UK & World News

  • 21 January 2014, 12:55

Ossie Ardiles: Ex-Spurs Footballer In Car Crash

Former Argentina and Tottenham Hotspur footballer Ossie Ardiles has been injured in a car crash on the Falkland Islands.

The 61-year-old was on the island making a television documentary about the Falklands War with ex-teammate and compatriot Ricky Villa, also 61, looking at how it affected their careers.

They arrived on Saturday and were driving with their five-strong crew along the road from Darwin to Stanley when the vehicle they were travelling in overturned.

Ardiles was driving the hire car and saw a sheep on the road and swerved to avoid it, according to a witness.

He suffered serious head injuries and a member of the ESPN TV crew was also badly hurt . The pair were airlifted to the King Edward Memorial Hospital in Stanley.

Villa was not believed to have been injured in the accident on Monday night.

"Some of his crew were less seriously injured, but he suffered a head injury which was serious enough for an RAF search and rescue helicopter to come and pick him up and take him to the local hospital in Stanley," said Sky's Ian Woods.

"I've driven that road several times. The quality of the road is not that great.

"We have spoken to a nurse in the hospital who says that he is fine, but they are clearly monitoring his condition.

"Ossie Ardiles is a real cult hero at Spurs. He went on of course to become their manager - also managed West Bromwich Albion and Newcastle United as well - and is currently working in Japan."

A message on the Tottenham Hotspur website said the club had "been in touch with Ossie's friends and relatives and have been informed that both Ricky and he were fine".

"Ossie suffered a cut to the head that required stitches, but he remained conscious throughout. Ossie remains in hospital," it added.

It reportedly his son Pablo as thanking fans for their messages of support on Twitter and Facebook.

"Thank you very much to everyone supporting us. It's excellent to see people's reaction in a sense to what's happened, but thankfully everyone's fine," he said.

Ardiles made 311 appearances in all competitions for the club between 1978 and 1988 and later managed the team.

Villa represented the club on 179 occasions between 1978 and 1983.

Both Ardiles and Villa's careers at Spurs were curtailed by the Falklands conflict because of anti-Argentinian feelings in the UK.

Ardiles was sent to Paris St Germain on loan in June 1982.

Both he and Villa were also part of the Argentine squad which won the 1978 World Cup.

It was following this achievement on the world stage that the pair headed to London to join Spurs - at a time when foreign exports in the English top flight were somewhat of an unknown quantity - and were part of the team that won the FA Cup in 1981.

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