Defining moment - Dean Marney
06 September 2017|Tottenham Hotspur
In a new, occasional series, we’ll feature a player’s defining moment in a Spurs shirt. Next up, Dean Marney's wonder show against Everton on New Year's Day, 2005 - the day a 20-year-old Academy graduate lit up the Lane.
No-one saw it coming.
November, 2004, and Academy product Dean Marney was quite possibly pondering 'what next' as a loan spell at Gillingham petered out. A midfielder, Dean found himself at right-back in a struggling team at Priestfield and three matches in, the manager who took him on loan departed. He was soon back at the Lane.
Fast-forward a month to New Year's Day, 2005, and he was in dream land.
Below: Dean celebrates his opening goal against Everton with Robbie Keane
Handed his first start at White Hart Lane by Martin Jol against Everton, Dean, still only 20, scored twice and set up two goals in a memorable 5-2 win, the pinnacle of a run of six wins in seven in the Premier League.
It was his defining moment in a Spurs shirt.
Dean's first was a brave finish from Robbie Keane's flick as he was about to be clattered by Richard Wright and his second even better, a run from deep followed by a 25-yard curler. It was a game of firsts as Pedro Mendes and Reto Ziegler scored their first and only Spurs goals (not counting Pedro's 'goal' at Old Trafford a few days later!) and after a run of one win in 10, the team looked to be going places again.
"It means everything to me," said Dean at the time. "Since the day I joined Spurs at nine-years-old it has been my dream, to make my first start at White Hart Lane. To get on the scoresheet as well is a real dream come true."
Ledley King certainly remembers Dean's magical day.
"He was outstanding that day, two wonderful goals," said the King of the Lane. "I was so pleased for Dean as here was a young lad from the Academy who came into the first team and had the ability to do that.
"I’m sure it’s still a highlight for him and it will be when his career has finished, scoring two goals like that on his first start at White Hatt Lane. He’s done well. He had a great attitude and that’s enabled him to continue his career at the top level all this time."
Indeed, Dean is still going strong at 33 and would be a key member of Burnley's engine room in the Premier League but for suffering the second cruciate knee ligament injury of his recent career at Arsenal in January.
Dean switched from Spurs to Hull in 2006 and then to Burnley in 2010. He won promotion from the Championship with the Clarets twice, in 2014 and 2016. During his first season back in the Premier League with Burnley, he unfortunately suffered a cruciate knee ligament injury in February, 2015, but came back to surpass the 200-game mark during 2015-16 back in the second tier. He featured regularly for Sean Dyche's side during the first half of last season prior to being sidelined in January.