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Short term pain for long term gain?

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It's hard to have a season-long view of rotation when the team plays in such a disjointed, insipid and uninspired manner.

Perhaps we'll be looking back to September/October as the month where we trod water while others burnt out, but the fact is, that was not the performance we were looking for.

Five points behind Marseille and three points behind Porto is not insurmountable, but we do need to pull our fingers out in what should have been a straight forward group.

From what I heard, the game was pretty dire. There was no imagination and no urgency - players were dropping too deep to get the ball and straying offside too much when the ball was, finally, played forward.

It was hard for the club's official commentator to get excited over and, in this blogger's opinion, it really showed how badly we're missing Alonso's vision.

Tottenham next - let's hope Rafa can get it sorted by Sunday.