Ben Davies: "We're like a brotherhood, like a family"
Thu 16 May 2019, 16:48|Tottenham Hotspur
How has the team managed to come back from the brink so many times to reach the Champions League Final? Can we just put it down to team spirit, or is it more than that?
Five years at the Club and 168 appearances down the line, it was a question Ben Davies was happy to answer.
He's been there at key moments on this incredible run to Madrid.
Harry Kane kept us alive in the competition with a late header against PSV in matchday three. Who provided the cross? Ben. Lucas Moura delivered a moment fans will never, ever forget with his hat-trick goal to beat Ajax and send us to the final. Who won the ball to start that last-gasp move? Ben.
Every player has played his part - and, in as many words, that's Ben's answer.
Speaking after training at Hotspur Way on Thursday, the defender began our countdown to the final by looking back at run that looked over before it started back in October, but re-ignited after a wave of his left foot and Harry's header against PSV at approximately 9.45pm on 6 November at Wembley.
"This has been a special season," said Ben, who joined us from Swansea in the summer of 2014. "We’ve had our backs against the wall in a few games and really had to put bodies on the line but when questions have been asked, we've found answers.
"It felt like we were up against it after losing the first game so late at Inter (1-2). Barcelona and Messi in the second game (2-4), he was special that night. PSV away (2-2) was so frustrating. Then Harry's header goes in off a couple of ricochets to beat PSV and we're up and running.
"These are the moments that can define seasons. It’s funny - we probably played better in the group stage last season, we were flying, but this has been about grit, determination and players have delivered those moments of quality when we’ve needed them. You need that in a cup run.
"Dortmund away (last 16), even though we had a 3-0 lead from the first leg, we were really up against it in the first half of the second leg out there. That’s when players have to stand up. We made big blocks, Jan had one tackle I remember, I had one, Hugo made countless saves (we eventually won 1-0, 4-0 on aggregate). These are the moments. It’s a squad game and everyone has to play their part. Once again, everyone has done that.
"I think when you have games where you have to fight for the man next to you, when you have to stand up for each other, put your bodies on the line, like City and Ajax, it becomes a brotherhood, like a family.
"I’ve been here a while now and everyone has each other’s back. You go through the pain barrier for the person next to you and that’s what we’ve had to do at times this season, especially in this Champions League run.
"We’ve had a number of injuries and we’ve really dug deep to get results for this Club. That's about determination and belief. We all believe in the man next to us, all believe in the quality we’ve got throughout the squad and everyone has delivered when it has mattered most."
Look out for more from Ben in the build-up to Madrid...