sport news Tottenham Supporters' Trust say THIRTEEN questions need urgent answers... ...

sport news Tottenham Supporters' Trust say THIRTEEN questions need urgent answers... ...
sport news Tottenham Supporters' Trust say THIRTEEN questions need urgent answers... ...

Daniel Levy and the board's refusal to meet with the Tottenham Supporters' Trust has left fans exasperated. 

Fans are looking for answers on a number of key issues ranging from the footballing DNA to the use of revenue generated from non-football activities. 

As the mouthpiece for supporters the THST has become a leading fan-group in trying to deliver change and this week they produced an open letter which put 13 questions forward, for which they want answers. 

They insist fans deserve answers from Levy and the board following a survey earlier this year among its 8,500 members which found that 76 per cent or more fans in the categories of UK-based fan, overseas fan, season ticket holder or club member said they had little or no confidence in ownership.

Accusatory questions of Levy and the board focusing more on profit and revenue than trophies - of which there has been one in 20 years - has whipped up an emotional storm which has seen some fans protest with placards before recent matches.

Sportsmail dissects the 13 questions, assesses if the criticism directed at the club is fair and looks to provide the answers to the burning issues for fans. 

There have been protests from some Spurs fans calling for Daniel Levy and the owners to go

There have been protests from some Spurs fans calling for Daniel Levy and the owners to go

1. There is a widespread feeling of a lack of direction at the Club: What is your vision for THFC? What are your objectives and how are you measuring progress against those objectives? Where do you want the Club to be in five years' time, on and off the pitch?

The word disillusionment crops up on many occasions during conversation with Tottenham fans.

Life after Mauricio Pochettino has been seriously rocky and the THST are seeking credible answers to what the plan is moving forward. 

When Joe Lewis, Daniel Levy and ENIC took over in 2001 the club finished that season 12th in the Premier League.

Since Mauricio Pochettino (right) left the club the direction of the team has been questioned

Since Mauricio Pochettino (right) left the club the direction of the team has been questioned

Jose Mourinho was tasked with ending their trophy drought but he was unable to do so

Nuno Espirito Santo was not first choice but he will still be expected to compete for silverware

Jose Mourinho (left) failed to bring success and now the onus is on Nuno Espirito Santo (right)

Since then they have elevated into a European club, reached a Champions League final and been able to sign high-level internationals in the transfer market. 

While it is difficult to ascertain Levy's exact 'vision' - the obvious answer is to win and be profitable in the process - an immediate return to the Champions League is no doubt central to it. 

Having delivered one of the best modern stadiums across Europe attention and scrutiny has now be shifted back to the pitch and failure to enjoy success under Nuno Espirito Santo will raise even more furious questions about the club's direction.

From a football side of things it has been heading south for quite some time... 

FOOTBALL PROGRESS

2018-2019 - Reached UCL final, finished 4th, Carabao Cup semis, FA Cup fourth round - 67 league goals scored

2019-2020 - Last-16 of UCL, finished 6th, Carabao Cup third round, FA Cup fifth round - 61 league goals scored

2020-2021 - Last-16 of Europa League, finished 7th, Carabao Cup final, FA Cup fifth round - 68 league goals scored 

2021-2022 - In Europa Conference League, currently 8th after seven games, in last-16 of the Carabao Cup, FA Cup yet to start for PL teams - six league goals scored

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​2. Does the Board think we've gone forward or backwards in a footballing context over the last two years?

When the board reconvened at the end of the 2018-19 season they were left to reflect on a Champions League final appearance, a fourth-placed finish in the Premier League, a run to the semi finals of the Carabao Cup and a more disappointing fourth-round exit in the FA Cup - losing 2-0 to Crystal Palace. 

They were within touching distance of Europe's biggest prize under Pochettino, were still in the top four and looked to be a contender - rather than pretender - to the big trophies.

What has followed has been an alarming slide that has got the club to here, with fans creating protest placards to use prior to home matches.

A year after their Champions League final defeat to Liverpool they were knocked out in the last-16, slumped out of the top four in the league and down to sixth, never made it past the fourth round of the Carabao Cup and had a mildly improved round five performance in the FA Cup.

