Wednesday 23 August 2017 / 02:16 PM

SPURS ON THE CUSP OF GREATNESS

Despite their stellar form over the last few weeks, and the fact that they comprehensively beat the league leaders only two weeks ago, Tottenham Hotspur could have been forgiven for being nervous about West Brom’s Saturday lunchtime visit to White Hart Lane.

After all, it was against West Bromwich that Spurs title chances were effectively ended last season, as Mauricio Pochettino’s men failed to escape from that game with the necessary three points to keep their challenge alive.

It wasn’t a surprise. It’s just what Tony Pulis’ teams do.

Eleven men behind the ball, a big man up front and lumped long balls.

No risks, no fancy stuff, just good old-fashioned football.

The fear for Tottenham fans this weekend was more of the same.

Pulis is an expert in building teams that are difficult to break down, and it seemed very likely that he and his side would be in North London to play for a point.

Which they tried to do.

But what marked this occasion out as entirely different from last season’s is that Tottenham just had more.

The 4-0 rout catapulted Spurs up to second on the ladder.

In hat-trick hero Harry Kane they have the form striker in the division, possibly in Europe.

In Dele Alli, one of the most precocious talents in world football and an outrageously good No.10.

Toby Alderweireld? Incredible centre back.

Danny Rose and Kyle Walker? World class wingbacks.

The best keeper in the league in Hugo Lloris.

All of those players are a year older, wiser and smarter.

In the space of just a few months, Tottenham have transformed from ‘also rans’ to ‘there’, and I would be very surprised if (if all elements remain the same) they don’t win the league in the next two or three years – which would be the club’s first since the 1960-61 season.

This season may be beyond them – the gap to Chelsea is still seven points – but if Spurs chairman Daniel Levy can continue to secure the services of Pochettino, his players will surely stay to fight for another campaign. And who’d bet against them next season?

What makes it even more likely that Spurs will be champions in the next couple of seasons is the age of the squad.

At 30 years old, Hugo Lloris is the one of the elder statesmen in the team, and given the fact that goalkeepers usually play until at least 40, he’s going to be at the top of his game for the next five years at least.

Below him, Vertonghen and Alderweireld are 29 and 27 respectively – plenty of years left in the tank.

Elsewhere, Danny Rose and Kyle Walker are still only 26, whilst Eriksen, Sissoko, Lamela and Son are 24, Eric Dier 23, Wanyama 25, Alli 20 and Kane 23.

This is a squad that is already one of the best in the league, and what’s scary is that there’s so much room for growth.

If Levy can keep this group together, then there’s every chance we’re about to witness one of the most successful periods ever for Tottenham Hotspur. Arsenal fans, get ready…

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Seb Greenwood

CBS’s longest-serving contributor, Englishman Seb is our leading football correspondent, pulling no punches with his opinions on the Premier League and the international scene.

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