PETER CROUCH: Winner against City my most important goal

PETER Crouch believes that his winner against Manchester City last night is the most important goal he has ever scored. The England striker scored a vital opener in the 2006 World Cup against Trinidad & Tobago four years ago, booking the Three Lions plac

PETER Crouch believes that his winner against Manchester City last night is the most important goal he has ever scored.

The England striker scored a vital opener in the 2006 World Cup against Trinidad & Tobago four years ago, booking the Three Lions' place in the last 16.

Earlier that year the 29-year-old had netted the winner for Liverpool against Manchester United in the fifth round of the FA Cup, en route to winning the trophy.

It was the first time the Merseyside outfit had beaten arch-rivals United in the cup since the Second World War, and Crouch also has 16 European goals to his name from his spell at Anfield and Portsmouth.


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However the 6ft 7ins forward, who started his career at Tottenham as a trainee in 1998, feels that his 82nd-minute header at Eastlands last night eclipses all of his other strikes.

"It's got to be right up there. I've scored important goals before but the whole thing about the top four being the top four for so long makes this one very special. For a club like Tottenham to break into that group is fantastic," said Crouch.

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"Obviously the job's not done, we still have to qualify so we've got a massive game there, but I think with regards to goals I've not scored a more important one. It's a real buzz to score the goal that cements a place in the Champions League. I'm as happy as I can be.

"It's hard to put it into words. I've not seen a changing room so happy really. It's because it's such a long, hard season. When you win the FA Cup or any cup final then obviously it's a great occasion, but this is 38 games and that's tough.

"It's come down to a massive game and to win it away from home against such a fabulous squad of players is a fantastic achievement, and I'd rank it right up there alongside the best of my career."

Crouch admits that, when he rejoined Spurs back in August, he did not truly believe that Tottenham would qualify for the Champions League in his first season.

However, he is convinced that the Lilywhites merit their top-four place over the course of the campaign.

"Did I really believe we'd do it this year? Probably not, no," he said. "I came here because I knew we had a fantastic squad of players, one that's probably been underachieving for a while now, and I'd worked with the manager for a number of years.

"But you look at the squads we were up against, obviously Man City spending so much money and bringing in such a fantastic squad, and Liverpool are always in the top four - that's just how it is. So for someone like ourselves to break in there is a really big achievement and something we should be very proud of.

"I was looking in the match programme and we've won more games than any of the teams below us. On that balance we deserve to be in fourth spot. I think we've won 21 games now and that puts us in fourth place. I wouldn't think that anyone would argue about us deserving it. It's a really exciting time to be part of Tottenham Hotspur.

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