NORMAN GILLER’S SPURS ODYSSEY BLOG No 284
Submitted by Norman Giller
Harry Kane was reunited with his boyhood idol David Beckham after Saturday’s Last of the Summer Wine slaughter of Crystal Palace, and the present and former Golden Boys of English soccer were able to reminisce on a relationship that goes back a long way.
The photograph below was taken at the launch of Beckham’s football academy in 2005, with David in the middle of Harry and Katie Goodland when they were both aged eleven. They are now husband and wife with two daughters, Ivy and Vivienne.
The Kane/Becks link goes back even farther, because both were born in Whipps Cross Hospital in Leytonstone (where Graham Gooch and Andros Townsend also had their first kick of life).
Becks has been there, done that, but admitted to Harry and Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino that he is in awe of Tottenham's stylish state-of-the-art new ground after having a VIP seat on Saturday.
He was in town looking for talent for his new Florida football franchise, Inter-Miami, and told his old friend and rival Pochettino that he wished he could wear the Lilywhite shirt, an ambition he briefly had when training with the youth squad at the old White Hart Lane before his memorable career with Manchester United.
It's 2005 and the future Mr and Mrs Kane meet their footballing idol David Beckham
He and Poch always rib each other about the penalty Becks scored to give England a 1-0 victory over Argentina in the 2002 World Cup finals. With feigned anger, Mauricio claims that Argentina were cheated. “Michael Owen dived over my foot,” the former central defender always insists. “That should never have been a penalty.”
Poch proudly said in the press conference following the 4-0 pummelling of Palace: “David told me that he would like to play for Spurs at our new stadium. He thinks it is amazing.
"It's only the beginning. We haven't played many games here. It's still all new. and It's important to make this stadium our home and feel comfortable. It's always going to be difficult to have a new stadium and it will take time.”
Our Spurs Odyssey guru Paul H. Smith purrs over the first-half performance of Spurs against Palace HERE, particularly the stunning two-goal contribution from Son Heung-min. Spurs now sit third in the table, but with Liverpool looking awesome at the top with a maximum 15 points.
I wonder how many times we will growl this season: “What went wrong against Newcastle?” The team that tore Palace apart would have crushed neurotic Newcastle. If only … if only …
Tottenham have set the bar as high as it can be in the Champions’ League, so we will be expecting a successful raid against Olympiakos in Greece this week. Then it’s back to a crowded fixture list that will fully test the strength in depth of the squad.
For your diary, these are the next six challenging matches, allowing little time to breathe and worry about minor matters like Brexit and the Rugby World Cup …
v. Olympiakos (a) CL Wednesday September 18, 5.55
v. Leicester City (a) PL Saturday September 21, 12.30
v. Colchester United (a) FLC Tuesday September 24. 7.45
v. Southampton (h) PL Saturday September 28, 3.00
v. Bayern Munich (h) CL Tuesday October 1, 8.00
v. Brighton (a) PL Saturday October 5, 12.30
Phew, that’s all shoehorned into just 17 days. Tottenham’s players are going to be as busy as Steve Smith piling up the runs. Let’s just hope the dreams of silverware do not turn to ashes.
Question No 7 in this 2019-20 SOQL season:
Who has played international football for two nations, scored one of the best goals in the 2018 World Cup finals against Japan, and from which Dutch club did he join Spurs?
Please email your answer to me at SOQL7@normangillerbooks.com. Deadline: midnight this Friday. I will respond to all who take part. So far, I have caught few of you out.
The rules are the same as in previous seasons. I ask a two-pronged question with three points at stake. In the closing weeks of the competition I break the logjam of all-knowing Spurs-history experts with a tie-breaking poser that is based on opinion rather than fact.
Last week’s sixth SOQL question of the season: Which midfielder was a League Cup winner with Spurs, was a member of the 1996 Euro International championship winning team and from which club did he join Spurs in 1998?
The answer: Steffen Freund, arguably the most popular overseas player along with Ossie Ardiles ever to pull on the Lilywhite shirt. He joined Tottenham from Borussia Dortmund and became a cult hero. Unfortunately, he went to the same finishing school as Moussa Sissoko!
This year’s prizes for the champion: a Harry Kane framed and signed photo, two books from my Spurs collection with autographs from Jimmy Greaves, Steve Perryman and Dave Mackay, and, most important of all, a framed certificate announcing the winner as SOQL champion.
You will be better informed if you buy my SHOOTING SPURS book that features every player who has scored 50 or more goals for Tottenham since the club was formed in 1882, with special in-depth features on Jimmy Greaves and Harry Kane, plus focus on exceptional managers John Cameron, Arthur Rowe, Bill Nicholson and current master, Mauricio Pochettino.
Cliff ‘159 goals’ Jones has provided the introduction, and profits go to the Tottenham Tribute Trust to help our old heroes who missed the gravy train and now have to pay medical and care bills.
It costs just £9.99 and I will send a signed copy to anybody buying direct from me at www.normangillerbooks.com. There is also a screen version for £4.99.
I hope you will support this great cause.
See you back here same time, same place next week. COYS!
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