Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Spurs in History - 29th August

29th August, 1974

‘The end of an era’

Following four defeats in the opening games of the season, Bill Nicholson announced his resignation as manager of Spurs, bringing to an end his association with the club that stretched back to 1936, as player, coach and manager.

Although the Board, players and fans tried to persuade him to stay he was not for turning. The club’s greatest manager was leaving, citing the need for a rest from football. He had found the circumstances of the UEFA Cup Final defeat the previous May difficult to accept and was finding it more difficult to relate to ‘modern’ players. He remained in charge until a replacement was appointed but it was a great shock to everyone connected with the club.

Bill Nicholson’s name was synonymous with Tottenham Hotspur and he had known success as a player being a member of the ‘push and run’ team that won the 1st and 2nd Division Championships in successive seasons and as manager.

He managed the successful ‘Double’ team, F.A.Cup and League Cup winning teams as well as successful teams in Europe. He set the standards for THFC and the club has been striving to achieve them ever since.

Many managers and teams have found him a hard act to follow. It was a sad end to a glorious managerial career and unfortunately the Board chose to ignore his suggestions regarding his successor.


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Spurs in History - 28th August

28th August, 1950

Spurs 4 Bolton Wanderers 2 (1st Division)

After winning promotion Spurs made a difficult start to life in the 1st Division. They lost their first game at home to Blackpool by 4-1 but then won at Bolton (4-1) and drew at Arsenal (2-2). They completed the ‘double’ over Bolton with goals from Len Duquemin(2), Eddie Baily and an own goal.

The results for the next few games were unconvincing until the ‘push and run’ team found its feet at the end of September when they commenced a run of eight successive victories.


Monday, August 27, 2007

Spurs in History - 27th August

27th August, 1988

‘Game Off!’

While the rest of the football world got their season under way, Spurs had to call off their home game against Coventry City because they could not get a safety certificate. Work on the redevelopment of the East Stand had been going on through the summer and although the work was not complete, they had been assured that they would pass the necessary safety regulations. However, six hours before kick-off the safety authorities refused to issue the certificate. The fans were very upset as they had been awaiting the home debut of the new summer signing, Paul Gascoigne.


Sunday, August 26, 2007

Spurs in History - 26th August

26th August, 1961

Spurs 4 Arsenal 3 (First Division)

Terry Dyson Hat-trick Hero

Spurs defence of the League Championship started with a win at Blackpool and a home draw against West Ham. For the second consecutive game they were without Dave Mackay and John White both injured.

The unexpected hero on this day was Terry Dyson who scored a hat-trick and remains the only Spurs player to score three against Arsenal. Spurs took an early two goal lead through Les Allen and Dyson but then Arsenal struck back and were 3-2 ahead with about fifteen minutes remaining. However, with seven minutes left Dyson scored twice inside two minutes for Spurs win and to put himself in the history records.


Saturday, August 25, 2007

Spurs in History - 25th August

25th August, 1990

Spurs 3 Manchester City 1

The World Cup in Italy during the summer brought Paul Gascoigne to the attention of the world in general and the nation in particular. His play had inspired the nation and he came home a hero. The phenomenon known as Gazza had been born and so there was incredible media attention for this game as Gary Lineker and Gascoigne appeared in the opening game of the season.

Both played a major part in this victory as Gazza opened the scoring and Lineker scored the other two.


Friday, August 24, 2007

Spurs in History - 24th August

24th August, 1994

Spurs 2 Everton 1

Jurgen Klinsmann's Home Debut

The atmosphere was electric as 24,553 spectators packed into WHL for Jurgen Klinsmann’s home debut. The reduced capacity was due to the ground redevelopment and Spurs could have filled the stadium twice over such was the demand for tickets.

Jurgen, as in his debut didn’t fail to deliver. The crowd had come to see him and within twenty two minutes he had put Spurs ahead with a spectacular volley. Thirteen minutes later he had added a second.

On half time Spurs won a penalty and everyone in the ground was willing Klinsmann to take it. Everyone, except Teddy Sheringham who elected to take it and ballooned it over the bar.

