Last night it was Wellington’s turn to host An Audience with Clive Allen, at the 4 Kings bar, hosted by Kiwi Spurs-the official New Zealand fan chapter of the Tottenham Hotspur Football Club
For those that don’t know Clive’s history he scored 112 goals between 1984 and 1988 for Tottenham including a club record 49 goals in the 1986/87 season – a record that has not been broken since but more on that later.
Allen made his initial name at Queens Park Rangers as an 17 year and was subsequently transferred to Arsenal in 1980 as an 18 year old for a fee then of 1.25 million pounds (a fortune in those days) for whom he never played a single competitive match. He was then swapped to Crystal Palace subsequently going back to QPR and then onto Spurs. A prolific striker for a number of clubs in his career he was also the Tottenham coaching setup as reserve team coach under Martin Jol and Harry Redknapp
Today’s Premier League is a far cry from his playing days with money being the motivator for a number of players. As he said some players get what it means to be part of a club on the centre stage and others don’t. Harry Kane, Allen said, gets what it means and he is in a position where he nurtured Kane as a young player and still has a strong relationship with him. His constant advice to him is get into the right place and you will always score. Allen managed to get a pair of signed boots from Kane from the Arsenal game earlier this month which will be auctioned in some way as a NZ Prostate Cancer Foundation fundraiser.
Other stories told over a 2 hour period were the time Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger accused Spurs of not playing in the spirit of the game by scoring instead of putting the ball out when a player was injured. Wenger takes grudges and refused to acknowledge any of the coaching set up post game and even two seasons later still refused to shake Allen’s hand.
Allen’s view is Wenger is as he comes across, dour and petty. Allen was restrained after he was about to swing at him by then reserve keeper Carlo Cudicini. Allen said he was ready to “clock’ Wenger and has no regret in trying to. It’s healthy to see the derby rivalry extends between the coaches as well as both players and fans.
The threat of Harry Kane breaking Clive’s goals in a season record is on however he basically needs to score in every game until the end of the season. Clive has full respect for Kane and Clive himself broke another Spurs legend, Jimmy Greaves, goal scoring record.
Clive will not be upset if Kane is the man to do it.
Another polarising figure in the Spurs hierarchy is Chairman and part owner Daniel Levy. Clive explained football is now a business for all clubs and Levy is no different from any other chairman/owner. A person you would not play poker with and a shrewd negotiator however the club is in his heart and every decision is made for the betterment of it. The new stadium being built will significantly raise revenues and put Spurs on a par with not only the other big clubs in England but Europe.
Allen told stories throughout his career – from the days when two footed tackles were the norm to his final playing days in France and the lower leagues in England
These days Clive is a media commentator for a number of organisations including beIN (heard here in NZ) and BT in the UK. Who would have thought that commentaries are all done via watching screens now (rather than actually being at the game) and a number of beIN games are commented from Doha where Clive travels frequently
Back to Harry Kane’s boots – go to KiwiSpurs.com site over the next few weeks for an opportunity to make them yours – all for the benefit of the Prostate Cancer Foundation.
COME ON YOU SPURS
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