For Brazilian international flanker Emerson Royal, who plays for Tottenham Hotspur, Son Heung-min is a hometown boy. “Heung-min is like a Brazilian,” Emerson said, opening up about the atmosphere at Tottenham Hotspur.
On Jan. 1 (KST), London-based soccer publication Football London published Royal’s interview amid Tottenham’s upward trend.
“The morale of the team is high and we are enjoying the moment,” Royal said, revealing the team’s harmonious internal situation.
Tottenham are unbeaten in the league this season and sit atop the table with eight wins and two draws in 10 games. After finishing eighth in 2022/23 and conceding 63 league goals, their worst season in the 21st century, Tottenham have been able to build on their league-leading form under new head coach Anze Postecoglou, who took over last summer, with both the offense and defense working as a unit.
Postecoglou and other key members of the club, including captain Son Heung-min, insist that it’s “too early to talk about the possibility of winning the league” and that there should be no “jubilation.” Nevertheless, first place is first place. The players are feeling like “winners” for the first time in a long time.
Emerson’s “revelation” is that Son Heung-min also contributes to the jovial locker room atmosphere.
“South American players are usually loud. English-speaking players are quiet,” and “Heung-min is obviously a fake Korean. He acts like a Brazilian,” and introduced Son Heung-min’s ‘excitement’.
“South American players, even Spanish players like Pedro Foro, all play songs and try to interact a lot with (their teammates),” he said. “They have their own personalities, but they try to bring a new style of fun to the locker room.”
Son has a good relationship with many of his Brazilian teammates. At the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, he broke down in tears after South Korea’s 1-4 loss to Brazil in the round of 16 and ran into the arms of his teammate and opponent, Ricardo.
In addition, Liverpool and Brazil national team captain Alisson Becker and modern Brazilian soccer’s biggest star, Neymar, have been seen embracing Son Heung-min, and even Brazilian players who have never played with him have been spotted showing their love for him.
Heung-min’s friendliness has helped him connect with players of all nationalities. He is a big part of the upbeat atmosphere in the Tottenham locker room.
This ‘festive’ mood is also shared by Spurs fans. After the 2-0 win over Fulham in the ninth round of the 2023/24 English Premier League, Postecoglou said, “Tottenham Hotspur Stadium (Tottenham’s home stadium) has become a nightclub,” referring to 토토 the atmosphere at the stadium during the club’s back-to-back wins, with songs playing and fans celebrating like a club.
Meanwhile, Tottenham will host one of the league’s strongest teams, Chelsea, in the 11th round of the league on July 7. It will be interesting to see if Tottenham’s performance against Chelsea can be replicated at home and if everyone will leave the stadium happy.