In the second part of our look at some of Tottenham’s Italian connections we hope to complete ’The Italian Job’ starting with a few of the links at international level. Of course ‘The Italian Job’ is a great title and a great film, and is set against the backdrop on a Italy V England game in Turin. Where England have actually played Italy four times. When we think of our international connections the one that springs to mind is ‘Italia 90’ which will be remembered for Gascoigne and Lineker and the semi-final with Germany.
Of the many connections at this level, Jimmy Greaves and Jermain Defoe have both scored for England against Italy. Whilst Simon Davies scored and was man of the match for Wales in their famous European Qualifier win over Italy in 2002.
Then in the last minute got a second and this was followed by Lennon setting up Bale for his hat trick. We may have lost 3-4 and no points but we held our heads high. The return game ranks as one of the greatest in our European history as we won 3-1 with goals from Van Der Vaart, Crouch and Pavlyuchenko. Bale was again in wonderful form and that was the night the Lane rang with the chant ‘Taxi for Maicon’.
Other games with Italian clubs include when we met Sampdoria in Scotland as part of the 1995 Ibrox tournament and we lost 0-2. Cagliari visited us at the Lane in the 2004 pre-season and the visitors won 1-2.
We played a tournament in Catanzaro in 1991 and lost to the Sicilian club Messina 0-2 before beating the host team 1-0.
Back here at the Lane in the pre-season of the 2008-09 season we entertained Roma and we ran out 5-0 winners. Everything looked like things were coming together for the season but we then had a dreadful start to the season.
We have also met Inter on several other occasions. In 1993 we met in the Fiorucci Cup. In this competition we played 45 minute games. Our clash finished 0-0 and we then lost 5-4 in a penalty shootout. We played them again in 2006 when we beat them 2-1 at home. Both our goals that day came from our Finish midfielder Teemu Taino. Inter’s first visit to White Hart Lane had been for the Ossie Adriles benefit game in 1985.
In the return leg however Inter looked like they might overcome us and only a late goal from Adebayor in extra time saw us go through.
We have met Italian teams at various development and age group levels throughout the years. Including our Academy team playing Roma in Vietnam as part of the Nutifood Cup only last month. We have also had several young Italian players at the club but so far none have made the step up to the first team.
Carlo Cudicini is the son of Fabio Cudicini who played for AC Milan against Tottenham in the 1971-72 UEFA Cup semi-finals, (see part 1), His grandfather was also a profession player but a defender. Carlo played for Tottenham from 2009-2012 playing in 36 game including in the games with Inter Milan.
Thanks to - THFC, THOS, The FA, England on Line, BBC, Bob Goodwin,
Images - Top- Roadaction films, 1- The FA, 2,3 &5- THFC, 4- Google Images,
About the author:
Keith Harrison, Nilgiris, TN
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