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Spurs at the World Cup - Archibald and Ardiles, 1982

08 June 2014|Tottenham Hotspur

We continue our series featuring Spurs players to have appeared at the World Cup as the big kick-off to Brazil 2014 draws ever closer.

Today, two players to feature in Spain, 1982...

Steve Archibald - Spurs 1980-1984, 189 appearances, 77 goals

Steve Archibald was a striker in form and well worth his place in Scotland’s World Cup squad which travelled to Spain in 1982 hoping to progress beyond the first group stage.

Our Scottish international, who joined us ahead of the 1980-81 campaign, was joint top scorer in the First Division that season, then won back-to-back FA Cup winners’ medals and scored in our ultimately unsuccessful League Cup Final against Liverpool in 1982.

Scotland had qualified comfortably along with Northern Ireland and England, and Archibald had featured in six of their qualifying matches, albeit without scoring. Jock Stein’s side were paired in Group 6 alongside Brazil, the Soviet Union and New Zealand and were anxious to put the nightmare of Argentina 1978 - when they lost to Peru and drew with Iran - well and truly behind them.

The Scots faced minnows New Zealand first up in Malaga and made a great start, winning 5-2, with a team that included the likes of Kenny Dalglish, Graeme Souness, Alan Hansen and Danny McGrain. Archibald started on the bench but replaced future Spur Alan Brazil after 53 minutes with Scotland leading 3-0.

Within 10 minutes of his arrival the Kiwis has scored twice and were threatening to ruin Scotland’s party, but John Robertson added a fourth for the Scots before Archibald got in on the act. He carried his great form in front of goal in our colours on to the World Cup arena, netting with 10 minutes remaining to complete the rout.

Archibald’s cameo was enough to earn him a starting berth in Scotland’s glamour tie next, as they faced the mighty Brazil in Seville. The Scots had the temerity to open the scoring, much to the delight of the travelling Tartan Army, but Zico, Socrates, Falcao et al turned it round and won 4-1, with Archibald playing the full 90 minutes.

He repeated that in their final game against the Soviet Union, one which they needed to win to progress and once again they went ahead but it ended 2-2 and with it went the Scots’ and Archibald’s dreams of progressing, finishing third in their group on goal difference to the Soviets.


Ossie Ardiles - Spurs 1978-1988, 311 appearances, 25 goals

Ossie was still getting used to the tag of ‘World Cup winner’ when he joined us in July, 1978, from Argentine side Huracan.

Just weeks before putting pen to paper with us, in what was one of the most sensational transfers in our history when he signed along with Ricky Villa, Ardiles was playing a key role in Argentina’s successful World Cup campaign on home soil.

He featured six times for the hosts as they scooped their first ever global triumph, playing in the final against the Netherlands. So when the 1982 tournament came around, Ardiles was four years into life at Spurs and he and Villa had made a massive impression on the club, our fans and the English game in general.

Ardiles’ final game for Spurs in the 1981-82 season was the FA Cup semi-final against Leicester City, for he then returned home to help Argentina’s preparations for their defence of the World Cup.

He was still expected to come back to Spurs for the FA Cup Final, but the Falklands conflict put an end to chances of him being released and instead he stayed in Argentina.

As for the ’82 World Cup, Argentina were among the favourites to do well again and with a young Diego Maradona being introduced on the world stage, they fancied their chances.

Ardiles started their first game, unusually wearing the No1 shirt since the Argentinian FA handed out squad numbers in alphabetically order, but it wasn’t a good start as they surprisingly lost 1-0 to Belgium.

However they overcame Hungary 4-1 in their next group match, with Ardiles on target for the one and only World Cup Finals goal of his career, and then beat El Salvador 2-0 to reach the second round group stage.

That’s where the tournament hotted up, with Argentina paired with Italy and Brazil in the ultimate ‘Group of Death’. It proved too much for Ardiles and his team-mates, as they lost both games, 2-1 to Italy and 3-1 to arch-rivals Brazil, in which Maradona was sent off, and were sent tumbling out of the competition, a far cry from the glorious scenes in Buenos Aires four years earlier.