In the second half Everton scored and Spurs had to hang on to the end to achieve the win their play deserved.

Klinsmann showed what he was capable of in his first two games but the difficulty of achieving a balance between defence and attack was to bring about Ossie Ardiles’ departure from White Hart Lane.


Thursday, August 23, 2007

Spurs in History - 23rd August

23rd August, 1978

‘Party Poopers!’

Spurs 1 Aston Villa 4

An Argentinean style World Cup ticker tape welcome was prepared for the home debuts of Ossie Ardiles and Ricky Villa.

The ground was throbbing with excitement and anticipation but the wrong Villa made the headlines.

Aston Villa came to spoil the party and ruined Spurs and the Argentineans’ big night. Spurs goal was scored by Glenn Hoddle from the penalty spot but it was inconsequential.

Spurs had come back down to earth with an almighty crash – they had discovered that life back in the First Division was going to be very difficult.


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Jol, Ramos and Tottenham Hotspur

Jol, Ramos and Tottenham Hotspur – What Really Happened!

International week – it should have been a quiet week at White Hart Lane.

The story after Saturday’s win over Derby should have been about Steed Malbranque’s two goals. The headlines should have been about Spurs scoring three goals inside fifteen minutes. The media should have been crediting Jermaine Jenas for an improved showing and individual goal after disappointing performances in the first two games. They might even have suggested that the result had lifted the pressure from Martin Jol’s shoulders after the poor start to the season.

But no – we’ve had three days of leaks, speculation and reports of Martin Jol’s pending departure and the imminent arrival of Juande Ramos from Seville, arriving on a white charger to take over at White Hart Lane.

The news broke prior to the Derby game when betting was suspended on the possibility of Jol being this season’s first managerial casualty. Then Spurs officials had been spotted speaking to Ramos in Spain and while the Tottenham board remained silent, the media and message boards filled the vacuum in a wild frenzy of speculation.

Now, finally the Board have issued a statement saying that Martin Jol and his coaching staff have been made aware of the Board’s expectations for the season and that the manager is going nowhere.

Not a ringing endorsement or vote of confidence for the coach and his staff.

How did all this come about?

It has been alleged that all has not well within the club between some board members and the coach for some time. Last season, Spurs’ FA Cup win at Fulham came at a critical time for the coach and was a turning point for Jol who it was thought was in danger of losing his position. However, tensions remained, on both sides, and through a difficult summer of transfer negotiations there would have been many discussions, agreements and disagreements, over suitable players. The Board thought they had done well by spending £40 million on new players but the question remained, where they the players the manager needed or wanted?

Into the new season and the injury hit team played poorly in both commitment and style at Sunderland and against Everton. The team which was being widely tipped to break into the top four was now languishing at the bottom of the league, not what had been expected.

The Board, looking at the immediate fixtures, could see difficult times ahead - a home win against Derby was expected but then Manchester United at Old Trafford, Fulham away, the North London derby at White Hart Lane with a trip to Anfield a few weeks later. Going on past experience, the return from those games could be minimal and so the Board thought it was an opportune moment to take action to replace the manager.

Arrangements were made to speak to the manager of Seville but they were spotted and so the story broke across the media fuelling the speculation that Martin Jol was on his way out of Tottenham. Spurs said nothing, hoping to wrap up the matter quickly, especially when it was reported that Ramos was wanting to come to the club and was wanting to start before the commencement of the Spanish season at the weekend. It all sounded good from the Spurs’ Board’s point of view.

However, as the matter dragged on, Sevilla started to flex their muscles – Ramos was going nowhere, they stated, he would see out the final year of his contract. It was getting tricky and now instead of wanting to be in place by Saturday, it was being reported that Ramos wanted to think about it for a couple of weeks. Perhaps he looked at Spurs’ up-coming matches and thought United and Arsenal in the first three games was a rather poisoned chalice that was better not accepted, hence the delay. The most recent statements indicate that Ramos will be remaining with Sevilla, his improved salary for the final year of his contract agreed - Tottenham Hotspur are so useful as a bargaining tool!

