Tottenham On This Day: Match Which Changed Paul Stewart’s Career


[Photo:]22nd December, 1990

Tottenham Hotspur 2 Luton Town 1

Scorer: Stewart (2)

This game turned the career of Paul Stewart at White Hart Lane.Stewart had been signed from Manchester City for £1.7m as a strong, goal-scoring centre forward. but he lost his confidence and goal-scoring touch. 

Stewart had started his career with Blackpool, and joined Manchester City in March, 1987. He scored 26 League goals for City and fifteen months later joined Spurs. He made his debut for Spurs on 1st October 1988, as a substitute in a 2-2 draw at home to Manchester United but missed a penalty. He scored 12 goals in his first League season with Spurs but when his goals dried up, he was converted to a highly competent and combative midfield player, as a result of circumstances.

Against Luton Town, he responded to a crisis situation and became a different player.Spurs were a goal behind and had two players sent off – Nayin for comments to the referee and Pat van den Hauwe for a late tackle.This required a reshuffle and Terry Venables decided to move Stewart into midfield.It was the making of him as he scored both goalsas Spurs went on to win from a seemingly impossible position. 

1991 FA Cup Winners [Photo: Logan Holmes]Stewart remained in midfield, played an important part in the FA Cup success, scoring the equalising goal in the Final against Nottingham Forest the following May. He then went on to play for England, winning 3 caps, before his transfer to Liverpool for £2.3m in the summer of 1992, having shown a desire to return north. In total he made 171 League and Cup appearances for Spurs, scoring 37 goals.