Like a virgin
Having been released by eternal bottlers Tottenham Hotspur after loan spells with the mighty Dulwich Hamlet and IFK David Hasselhoff, Crouchy was sold to Queens Park Rangers for sixty-grand (barely enough to pay for a Harry Maguire head massage). After an impressive season for The Hoops, the 6ft 7in striker was sold to Portsmouth for £1.5m. A nifty haul of 18 goals in 37 starts for Pompey earned him a £5m move to Premier League side Aston Villa. After making the big-time, he was asked what he would be if he hadn’t been a footballer. The big man replied: ‘A virgin’. Legend.
FA Cup Glory
After failing to nail down a regular starting berth at Villa, Crouch proved his Premier League credentials after a £2.5m move to Southampton. After netting 16 goals in 33 appearances for the south-coast outfit, the big friendly giant received his first England call-up. When the Saints were relegated at the end of the 2004-2005 season, Crouchy sealed a dream move to European Champions Liverpool for a fee of £7m. Despite not scoring in his first 19 games, the Macclesfield-born forward endeared himself to the Kopites who serenaded him with the chant: ‘He’s big, he’s red, his feet stick out the bed, Peter Crouch’. He scored 13 goals that season including the winner against Manchester United in the FA Fifth Round. Liverpool went on to win the competition and it proved to be the only silverware of Crouchy’s career.
There have been some memorable goal celebrations down the years. Who can forget the time Finidi George took a dog-like pish against the corner flag during the ’94 World Cup? Or when Robbie Fowler attempted to quash rumours that he participated in recreational drug use by pretending to snort a line of cocaine along the Anfield touchline? But few live longer in the memory than the time the big man first dropped ‘The Robot’. After netting his first (and only) international hat-trick during a pre-World Cup friendly game against Jamaica, Crouchy unleashed the iconic 80s dance move with all the rhythm of a yard brush having a seizure. He carried his good form into the tournament and when England were drawing 0-0 with the mighty Trinidad & Tobago, Crouch rose above his marker put his side in front. The lanky striker went on to score 22 goals in 42 appearances for the Three Lions.
After a successful second stint at Fratton Park, Crouch re-signed for Tottenham Hotspur. His time at White Hart Lane is best remembered for the goal he scored against Manchester City which sealed Spurs’ first ever qualification for the Champions League back in 2010. Harry Redknapp’s side headed to the Etihad knowing a win would take them to the promised land. With the score tensely poised at 0-0, Crouchy rose like a salmon on stilts late in the game to cement Tottenham’s place in the top four. Crouch left North London in 2012 for the more exotic destination of Stoke. The lofty marksman spent eight seasons with The Potters becoming a cult-hero and scoring 62 goals including an absolute worldie against Man City during his debut season. Then in February 2017, Crouchy became member 27 of the Premier League’s elite 100 goals club.
Crouch has become as synonymous for his sense of humour off the pitch as his prowess on it over the years. The big man has treated us to some absolute gems on Twitter down the years but none more so than this…
Summer for me is about time with family . pic.twitter.com/dtft1CZoyl
— Peter Crouch (@petercrouch) June 19, 2017