Quarter Final memories

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‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it’ as philosopher George Santyana once said. Not to be confused with ‘She’s a black magic woman, she’s trying to make a devil out of me’ of course, that was a very different Santana entirely. So bearing George’s comment in mind, plus Saturday’s game at Craven Cottage, here’s a reminder of our FA Cup quarter finals of the last twenty years or so.

2006-07 Chelsea 3-3 Spurs (Our goals – Berbatov, Essien o.g., Ghaly)

Last time we were in the sixth round was 06-07 when we were also drawn away in west London, that time at Stamford Bridge. A memorable first half performance saw us take a 3-1 lead before some questionable Jol substitutions (he appeared to take off players to rest them for the UEFA Cup tie against Braga a few days later) let Chelsea back into the game. Defoe missed a last minute chance but Mourinho’s unbeaten home record remained intact & back we went to WHL where…

2006-07 (Replay) Spurs 1-2 Chelsea (Keane pen)

A game notable mostly for two never to be repeated in a Chelsea kit wonder goals from Shevchenko and SWP. We were never in this one. An ill-advised pitch invader arguably showed the most fight when he decided to take things personally after the final whistle and invite Fat Frank to ‘take things outside’.

2004-05 Newcastle United 1-0 Spurs

We were all over the barcodes for most of the game but couldn’t level a very early Kluivert goal. Jermaine Jenas turned out for the home team as did Steve Carr who decided to do his post match clenched gurning in front of the away fans. Nice.

2001-02 Spurs 0-4 Chelsea

After dumping  all over Chelsea in the League Cup semi final a few weeks earlier, this cup clash didn’t go quite so well. Eidur Gudjohnsen will have good memories of the game as he nicked two goals and it might bring a warm glow to Graeme Le Saux too. His wild lunge at Mauricio Taricco just a couple of minutes after the latter had come on as sub probably helped him towards closure on a long simmering feud with the Argentine as well as giving him first use of the soap.

2000-01 West Ham 2-3 Spurs (Rebrov 2, Doherty)

A win to report at last. Possibly the highlight of Sergei Rebrov’s Spurs career. Two goals from our favourite CB radio enthusiast plus a header from the Ginger Pele saw off a Hammers team containing future Yids, Carrick and Kanoute. In return Rebrov and Etherington eventually went the other way. The latter was famously quoted as going to “a bigger club than Spurs” when he left us. I’m not sure he’s made it yet; he must be very frustrated at Stoke City knocking back the offers from Champions League clubs all over Europe.

1998-99 Barnsley 0-1 Spurs (Ginola)

An unmemorable game that was won with an unforgettable goal. Starting his run from just inside the touchline, Ginola slalomed his way past a succession of defenders before curling a low shot past the keeper. A real treat for anyone lucky enough to be there.

1994-95 Liverpool 1-2 Spurs (Sheringham, Klinsmann)

And talking of treats, this is one of my favourite games ever. Even though we’d nicked a couple of results at Liverpool the concept of winning there was still pretty unfamiliar. Robbie Fowler put the Reds one up but then a curled shot from Sheringham before half time and a last minute winner from Jurgen the German meant that Anfield was still rocking with the sounds of a Klinsmann Wonderland well after the final whistle.

1992-93 Manchester City 2-4 Spurs (Nayim 3, Sedgley)

This is a game more often remembered for the behaviour of the home fans and the police than the match itself. Nayim’s hat-trick was the peak of his goal scoring for Spurs, though obviously not of his career as his sublime moment in Paris was still to come. Joe Royle’s City were a highly thought of team so after Mike Sheron had put them in front, Maine Road got pretty upset as we dismantled and outplayed them. It was after Terry Phelan made it 4-2 near the end that the crowd took to the pitch, the ref took the players to the changing rooms and the local constabulary took to their stallions. The coppers looked moody and pointed their nags in our direction as the locals cavorted ‘Bez’ style behind them. After the game was restarted Teddy missed a pen, prompting speculation that he’d done it on purpose to avoid further trouble.

1990-91 Spurs 2-1 Notts County (Nayim, Gascoigne)

This was the year we last won the cup of course. County were from a division below but deserved their half time lead gained from a cracking long range volley. Gazza led the fight back & we were on the top in the second half. We deservedly equalised and then won thanks to a late effort from Gascoigne himself. We didn’t know then that the drama of his consequent operation, recovery, free-kick in the first ever Wembley semi-final and then self destruction in the final itself would pale into insignificance compared to the path his life would follow from then on.

So of our last eight quarter finals we’ve lost the last three and won the previous five. Unluckily, we’ve been drawn away a lot, as we have this season as well. The biggest thing to me from looking at this list is how long it is since we’ve been in a semi final. Nothing since Scumpbell’s last game for us in 2001 and that’s pretty poor. Nayim and Rebrov proved unlikely goal scoring heroes in a couple of our successes in these games. Here’s to a Vedran Corluka hat trick on Saturday.

(Apologies for any mistakes in the above, research was a bit rushed.)

By MF

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