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Programme: Glenn Hoddle

Posted on 3 December 2001  - 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).

<P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>GLENN HODDLE</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>The result of our last game here against Arsenal almost felt like a win because we scored the goal so late in the match. But I have to say over 90 minutes I thought we were the better side, we created more and passed the ball well and could have gone in 2-0 up at half-time.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>It was disappointing we weren&rsquo&#59;t leading at that stage and even more so to go out and then see Arsenal take the lead. They had a spell of pressure, but it wasn&rsquo&#59;t sustained and they didn&rsquo&#59;t create much, just a few long shots although one led to their goal. But I was pleased with the way we responded, we were very positive, kept going right to the end and showed great character and belief in ourselves to come back. Okay, so it was a mistake at the end by Richard Wright but it was forced on him by our pressure.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>They did that to Spurs last year but that was a game Arsenal deserved to win, whereas we deserved to win this season. I&rsquo&#59;ve been pleased with the way we&rsquo&#59;ve played against the top five teams so far and it shows that we are definitely bridging the gap. In the second round of matches against these sides this season, we have got to make sure we get results.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>I was delighted with a point and it was a smashing goal by Gus. It came from a great ball from Sergei when a lot of pressure was on his shoulders and all credit to him, he&rsquo&#59;s come on and affected the game which is exactly what we wanted.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>That result kept the week ticking along and the lads came into training with a spring in their step. If we had lost that game it would have been a bit of a blow and maybe we wouldn&rsquo&#59;t have carried on that positive momentum going into the West Ham game.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>But we went across to Upton Park for another London derby, a game which has always been difficult for Tottenham. I can&rsquo&#59;t remember going over there very often and winning during my playing career, probably two or three times in all the years I was here.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>So it was great to go and win the game in third gear. We scored one, hit the post twice and also the crossbar so it could have been a much more comfortable victory but I never felt as if we got into top gear and that&rsquo&#59;s a great sign.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>We not only won but did so without them really creating a chance. That&rsquo&#59;s what&rsquo&#59;s really pleased me, two London derbies &mdash&#59; Arsenal at home and West Ham away &mdash&#59; and yet neither side have really created one chance where they&rsquo&#59;ve carved us open inside our penalty area. We&rsquo&#59;ve nullified that by defending really well as a team.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>I said to the players at the start of the season that what we achieve will depend on how we defend as a team not what we do with the ball. I&rsquo&#59;m confident and happy with the shape we are playing when in possession and the players we have who can score and create goals. But it&rsquo&#59;s not about the goalkeeper, back three, back five or whatever but about defending from front to back and I&rsquo&#59;m delighted with how well we&rsquo&#59;re doing that.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>It has perhaps stemmed from the second half here against Manchester United, which was such a massive blow at the time, but out of something negative we have drawn positives. We went to Tranmere and won which started a good run of form, but we now have to keep that going for the next batch of games.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>That starts tonight against Bolton, who have been excellent this year. Sam Allardyce and his staff have done a fantastic job there. He&rsquo&#59;s bought shrewdly in the transfer market and they&rsquo&#59;ve been the surprise package, just like Ipswich were last year. They&rsquo&#59;ve had some wonderful results and are excelling themselves, they are picking up wins when nobody expects them to, they&rsquo&#59;re well organised and solid as a team.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Tonight is going to be a very difficult game, we will need to work extremely hard to get the points. We will have to be a little bit patient and so will you all, similar to the way you<SPAN style="mso-spacerun: yes">&nbsp&#59; </SPAN>were against Derby and Middlesbrough here, when you got behind the team and we managed to overcome both opponents.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Congratulations to Ledley King who is the Evening Standard player of the month for November and deservedly so, he&rsquo&#59;s been very consistent throughout this season and let&rsquo&#59;s hope he can keep up his level of performance.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Ledley is a player who we value greatly here, we have high hopes for him and I can assure fans that there is absolutely no truth in the stories circulating last week about him moving to another club. We are trying to build for the future and that doesn&rsquo&#59;t involve selling our best players.