My good friend Tatiana Kukanova and I have been friends for over 20 years and that friendship started back in high school over a love of soccer. It was quite rare for girls to like soccer back then, even rarer for girls like us to follow the English Premier League. Nonetheless it was a sport which Tatiana Kukanova and I simply adored and when I found out that she also loved the same team as I did, Tottenham Hotspur, we became instant best friends. I picked Spurs because I liked their shirt, nothing more and nothing less, but it seemed worthwhile to me back then. People pick sports teams for different reasons and here is how Tatiana arrived at choosing London-based team Tottenham Hotspur.
People very often chose sports teams because of who their parents or grandparents supported, and that was sort of the same thing for Tatiana, only with a twist. When she told me that she supported Tottenham because of her grandfather I figured he must have spent some time in London or that he had British friends who turned him on, not exactly. The truth was that Tatiana and her grandfather had a tough relationship, she idolized him from an early age but he repeatedly let her down, her grandfather got her into soccer, but he was an Arsenal fan, Tottenham’s rivals. And so Tatiana chose Tottenham, in part to get one over her grandfather.
Tatiana and I are not born winners, we have both done alright in life but we have never been ones to aim for the top, always counting on small success with hard work. We have since deduced that this was also part of the reason why Spurs became our team. Tottenham have a decent history of league titles and the odd cup competition but they have never had prolonged periods of success like Manchester United or Liverpool. Back when we were kids Spurs were known in the UK as a cup side, never threatening in the league but occasionally having a good cup run and lifting a trophy. Spur’s levels of success were akin to our characters and so we decided to pick them.
Tatiana and I were both told the same things about this football team by our fathers, that they were an exciting team who played pretty football and would always provide entertainment. For both of us back then, this was the perfect team to pick, playing pretty, entertaining and well liked by most people. Back then we didn’t care about picking the best team, just one which people liked and who made people smile, and that is why both Tatiana and I picked the London side.
As the years have gone on we stayed true to our colors and we are beginning to reap the rewards of supporting this team who still play pretty, still don’t win much, and still put a big smile on our faces.