Despite his infrequent appearances this season, we decided to ignore our vow of a fortnight ago and offer Ledley King a stay of execution in the Londonist United side. Seemingly fighting fit, in a must-win game against lowly Stoke, surely King would get a game?
Would he 'eck. Juande Ramos made the bewildering decision to leave his finest defender on the bench, perhaps assuming that Stoke's diminished front line wouldn't master the moves to muscle through his makeshift back four. They didn't need to: a 25-minute red-mist moment by Gareth Bale earned him a straight red card, Stoke duly dispatched the resulting penalty, and the feeling that, once again, this just wasn't going to be Tottenham's day settled in. Despite a subsequent rally, including an equaliser by Darren Bent (sadly kicking his heels on the Londonist United bench at the time), Spurs' worst start to a football league season in the club's history was confirmed when throw-in specialist Rory Delap decided to actually put his feet to good use and score mid-way through the second half.
Not that the rest of our London born 'n bred side fared any better. A dour day again for West Ham, perhaps rumbled by the news last week of their financial woes thanks to the Iceland thaw, limply yielded to Hull. The Premier League newcomers have made a habit out of humbling London sides - they've also beaten Tottenham and Arsenal (in the capital no less) alongside Fulham this year. Indeed, King aside, our defenders were the only bright spot of the weekend - Sol Campbell, Rio Ferdinand and John Terry all recorded shut-outs for their sides, while the latter's Chelsea side routed Middlesbrough, allowing Frank Lampard to score and add to his impressive haul for the year.