Skip to main content


  • Hall Of Fame Keith Burkinshaw
Subscribe to newsfeed 

Hall Of Fame: Keith Burkinshaw

Posted on 27 May 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).

Hall Of Fame: Keith Burkinshaw

Manager: 1976-84

Inducted: May 2004

Born at Higham, Barnsley on June 23, 1935, Harry Keith Burkinshaw attended Barnsley Grammar School and played for Barnsley Boys. On leaving school with six ‘O’ levels he worked for a time at the local Dodworth Colliery, transporting coal from the pit face.

A wing half, he signed amateur forms for Wolverhampton Wanderers and was placed with their Yorkshire nursery team Wath Wanderers but soon moved on to play for Denaby United in the Midland League.

Liverpool offered him his first professional contract in November, 1953. He stepped up for his League debut in a second division fixture against Port Vale on April 11, 1955. That proved to be his only senior outing for Liverpool although he did collect a Central League championship medal with their reserve team in 1956.

Keith moved on to Workington during December, 1957 for a reported £2,500 fee.

In eight seasons at the former League outfit he netted nine goals in 293 league appearances and had a stint as player/manager from November, 1964 until March, 1965. Workington awarded Keith a testimonial match against an All Stars team on December 3, 1963.

A three year spell at Scunthorpe United from May, 1965 brought his playing career to a close with a further 108 games played, scoring three goals. His time at Scunthorpe included a ten month spell as caretaker manager.

In 1968 Keith joined the coaching staff at Newcastle United serving as assistant coach for three years before a four year stint as first team coach.

Keith arrived at Tottenham during June 1975 as first team coach, working alongside manager Terry Neill and assistant manager Wilf Dixon. On July 14, 1976, he took over as manager. His first season saw us relegated from the old first division but we bounced back at the first attempt, notching our best ever division two win — 9-0 against Bristol Rovers — which proved crucial in edging out Brighton & Hove Albion for the third promotion place.

The dual signing of Ossie Ardiles and Ricky Villa soon after the 1978 World Cup gave the club a new lease of life. In 1980-81 the 100th FA Cup Final was won, 12 months later Keith became the first manager to lead his side to two major cup finals at Wembley in the same season. Another record was created by reaching the Football League Cup Final without conceding a goal. Our only reward for a season where we went so close on four fronts was retaining the FA Cup. A new club record of 18 FA Cup matches undefeated was created between January, 1981 and January, 1983.

On April 2, 1984 Keith announced his resignation with effect from May 31. His final match in charge saw the UEFA Cup Final won here at Tottenham in a dramatic penalty shoot-out against Anderlecht.

The following week, on May 29, Bobby Robson brought an England XI here for Keith’s testimonial match. Five guest players were involved, Pat Jennings, Liam Brady and Peter Taylor for Tottenham plus Brian Talbot and Trevor Brooking for the England XI. A crowd numbering 20,518 saw the teams draw 2-2 with Brady and Chris Hughton netting our goals and Bryan Robson and Ray Wilkins scoring for England.

The full line-ups were:
Tottenham: Jennings (Parks 50), Thomas, Hughton, Roberts (Stevens 50), Miller, Perryman (Hazard 50), Ardiles (Taylor 62), Crooks, Falco, Brady, Galvin.

England XI: Shilton (Woods 46), Duxbury (Gregory 46), Sansom, Talbot (Armstrong 46), Watson, Fenwick, Hateley (Lineker 46 (Hateley 62)), Robson (Wilkins 46), Francis, Brooking (Callaghan 46), Hunt (Barnes 46).

Keith used 61 players during his tenure, 38 of whom scored at least one goal. Two players were on our professional staff throughout his reign, Steve Perryman and Glenn Hoddle. Micky Hazard and Paul Miller were apprentice professionals at the time of his appointment. 44 players were given their League debut in our colours by Keith. Gerry Armstrong was the first, on August 21, 1976 at Ipswich Town and Robbie Brace the last, at Southampton on May 7, 1984.

A total of 21 players were signed for a fee by Keith. The late Ian Moores was the first, arriving from Stoke City during August, 1976, and the last Danny Thomas from Coventry City in June, 1983. 32 players with first team experience were released, of which 20 commanded a transfer fee. Jimmy Neighbour, to Norwich City in September, 1976, was the first to depart and Terry Gibson the last, to Coventry City during June, 1983. The nett spend over the eight year period was around the £3 million mark with a shade over £5 million outlaid and just under £2 million recovered.

Not surprisingly, Perryman leads the way having played in 412 of Keith’s competitive games in charge with Hoddle next on 353. Chris Hughton (251) and Ardiles (203) were the only other players to play in excess of 200 matches for Keith. Hoddle led the goalscoring charts with 85 followed by Steve Archibald (77), Garth Crooks (57) and Mark Falco (39).

On leaving Tottenham Keith had two year stints as coach of the Bahrain National team and Sporting CP, winning the Portuguese Super Cup during 1986-87. He returned to domestic management with a six month spell as Gillingham manager from October, 1988. During the Nineties he held the posts of chief scout at Swindon and assistant and manager at West Bromwich Albion — taking over as boss when Ardiles departed to come here as manager in 1993.

Since the mid 1990’s Keith has assisted the League Managers’ Association and is currently a mentor to their members studying the programme for football management at the University of Warwick. His present intake includes Paul Brush, Kenny Jackett and Leroy Rosenior.

May, 1997 saw him appointed director of football at Aberdeen, a position held until resigning in December, 2000, but remained as a non-executive director until the following summer. Keith has also served Stoke City in recent years as a scout and spent the current season as a match delegate for the FA Premier League.