Spurs hadn’t been thinking on that timescale so how could they turn around a situation that had been suggesting that Jol would be on his way in a matter of hours, without losing total face. They couldn’t sack the manager as there was no-one to replace him and they couldn’t deny that they had met Ramos as there was photographic evidence to prove it.

A face to face meeting with the coach and his assistant to lay down their expectations for the coming season, to make it clear what was expected and ensure everyone that Martin Jol was going nowhere while they were within their rights to look at ways of ensuring the best for the club in the future.

For the moment, Martin Jol is still in charge – wounded but perhaps like the wild animal which has been shot and injured, he’ll come out fighting more determined than ever to show the Board and the doubting supporters that he is capable of taking Tottenham into the Champions League and future success.

I am not an ITK (In The Know) and this is total supposition and speculation on my part about what has happened at Spurs over the past few days.


Spurs in History - 22nd August

22nd August, 1981

Aston Villa 2 Spurs 2 F.A.Charity Shield at Wembley.

Spurs gave a debut in goal to Ray Clemence in place of FA Cup winner Milija Aleksic. Clemence had been signed from Liverpool for £300,000 to help strengthen the defence. However, he had a poor debut with handling errors and his mistake brought about Villa’s first goal to give them the lead after thirty minutes.

Clemence eventually went on to establish himself and prove his value to the club. Spurs' goals were scored by Mark Falco who was playing in place of the injured Garth Crooks. The goals came either side of half time but Spurs only held the lead for a few minutes before Villa levelled the scores. This was a game that Spurs could have won but both teams shared the trophy.


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

No Jurgen! Not the Man for Tottenham Hotspur

Jurgen Klinsmann as Spurs boss?

Jurgen Klinsmann is one of the names being put forward to replace Martin Jol at White Hart Lane but the club has already been down that road. Ossie Ardiles and Glenn Hoddle, former star players returned to the club as manager but with little success.

White Hart Lane is NOT the place for Jurgen Klinsmann. Spurs have tried that before and with disastrous results. They've brought in former players to manage the club to please the fans and it hasn't worked. Indeed, it all ended in tears.

Alan Sugar brought Ossie Ardiles from West Bromwich Albion in the aftermath of his fall-out with Terry Venables. He knew that he had to find someone whom the fans would accept and Ardiles fitted the bill. Ardiles' first season was a disaster with the club only avoiding relegation with a game to spare.

The following summer was a great time for Spurs as Ardiles signed Jurgen Klinsmann, Ilie Dumitrescu and Gica Popescu and the season started with a flourish of exciting, attacking football. However, as autumn turned to winter, the attacking flair envisaged by Ardiles couldn't outscore the deficiencies of the defence, so club and manager parted company after 18 months. Ardiles as a player was a hero to all Spurs supporters, but as a manager he failed in the Premiership.

Move forward six years and the club’s new owners are looking to impress the supporters and get them on their side. They remove the unpopular George Graham and replace him with every Spurs fans' favourite - Glenn Hoddle. An encouraging start is followed by twelve months of misery before the Board admit their mistake and remove Hoddle - it simply hasn't worked.

Everyone at Tottenham Hotspur wanted Hoddle to succeed as manager but he failed to take the club forward. Similarly to Ardiles, he had little more than 18 months as manager. Both Ardiles and Hoddle were worshipped by the supporters and such was their standing as players that the fans still remember them favourably, overlooking their management shortcomings.

Klinsmann falls into the same category. He was a great favourite as a player, although he was only at White Hart Lane for a short time in comparison to either Ardiles or Hoddle. But he could so easily fall short as a manager. His reputation in management is high following his handling of the German team in the World Cup. However, he has no experience as a manager or coach at club level which demands day on day involvement with the players and officials. Would Klinsmann give the long-term commitment needed for such a position?

Klinsmann seems to enjoy the American lifestyle of California - would he be tempted to return to the grey skies of Tottenham? It would appear to be unlikely and a tremendous gamble to put all your faith in someone untried at this level.
In the World Cup, Klinsmann was working with the best players Germany had available to him. Would he have the patience and temperament to work with lesser players? Would he have the desire to cope with all the demands of the players on a daily basis? His man-management skills would be sorely tested.

