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Bill's benchmark

Posted on 16 March 2004  - 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).

Dave Mackay believes Bill Nicholson set the benchmark in terms of style of play for which Spurs teams since have strived to follow.

The legendary midfielder was at White Hart Lane last Thursday evening for the first Tottenham Hotspur Hall of Fame dinner where Bill - who signed him from Hearts in 1959 - was inducted followed by the double winning side.

At the time of speaking to official Spurs website, Dave was unaware that the double winners were to be honoured and insisted it was only right that our greatest manager should be first.

"I think it is only natural that he is the first one in because he started the club up," reflected Dave. "When I came to the club in 1959 they were third or fourth from the bottom.

"Within a couple of years we had done the double, Bill bought in really good players and switched the whole club around in less than a couple of years.

"It was the best team I ever played in. Bill Nick got the team together, he was always looking for entertainment and his team had to play good football.

"He didn't want to win one-nothing and defend for 90 minutes - or just scrape a goal. He wanted good entertaining football for the fans and they got it."

A mandate he set for future teams to try and emulate.

"It is the Nicholson way and he was bought up on the Arthur Rowe 'push and run'. If I go and watch a game of football I want to see a game and it's got to be exciting. All Bill Nicholson teams were very exciting.

Dave went on to recall that Bill's jubilation at completing the double was tempered following the FA Cup final victory over Leicester.

"When we won the double Bill was a bit upset because the team hadn't done particularly good. Most would have been delighted just to have done it, but Bill was a bit disappointed because we hadn't performed as well as we should have done because Leicester finished up with ten players."