There’s not much Jurgen Klinsmann didn’t achieve during an illustrious career across Europe and with the Germany national team. The former striker was deadly in front of goal and had a pretty good sense of humour too, so it’s easy to see why he was popular with teammates and fans alike.
His playing career took him from Stuttgart, to Inter Milan, Monaco, Tottenham, Bayern Munich and Sampdoria. But he first received international renown for winning the World Cup in 1990 with Germany, scoring three times along the way. He had just moved from Stuttgart to Inter Milan, but really announced himself on the world stage with a fine run at Italia 90.
Klinsmann admitted that winning it had greater significance for his country than just a football tournament. Klinsmann fell in love with London, with Gary Mabbutt and Teddy Sheringham showing him the delights of Tottenham High Road.
Spurs fans fell in love with Klinsmann, as the goals flowed, and the self-deprecating dive celebration became iconic. Klinsmann hit 29 goals for Tottenham in 1994-95 but was gone at the end of the season, much to the disappointment of Spurs fans.
He headed back to his homeland with Bayern Munich in search of silverware and went on to win the UEFA Cup and Bundesliga title. Having helped Germany win Euro 96 – once again breaking English hearts in the process – he moved on to Sampdoria. But he was temped back to Tottenham in 1998 on loan.
The club were struggling at the time and at real risk of relegation, but Klinsmann’s goals played a major part in keeping them in the Premier League before he called it quits. Klinsmann’s career then went down the coaching route, guiding Germany to a World Cup semi-final in 2006, before a short stint at Bayern Munich. He was United States manager for five years and most recently in charge of Hertha Berlin.