Klinsmann achieved a great deal with Germany and was rightly praised for his innovation and the style with which his country played throughout the tournament. However, that was for a short period. Would he be able to continually motivate players through a long season and would his natural enthusiasm extend to a wet November night at Grimsby for a Cup game?

As a player, Klinsmann enjoyed new challenges - he played in different countries and then moved on in search of something new. As coach to the German team he has shown the same ideology, resigning at the end of the tournament and looking for a fresh challenge. As manager or coach of a club side, there has to be that longer-term commitment and it’s uncertain whether Klinsmann would be prepared to make it.

His reputation at White Hart Lane is based on 18 months as a player. As a manager, he mightn't even last that long. In the short-term, it would be a tremendous coup to recruit Jurgen as manager/coach. The move would be surrounded with fantastic media hype but it is uncertain that he would be a long-term solution to the club's managerial problems.

Many international managers complain that they they miss the day-to-day involvement with the players that is part of club management. Klinsmann, on the other hand, seems ideally suited to that international management role as it allows him greater freedom to be involved in other projects. Spurs’ supporters wouldn't want to see Klinsmann come to Tottenham and suffer as both Ardiles and Hoddle did before him. Spurs supporters want to remember him as the player he was and not as a manager who has failed to achieve what he and the fans have been hoping for.


Spurs in History - 21st August

21st August, 1982

Liverpool 1 Spurs 0 F.A.Charity Shield at Wembley.

Newly signed from Bristol Rovers, Gary Mabbutt made his debut in Spurs midfield. Spurs were without influential players like Steve Perryman and Graham Roberts with Paul Price also unavailable through injury.

The game was a robust affair and many competitive tackles came in from both sides – this may have been something left over from the previous season’s Milk Cup Final when Liverpool set about unsettling Spurs early on in the game which left Tony Galvin to play most of the game bearing the pains of some hefty tackles which greatly reduced his effectiveness.


Monday, August 20, 2007

Spurs in History - 20th August

20th August, 1994

Sheffield Wednesday 3 Spurs 4

What a debut for Jurgen Klinsmann! Ille Dumitrescu also made his debut and just like sixteen years previously, the demand to see Spurs was incredible. Ardiles selected a team with with five attacking players, Klinsmann, Teddy Sheringham, Nicky Barmby, Darren Anderton and Dumitrescu, suggesting excitement and no-one was disappointed.

Spurs went two ahead in the first half through Sheringham and Anderton. Early in the second half Wednesday equalised before Spurs went ahead again with goals from Barmby and Klinsmann. All Spurs fans had been waiting for Klinsmann to score and he celebrated in style with a beautiful ‘dive’, noting the comments that had been made about him being a ‘diver’ in trying to win penalties.

Wednesday scored again and before the end Klinsmann was carried off the pitch on a stretcher suffering from a facial injury.


Sunday, August 19, 2007

Spurs in History - 19th August

19th August, 1978

Nottingham Forest 1 Spurs 1

Newly promoted Spurs had to play Champions Forest on the opening day.

The game marked the start of a new era, the League debuts of the Argentinean Internationals, Ossie Ardiles and Ricky Villa. Demand for tickets was immense; Spurs had created an excitement that was unbelievable and the kick off had to be delayed to allow everyone into the ground.

Many people were waiting for them to fail, ‘they wouldn’t be able to adapt to English football’ being a familiar comment. However, while it took time for them to establish themselves, Ricky Villa had the perfect start scoring late in the first half to equalise for Spurs and earn a deserved point.


Spurs in History - 18th August

18th August, 1971

Spurs 0 Newcastle United 0

This match marks my first visit to White Hat Lane for a first team game. Spurs had opened the season with a 2-2 draw at Wolves, coming from two down to earn a late point.

This game had little to commend it and the main point in the papers the next day was the crowd trouble behind the goals at the Park Lane end of the ground. The match had to be stopped for several minutes while the trouble was sorted out. The Newcastle goalkeeper was hit with a staple fired from a catapult, the referee appealed to the crowd to identify the culprits.

Spurs closed off this section of the ground for the next games.

