5 – The original odd couple
In 1978 Argentina lifted the World Cup. Two of their stars then travelled to Spurs, where they won an FA Cup, a UEFA Cup and the affection of the White Hart Lane faithful, not to mention pioneering a foreign revolution in English football.
As we prepare to return to Wembley, Ossie Ardiles and Ricky Villa recall how they felt before the FA Cup Final in 1981…
How did you feel when you knew you were going to play at Wembley?
Ossie: “When we arrived in England, we could tell how important The FA Cup was to everybody. In fact, if you asked the players what they wanted to win, the First Division or The FA Cup, everyone would say that, yeah, the First Division is much more difficult to win, but they would all want to win The FA Cup at Wembley.”
Ricky: “I sometimes said to Ossie: ‘We are good players. We must play at Wembley at least one time when we are here.’ Thankfully, we did. I was not happy when the old Wembley was knocked down because there were so many memories connected with that place, especially for the English people. But now there is a new Wembley and a new history begins. I walked around the pitch for the opening of the new Wembley; Glenn [Hoddle] was with me and he was saying that when he was younger, he dreamed of playing in The FA Cup Final – and that most young people in England felt the same way.”
Ossie and Ricky are featured in conversation over six pages in the ‘Flair Football’ section of the Opus. With 300,000 words and 1,500 photographs, the Opus is the ultimate piece of Tottenham Hotspur memorabilia.
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