The British Cup Winners Cup comes under the spotlight in this issue as we look at the club’s Scottish tour of ‘21. We take a look at the day a Scottish Select XI came to White Hart Lane and featured Alan Gilzean’s first game at White Hart Lane.
We recall meeting Hibernian fourteen times in nine years and former goalkeeper Neil Sullivan is also featured. We also put on our genealogists outfits and discover a surprise connection.
In September 1921 Tottenham drew 0-0 at Middlesbourgh in the league game. Then instead of heading home they ventured north into Scotland for the second time in our history. When on the Monday we played the Scottish Cup holders, Patrick Thistle. Various Tottenham histories (4) list this game as a friendly. With Tottenham being the English Cup holders in what does seem to be a replay of the events when we won the FA Cup the first time and played Hearts (5). While this may have been an unofficial British Championship when I spoke to the Partick historian he referred to the game as the British Cup Winners Cup. Clearly a more recent title but the press would of certainly have ’played up’ the meeting of the two cup winners at the time of the event. As he states ‘It certainly does not feature as a friendly in our history book.’ Once again Tottenham had a Scot in the managers chair, Peter McWilliam. The game at Firhill saw the Scots again win, this time by 1-3 , in front of 20,000. Our goal coming from Charlie Wilson. The team showed just the one change from the league game two days earlier. Cantrell was injured. Spurs - Hunter, Clay, McDonald, Archibald, Walters, Grimsdell, Banks, Seed, Wilson, Thompson and Dimmock. That’s eight of the side that won the Cup the previously May.
There is also another Tottenham connection stemming from that game. Patrick’s left winger was one Willie Salisbury. Who played in both the Scottish Cup Final and the game V Tottenham. His grandson was one Gordon Smith who played for us in the 1970’s and was featured in Connections - Scotland, part 2.
After the game Tottenham headed even further north to Inverness. At that time there were four teams in that town. Two of them Inverness Thistle and Caledonian FC supplied the players to form the Inverness Select side to face Spurs on the Thursday. Interesting aside it was these two clubs that merged to become the Inverness Caledonian Thistle we have today. Spurs made three changes in what must have been an exciting match, even if we lost by 3-6. Lowe came in for Walters. Fanny Walden replaced Banks at outside right and Alex Lindsey for Wilson. Tottenham’s goals came from Grimsdell, Lindsey and Thompson. Robert McDonald our left back had been born in Inverness and played for the Caledonian's club as an amateur before signing Professional forms for Tottenham in 1919.
Tottenham returned to London and on the Saturday defeated Aston Villa at White Hart Lane by 3-1. Tottenham you will recall (6) ended that season as runners up to record their highest finish in the league to that point. Tommy Clay from the penalty spot, for his third penalty of the month, Seed and Bliss scoring for Spurs.
Neil Sullivan, (top pic) played for spurs from 2000-04. The goalie played 81 games for Tottenham. Born in South London he won 28 caps for Scotland, 12 whilst he was with Spurs and was a non-playing squad member at the 1998 World Cup.
The club held a memorial game for John White in November 1964 after his tragic death the previous July. The first team turned out V a Scotland XI in front of 29,375 at White Hart Lane. In the Spurs line up that night was a guest player, John’s brother Tom, who was on loan from Hearts for two days to play in this game.
Tom and Tony Marchi scored our goals in a game Scotland won 6-2. The Scotland team contained players from six different clubs and included Alan Gilzean who was then at Dundee.
After ‘Tottenham’s Scottish tour of 1921’ we didn’t venture north again until 1949 when we set out on a series of friendlies with Hibernian meeting them fourteen times in the next nine years. The first game fell on April 25th 1949 when they come to London and won 2-5. The two clubs would meet each season at the same time with the Scots having the better of the meetings. Three of the first four falling in London. Then in May 1953 we took part in the Coronation Cup (1) in Glasgow. That September we returned to Edinburgh and recorded our first victory over them with Ralph Wetton (7) scoring the only goal. At the end of that season they came south and Tottenham recorded the double over them winning 3-2. The next year we visited them and drew 1-1.1956/57 saw the series of games with various Scottish team which became known as the Anglo- Scottish Cup (2,3). 1957/58 saw us make our last trip to the Easter Road ground in the autumn and they returned to us in the April when we won 4-0. After all those meetings the last time the two sides have met to date occurred on 10th November 1958 with a 5-2 victory for the Spurs, a reverse of the score line of that first meeting.
t- Keith 16024542
f- peter shearman (old non de plume)
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With thanks also to - Partick Thistle FC, Robert Reid, Inverness FC, Bob Goodwin, Charles Bannerman, Alex Main. The Scotsman.
1 - Hotspur Towers - the Coronation Cup
2 - Hotspur Towers - The Anglo-Scottish Floodlight Cup.
3 - See also Hotspur Towers - Hibernian
4 - Phil Soar’s Official History and Bob Goodwin’s complete record.
5 - Spurs and the World Club Championship.
6 - See Tottenham and the Roaring 20’s.
7 - Ralph Whetton was a half back at the same time as Burgess and Nicholson. He was at the club the same time as his brother, Albert, who never appeared for the first team.
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Tribute to Bill Nicholson
The Road to Turin
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Interview with Marina Sirtis
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All Change At Spurs
History Of THFC: Part 1
Passage to India: Rohan Rickets
Thanks For The Memories
Our Tommy Carroll
The AVB Files: Part1
You The Jury
The Hand Of Hugo
Connection - Argentina
Creating a Reputation
Flying Down To Rio