Tottenham HotspurKlinsmann’s Diving Academy
Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, is an English Premier League football club based in Tottenham, North London. The club's home is White Hart Lane and their Latin motto is Audere est Facere (lit: "To Dare Is to Do").
Commonly known as Spurs, they are one of the most successful and long-standing clubs in the top-tier of English football, having collected a host of silverware, including the UEFA Cup, the League Cup, the FA Cup, and the Division One title. Many illustrious players have called White Hart Lane home, Ricky Villa, Ossie Ardiles, Pat Jennings, Glen Hoddle, Danny Blanchflower, Gary Lineker, Chris Waddle, Paul Gascoigne and Jurgen Klinsmann.
Jurgen Klinsmann was born on July 30th 1964 in Göppingen, Germany, and began his playing career with second division club Stuttgart Kickers in 1982. His big breakthrough came in 1988, whilst playing for Vfb Stuttgart. He finished the season as top scorer in the Bundesliga and was voted 'German Player of the Year'.
In the summer of 1989, Klinsmann went to Italian giants Inter Milan, joining fellow countrymen Lothar Matthäus and Andreas Brehme in a great team that eased to the Serie A title in their first season. Klinsmann was a continental player, who was open to new cultures. He'd played top level football in Germany, Italy, France and England. In 1990, he won the World Cup with West Germany in Italy, playing five of the games on his home ground in Milan, making the triumph even more special. He was now firmly established as one of the greatest strikers in world football.
Somewhat surprisingly, the 1994–95 season saw Klinsmann make the move from French side, Monaco, to Tottenham Hotspur in the English Premier League. Fans and media were ferociously critical of the German, partly because he played in the 1990 Germany team that knocked England out of the World Cup, and partly because of his growing reputation as a 'diver'. This reputation was mostly due to events in the match between Germany and Argentina in the 1990 World Cup Final. Pedro Monzon received a red for a tackle full of intent. Most commentators say that no contact was made, yet Klinsmann launched into a graceful, athletic dive, adding in a spasmic jerk and a couple of rolls for good measure. A textbook dive that would be a credit to any stuntman, it is now the blueprint for all divers.
Klinsmann scored a header on his Spurs debut against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough, and immediately won over fans with a self-deprecating dive to celebrate the goal. A journalist that had written an article called 'Why I Hate Jürgen Klinsmann', wrote another two months later called 'Why I Love Jürgen Klinsmann', such was his impact in England.
This parody of his own 'diving' proved that he had a sense of humour, and it quickly gave birth of the much celebrated ‘Klinsmann dive’ goal celebration, and, henceforth, it would quickly permeate school playgrounds, parks and football pitches all over the UK.Due to these antics and his unquestionable ability as a player, he became an instant, huge hit at White Hart Lane, and was voted 'English Player of the Year' in 1995. A year later he won the European Championship with Germany at Wembley. He captained the winning side, despite being injured and missing some games. After only one season at Tottenham he joined Bayern Munich, and later went back to Italy with Sampdoria. He returned back to Spurs to save them from relegation in 1998. A mission he accomplished, further elevating his legendary status at the London club.
Jurgen was anything but the typical, vacuous, self-absorbed modern footballer. He was an intelligent player, and progressive in his outlook and conduct. While other players wheels of choice were Porsches and Mercedes, he famously drove a cobalt-blue ’67 Volkswagen Beetle around his North London base.
“It was a very special moment because before
the game started we were welcomed at Sheffield Wednesday’s stadium by all the
diving signs, 5.9, 5.8, all that sort of thing and we were all laughing about
it. Teddy Sheringham came up and said ‘Jurgen, if you score your first goal
here, we’re all going to do a dive’. It was like all the pieces of the puzzle
came together, I scored the goal and the whole team came over and did the dive.
The wonderful thing was that the fans from Sheffield even laughed about it.
Everyone took it the right way and it was a great way to start the season.”