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Good news on the long-term injury victims with Steffen Iversen, Stephen Clemence and Tim Sherwood all having had reserve games recently. They are finding their feet and getting the rustiness out of their systems. We&rsquo&#59;ve got a lot of games during this month so we are going to need a very strong squad to cope with the demand.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>We welcome Dave Beasant to the club, who was on the bench against Arsenal, a great way to start off his Tottenham career. The reason we had to go and get Dave was because Kasey Keller had an operation on his ankle and a very successful one at that. In fact, Kasey is back and running already, but he&rsquo&#59;s still a way off being fully fit so we had to get cover. Dave was available and we wish him well, he has a great attitude to the game.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>It was great to meet up this week with Ricky Villa again, who popped his head in to the training ground. I haven&rsquo&#59;t seen Ricky since our days together playing and he was at Spurs Lodge with Keith Burkinshaw. We had a laugh and reminisced and it was wonderful to see them. I think Ricky is coming to the game tonight so let&rsquo&#59;s hope we can put on a good performance for him.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>&nbsp&#59;<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p></FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>&nbsp&#59;<o:p></o:p></FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>TEDDY SHERINGHAM</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Tonight we look to continue our recent good form in the Premiership following two tough London derbies.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>The Arsenal game was a very good marker for us to see how far we&rsquo&#59;ve come on this year. It was also a good time to play them as they were without Seaman, Adams and Henry, probably their three most influential players, and at a time when we&rsquo&#59;ve been having some good results.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>It was a good indicator for us because we all know that over the last four or five years Arsenal have stretched away from Tottenham. But with our own confidence at a high it was the right time to test ourselves.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>I thought we played quite well in the first half, we got right at them, had a lot of possession without creating too many chances and applied a lot of pressure in their half which was encouraging. But there was a stage where they were comfortable in the second half just before they scored.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Another pleasing aspect of our performance was the way we fought back in the last 10 minutes once we did go 1-0 down. Arsenal had been controlling the game for 15 minutes before that, so it was good to see the way we really came back into it and gave it a big push. It&rsquo&#59;s a great sign that we can do that against teams like Arsenal after going behind.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>On the whole, the result was about right even though ours was a slightly fortunate goal towards the end. We deserved to come out with a 1-1 draw, but it just shows how good we&rsquo&#59;ve got to get. We&rsquo&#59;re improving all the time but we need to be even better than that if we want to be challenging for honours. We&rsquo&#59;re on the right path though.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Once that game was out of the way we had to concentrate on West Ham which was always going to be another difficult match. However, we knew it was a game that, if we want to be challenging, we needed to go and get a result which these days means all three points.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>A special mention must go to Chris Perry, Ledley King, and Dean Richards, they were outstanding on the day. They didn&rsquo&#59;t give West Ham a sniff and they deserve all the credit for that. </FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>I thought we played some good football and could have scored a couple more goals which would have made it a more clear-cut result, but having said that the win keeps us bobbing along nicely without anyone noticing. We picked up the three points and that&rsquo&#59;s all that matters and we&rsquo&#59;re up into seventh, a nice position to make a push.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Everybody&rsquo&#59;s losing points to everyone else this year and its going to be a lot tighter at the top of the table. We&rsquo&#59;ve got to produce these results on a consistent level, that&rsquo&#59;s what gets you into contention at the end of the season.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>It&rsquo&#59;s great to see players coming back from long injury lay-offs &mdash&#59; Steffen Iversen, Tim Sherwood, Stephen Clemence and Goran Bunjevcevic have all returned to action recently.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>That just shows the strength in depth we&rsquo&#59;ve got when we&rsquo&#59;re waiting on players of their ability to come back into the first team reckoning, along with the likes of Stephen Carr, Gary Doherty and Chris Armstrong who are on the way back.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Chris has had a terrible time with injuries over the last couple of years. I certainly enjoyed playing up front with him in my first spell with Tottenham and I look forward to seeing him playing well in a Tottenham shirt again very soon.