2013-14 Tottenham Hotspur Home Shirt Size Medium (Long Sleeve) - Soldado #9
Team: Tottenham Hotspur
Brand: Under Armour
Era: 2013-14 (Used for the 2013-14 Barclays Premier League season)
Name/Number: Soldado #9
With this shirt just months away from turning 10 years old (at the time of writing); this shirt is still in excellent condition with the main blemishes being the Under Armour text which is coming away from the sleeves, and some wear to the blue HP decal – nothing however, that takes too much away from the quality of the shirt.
Pit to Pit Measurement: 20 inches
Shirt Length: 27 inches
Made by Under Armour in their 'Heat Gear' range of shirts that they introduced in 2013; this shirt feels just as stretchy as its base layer counterparts, however nowhere near as fitted as the base layers which makes it an excellent size medium fitting shirt.
Under Armour’s second presentation of Tottenham Hotspur’s home shirt would be a significantly different offering to their debut design used in 2012-13; with HP (Hewlett Packard) returning as the club’s shirt sponsor after a 14 year hiatus to replace Aurasma, while AIA was emblazoned for the European campaign. Also ditched, was the grey accents which were used in 2012-13 as well as the polo collar; with a unique hoop-neck cross v-neck hybrid being used in what was also the most salient feature of this shirt. While this shirt would be associated with a tumultuous season following Gareth Bale’s transfer to Real Madrid in September 2013; the club did enjoy another run to the Last 16 in the Europa League where they were beaten by runners-up – Benfica in a thrilling tie and would finish in 6th place which was ahead of Manchester United – whom they extended their unbeaten run against to 4 games. This would also be the last home shirt worn by stalwarts of Spurs’ successes during the first half of the decade - Jermaine Defoe, Michael Dawson and Sandro, meanwhile, this would be the home shirt worn as Harry Kane scored his first ever Premier League goals for the club!
Tottenham still just could not catch a break. Despite a fine debut season at the helm for Andre Villas-Boas and Premier League club record 72 points; they would still miss out on a place in the Champions League with Arsenal pipping them to the coveted 4th place position by just a point.
With speculation intense about the future of Gareth Bale who had just both won the PFA Young Player of the Year and FWA Footballer of the Year awards for 2012-13 – it was only a matter of time before he became a Real Madrid player; and on transfer deadline day, he would become the world's most expensive ever footballer when he moved to them for £85,300.00.00 million! His wasn’t the only exit from White Hart Lane that summer as William Gallas, David Bentley, Steven Caulker, Clint Dempsey, Tom Huddlestone and Scott Parker also left the club.
With Bale commanding such a huge fee, there would be seven new arrivals made up of: Vlad Chiriches, Nacer Chadli, Etienne Capoue, Paulinho, Christian Eriksen, Roberto Soldado and Erik Lamela who were entrusted to get Spurs over the line and into the top 4 in the first season of the post-Sir Alex Ferguson era.
The campaign began with a London derby as they went to Selhurst Park to welcome Crystal Palace back to the top-flight and Roberto Soldado’s first goal for the club on his official debut would earn all 3 points. He was clinical again from the spot a week later as Spurs defeated Swansea 1-0, but would be pegged back by the same scoreline in the first North London Derby of the season on 1st September. Two more wins would follow as Spurs led the table alongside Arsenal after 5 games. This would represent the high point of the season for Andre Villas-Boas’ charges as the fixtures piled up on all fronts and after being beaten 5-0 by Liverpool on 15th December; ‘AVB’ would be dismissed and former club captain – Tim Sherwood would pick up the reins with the club sitting in 7th place and 5 points adrift of the top 4 places.
His arrival would inspire the new manager bounce as he went unbeaten in his opening 5 games – picking up 4 wins including a 2-1 win over Manchester United at Old Trafford on New Years Day! His opening salvo lifted Spurs into 5th place where after 22 games, they were level on points with Liverpool in 4th place and could have moved within 4 points of 2nd place Manchester City in their next outing, however, they would be beaten 5-1 at home on 29th January. Their form would follow a similar run of a pair of wins followed by a pair without a win, and not 3 wins from 4 in April could prevent them finishing outside the top 4 again, as they would have to settle for a 6th place finish – their lowest since finishing 8th in 2008-09.
After their respective Fourth Round exits in both the FA Cup and League Cup in 2012-13; Tottenham would stumble a Fifth Round exit in the League Cup and most disappointingly, a Third Round elimination at the hands of Arsenal in the FA Cup.
In the Europa League; domestic cups win in 2012-13 for both Wigan Athletic and Swansea City meant that Spurs would need to win their play-off against Dinamo Tibilsi to reach the Group Stage of the Europa League – which they did by an 8-0 scoreline! In the Group Stage, they won 6 outings – beating Anzhi Makhachkala, Sheriff Tiraspol and Tromso home and away! In the Round of 32, they would be beaten for the first time – away against Dnipro, before winning the Second Leg 3-1 to set up a Last 16 tie versus Benfica. An emotionally charged pair of clashes ended with Benfica prevailing 5-3 over two legs; not before Spurs nearly pulled out a huge comeback in the 2nd Leg on 20th March.
The notable players that season were:
Emmanuel Adebayor, Harry Kane, Jermain Defoe, Roberto Soldado, Moussa Dembele, Nacer Chadli, Erik Lamela, Nabil Bentaleb, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Aaron Lennon, Christian Eriksen, Andros Townsend, Lewis Holtby, Etienne Capoue, Paulinho, Sandro, Vlad Chiriches, Jan Vertonghen, Younes Kaboul, Michael Dawson, Danny Rose, Kyle Walker, Kyle Naughton, Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Brad Freidel, Hugo Lloris
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