18th August, 2007

Spurs 4 Derby County 0

I revisited White Hart Lane on the 36th anniversary of my first visit to see an under pressure Spurs take on newly promoted Derby.

Newspaper reports of manager Martin Jol under pressure and a rift among the players were answered within a minute as Steed Malbranque scored Spurs first goal. Within a quarter of an hour the result was assured with further goals from Malbranque and Jermaine Jenas.

A second half goal from Darren Bent completed Spurs' victory.

Derby County were poor and gave Spurs too much room. The return of Lee at left back gave some balance to that side of the team rather than having to play Stalteri out of position. Malbranque's goals were a reward for his hard work. he will never be the best player in the side but he worked tirelessly last week at Sunderland and also against Everton. Jenas showed his quality again but must reproduce it against the top teams, like Manchester United at Old Trafford next weekend.

A well-deserved win but the rumours of Jol's departure still linger on in the newsparers and on supporters' message boards.


Friday, August 17, 2007

Spurs in History - 17th August

17th August, 1996

Blackburn Rovers 0 Spurs 2

A good opening to the Premiership season but at a high cost.

The good result and three points were overshadowed by the injury to Captain and inspiration, Gary Mabbutt. After twenty minutes of the first half he broke his leg and was to be ruled out for the rest of the season.

At the time of the injury the game was scoreless. However, thirteen minutes later Chris Armstrong gave Spurs the lead and then doubled the score mid-way through the second half. In spite of Mabbutt’s injury and the injury of his replacement within nine minutes, Spurs managed to re-organise themselves and deservedly won the three points.


Thursday, August 16, 2007

Spurs in History - 16th August

16th August, 1980

Spurs 2 Nottingham Forest 0 (1st Division)

The opening day of the season with the usual high expectations. For the previous two seasons Spurs were short of a goal scorer but during the summer Keith Burkinshaw signed two players in an attempt to resolve this problem.

Steve Archibald was signed from Aberdeen and Garth Crooks came from Stoke City and a very successful partnership it was to prove, setting Spurs on the way to further success. Both made their debuts in this game and Crooks scored the second goal, Hoddle having given Spurs the lead with a penalty.

Archibald scored in the next game, Crooks scored twice and another in his third game. The team then hit a difficult spell not scoring for the next four games but they had shown their worth.


Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Spurs in History - 15th August

15th August, 1965

As part of their pre-season preparations in 1965 and 1966, Spurs took part in the Costa del Sol Trophy in Malaga. On both occasions they were victorious and the final game in both years was played on this date.

In 1965, they defeated Valencia 2-1 (Eddie Clayton & Cliff Jones scored) to reach the Final against Standard Liege which was won 1-0 with a goal from Alan Mullery.

15th August, 1966

The following year they defeated Benfica 2-1 in the Final. The goals were scored by Jimmy Robertson and Jimmy Greaves. To reach the Final they had beaten Malaga CD 2-1 with Alan Mullery and Alan Gilzean the goal scorers.

The Costa del Sol Trophy was over four feet tall and valued then at £1,200 and on being asked to receive the trophy, Jimmy Greaves, as Captain, summoned up all the decorum his position had afforded him and retorted, ‘I’m not picking that ***** thing up – I’ll kill myself.’


Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Early Reality Check for Spurs

Early Reality Check for Spurs
The reality check came early for all to do with Spurs. The usual pre-season optimism on the back of winning all the pre-season games has taken a dent and Spurs must now realise that there’s a lot of work to be done if they are to improve on last season’s finishing position.

So much for the early season statement of intent from Spurs that some of us were hoping for. The performance against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light shed more light on Spurs’ deficiencies which haven’t been resolved by signing a fourth striker.

All of us need to take a look at ourselves. We, the fans need to be more realistic in our expectations. The players need to show greater application and the manager and staff need to realise that they have no plan ‘B’ when things aren’t working out and they appear to have done nothing to resolve last year’s problems.

Comments in the newspapers over the weekend were interesting and shed some insight into Spurs.

Martin Jol said, “The game was boring…. lacking creativity….. and a draw would have been disappointing.”

From the Daily Express: ‘For Spurs, this was a worrying result as they enjoyed the lion’s share of possession but did next to nothing with it.’

