Tottenham and West Ham have given us plenty to talk about over the years, but one moment was completely bizarre.
On the final day of the 2005-06 Premier League season, Spurs were beaten at West Ham while Arsenal nicked a win at Wigan to take Tottenham’s place in the Champions League.
The 2-1 defeat by West Ham has always been a bit of a funny one. Spurs players have always claimed they suffered food poisoning, thanks to some dodgy lasagne and spaghetti Bolognese.
Writing in his column for Yahoo, Jermaine Jenas, who was part of Tottenham’s ill-fated squad, talked about what the hell went on before and during that game.
‘As a member of the Spurs team beaten at Upton Park in the infamous “Lasagnegate” match on the last day of the 2005-2006 season, when the bulk of our squad went down with food poisoning, you could say this derby will always have a special resonance with me – as it will for anyone who experienced that day,’ the 33-year-old wrote.
‘The silly thing is that for a game against West Ham we would have normally just stayed at home because it was a local derby, but because it was such a crucial game the club put us in a hotel because they wanted us to be together.
‘Lasagne and spaghetti Bolognese were on the menu, we ate, and then in the middle of the night we started dropping like flies. It was mayhem. The club tried to get the match called off, but in vain, so we just had to play through it feeling like death. A lot of the lads were running on empty – literally. Even while the gaffer Martin Jol was giving his team talk before the game, players were being sick in the toilets. Once the game started players were literally running off the pitch. It was carnage.
‘By the end of it we felt so horrific that the fact we had just lost out on the Champions League, on the last day of the season, to Arsenal, with West Ham in the next room having the biggest party ever, was almost of secondary importance.’