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Battle of the giants

Posted on 23 August 2002  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

Anthony Gardner insists you'd be foolish to just see Aston Villa striker Peter Crouch as a one-dimensional threat.

The ex-Spur will come up against his former club when he leads the line for the Midlanders in our first home Premiership outing on Saturday.

Crouch, now 21, is renowned for his slight, beanpole frame but Anthony, who knows him well from his days at Spurs, says there is plenty more to his game than that.

Anthony, who at 6ft 5ins has more of an advantage than most defenders to cope with Crouch's 6ft 7ins frame, is looking forward to coming up against his former team-mate and friend.

"It will be a good battle," said Anthony. "I know Crouchy personally from when he was here. We socialised a bit together outside the football. I know what he's all about, he knows me, so it will be intersting.

"He's much more than just a target man. You'd be a fool to think of him as just that. He's good great feet, ability in the air and a lot of strength.

"He will be dangerous and with Vassell as well, a dangerous pair. We'll have to be on our toes and try and dominate them."

Crouch left us in July 2000 and after scoring 12 goals in 47 games, moved to Portsmouth.

He struck fine form at Fratton Park where his 18 goals in 37 league games prompted a £5m move by Aston Villa in March.

"Peter's done very well," added Anthony. "He went to QPR and Portsmouth, scored goals and justified the fee that he went to Villa for.

"He will score goals. People may say he's unorthodox but he can cause defenders a lot of problems.

"You don't get the sort of threat he provides that much any more. Strikers tend to be more baulky rather than tall, he's a bit different.

"When you are playing week in, week out against strikers who are nippy or quick, it's a shock to play against Crouchy."

Anthony starred in our opener at Everton last weekend and he admits he was surprised to make our first starting line-up of the campaign.

"I was quite pleasded to get the nod for the first game," he reflected. "I wasn't expecting it to be honest after being injured, then ill and not playing many pre-season games.

"I though to myself it was an opportunity to play and I might have not been expecting to start but I'd do my best.

"It was pleasing. But there is still a long way to go to for me to establish myself as one of the club's main centre-halves."