A very accurate assessment by the manager and all the fans would agree especially those who travelled to Sunderland. However, my point is, it was he, the manager, who selected that team and with that selection in midfield, there was never going to be any creativity – they didn’t display any last season and with Aaron Lennon injured there was no pace or width in the team. Spurs selected a team, hoping to score a goal and hold out for the three points. When the goal didn’t come there was no alternative plan and with two strikers on the bench, there was no place for Routledge or Taarabt to bring variety to Spurs’ play.

The manager and the players should have been aware that Sunderland would close them down and give them little time or room to play and been prepared for it but they weren’t.

From the match report in the Daily Mail on Dimitar Berbatov : ‘….when the referee failed to give a first half penalty….the Bulgarian lost interest after that, frustrated by the excellent defending from Nosworthy and McShane along with woeful service.’

Spurs made it easy for the Sunderland defenders who were able to stand and head the ball clear, there was no movement from Spurs to take them out of position and no-one with pace to run at them to cause them problems and put them under pressure. Robbie Keane had one of those games where he went deeper and deeper to collect the ball and Spurs’ forward movement came to a stop, giving Sunderland time to regroup, and the ball made its way back to Robinson.

The comment of disinterest can also be applied to Jermaine Jenas. He disappeared in the second half, frustrated at the unceremonious treatment he received from the Sunderland midfield and defence. Both Berbatov and Jenas should have been prepared for that – it’s the way Sunderland play and is reminiscent of last season’s opening game at Bolton.

Some newspapers selected Michael Chopra as ‘Man of the Match.’ That just about sums up how poor the game was. A substitute who played for less than twenty minutes who scored the only goal – it doesn’t say much for the performances of the other players.

Roy Keane commented on Sunderland that ‘it was a different club.’ That, on Saturday’s performance could not be said for Spurs – the same old problems were there for all to see.

The comment in the News of the World sums up Spurs’ current situation very accurately, ‘Spurs must look at themselves if they want Champions League football.’

On that performance, that is a long way off. Spurs have believed their own pre-season hype and while other clubs were prepared to go out and play with total commitment – Reading at United, Birmingham at Chelsea – Spurs weren’t and didn’t. They have now increased the pressure on themselves for the next two games at White Hart Lane. If there are any further slip-ups, the idea of four international strikers may have to be reviewed. One may have to be sacrificed, if only to enable the manager to bring in someone to add creativity to the side.

To end on a more positive note, the report in the Sunday Times, noted, ‘Tottenham’s only encouragement was the eye-catching contribution made by Younes Kaboul, their new centre-half from Auxerre. The young Frenchman would not have been playing had King and Dawson been fit, but he will take some shifting on this form. Not only is he a tall, commanding presence in central defence, he is also given to charging upfield to augment the attack.’

With King and Dawson’s continued absence, Kaboul may get more Premier League experience than he had expected so early in his time at Tottenham and hopefully he will be able to develop a partnership with Gardner that will improve the record noted in the Daily Mail: ‘Spurs have kept only two clean sheets in their past twenty nine Premier League games.’


Spurs in History - 14th August

14th August, 1993

Newcastle United 0 Spurs 1

Ossie Ardiles’ first game in control took him back to the newly promoted club where he had been manager for twelve months before being sacked.

Ardiles had the last laugh as Spurs won with a first half goal scored by Teddy Sheringham.

After the problems of the summer, with the dismissal of Venables, the departure of Neil Ruddock and newspaper stories featuring the club, many fans were disillusioned so Ardiles needed to make a good start to the season. New signings, Colin Calderwood and Jason Dozzell made their debuts and the team responded with a good performance.


Monday, August 13, 2007

Spurs in History - 13th August

13th August, 1969

Spurs 4 Burnley 0

After the opening day defeat at Leeds, Spurs gave a better performance in the Wednesday evening game at White Hart Lane against Burnley.

The goals were scored by Peter Collins, Jimmy Pearce, Jimmy Greaves and Martin Chivers. The following Saturday they lost at home to Liverpool but the next Tuesday, in the return fixture at Turf Moor, defeated Burnley 2 – 0 with Collins and Pearce scoring again.

