Words By Carl Anka

Photography By Elliott Morgan

Styling By Laura Harvey

If you were to cut Michael Dawson, he’d bleed white and blue. Tottenham Hotspur’s captain and lionheart defender embodies the die hard footballing spirit that fans love. Dawson is the type of player who’d run through walls for his club and spend hours signing memorabilia for fans afterwards. Topman Generation were lucky enough to get him styled and shot in the Topman Oxford Circus personal shopping lounge where we talked about Spurs’ locker room antics, getting namedropped in Gavin and Stacey and what it was like being a milkman at 13…

Topman Generation: Hi Daws, so how did you find the shoot today?
Yeah great, I liked the suit at lot.  Laura (our stylist) did a great job – everything in the shoot is the sort of thing I’d wear.


Topman Generation: Now you’re in a jeans and t-shirt right now, would you say that’s your regular dress?
Dawson: Pretty much; jeans and t-shirt sort me out for training or when I’m around the house or if I’m walking the dogs. If I’m out on a special occasion then I’d normally wear a suit. I’d call my dress sense casual. The Spurs boys know if I’m going anywhere after training because I’ll be wearing something a bit sharper.


Topman Generation: Now I’ve noticed you’re wearing a sharp pair of purple trainers. You a big trainer collector?
Dawson: Oh I have a big shoe collection – they’re my weakness. I’ll buy one pair of shoes and then look at my worst one and get rid of them.


Topman Generation: Do you have a favourite pair?
At the moment I love my Louboutins. They’re my special pair – if the boys see me wearing that they know I’m headed somewhere nice


Topman Generation: Do you remember the first bit of clothing you saved up for?
Dawson: Probably a pair of Diesel jeans or a pair of trainers. I’d always save any money I got from my birthday or Christmas and use it to buy clothes I really wanted.


Topman Generation: Let’s talk about football for a bit because this season in a way you’re back!
Dawson: Yeah I am! Last season I had two bad injuries – one Achilles that kept me out for a while, then I came back, played in the FA Cup and fell awkwardly and hurt my ankle so I missed last season because of two freakish injuries. At the start of this season I had a tough three months because I wasn’t playing but now I’ve got some games under my belt I’m loving playing for Spurs again.


Topman Generation: Judging by fan reaction on Twitter, you do seem to be a fan favourite.
Dawson:I don’t have Twitter but the Spurs fans, ever since I joined eight years ago have been great. When I wasn’t playing they were still backing me and singing my name so to be playing and leading the team out to get the sort of results we know we can is an amazing feeling.


Topman Generation: Now since Ledley King had to retire you’re Spurs longest serving player at the moment – you’re Grandad!
Dawson: Yeah, I’m the oldest of the bunch since Ledley left. Ledley is an amazing player and it’s unfortunate that he had to retire so young, but he taught me so much and helped me out when I first moved to Spurs. To play alongside him was an honour – he’s probably the best player I’ve played alongside.


Topman Generation: Now the Spurs player of the moment right now is Gareth Bale. Now we know how good he is and how he’s modeling himself on Cristiano Ronaldo – what I want to know is when he copied Ronaldo’s haircut, did you give him stick for it in the changing room?
Dawson: Well, I always said that he copied my hairstyle  (laughs)  No, but seriously Gaz is up there with Ronaldo and Messi in terms of ability – he’s one of the best players in the world at the moment, and probably the best in the world for me right now. Some of the things he does would have Ronaldo blush. His goal this season against Norwich where he picked the ball up in his own half and dribbled past all those players before having the calm and composure to put in the bottom corner. He’s been brilliant and credit to him because it hasn’t been easy for him. He’ll be the first to admit he found it difficult when he first came to Tottenham, people forget he moved here when he was 17.


Topman Generation: There’s definitely a ”Never Say Die” mentality that’s emerging in the squad as of late, do you think there’s any reason behind that?
Dawson: Quality can’t be turned off. We may have had our dips in form but I think the squad is maturing together and that’s why we’re playing so well at the moment. Tottenham is a great place to be right now and long may it continue. At the start of the season our aim was to get back in the Champions League. To finish fourth last season and then not qualify in the manner we did was devastating but we didn’t mope, we’ve just worked harder this season and it seems to be paying off.


Topman Generation: Let’s talk locker room antics. So, who is the pre-match DJ at White Hart Lane?
Dawson: Kyle Walker has it at the moment. Scott Parker had it before him and there’s a … bit of a difference in the songs they play. Kyle plays a bit of everything; loud and pumping.


Topman Generation: Have you ever been in charge of the playlist?
Dawson: Yeah, mine has been on. It’s also been chucked off! I go for a bit of everything; 80s to upbeat RnB.


Topman Generation: What about when you’re driving, what do you listen to then?
Dawson: It depends what mood I’m in. If I’m on the way to a game I listen to a bit of Usher… if I want to relax, maybe a bit of Whitney Houston or Mary J Blige.


Topman Generation: Now you’ve been at Tottenham for eight years but you of course a Yorkshire lad. How did you first find the move down south?
Dawson: I’m pretty fortunate where I live as it’s on the outskirts; I think living in the centre of London would be far too much for me. Going from a Yorkshire lad surrounded by fields to the busy city. London is a great place to live. I just wish my family was a bit closer at times.


Topman Generation: Let’s talk about fashion trends , now the big one last year was onesies – do you own one?
Dawson: I do! I bought my wife one for Christmas and I figured I’d grab myself one. We both now have a pair of plain grey onesies.


Topman Generation: Would you ever wear it outside?
Dawson: No. Not even to pop to the shops or walk the dogs.


Topman Generation: Who’s the flashiest dresser at Spurs?
Dawson: Kyle Walker came to training recently in a onesie and I just thought “Wow”. But fair play to him, he pulled it off. It was a plain black one – actually I think it was one I bought for my wife!


Topman Generation: And who’s the best dressed in your opinion?
Dawson: There are a few sharp dressers in the squad – Scott Parker scrubs up well and has a bit of quirkness to him. I had to up my fashion game when I started sitting next to him at the new training ground.


Topman Generation: How about you tell me something the world doesn’t know about Michael Dawson.
Dawson: I watch a lot of soaps. I really like Eastenders.  Also, I used to me a milkman. From about 13; my eldest brother did it, my older brother did it, it was in the family, once you came of age you went out and worked. 6.15am Monday to Friday. It’s probably why I always fell asleep in school! I had to stop around 15 when football took over.

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