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Glenn Hoddle's programme notes v Bolton

Posted on 21 October 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).

Welcome to Sam Allardyce and to all from Bolton. Wanderers have been unlucky in some games this season and were only defeated by the odd goal by Liverpool and Arsenal.

The fact that they've also beaten Manchester United at Old Trafford illustrates not just their potential but the danger they represent in every game.

By co-incidence, when we went up to Blackburn for our last game, I was asked by the media if the fact that they had beaten us in the Worthington Cup Final would have any bearing on that game at Ewood Park. I said that it wouldn't and it definitely would not be a case of us seeking revenge.

But I did agree that such situations certainly added spice to the next encounter as you sought to redress the situation. So, with that in mind, we have to be on our guard that it doesn't happen to us this afternoon because we certainly had the upper hand in our meetings last season and Bolton's pride will give them added impetus.

In fact, as you know, we knocked Wanderers out of both Cups here with resounding 6-0 and 4-0 wins over them in the Worthington and FA Cups respectively. Les Ferdinand will certainly remember that first one as he scored a memorable hat-trick. But things were a lot closer between us in the Premiership with Les also on target in our 3-2 win here ahead of the 1-1 draw up there in April.

In any case, that's now all history so, although we'll take confidence from that record, we won't take anything for granted in the certain knowledge that we're in for a particularly hard game today. Bolton currently have a solid look about them with some high quality match-winners in their ranks and will offer a threat that will need to be met head on.

Although it has been good to have a bit of a rest during international week, it obviously hasn't been that relaxing for our players who have been away on duty and their late return has disrupted preparations for this game. It's difficult waiting and hoping that all your players return fit to resume domestic play but that's the same for every Premiership side and you try to learn to live with it.

Our last Premiership game here is certainly one to forget! We just weren't there against Middlesbrough and can have no excuses for such a poor performance in which we couldn't even do the simple things right. But maybe it was a timely kick up the backside as since Boro we've pulled ourselves together and collected a couple of pleasing wins.

Our Worthington Cup game here against Cardiff City was always a potential banana skin but we did a solid, professional job against a plucky and capable Division Two side who look certainties for promotion. They played some good football and although we only had a slender lead, we never really looked like losing.

We certainly matched them for effort and although a single goal lead means that you can never relax, it was just good to get back on the winning track.

We built on that result at Blackburn where it was good to see Robbie Keane get off the mark early on in what was a particularly good first-half performance. It's always good to get your first goal at a new club and now he'll certainly get a few more, don't doubt that!

True, we came under some pressure in the second half at Ewood and Jamie Redknapp won't be describing his winning goal as one of the best of his career! But you need a bit of luck in this game and, overall, I felt that we deserved to win.

It was certainly pleasing to hit the international break on the back of an away win and the gap in fixtures has allowed some of our injured legion to make a little bit more progress towards a full recovery. Stephen Carr, Gus Poyet and Stephen Clemence all played in our midweek Reserve match with West Ham while

Thursday's friendly with D.C. United at the Lane gave us further optimism in that direction.

We had an excellent turn out for that game and I want to thank you all for your wonderful support in what was an extremely worthy cause. It is important to remember your former players and be prepared to help them financially should they fall on hard times. The whole idea was initiated by our Chairman Daniel Levy and developed in conjunction with the Tottenham Hotspur Supporters' Trust who are represented on the independent panel of trustees set up to distribute the funds. As the first club to stage such a match, those involved in its organisation deserve commendation.

The Tottenham Tribute Match was an excellent occasion all round. But, unfortunately, due to a hamstring injury picked up before the Blackburn game, I was unable to play. Great also to see Jürgen Klinsmann, David Ginola, Paul Gascoigne, Chris Waddle, Clive and Paul Allen back in a Spurs strip and I hope that you all had as good a night as we all did.

Once again, get behind the lads today.