Spurs stars provide Pub Cup inspiration
Publican and players mingle with Tottenham’s first team squad ahead of tournament kick-off
To be in prime condition for the start of a major sporting event, it’s essential to put in the hours on the training ground.
So, with the BT Sport Pub Cup getting underway this week, a trip to Tottenham Hotspur’s state-of-the-art training complex could not have come at a better time for two of this year’s entrants.
Milly Staniscia-Singa, landlady at The Tudor Arms in Watford, and her son Theo, were joined by Arthur Cull and Will Salmon, who play for The Anchor in Tring, at the special event arranged by BT Sport.
After a team briefing in the media room, the quartet were led out to watch the first team being put through their paces in a series of drills and exercises. And when the workout was complete, stars including Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen and the rest of the squad signed autographs and posed for photos with the four.
Milly said that the experience and the Spurs ‘no excuses’ ethos was something she could take back to her business.
“The set-up here and the attention to detail is very impressive,” she said. “This is a stage and my pub is a stage too. They are very different businesses but they are both are forms of entertainment and you have to do everything you can to give yourself the best chance of success.”
Football is a major driver of business at Milly’s pub which has eight screens to show live sport. Two football teams also use the pub as their social hub.
Theo will be playing for the Tudor Arms in the Pub Cup London heat at Loftus Road on Thursday May 10.
He said: “Coming here is inspiring and it is going to be amazing to get to play on a top-quality surface like the ones here. We are in it to win it and will be doing all we can to get through to the next stage.”
That sentiment was shared by Arthur and Will who both play for Tring Athletic, which bases itself at The Anchor.
Midfielder Arthur said: “We have had an amazing season and haven’t lost a game so playing in the Pub Cup is the icing on the cake. We would love to get through the heat to play in the 11-a-side tournament at St George’s Park.
“We always go back to the pub, which is a huge part of the enjoyment of it all and why we have had such a great spirit this year.”
The trip to the 77-acre training complex which only opened in 2012 and boasts 15 pitches and some of the best facilities in Europe was even more special for Spurs supporter Will.
He said: “I’m in awe just being here and seeing it all. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, as is playing on a professional pitch in the tournament. The pitches here look so amazing, you just want to walk on the grass, let alone play on it.”
He and Arthur will be stepping out on the pitch at The Den on May 18 for the final regional qualifier. The Loftus Road qualifier is the opener with another at Goodison Park on Friday.
Further heats take place next week at the Hawthorns, Bournemouth’s Vitality Stadium, Hibernian’s Easter Road and Hillsborough.
More than 60 teams representing pubs from all over the UK will compete in 7-a-side tournaments at the grounds. Eight winning sides will progress to an 11-a-side semi-final tournament at St George’s Park in Burton with two winning sides playing in the final at Leicester’s King Power Stadium on June 2.
The winning team will secure the title plus a free BT Sport subscription for a year and £5,000 worth of equipment for their pub.
We’ll be keeping you updated throughout the tournament so check these pages or our Twitter feed @btsportbars for the latest stories and results.