At that time Burnley were a hard working mid-table team with a talent for producing young players whom they later sold. Spurs were to sign Ralph Coates in May, 1971 when Burnley’s time in the top division drew to a close with relegation to the 2nd Division.


Sunday, August 12, 2007

Spurs in History - 12th August

12th August, 1961

Spurs 3 F.A.XI 2 F.A.Charity Shield (White Hart Lane)

In 1961 as the ‘Double’ winners Spurs had no-one to play in this traditional curtain raiser to the season. An F.A.XI provided the opposition and Spurs won with goals from Les Allen(2) and Bobby Smith.

12th August, 1967

Manchester United 3 Spurs 3 F.A.Charity Shield (Old Trafford)

In 1967, this high scoring game is remembered for the identity of the scorer of Spurs' second goal. After two minutes Spurs took the lead when Jimmy Robertson scored from a Jimmy Greaves cross. Five minutes later, Pat Jennings played a long clearance up-field that bounced between Gilzean and United’s goalkeeper, Stepney, went over the keeper’s head and into the net.

United were level by the twentieth minute but Spurs went ahead again through Frank Saul, early in the second half. However, with fifteen minutes left United equalised and the clubs shared the trophy.


Saturday, August 11, 2007

Spurs in History - 11th August

11th August, 1962

Ipswich Town 1 Spurs 5 F.A.Charity Shield (Portman Road)

The defeats by Ipswich in both League meetings during the previous season had cost Spurs the opportunity of retaining the Championship and completing a second ‘Double’.

Managed by former Spurs' full-back, Alf Ramsey, Ipswich had played a system that had taken most teams by surprise but in this game Spurs had found the tactics to nullify the system and won with ease.

Spurs' goals were scored by Jimmy Greaves(2), Terry Medwin, John White and Bobby Smith.


Friday, August 10, 2007

Spurs in History - 10th August

10th August, 1991

Arsenal 0 Spurs 0 F.A.Charity Shield (Wembley)

The Champions against the FA Cup winners at the venue of the previous season’s amazing Cup semi-final. Gazza was missing but Spurs used the same tactics that had been successful in the semi-final.

Gary Lineker was the lone striker with five in midfield but the match failed to reach the level of the previous meeting. This was the first time that the clubs had met in the Charity Shield and with no penalties to decide an outright winner, both clubs shared the trophy.


Thursday, August 09, 2007

Spurs in History - 9th August

9th August, 1969

Leeds United 3 Spurs 1 (League Division 1)

This game marked the earliest start for the Football League season. The season didn’t start auspiciously for Spurs with this defeat at Elland Road. The World Cup was to be played in Mexico the following summer so football made its early start.

Martin Chivers returned to the team following the injury that had caused him to miss three quarters of the previous season but the Spurs goal was scored by Jimmy Greaves.


Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Spurs in History - 8th August

8th August, 1981

Glentoran 3 Spurs 3 (Pre-season Friendly)

Tottenham Hotspur, the F.A.Cup winners brought the trophy to Belfast and received a great welcome. Ossie Ardiles, Glenn Hoddle, Ricky Villa, Steve Perryman, Steve Archibald and Gaham Roberts were all present in what was an entertaining game.

New signing Paul Price played in place of Paul Miller and Mark Falco replaced Garth Crooks.

The local side gave a good account of themselves being one up at half time and Spurs had to work hard for the draw. Hoddle equalised with a penalty, Mark Falco (called Faldo in a local newspaper report) put them ahead only for Glentoran to equalise. Ardiles put Spurs ahead but with three minutes left the home side equalised.


Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Spurs in History - 7th August

7th August, 1999

West Ham United 1 Spurs 0 (Premiership)

The earliest start to a football season as the European Championships were to be held in Belgium and Holland the following June.

As always, Spurs started the season with injuries and the situation got worse with Sol Campbell going off after fifteen minutes. After a poor first half they conceded a goal just on half-time.

Manager, George Graham took off David Ginola and replaced him with new signing Oyvind Leonhardsen. An improved second half brought no reward and Spurs played the last twenty minutes with ten men when Justin Edinburgh went off injured, all the substitutes having been used.


