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Happy return for Christian

Posted on 16 September 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).

Christian Ziege reported no problems following his return to action for the reserves against West Ham United on Monday evening.

The German international took to the field at Stevenage for his first game since coming off in the first half against Wycombe in pre-season and has since undergone further surgery on the thigh injury initially suffered on Boxing Day.

The 31-year-old was his usual elegant self against the Hammers, easing up and down the left flank and oozing with quality while in possession of the ball. He revealed that a 45-minute stint was originally planned, but this was extended to 73 minutes when he decided there was more in the tank at the break.

Looking relaxed and pretty content afterwards, Christian pointed out that this is just a personal starting point and there is much more to come.

"Obviously if you are out for a long time certain thing have still to come," he pondered. "I'm just glad a played a little bit over 70 minutes and felt quite alright fitness-wise and the leg was alright.

"It has been a difficult time but I was back on the pitch and that is the main thing at the moment. I just wanted to play and I started thinking about playing in this on Thursday - even if I didn't really know how fit I am at the moment.

"I wanted to try and, at first, they said just to play until half-time. I felt quite alright then, so to get to 70 minutes is a good thing. Obviously, I still need more fitness work."

There was only one opportunity in the game for Christian to test out his famed left peg from a free-kick in an inviting central position just outside the area. John Jackson and Stephane Dalmat hovered, but there was only ever going to be one taker...

The outcome was more top of the stand than top corner and Christian was quick with his plea of mitigation.

"To be honest, last week I took some in a training session and put them right in the top corner. Today I think the leg wasn't there - I have to blame the leg!"