COMMENT By Alex Taylor
Tottenham have often been a team that has struggled with the idea of expectation.
The north London outfit has seemingly developed an unwanted trend for producing success when perhaps the spot-light is shining brightest away from White Hart Lane.
In recent years this has proved especially true, many Spurs fans will still be asking just how a side starring Luka Modric, Gareth Bale, Rafael van der Vaart and Jermaine Defoe failed to secure Champions League qualification in 2012.
Then it was Champions League qualification, last season it was the Premier League title. Before it was Bale and Modric, last term it was Kane and Dele Alli.
The stakes were raised, but the outcome was ultimately the same. Tottenham failed when it mattered.
It seemed for all the world that it would be Leicester who were to fall away in last seasons title race and that Mauricio Pochettino’s side would hold their nerve.
Yet as soon as things reached the wire, when Tottenham had to perform, they didn’t.
The team threw away a two goal lead against Chelsea, and could only watch on in horror as a misfiring Eden Hazard curled home a goal-of the-season contender to seal Leicester as the champions of England.
Then, just a matter of weeks later, the pressure was on again. This time against relegated Newcastle. To finish above their age old rivals Arsenal, just a point was needed.
The result? A staggering 5-1 victory for the Tynesiders finished their disappointing season in style and Tottenham’s stylish season in disappointment.
Indeed though, that was then and this is now a new season, but a new season may prove to bring the same old challenges.
The problem that awaits Tottenham is not really how well Vincent Janssen will slot in alongside Kane, or whether Dele Alli will face the dreaded second season syndrome, but how they will handle the expectation of being a favourite for the title.
If their recent history is anything to go by, they will falter. It is hard to see any outcome other than Spurs finishing outside the top four. When the going gets tough, they get going.
In other Tottenham team news, Paul Mitchell grew disillusioned with Spurs after missing out on Michy Batshuayi to Chelsea.