Darren Anderton started 2013 in exactly the same way he finished 2012 in the Spurs Legends team - on form and on target.
The former England midfielder scored either side of half-time on a bitterly cold afternoon at The Link in Harlow on Sunday to help the club’s veterans team secure a comfortable 4-0 win over a Parsloe Athletic Charity XI in their first game after their winter break.
It was no more than the ex-White Hart Lane favourites deserved after an energetic display in difficult conditions, although the hosts proved a tough nut to crack in the opening stages.
Legends goalkeeper Gareth Howells was forced into an early save, while at the other end, Justin Edinburgh teed up Anderton with an indirect free-kick inside the 18-yard box after a back-pass was picked up by the opposing custodian, only for Anderton’s shot to be charged down by a defender.
Anderton rattled the crossbar in the 20th minute after a clever one-two with Kevin Watson on the edge of the area, but the midfielder finally broke the deadlock 12 minutes later.
Watson’s low drive was turned around the post by the goalkeeper, and from Clive Wilson’s resulting corner, Stuart Nethercott rose above his marker to nod the ball towards the top corner.
His effort hit the underside of the bar and bounced close to the goalline, with Anderton helping it into the net from close range.
Four minutes after half-time it was 2-0 as Anderton found striker Micky Jarrett with a ball over the top of the defence, the front man slotting the ball under the goalkeeper and into the net.
Edinburgh went close with a speculative effort from long range on 55 minutes, before Anderton again hit the woodwork, his deft right-footed effort glancing off the outside of the upright.
Substitute Micky Southam latched onto Edinburgh’s cross to make it 3-0 on 82 minutes, but the hosts refused to lie down and after a goalline clearance by Wilson, keeper Howells parried the ball up and over the bar to keep his clean sheet intact.
Anderton rounded off the scoring five minutes from time with a well-placed shot that crept inside the goalkeeper’s right-hand post, capping off a fine afternoon’s work in style.
Spurs Legends: Gareth Howells, Paul Miller, Tony Galvin, John Lacy, Stuart Nethercott, Kevin Watson, Clive Wilson, Mark Stimson, Micky Jarrett, Darren Anderton, Justin Edinburgh. Sub: Micky Southam.
With thanks to Billy Shaw...
Photographs: Martin Taylor