Crouch so happy at Tottenham

Crouch signed his first professional contract with Spurs back in

1998 but left without playing a game and has spent time with

various clubs over the past decade. He returned to White Hart Lane

18 months ago and has played his part in a successful period for

the club, capped by qualification for this season’s UEFA Champions

League. The striker, who turns 30 next month, feels settled in

North London and has no plans to move on again before he hangs up

his boots. Not that he is contemplating retirement, though, for

Crouch believes that he has yet to fulfil his potential and will

reach his peak over the next few years. “My thirties will prove to

be the best years of my career,” Crouch told the Mail on Sunday. “I

shot up in height at a young age and my body had to catch up. I am

stronger and fitter than ever. “I feel settled and happy at Spurs.

From the day I signed, I was hoping I’d stay for a long time.

Actually, I hope to end my career here.” Crouch feels Spurs must

build on their achievements of last season and finish at least

fourth in the Premier League this term. He said: “We know we need

to be in the Champions League every year because that’s the

benchmark of a good side. “It will be massively disappointing if we

don’t achieve qualification again this season.” Meanwhile, Crouch

has also reflected on his personal disappointment amid England’s

shambolic World Cup campaign this summer. The striker has an

impressive goalscoring record at international level but was only

used as a substitute in two of England’s four games in South

Africa. “I was bitterly frustrated at the World Cup,” he recalled.

“I’d been given the number nine shirt and thought I was going to

play. “I didn’t really get a sniff but I’ll always be ready to play

for my country. Others can judge what type of player I am. But I’ve

always scored goals and always will.”