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Enjoy the game.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>&nbsp&#59;<o:p></o:p></FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>&nbsp&#59;<o:p></o:p></FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>DAVID PLEAT</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>This evening&rsquo&#59;s game is our fourth live Sky TV game of the season &mdash&#59; so far we have done ourselves justice in front of the TV cameras. We worked hard to get a draw with nine men at Everton, won in fine fashion at Sunderland and completed a comfortable victory over Derby County at White Hart Lane. Hopefully we can keep the run going this evening to build on our recent revival after the shock of Manchester United&rsquo&#59;s second half performance.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>The league is wide open as can be seen by last week&rsquo&#59;s results. Whilst teams who have earned the right to compete in the Champions&rsquo&#59; League are maintaining their progress in the second phase, I&rsquo&#59;m sure there will be other contenders this season for the league championship.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Our form is sound, we are passing the ball well and credit must go to Glenn Hoddle and his coaching staff for bringing some smooth continuity passing into our play. </FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Fortunately, the suggested threat of a strike never materialised and Tottenham, all through the dispute, kept a low profile. From a personal point of view I was very disappointed with some of the political manoeuvres and the egos being massaged in the public domain. It is to be hoped that football hasn&rsquo&#59;t lost too many doubters in the last few days of the shambolic negotiations. The PFA have stated their case but they should be more than aware that never has the gulf been wider and they have to decide whether they genuinely want to protect their members lower down or are only paying lip service and looking after the new elite big earners.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Evidently, the chairmen of some of the teams who are being squeezed out of the Premiership have been manoeuvring for a change. Supporters can rest assured there will be no changes in the immediate future but it has bought sharply into focus the way the game is structured.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Meanwhile, we must continue to concentrate on producing good young players for our senior team. I was heartened at the end of a busy week by watching our Academy Under-19s at Arsenal last Saturday when we gained a creditable 0-0 draw, whilst the Under-17s were beating our neighbours 2-1. Both teams are challenging for the leadership of their groups which is proof that the Academy staff here are on the right lines and I&rsquo&#59;m sure amongst their number are further boys who have the incentive of seeing Ledley King progress so rapidly to senior status. It can be achieved with total dedication and personal ability.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>During the last two weeks we have been urgently discussing some temporary rearrangements for our Sunday morning Academy teams. Each Sunday morning, we have eight games, four of which are at home and the pitches at the training ground in Chigwell have not been adequate to take the tremendous toll of midweek training and weekend games.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>We have also been playing games at the Walker ground at Southgate. We now expect to be using the Middleton House grounds off the A10 at Enfield. Our Sunday games will be played there and we may also be switching our Saturday morning Academy games there whilst we do some improvements to the pitch surfaces at Chigwell.<SPAN style="mso-spacerun: yes">&nbsp&#59; </SPAN></FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Ossie Ardiles has just left his managerial appointment with Al Ittihad in Saudi Arabia, whilst Ricky Villa was a guest here last Wednesday, being interviewed for a documentary….Keith Burkinshaw is now scouting for Stoke and was at our Reserve game last Monday….Ray Clemence was also watching son Stephen play his first competitive game after injury….Ian Stonebridge and Ian Thurgood, two of our ex-apprentices, have regained their first team spots at Plymouth and Southend….Peter Crouch is leading the line well at Portsmouth….a benefit dinner for a northern hospice which looked after &rsquo&#59;87 Cup Final referee Neil Midgley, who has sadly died, raised &pound&#59;1,900 on a Spurs shirt.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Finally, we congratulate Sam Allardyce and his Bolton players on such a splendid start to the season. They have massively defied the odds and deserve tremendous credit.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>One of their most loyal supporters Kenneth Wolstenholme, the commentator, is a regular visitor to our club where he has done some work in our hospitality suites. Ken always has a smile on his face and I&rsquo&#59;m sure he will be one of many people who will be delighted by Bolton&rsquo&#59;s appearance here this evening as a Premiership club.</FONT><P class=MsoNormal style="MARGIN: 0cm 0cm 0pt"><FONT face=Times>Enjoy the game and let us hope we can give the television cameras a true indication of the restoring of our confidence.</FONT><P>&nbsp&#59;