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40 years ago today

Posted on 15 May 2003  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

Today marks the 40th anniversary of our European Cup-Winners Cup triumph in Rotterdam, thus becoming the first British club to lift a European trophy and club historian Andy Porter takes a look back at how the cup was won and the men who contributed to our success.

With 24 clubs participating we were one of seven to gain a bye in the first round, plus holders Atletico Madrid - exempt until round two - who defeated Fiorentina in a replayed final at Stuttgart in September, held over from the end of the previous campaign.

Back then only the closing date for each round was designated by UEFA, it was up to the two clubs to arrange the dates between themselves. This was also before the away goals rule was introduced so a neutral venue for a possible play-off game also had to be determined. As it was, we did not need a third game but it is interesting to note that Hillsborough (v Rangers) and Highbury (v Slovan) were the grounds selected as was an unnamed London venue for the OFK tie.

Our first taste of Cup-Winners Cup action was a "Battle of Britain" contest with Rangers, 4-2 conquerors of Sevilla in round one. An incident packed first half here saw John White head us into a fourth minute lead which Willie Henderson levelled five minutes later. Another White header, from a Jimmy Greaves corner, made it 2-1 and Les Allen met a deep cross from White following a Danny Blanchflower free kick to head home number three. Just before the break a shot from Allen was diverted into his own net by Rangers' skipper Bobby Shearer but before the interval Jimmy Millar headed in to make it 4-2. Ten minutes from time Maurice Norman shot home after Allen had nodded on another Greaves corner.

Greaves it was who opened the scoring in the return leg at Ibrox - delayed for six days following a fog shrouded Glasgow on the originally scheduled date of December 5. A typical run from the half way line saw him bypass three defenders before slotting home on eight minutes. Ralph Brand levelled for Rangers two minutes after the break but Bobby Smith then rifled in a crisp right foot shot from a White centre. David Wilson equalised before Dave Mackay set up Smith to head our third with two minutes remaining.

Czech side Slovan Bratislava, 2-1 winners over Lausanne, were our quarter final opponents. A poor performance in the first leg could have been much more damaging than a 0-2 defeat, had it not been for the heroics performed by goalkeeper Bill Brown. Ludovic Cvetler (29 minutes) and Josef Obert (54) found a way past him but the Scottish custodian thwarted everything else to keep us in the tie.

Slovan could have extended their lead in the early stages of the return here with Anton Moravcik seeing his effort rebound from an upright and Brown save the day when Cvetler was clean through. As it was, two three-goal bursts saw off the Czech challenge. Mackay opened the scoring on the half hour with a left foot shot. Seven minutes later Greaves turned in from the left to level the aggregate scores and by half time Smith had thundered in a header from a Frank Saul centre. A Greaves lob from the edge of the area midway through the second period made it 4-0 on the night then two goals around the 75th minute mark put the issue beyond doubt. First, Cliff Jones headed home a Tony Marchi cross and then White intercepted a Jan Popluhar pass to net our sixth.

The Red Army Stadium, Belgrade, was the venue for the semi final first leg with OFK. White was again on the scoresheet with a 26th minute left foot volley from 20 yards. Milorad Popov levelled from the spot 10 minutes later after Mackay was adjudged to have handled. We were reduced to 10 men on 55 minutes when Greaves was dismissed by Hungarian referee Lajos Aranjosi for aiming a kick at Blagomir Krivokuca. Twenty minutes from time Terry Dyson lashed home the winner.

Greaves was suspended from the return leg here. Mackay, who replaced him up front, opened the scoring on 23 minutes from a Blanchflower cross. Josip Skoblar equalised five minutes later but Jones restored our lead just before the break. Bobby Smith netted with a diving header four minutes into the second half to give us a 5-2 aggregate win.

Arrangements for the final in Rotterdam saw the biggest airlift in British sporting history at the time. Around 2,500 of the 4,000 fans travelled with the Spurs Supporters Club, filling 33 planes. Prices ranged from £8.10.0 (£8.50) for a day return flight to £13.10.0 (£13.50) for an overnight stay. Train travel cost £6.5.0 (£6.25) with match tickets priced from 4s. (20 pence).

Greaves opened the scoring at the Feyenoord Stadium, slotting home a 16th minute right wing cross from Jones. Dyson set up White soon after. His 20-yard drive smashed against the underside of the crossbar and into the net. Atletico had their best spell immediately after the break. Within two minutes Ron Henry conceded a penalty when punching away a goalbound effort with Brown beaten. Enrique Collar scored from the resultant spot kick and it was not until midway through the half that we restored our two-goal advantage. Dyson's lob from an acute angle dropped neatly into the net and with 10 minutes remaining Greaves netted the fourth. Dyson rounded off the scoring with a spectacular strike from the edge of the area.

Danny Blanchflower was presented with the trophy by UEFA President George Wiederkehr.

How The Cup Was Won
31.10.62 Rangers (H) Won 5-2 White 2, Allen, Shearer own goal, Norman.
Att. 58,859.
Brown, Baker, Henry, Blanchflower, Norman, Mackay, Medwin, White, Allen, Greaves, Jones.
11.12.62 Rangers (A) Won 3-2 Smith, R. 2, Greaves. Att. 80,000.
Brown, Baker, Henry, Blanchflower, Norman, Mackay, Medwin, White, Smith, R., Greaves, Jones.

