in every position, have two great strikers, pace on the wings, and an excellent central defensive duo. Tottenham Hotspur have lost to Leicester, Crystal Palace, and have drawn to Sheffield United in the New Year. I have no idea why a British club was facing sides from cities in Dungeons and Dragons but regardless, those results sound pretty bad.
Go ahead, ask a Tottenham fan why they are garbage. They won't even dispute the point, they'll just start listing reasons. Harry Kane has cheered them all up a lot recently, but he is probably your garden variety overrated-English-flash-in-the-pan and he looks like a Wayne's World extra, not a superstar in the making. Partnered on a playing field with the equally pale/sickly Christian Eriksen, I start wondering if I am watching a weird remake of Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey, and that Keanu Reeves looks terrible with that haircut. Players as objectively rubbish as Paulinho and Roberto Soldado routinely make appearances for this collective of supposed "athletes."
Tottenham have allowed more shots from the danger zone per match than ANY team in the Italian Serie A. They have also conceded second most shots off of "fast attacks" in the Premier League. Heck, Spurs are so bad that they got Mario "Super Diving Fraud Crybaby International Embarrassment" Balotelli a goal. Not even from the penalty spot! AND IT WAS A WINNER! They should be banned from any competitive tournament on this point alone. But even if they were permitted to play, they'd probably just "do a Spurs."
Now, some of you are probably wondering to yourself "whoa there Lorenzo, aren't you being a bit severe on this relatively likable club? Shouldn't you save some of your ruthless journalistic truth on a more worthy target, like Tim Sherwood? And anyways, don't they have a tiniest bit of a chance, like in a David versus an extra-ripped Goliath sense?" In order: no, no, and HELL NO.
Borja Valero is going to pass circles around Ryan Mason until he cries and regrets his inner thigh tattoo. Mario Gomez is going to cackle as he munches on a medium rare Fazio. Joaquin is going to gleefully make Danny Rose look like a "Play in the Pros" contest winner (well, even more so than usual). And Gonzalo Rodriguez is going to bring a beach chair so he can nap comfortably in the perfect silence of White Hart Lane. Salah might not even play because Vincenzo Montella has a heart, and Mauricio Pochettino seems like a nice fella. Wish we could throw Iakovenko on and give them a fighting chance.
So now that I have filled you in on a little TRUTH, I have to say: I'm definitely relaxed ahead of these Europa League games. I even more definitely WON'T be sweatily watching the games covered in all of my Fiorentina gear, anxious out of my mind, desperately hoping that Montella gets it right against a tough opponent on the road, and that we have something to play for in the home leg. Again, that's NOT what I'll be doing. I'll be chill. Just watching, maybe with a light refreshment. Maybe in Jamaica. Who knows!
Please use the blank space below to remind me of other reasons that Tottenham Hotspur are a dumpster fire of a professional sports team. And please, no jokes.