Paul Robinson: Memories of ’08

It’s the oldest cliche within the e-book, however as a footballer, you dream of winning trophies. Taking part in in entrance of a sold-out crowd, being on the winning side in a cup final and climbing these Wembley steps to gather your winners medal – “there’s no higher feeling,” says Paul Robinson, because the former Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper reflects on Spurs’ 2008 League Cup triumph, the one main trophy of his career.

“There’s the old cliche that as a child you dream of winning a cup final and climbing these stair at Wembley Stadium, and I really feel very lucky to have had that chance and to have climbed these stairs as a winner. 

“As a child, that’s your ambition, it’s one thing you at all times wish to do and sure it’s a cliche, however to play at Wembley and to win at Wembley, you’re residing out your childhood dream. There’s no higher feeling.”

It’s 13 yers since Spurs last lifted the League Cup, with triumph over London rivals Chelsea in 2008, and Paul Robinson was a part of the Tottenham side that helped the membership to an unforgettable 2-1 victory under the new Wembley arch. 

Greater than 87,000 made the journey to North London for what was the primary fixture to be played on the new Wembley Stadium. Underdogs on the day, Spurs have been up against a Chelsea side captained by John Terry, with Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka all that includes within the beginning line-up. 

“It was an unimaginable event for us all,” Robinson said, talking solely to the EFL. 

“We have been in a little bit of a transitional interval once we received the competition in 2008, we went into the Final as underdogs due to that. 

“We’d just lately acquired a new manager in Juande Ramos, we have been about 14th within the table with Portsmouth, Fulham and Studying all above us within the Premier League, so it was a troublesome season for us as a result of we have been all studying new issues and attending to grips with the place we have been, however that win really did catapult us on and gave us the arrogance to go on and carry out within the league. I feel we took numerous confidence from overcoming Chelsea.”

After going behind within the first half because of a Didier Drogba free-kick, they needed to do it the hard means and extra-time was wanted to beat their London rivals, however Jonathan Woodgate struck within the 94th minute to provide Spurs a fourth League Cup and deny Chelsea back-to-back League Cup victories within the course of. 

“They’d a really robust side and they went 1-0 up via Drogba who scored a free-kick,” Robinson continued. 

“However we fought our means back into the sport via a Dimitar Berbatov penalty and from then we really grew into the sport. We managed to take it to extra-time and I feel Petr Cech punched the ball out to clear it, it got here off Jonathan Woodgate’s head and went in. I feel it was one of many luckiest goals that Woody has ever scored, however from there it was just a case of holding on which we managed to do.”

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An excellent defensive show from Woodgate and Ledley King noticed Spurs cling on for a well-known win, however the secret behind their success all these years in the past? Robinson reveals all…

“One factor I do bear in mind greater than something is 2 days earlier than the Final, the manager took us away to a lodge in London and it was extra like a stag do relatively than making ready for a final – minus the alcohol! 

“There have been all these team constructing and bonding workout routines ready; we went go-karting, buggy using, did archery and spent a complete day doing actions like that – none of us knew it was coming and none of us really knew what was going on, however it fully took our thoughts off the Final and off the upcoming sport, which in hindsight was most likely a masterstroke. 

“I really bear in mind the night time earlier than the Final we had dinner collectively and had our team assembly, then the manager opened up the room subsequent door and it was a faux on line casino. I just bear in mind him saying to us, ‘you may have a few hours within the on line casino earlier than you go to mattress.’ 

“All of us turned to one another questioning if it was some form of test, nobody really knew what to do at first. It appeared so out of character for the manager to do one thing like that, however really it enabled us to organize for the sport however on the similar time not for the sport to devour us. 

“I feel the manager was seeking to take our focus off the Final and for it to not devour us for the full 48 hours earlier than it happened, he needed us to enter the sport with the fitting mentality and mindset. It was a typical team constructing train and in hindsight it had the specified have an effect on.”

Robinson made greater than 170 appearances for Spurs, winning the one trophy of his career throughout his four-year stay at White Hart Lane, and there’s little doubt that the membership will at all times maintain a particular place in his coronary heart. 

“It’s the one main trophy of my career and that makes the competition very particular to me.

“I feel I played a few of my very best football at Spurs, my time there was one of many highlights of my career, it was fantastic. I established myself as England’s no.1 throughout my time there, the connection that I had with the followers was wonderful and a number of the football that I played at White Hart Lane was the best of my career.”

The full interview with Paul Robinson is on the market to observe beneath:

 

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