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Glenn Hoddle Biography

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Glenn Hoddle (born October 27, 1957 in Hayes, London) is a football manager and former player for Tottenham Hotspur and England. He has had spells as manager of Swindon Town, Chelsea, England, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur and most recently Wolverhampton Wanderers. He was an immensely skilled attacking midfielder with top quality close control.

Playing career

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Tottenham Hotspur

Hoddle joined Tottenham as a schoolboy, making his debut as a 17 year old in 1975. Within two years, he was a regular in the centre of the Spurs midfield, creating plenty of goals and scoring a few spectacular ones of his own. Spurs were relegated from the top flight in 1977, but with Hoddle as a centrepiece of the team, won promotion again the following year. He scored on his full England debut in 1979 and won the FA Cup with Spurs in 1981 and 1982 and the UEFA Cup in 1984.

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England

Though regarded as a genius with the ball at his feet, Hoddle was regarded as an enigmatic player because his work off the ball was not of the highest standard, and as a result international managers were wary of playing him all the time. That said, he made two World Cup squads (1982 and 1986), playing an important role in the latter campaign when England reached the quarter finals against Argentina. Hoddle was one of the England players left behind by Diego Maradona as he burst from inside his own half to score his second goal in England's 2-1 defeat. Hoddle also featured in the European Championship squads of 1980 and 1988, making his final England appearance during the latter tournament.

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Monaco

Hoddle announced in 1987 that he would be leaving Tottenham at the end of the season to pursue ambitions abroad. His final game for the club was the FA Cup final in which Spurs lost to Coventry City. He then joined AS Monaco, under the management of Arsène Wenger and alongside fellow England player Mark Hateley.

Also in 1987, he released pop single Diamond Lights with Spurs and England colleague Chris Waddle and reached the Top 20 in the UK. In 2003 the song was voted number 14 in Channel 4's All-Time 'Worst Ever' Singles Poll.

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Managerial career

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Swindon Town

Glenn Hoddle remained at Monaco until March 1991, when he returned to England and was named player-manager of Swindon Town. The Robins had been hit badly by a financial scandal at the club some years earlier which had seen them stripped of promotion to the First Division at the end of the 1989-90 season and had a negative impact on their league form. Hoddle's initial task was to save Swindon from slipping into the Third Division. He fulfilled this task and these improvement continued into the 1991-92 season, when they finished ninth and just missed out on a playoff place. Swindon reached the new Division One playoffs in 1993 and secured a 4-3 victory over Leicester City in the final at Wembley, wiping out bad memories of the 1990 financial irregularities debacle. The 36-year-old Hoddle was by now one of the most highly rated young managers in England and many bigger clubs were demanding his services. He eventually left for Chelsea and was succeeded at Swindon by his assistant John Gorman.

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Chelsea

In June 1993, Hoddle became player-manager of Chelsea (he retired from the playing side in 1995). His assistant at Chelsea was the former Tottenham manager Peter Shreeves, and they reached the FA Cup final in Hoddle's first season, where they lost 4-0 to Manchester United. But United had done the double, and consolation for their failure to win the trophy came in the form of a Cup Winners' Cup place. Chelsea reached the semi finals of that competition in 1994-95 and lost by a single goal to Real Zaragoza, who went on to beat Arsenal in the final. Hoddle guided Chelsea to the FA Cup semi finals in 1995-96, but was unable to take them beyond 11th place in the Premiership - they had occupied this final position three times in four years. Hoddle's three-year reign at Chelsea came to an end in 1996 when he accepted the England manager's job. He had not won any trophies during his time at the Bridge, but had come close in each season. He also signed big names such as Mark Hughes and Ruud Gullit, who were to be instrumental figures in the club's future success.

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England

On the international stage, Hoddle guided England to qualification for the 1998 World Cup, securing the team's entry with a memorable 0-0 draw in Rome against Italy. However, he caused controversy by omitting Paul Gascoigne from the squad and installing supposed faith healer Eileen Drewery as part of the England coaching staff, which led to the team being dubbed "The Hod Squad" by the tabloid press. They reached the Second Round of the 1998 tournament, losing on penalties to Argentina in a game noted for the ignominious sending off of David Beckham.

Hoddle came under fire after a disappointing start to the Euro 2000 qualifying campaign, and was sacked in February 1999 after he appeared in an interview with The Times newspaper where he suggested that disabled people were being punished for sins in a previous life. There was such an uproar, including intervention by Prime Minister Tony Blair, that the F.A. had little option but to terminate Hoddle's contract.

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Southampton

Hoddle was back in football within a year as Southampton manager, succeeding Dave Jones, who had been suspended in order to concentrate on clearing his name in connection with child abuse charges. Although these charges were later found to be false, Jones was not re-instated and Hoddle continued to be manager. Hoddle kept the Saints in the Premiership against all odds but left acrimoniously in March 2001 to return to Tottenham as manager.

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Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur's league record in the decade leading up to Hoddle's appointment was disappointing. Hoddle was determined to establish them as a top playing side, and during his first season he had some wonderful opportunities to succeed. Tottenham reached the League Cup final but surrendered an early lead to go down 2-1 to Blackburn Rovers, who lifted the trophy for the first time in their history. The club's promising early season form dwindled away into mediocrity and they finished ninth in the Premiership, an improvement on the previous season's 11th place but hardly impressive. Spurs began the 2002-03 season in fine form and Hoddle was named Premiership Manager of the Month for August 2002 after they ended the month top of the league. Although few people expected them to stay there, 10th place in the final table was still disappointing. The pressure began to build up on Hoddle and he was sacked in September 2003 after a dismal start to the season, in which the team picked up just four points from their opening six league games and lay in the Premiership drop zone. Ironically, his final game in charge was a 3-1 loss to old side Southampton. It was an unhappy end to Hoddle's association with Spurs, although he will always be remembered fondly for his time as a player with the club.

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Wolverhampton Wanderers

Glenn Hoddle made his football comeback in December 2004 with Wolverhampton Wanderers, again succeeding Dave Jones. Wolves had just been relegated from the Premiership and their overheads had decided it was time for a change of manager after a dismal start to the 2004-05 Championship campaign. Hoddle steadied the boat and Wolves lost just one of their final 25 league games. But their hopes of making a late run to the playoffs were ended because 15 of their remaining games after Hoddle's appointment ended in draws. Wolves began 2005-06 among the favourites for promotion to the Premiership, but still drew far too many games and came one place outside the playoff zone - two places higher than the year before. In spite of this disappointment, the Wolves board insisted that Hoddle's job was safe, but on 1st July 2006 he handed in his resignation stating that he felt Wolves' ambition failed to match his after they announced stringent financial cutbacks: "I feel my expectations and the club's have drifted too far apart and this decision has been made early for the benefit of the club." There was great malice from many fans who believed Hoddle had destroyed any chance of a good preparation to the new season and never truly valued the Wolves managerial job.

Courtesy of: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glenn_Hoddle

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