Monday, August 06, 2007

Spurs in History - 6th August

6th August, 1994

Watford 1 Spurs 1 (Pre-season Friendly)

Since the announcement that Jurgen Klinsmann had joined the club, this match was eagerly awaited.

Klinsmann made his Spurs' debut and Watford were the fortunate beneficiaries of media attention and clamour for tickets for what would otherwise have been another run of the mill pre-season friendly.

Jurgen Klinsmann didn’t score in the game but his contribution was sufficient to show that Spurs had signed an outstanding player.
Spurs' goal was scored by Teddy Sheringham.


Sunday, August 05, 2007

Spurs in History - 5th August

5th August, 1967

Celtic 3 Spurs 3 (Hampden Park)

The F.A.Cup winners against the Champions of Europe in a high profile pre-season challenge game attracted 91,708 spectators. A newspaper report of the game - ‘In this magnificent football ‘Battle of Britain’ brimming over with entertainment and loaded with individual genius, the score see-sawed fantastically.’

Jimmy Greaves scored within a minute but Celtic were ahead by the 20th minute, goals which could be attributed to poor clearances from Pat Jennings. Alan Gilzean equalised before half-time and Greaves restored Spurs' lead only for Celtic to again equalise following a mistake by Jennings who appeared to be under pressure from the change in the laws restricting the goalkeeper to four paces before clearing.


Saturday, August 04, 2007

Spurs in History - 4th August

4th August, 1984

Enfield Town 0 Spurs 7 (Pre-season Friendly)

This game is of note among an increasing number of pre-season friendlies because Spurs fielded two members of the Argentinean World Cup winning team.

Ossie Ardiles was joined by Mario Kempes who was on a two game trial. He had been playing in Spain but failed to score in either game and was not offered a contract.

The goals in this game were scored by Garth Crooks(4), Gary Stevens, Garry Brooke and Mike Hazard.


Friday, August 03, 2007

Spurs in History - 3rd August

3rd August, 1974

Hearts 1 Spurs 1 (Pre-season Friendly)

On holiday in Edinburgh I went to this game and when Spurs scored I was the only person celebrating in the stand – much to the concern of my girlfriend.

The game was very low key, Spurs were playing their first pre-season game and were without Chivers, injured, and had Chris Jones leading the attack.

Spurs goal was scored by substitute John Pratt when he equalised late in the second half from what looked like a decidedly off-side position – but they all count!

My girl friend then insisted on walking away from the ground as close to the nearest policeman that she could find. It's the one and only Spurs' match she has ever attended and we've been married 31 years.


Thursday, August 02, 2007

Spurs in History - 2nd August

2nd August, 1997
Spurs 0 Fiorentina 2 (David Howells Testimonial)

David Howells was a loyal player to Spurs.

He made his debut as a striker, scoring in a 2-1 win at Sheffield Wednesday in February, 1986. He took time to establish himself and it was as a defensive midfielder/defender who could score important goals that he will be remembered.

He made 277 League appearances, scoring 22 goals, 58 Cup games brought 5 goals and was a member of the 1991 Cup winning team.

This game was the first opportunity for the Spurs fans to see the new summer signings playing at White Hart Lane – David Ginola and Les Ferdinand who were signed from Newcastle United.
David Howells left Spurs in May,1998 and signed for Southampton. He also played for Bristol City before retiring in 2000 due to a persistent knee problem. He now runs a string of successful soccer schools across Europe.


Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Spurs in History - 1st August

1st August, 1992

Glenavon 0 Spurs 1 (Pre-season Friendly)

Little of note occurred on this day, bringing me to a match arranged as part of the transfer of Gerard McMahon to Spurs. Terry Venables as chief guest opened the new stand that the club had just built and Spurs set about winning the game with a goal from Vinny Samways.

A good passing movement between Nayim and Durie sent Samways clear and with just the goalkeeper to beat he side-footed home.

McMahon played against his old team mates and went on to make twenty League and Cup appearances for Spurs (including 8 as substitute), scoring once before being transferred to Stoke City.