Tottenham Hotspur

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August 4, Tottenham Hotspur v Inter


After securing the 2018 International Champions Cup title, Tottenham Hotspur are the team the rest are looking to dethrone.

Spurs were crowned in 2018 after beating AS Roma and AC Milan. Now, the Premier League giants are back for more and are hoping to clinch a second successive International Champions Cup trophy.

Let’s take a closer look at the Londoners.

Overview

While they may not have any domestic silverware to show for it, Tottenham have enjoyed a period of progression under the leadership of the highly rated Mauricio Pochettino.

The Argentine tactician has firmly established the club’s position in the Premier League’s top four, guiding them to finishes of third, second and third in the 2015/16, 2016/17 and 2017/18 seasons respectively, as well as progressing to the knockout rounds of the UEFA Champions League in each of the last two years.

Spurs possess an effective blend of youth and experience in their squad, not to mention one of the deadliest strikers in world soccer: Harry Kane.

History

Formed in 1882, Tottenham Hotspur were originally known as Hotspur Football Club before changing their name in 1884.

Having won the FA Cup in 1901 and 1921, the Lilywhites experienced unprecedented success under legendary coach Bill Nicholson.

During his 16-year reign they won the league and cup double in 1961, the FA Cup in 1962 and the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup in 1963.

Nicholson also brought Jimmy Greaves back to English soccer after the legendary forward’s short spell with AC Milan.

Greaves, already a favourite at Chelsea, proceeded to become Tottenham’s greatest ever player, scoring an incredible 266 goals in 379 appearances during nine years at the club, helping them to two FA Cups and the Cup Winners’ Cup.

Spurs have been Premier League mainstays since the league’s inception in 1992. Although they are yet to lift the league title in its modern incarnation, they have twice tasted success in the League Cup, in 1999 and 2008.

Stadium

Until 2017, White Hart Lane was Tottenham's home ground. One of the most instantly recognisable venues in English soccer, they bid farewell to the Lane and temporarily moved into Wembley Stadium ahead of the opening of their new ground.

Spurs announced plans to build a new stadium in 2008 and, with a capacity of over 62,000, it is the largest club stadium in London.

The pitch’s dimensions are 105m x 68m, equivalent to Old Trafford and the Emirates Stadium, and 440 square metres larger than White Hart Lane.

Coach – Mauricio Pochettino

After a successful playing career which saw him capped 20 times by Argentina, Pochettino moved into coaching when he was appointed by Espanyol – with whom he had spent seven years as a player – in 2009.

Four years in LaLiga proved his making, with onlookers admiring his dedication, tactical nous and leadership skills.

In January 2013, he was appointed Southampton boss and quickly made a name for himself in England.

Spurs won the race for ‘Poch’ in the summer of 2014 and he has since built one of the most exciting teams in European soccer while garnering a reputation for developing talented young players.

One of the most respected coaches in world soccer, Pochettino will be eyeing more International Champions Cup success this summer.

Key players

Harry Kane – A two-time winner of the Premier League Golden Boot, Kane has cemented his place among the game’s elite strikers since breaking into the Spurs team in 2014.

The England captain, whose six goals also won him the Golden Boot at last year’s FIFA World Cup, has put some incredible numbers while spearheading the attack.

Netting 31 times in all competitions in a breakthrough 2014/15 campaign, Kane struck 28, 35 and 41 in his following three seasons.

Toby Alderweireld – While Spurs’ attacking talents rightly earn plenty of praise, Alderweireld has been as consistent and important during Pochettino’s reign.

Signed from Southampton in 2015, the Belgian has grown to become one of the most respected defenders in English soccer, forming a formidable partnership with compatriot Jan Vertonghen at the heart of the Spurs back-line.

A leader on the pitch, Alderweireld is also renowned for his remarkable passing skills, which include a trademark diagonal that turns defence into attack in an instant.

Christian Eriksen – The Danish maestro was signed in the summer of 2013 following Gareth Bale’s sale to Real Madrid and has proven to be an exceptional piece of business by the North Londoners.

At home anywhere behind the main striker, Eriksen’s vision and range of passing make him an incredibly gifted playmaker who can crack open the toughest of defences, while also chipping in with goals from midfield.

The 27-year-old has hit double figures in four of his five full seasons in the Premier League and is closing in on 300 appearances for the North Londoners.

Ones to watch

Oliver Skipp – The 18-year-old midfielder has caught the eye after breaking into the first-team this season. A solid defensive midfielder with impressive technical attributes, Skipp earned plaudits for an assured display on his first Premier League start against Burnley in December.

Skipp featured in two International Champions Cup clashes in 2018, against Roma and FC Barcelona respectively.

Kyle Walker-Peters – The defender is tipped for a bright future in Spurs' first-team, underlining his abilities with an excellent hat-trick of assists against AFC Bournemouth in December 2018.

Pochettino has eased Walker-Peters into the senior set-up after handing him a full Premier League debut in August 2017. But make no mistake: he could be a mainstay in the Spurs defence in the years to come, and was electric during Tottenham’s 4-1 win over AS Roma during the 2018 International Champions Cup.


COME TO SEE SPURS IN THE US THIS SUMMER!