Ricardo Julio "Ricky" Villa born August 18th 1952
Ricky Villa lit up Wembley in 1981, scoring one of the most memorable goals ever scored at the old stadium.
In what for many is the most memorable finish to any Final, Ricky Villa stamped his mark on the history of the world’s oldest domestic Cup competition with some aplomb, scoring one of the great individual strikes to give his side a sixth FA Cup win.
The Argentinian was in electric form all night, no doubt fired by his substitution during the first game between the two sides which had finished 1-1.
With the replay neatly balanced at 2-2, Spurs’ Argentinian midfielder Ricky Villa weaved his way through the City defence, twisting and turning past three pale blue shirted opponents before slipping the ball coolly past goalkeeper Joe Corrigan.
"Sometimes it feels like I only played one match and only ever scored one goal," Ricky says laughing. The fact that we probably all know which goal he means lends weight to the argument, but the truth is he played many more matches and scored lots more goals.
Together with Ossie Ardiles, he was snapped up by Tottenham's Keith Burkinshaw after Argentina's success in the 1978 FIFA World Cup.
Arriving to a ticker tape welcome at White Hart Lane, Villa scored one goal against Nottingham Forest on his debut. Capped 25 times when he arrived at the Lane, Villa struggled to nail down a regular place initially and spent a lot of his time on the substitute's bench.
Villa, however, carved his name in Spurs folklore in the FA Cup run of 1980-81. His superb goal against Wolves in the semi-final helped us to Wembley and then followed one of the great FA Cup stories.
I remember the excitement generated by the signing of Ricky and Ossie and still remember ripping up newspapers for their ticker-tape welcome to WHL. Better, I remember standing on the North Bank at Highbury when he scored two goals in the Semi-Final replay against Wolves to take us to Wembley. One was a real stunner and I'm not ashamed to tell you, I danced on the Highbury centre circle at the final whistle. Oh yes, we've celebrated achievement at Highbury.
Thanks for that Ricky!
Appearances/goals: 124/18 (LG), 21/3 (FAC), 15/3 (LG CUP), 8/1 (EUR)