Champions League hangover or the lingering effects of a summer of uncertainty?
Whatever the cause, Tottenham remain a team in limbo, seemingly determined to take one step back for every stride forward.
In their opening European fixture at Olympiacos on Wednesday night Spurs contrived to secure a third 2-2 draw from as many away games this season, despite being two goals up and cruising within half an hour.
Last year’s beaten finalists looked to have woken from their slumber in Saturday’s 4-0 drubbing of Crystal Palace, but that – like their first game of the campaign against Aston Villa – has proven a false dawn.
They followed the victory over Villa with a 1-0 defeat to Newcastle in their next home fixture, after which they threw away a two-goal lead at Arsenal. The trip to Greece followed an identical pattern.
Despite a sluggish start Tottenham engineered a goal midway through the first half when Yassine Meriah brought down Harry Kane at the second attempt and the England striker planted his penalty high and central.
Lucas Moura, a hero of Spurs’ run in this competition last term, added a second moments later. Ben Davies won the ball just inside Olympiacos territory and the Brazilian rifled in a bobbling ball from 20 yards.
As at Arsenal, Mauricio Pochettino’s men let their opponents back into the game just before the break. The sprightly Daniel Podence cut in from the right, swapped passes with Mathieu Valbuena and fired low into the far corner.
And the collapse was complete on 54 minutes when Valbuena’s penalty sent Hugo Lloris the wrong way after he had been fouled by Jan Vertonghen.
Tottenham making life difficult for themselves in the Champions League is nothing new; they led for just 173 minutes of their 13-game run to the final last season.
With Bayern Munich up next, they are certainly doing so again – and continuing to squander momentum.
Main image credit: Getty