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#Legends #PremierLeague #Interview #WestHam

Is this one of our most underrated goals of the Premier League era?

Thu 26 March 2020, 15:00|Tottenham Hotspur

It’s the hidden gem in that crazy, beautiful 4-3 win at West Ham back in March, 2007.

Maybe it was overshadowed by the events of the game. Maybe Dimitar Berbatov’s exquisite free-kick to level the scores at 3-3 and Paul Stalteri’s mad late dash up the field to tap in the winner in the final seconds stole this goal’s limelight somewhat.

But watch it again – as many Spurs fans did in our special re-run last Friday – and there it is, that hidden gem from Teemu Tainio.

The break is on, Berba floats in a cross to the far post where Aaron Lennon completes a mid-air backheel assist for Teemu to strike on the full volley into the corner from 14 yards. It is a thing of beauty.

It begs the question – is this one of our most underrated goals of the Premier League era? There was certainly plenty of love for it on Twitter.

With that in mind, only one person to ask, Teemu himself. Now managing back home in Finland at FC Haka, the team that gave him his professional debut back in 1996, Teemu was more than happy to turn back the clock and reflect on ‘one of my thousands of Spurs goals’ on that night at Upton Park over 13 years ago…

“It’s one of the favourite goals of my career, in fact, the whole game is one of my favourite memories,” said Teemu. “The last thing I remember is the ball came flying into the box and Lenny (Aaron Lennon), he sees me and really the only thing he can do to get the ball towards me is that backheel. That was amazing.

“So, the ball comes towards me and my aim is to shoot into the opposite corner (right) from where the ball comes from. I had to cut across it a little and it was a good finish, I must say.

Berba scored the free-kick, I ran over to hug him and we were so close to our fans that I fell down! There was a little gap between the fans and the pitch...

Teemu Tainio

“I can remember that game so well. The one thing I always remember about it is that I had to mark Bobby Zamora from set-pieces. He scored West Ham’s third goal (to put them 3-2 ahead) and you can see me going mad, punching the ground. He was my man! I was marking him! I was devastated.

“After that, Berba scored the free-kick, we went crazy and I ran over to hug him and we were so close to our fans that I fell down! There was a little gap between the fans and the pitch. Then Paul Stalteri scored. My first thought was ‘what is he doing up there?’. He’s a full-back, running like a winger! What a goal. What a winner. What a night that was!

“Every day I think about my couple of years at Spurs. That never goes away. My favourite team has always been Spurs. That was right from the beginning when I was a small boy and still goes on today.”

Coming soon - look out for more from Teemu on his love for Spurs and managing back home in Finland...