Dropping to the Europa League for 2020-21 was one thing but league results faltered too, this time finishing a lowly seventh. That Champions League final in Madrid was beginning to feel a lifetime ago.

Only a Carabao Cup final provided them with a trophy shot since the 2019 Champions League

Only a Carabao Cup final provided them with a trophy shot since the 2019 Champions League

A trip to the Carabao Cup final under Jose Mourinho - who was sacked in the week of the game - ended in disarray as Manchester City totally dominated at Wembley. Spurs' hope of adding a second trophy in 20 years vanished. 

And now fans are here, back inside the stadium following the pandemic, and they are far from impressed to see a side that was not too long ago dining at Europe's top table now slug it out in the Europa Conference League.

It is early days domestically and while Nuno won Manager of the Month following an unbeaten start, the wheels have, while not come off, come loose and a 3-1 defeat to Arsenal in the North London derby has done little to quell the discontent. 

Currently eighth after seven games - with just six goals scored - the board will have a hard time in arguing against on the pitch regression.   

3. Can you expand on Daniel Levy's comment on restoring the DNA of the Club, and provide examples of how that is being achieved?

DNA has become something of a popular buzzword across football in recent years and supporters at every club have an innate belief about what it means to each of them. 

Bill Nicholson, Tottenham's greatest ever manager, is the man many supporters look to when DNA, and subsequently style of play, gets discussed. 

'It's no use just winning, we've got to win well,' he famously said.

The term DNA has come into sharp focus at Tottenham after it was carefully used by Levy in a rare address to fans at the end of last season

Levy admitted the club 'lost sight of some key priorities and what's truly in our DNA' in the end-of-season letter.  

A lot of focus has been on the DNA of the team and the desire for quick, attacking football

A lot of focus has been on the DNA of the team and the desire for quick, attacking football

He went on in the letter to promise to appoint a new manager 'committed to attacking football and blooding young players' following fierce criticism on both points under the Mourinho reign. 

'We are acutely aware of the need to select someone whose values reflect those of our great Club and return to playing football with the style for which we are known – free-flowing, attacking and entertaining - whilst continuing to embrace our desire to see young players flourish from our Academy alongside experienced talent,' he wrote. 

And yet what transpired, in the eyes of some supporters, felt like a direct contradiction of what seemed a promise. 

In came Nuno, albeit it was widely reported he was not the club's first choice, and he has brought with him the pragmatism that made Wolves hard to beat, if not hard for neutrals to watch. 

Rarely are his sides free-flowing and expansive and that shows in just the six league goals from seven matches so far.

Of his first 12 competitive games in charge only twice have they netted more than two goals in a game - both of those came in the Europa Conference League.

Fans are keen to see young stars trusted to make a mark and bring success with them playing

Fans are keen to see young stars trusted to make a mark and bring success with them playing

Spurs' 1961 double-winning captain Danny Blanchflower seemed to say it best in deriving what exactly the game is about in north London.

'The great fallacy is that the game is first and last about winning. It's nothing of the kind,' he once said. 

'The game is about glory. It is about doing things in style, with a flourish, about going out and beating the other lot, not waiting for them to die of boredom.' 

What Nuno can be credited for is his use of young players with Japhet Tanganga and Oliver Skipp both being trusted with prominent roles thus far. 

New signings - such as Bryan Gil and Emerson Royal - have shown an emphasis on having a young future core and it can be argued that both of those exciting, creative arrivals are clear examples of a pathway, albeit a long one, to delivering both attractive football with young players once more.  

4. You have said your focus has always been on achieving success on the pitch. Do you think that one trophy in 20 years is an acceptable outcome?  

There will be no person among Tottenham's support or operating in the boardroom that will answer this as - yes, it's acceptable. 

It quite clearly is not but pinning the blame solely on the chairman alone would not stack up.

Since joining the Premier league in 1992, Tottenham have only won two trophies - the League Cup in 1999 and 2008 - one of which has come in the era of ENIC.