05.03.63 Slovan Bratislava (A) Lost 0-2. Att. 15,000.
Brown, Baker, Henry, Marchi, Norman, Mackay, Saul, White, Smith, R., Greaves, Jones.
14.03.63 Slovan Bratislava (H) Won 6-0 Greaves 2, Mackay, White, Smith, R., Jones. Att. 61,504.
Brown, Hopkins, Henry, Marchi, Norman, Mackay, Saul, White, Smith, Greaves, Jones.

24.04.63 OFK Belgrade (A) Won 2-1 White, Dyson. Att. 60,000.
Brown, Baker, Henry, Marchi, Norman, Mackay, Greaves, Smith, J., Smith, R., White, Dyson.
01.05.63 OFK Belgrade (H) Won 3-1 Mackay, Jones, Smith, R. Att. 59,736.
Brown, Baker, Henry, Blanchflower, Norman, Marchi, Jones, White, Smith, Mackay, Dyson.

15.05.63 Atletico Madrid (Rotterdam) Won 5-1 Greaves 2, Dyson 2, White.
Att. 40,000.
Brown, Baker, Henry, Blanchflower, Norman, Marchi, Jones, White, Smith, Greaves, Dyson.

The Men Who Made History
Les Allen App 1 Gls 1
Notched 61 goals in 137 senior games for us between 1959 and 1965. Father of Clive, he recently underwent a hip replacement operation with help from the Tottenham Tribute Trust. Now lives in retirement in Essex, aged 65.

Peter Baker App 6
Made 342 senior appearances, scoring three goals, from 1953 to 1965. Lives at Durban, South Africa. Ran an office furniture and stationery business. Now aged 71.

Danny Blanchflower App 4
Inspirational skipper for both club and country. Scored 21 goals in 362 games between 1954 and 1963. Wrote regular newspaper columns after his retirement from playing. Passed away during December, 1993, aged 67.

Bill Brown App 7
Agile shot stopper who kept goal in 262 matches for us from 1959 to 1966. Now lives at Ontario, Canada where he worked in property development for many years. Retired, now aged 71.

Terry Dyson App 3 Gls 3
Undisputed man of the match in Rotterdam. Scored 55 goals in 209 games from the wing between 1955 and 1965, including eight in nine European appearances. Now aged 68, he lives in Middlesex and works part time for the FA Premier Academy League as a match assessor.

Jimmy Greaves App 6 Gls 5
Club record goalscorer with 266 goals in 379 appearances from 1961 to 1970. Has since worked as a television presenter, media pundit and after dinner speaker. Youngest member of the 1963 cup winning team, now aged 63.

Ron Henry App 7
First signed as an amateur 50 years ago, he still helps out with our Academy U19 team. Made 287 senior appearances between 1955 and 1965. Runs his own plant nursery in Hertfordshire. Now aged 68.

Mel Hopkins App 1
Played 240 games from 1952 to 1964 and later ran a sports centre at Horsham for a number of years. Still a regular visitor here on matchdays. Lives in Sussex, aged 68.

Cliff Jones App 6 Gls 2
Goalscoring winger notching 159 goals in 378 games between 1958 and 1968. Worked as a PE teacher until 2001 and is now a matchday host at White Hart Lane. Lives in Hertfordshire, now aged 68.

Dave Mackay App 6 Gls 2
Missed out on the Rotterdam final due to damaged stomach muscles. Made 318 appearances in our colours, netting 51 goals, from 1959 to 1968 before managerial and coaching appointments at home and abroad spanning 25 years. Now lives in the Midlands, aged 68.

Toni Marchi App 5
Local product, Edmonton born, made 260 appearances between 1950 and 1965, scoring seven goals. Worked in the building trade after his playing days. Now lives in retirement in Essex, aged 70.

Terry Medwin App 2
Scored 72 goals in 215 games from 1956 until injury sustained on our tour to South Africa in 1963. Lives in his native Wales, now aged 70.

Maurice Norman App 7 Gls 1
Played 411 games between 1955 and 1965, scoring 19 goals. Later ran an Essex knitwear and tapestry shop with his wife before working as a market gardener. Celebrated his 69th birthday earlier this week, now lives in retirement at Suffolk.

Frank Saul App 2
Homegrown talent who scored 45 goals in 129 games from 1960 to 1967. Remained in his native Essex working in the building industry for many years. Now aged 59.

John Smith App 1
Utility man who played 24 games, scoring one goal, between 1960 and 1963. Later worked as social club manager for United Biscuits. Passed away during February, 1988, aged 49.

Bobby Smith App 6 Gls 4
Bustling centre forward second only to Greaves in our all-time goalscoring chart with 208 in 317 appearances from 1955 to 1964. Still lives in north London, now aged 70.

John White App 7 Gls 5
Scottish schemer who scored 47 goals in 219 games from 1959. Was cruelly struck down by lightning whilst sheltering on Crews Hill golf course during July, 1964, aged 27.

As well as manager Bill Nicholson, the backroom staff during the successful cup run consisted of assistant manager Harry Evans - who passed away during December, 1962, aged 43 - and trainer Cecil Poynton whose first association with the club was as a player in August, 1922.