Bill Nicholson - part 6
"Bill Nicholson was totally dedicated to this club. He was the first person to arrive in the morning and the last person to leave at night. He's a fantastic man and it was an honour to serve under him.
It was the lure of playing for Nicholson that made me decide to join Spurs.”
- Martin Peters
Each day this week we have started with a tribute from someone who worked with him. Today a few thoughts from the man himself but first what did his contemporaries think.
“I have always had the deepest respect for Bill Nicholson as a person and as a manager. The Spurs boss is an honest Yorkshireman and you will go a long way before finding a straighter character than that. Bill has never wavered in his determination to give White Hart Lane fans the best." - Bill Shankly
"You had to play with him or against him to appreciate what a great defender he was, and when the opposing manager was looking for a weakness in the Tottenham defence, the name Nicholson never came up." - Joe Mercer
"Bill eventually became Mr. Tottenham Hotspur, and produced such a dazzling team at White Hart Lane that they won the double and played the game in a way that was an object lesson to everybody." - Brian Clough
Even after I finished as manager, I still continued to do scouting to help out after that. This club has always been a good attraction for me.” Then looking forward to the Florentina game he said “It is, I hope, going to be a good day for everyone and a good game,” he said. “I feel we’ll see a decent game because Florentina are a very good Italian team.”
The line up for image 3 above - back row, John Hills, Bobby Smith, John Ryden, Maurice Norman, Mel Hopkins, Peter Baker and David Mackay. Middle row -Cliff Jones, Tony Marchi, Bill Brown, Jonathan Hollowbread, Ron Henry and Les Allen. Front row, Tommy Harmer, Cecil Poynton (trainer), Danny Blanchflower, Bill Nicholson and Terry Dyson.
Bill Nicholson said during the Double celebrations, “I’m the luckiest manager, I’m the proudest manager.” I’m reminded of the old sporting adage the harder I work and the more I train the luckier I get.
Bill Nicholson devoted his whole life to Tottenham Hotspur and to our fans and will never be surpassed as the greatest individual in our history. He lifted Spurs from mediocrity to the sublime as we became the first British club to win a European trophy and to so many wonderful achievements such as that special Double of 1961." - Daniel Levy
To end this series tomorrow a few personal memories of when I met the great man.
Acknowledgements will be at end of series but special thanks today to THFC,
Images - Top - Lilywhite Magazine,THFC, 1950, 2- Topfoto, 3- Getty images, 4- the Independent, 6- the Daily Telegraph.
About the author:
Keith Harrison, Nilgiris, TN
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