The legitimate gripe supporters have is that since the defeat in the Champions League final, Tottenham, aside from a convincing Carabao Cup final defeat to Man City, look further and further away from silverware. 

One trophy across the last 20 years is clearly unacceptable to everyone associated with Spurs

One trophy across the last 20 years is clearly unacceptable to everyone associated with Spurs

As the key decision-maker that ultimately lands at Levy's door with questionable appointments and transfer business being thrown back in his direction.

One direct comparison is Arsenal who have won 15 trophies since Levy and Lewis took control of Spurs. Liverpool have won 12, Chelsea have won a massive 20 titles in that same time period. 

If Tottenham have positioned themselves as one of the clubs in contention for the doomed European Super League, they sure don't have the silverware to keep pace with their breakaway allies.  

5. Are you aware that there is a widely-held perception that football is not the priority at THFC? What would you say to Spurs supporters who feel that way?

One of the biggest driving forces in the criticism and abuse aimed at Levy personally is that he doesn't care all that much about what transpires on the pitch. 

This is simply not true and no doubt Spurs fans would concede that if pushed.

'We are absolutely clear that central to our ambitions is a successful football team – it is what we all crave,' Levy wrote in that end of season letter. 

'We have come close over the last seven seasons and everyone's focus is on a return to regular Champions League participation and competing for honours. 

'I have said it many times and I will say it again – everything we do is in the long-term interests of the Club. I have always been and will continue to be ambitious for our Club and its fans.' 

Those comments did little to placate those who have called for his resignation but it is difficult to argue that Tottenham's rise in stature and with it expectation on the pitch does not owe credit to Levy and the board. 

Fans have grown tired of Levy and the ENIC regime and some have started to furiously protest

Fans have grown tired of Levy and the ENIC regime and some have started to furiously protest

It is a remarkable transformation to become a permanent fixture of a 'Big Six' but with progress comes increased demand and with increased demand comes increased pressure.  

Mourinho, a surprising ally for Levy, actually came to the defence of his then-boss on the issue of trophies and responsibility.   

In March 2021 Mourinho said: 'I don't think it's fair to judge just on the trophies but the trophies are the salt and pepper or football and I would love – not just for him but for the players and the fans and for every one – to help that to happen.

'I don't think sometimes it's fair for an owner, CEO, administrator, a president of a club to be judged on trophies because trophies many, many times depend on others, too.'

Levy has always been viewed as a man who has focused more on the business side of the game but going all-out for Mourinho felt like a ruthless decision to end the trophy drought - only it backfired. 

As a lifelong Tottenham fan, to accuse the man of not caring one iota about the team's fortunes simply isn't true. 

6. It would reassure supporters if you could provide a clear explanation of where profits earned from non-football events at the stadium go?

The £1.2billion stadium project was always about more than creating a leading football stadium.

Levy threw absolutely everything - money and emotion wise - into the stadium project and what has transpired is they have a home that is a leading contender for a host of major sporting and non-sporting events.  

He managed to convince NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to agree to a 10-year NFL deal to play at Tottenham where they visiting franchises pay a hosting fee. 

Gate receipts for those games - the recent match between the Atlanta Falcons and the New York Giants drew a crowd of 60,589 - go to the NFL teams but Spurs are left to collect all food and drink income, as well as merchandise sales to make it an incredible attractive arm to the business. 

The chairman (left) has been a key force in bringing major events like NFL to the new stadium

The chairman (left) has been a key force in bringing major events like NFL to the new stadium

The NFL has a 10-year deal with Tottenham but now fans want to see where revenue goes

The NFL has a 10-year deal with Tottenham but now fans want to see where revenue goes

'American football is going from strength to strength in London and it was fantastic to see the NFL return to the capital on the weekend,' Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said this week.

On Tottenham's website they say through hosting NFL matches and other major events they are contributing to an estimated investment of almost £300m in the local economy each year.

Goodell was originally skeptical to the idea of matches at Tottenham but Levy was persistent and it paid off. 

In 2019 Goodell said: 'I walk

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