George on Merson
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).
Few people in football know Paul Merson as well as George Graham.<P class=MsoNormal>George helped develop a young Merson into one of the most talented forwards in English football during his nine-year managerial career at Highbury.<P class=MsoNormal>The pair shared trophy-laden years in that time but there were bad times as well &mdash; culminating in the day back in 1994 when a tearful Merson admitted his drink and gambling addictions.<P class=MsoNormal>Thankfully Merson&rsquo;s well-documented private life seems to be in order at the moment and he now faces his former manager as George takes us to Aston Villa in the Premiership on Saturday.<P class=MsoNormal>George said: &ldquo;Paul&rsquo;s handled his private life which is back on track again. If you get your personal life in some sort of order you go onto the pitch with a much happier, more positive frame of mind.<P class=MsoNormal>&ldquo;He&rsquo;s had his problems in the past and he&rsquo;s handled his problems, or solved some of them. Perhaps some of the problems are not 100 per cent solvable. He&rsquo;s worked hard at it and seems a lot more positive now than when I had him. I&rsquo;m pleased for him.&rdquo;<P class=MsoNormal>Merson&rsquo;s stability off the pitch is certainly reflected in his form on it. He claims to be playing the best football of his life &mdash; perhaps underlined by his magnificent 35-yard lob to beat Everton last week &mdash; and maybe tempted out of what many saw as a premature international retirement if the England call comes again.<P class=MsoNormal>George added: &ldquo;He is playing the role that suits him very much. It&rsquo;s almost like a free role in the middle of the park which means he can break forward without any discipline for getting back again.<P class=MsoNormal>&ldquo;Most midfield players when they get forward also have to get back quickly and do a stint in midfield defending as well.<P class=MsoNormal>&ldquo;Paul&rsquo;s very creative, great imagination, fantastic vision as he showed with his goal against Everton and that is typical Paul Merson. He can be very quiet for long periods and then produce a bit of magic to win the game for you.&rdquo;<P class=MsoNormal>To listen to George's thoughts, <A href="http://www.spurs.co.uk/news/ram/gg001111pm.ram">click here</A><I></I><P class=MsoNormal><I>By Paul Miles</I><P class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;<P class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;<P class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p><P class=MsoNormal>&nbsp;<o:p></o:p>