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Stupid Spurs meltdown: Why can't Eriksen just switch off his phone?!

COMMENT: Stupid. Moronic. Self-destructive. Pick one out - after all, Hugo Lloris had to do that seven times on Tuesday. But take one word to describe Christian Eriksen's actions in the aftermath of the Bayern Munich humiliation...

Ahh, remember the old days? Way, waaay back? Way back to 2017, when Prem players en masse, having delivered a performance as Spurs fans endured this week, would later admit wanting to stay in doors. Ashamed to show their face around the local haunts. Fearful of seeing the disappointment written across the faces of their most loyal and supportive fans.

But today? Well today, at least if you're a Spurs player, you're straight onto your phone and your social media account. Not to offer an apology for the rank performance their fans have just witnessed. A humiliation. Something "historic", as Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Bayern's chief exec, described the 7-2 drubbing in London. Oh no, Eriksen was on his phone, on social media, reacting to some obscure, fantasist's gossip about his girlfriend and teammate Jan Vertonghen. Gossip which hadn't reached the press. Something that not only had just existed online - but in a tiny echo chamber. Though clearly an echo chamber Eriksen was aware of.

And that gets to the crux of all this. In Eriksen's world. In the player's bubble. This social media account making these claims, matters. But beyond the scores of people (and that's being generous) whom pay attention to this stuff, what matters is the last performance and the last result - in no particular order. That Eriksen, backed up by Vertonghen, should feel the need to address this garbage - and in the process bring it into the mainstream - is indeed stupid, moronic and self-destructive. Especially when the club is teetering as it is.

Why even pick up your phone after such a result? Why switch it on and let all the abuse wash over you? Why not, just as players did not so long ago, do the electronic version of keeping their head down and simply switch the bloody thing off?

Eriksen is a good pro and a good man. Those whom have been with this column long-term will be well aware of his attempts to move to a higher level. But he never made it obvious. He's never kicked up a fuss or downed tools. Indeed, as we've covered here, the first hint of ambitions elsewhere didn't come from him, but a former agent, Bayram Tutumlu - and that was over two years ago. But no matter the frustration, Eriksen has never let it influence his football.

But with this one, he's messed up. With Spurs being pulled apart like never before. From the chairman, to the manager and the players. To give oxygen to something that would've melted away in time was ridiculous. And delivering another negative angle to the storyline of this Spurs season is only half of it.

With Chris Waddle ranting about a needed clearout. With manager Mauricio Pochettino accusing his players of "giving up" - and captain Hugo Lloris later admitting as much. With the headlines ablaze with stories about the commitment at Spurs, the last thing the fans want to see on the backpages of the biggest dailies is the stuff Eriksen volunteered to get in the middle of.

At worst, for those who believe what they read on social media, all it's done is fuel the talk that the players are at eachother's throats. And for the others, Eriksen's response only affirms the doubts about their focus this season.

A week ago, Pochettino admitted the dressing room was fractured, stating: "Maybe performances are good but we need this mental connection, this energy to be all together, not to have different agendas in the squad. We need time again to build that togetherness."

And in response, this column was critical of the Spurs manager and his contribution to this disunity. However, it must now be said, what chance has Pochettino to turn things around when his senior players are allowing themselves to be manipulated like this?

The timing was stupid. The reaction moronic. And the result self-destructive. Next time - and for the sake of Spurs fans you hope there isn't a next time - just switch the bloody thing off.

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Chris Beattie
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Chris Beattie

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