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Countdown to SA

Posted on 8 July 2003  - 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).

South African football left a huge impression on Perry Sucking.

Our Academy goalkeeping coach spent four years in the country both playing and coaching before returning to England and onto his role at Spurs.

He says our tour to South Africa and matches against Orlando Pirates (July 26) and Kaizer Chiefs (July 29) will be a wonderful experience for all involved.

"I went out in 1996 and was out there for about four years," reflected Perry.

"We'll be playing against two of the biggest clubs in Africa in Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs. Both have fanatical support throughout South Africa and both have wonderful players, technically gifted and very sharp.

"One thing is for sure as well, both games will have carnival atmospheres, lots of chanting of traditional zulu songs and both will be full houses, without a doubt.

"The football is quick, a nice tempo. They build up slowly from the back but when they get into the attacking area of the field they explode into action.

"They are very good athletes, very fast and it will be a good experience for the lads.

"We'll be going over in South Africa's winter and there is no rain, so it will be dry, quite chilly in the evening but a both will be great occasions."

Perry actually had former Manchester United goalkeeper Gary Bailey to thank for his experience.

He took up the story. "I was fortunate because when I played for Manchester City, Gary Bailey was at Manchester United, so Gary and I became friends.

"When I retired Gary suggested that I went out to South Africa, so I went out there originally to play for a team called Wits University, playing against Orlando Pirates, Kaizer Chiefs, all the big sides.

"I left there and went to Super Sport, where I coached goalkeepers and acted as a back-up goalkeeper.

"I had a wonderful time out there and my kids loved it. It was good but I'm an English boy and I couldn't wait to get back to London and work for such a great club as Tottenham Hotspur."