The man who penned the popular Harry Hole detective series, in addition to hit standalone stories such as Headhunters and The Son, has seen more than 23 million copies of his books sold worldwide with his work translated into over 40 different languages.
Born in Oslo and still residing in the city, the 56-year-old, who at one stage played football for Norwegian top-flight side Molde, was thrilled to get the chance to take in one of our games on his doorstep at Ullevaal Stadion on Friday and explained how his love for the club first came about.
“It all started when I was eight or nine years old when my brother, who is five years older than me, told me: ‘Okay, in case you’re in doubt, you’re a Spurs fan and you have to learn the whole squad by heart by Monday!’
“That’s what I did, me and my younger brother. The whole family are Spurs fans. My nephew is here today and he’s a Spurs fan too, so it runs in the family. I’ve been following Spurs ever since – the early-1970s were happy days of course, then we had happy moments in the 1980s too, the 1990s were a bit different but now I think the happy days are back.
“Lately, the players have been doing great. If you take away the last three or four matches of last season – and the start – it was great, amazing. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a better Tottenham team in the way they’ve played than last year and if they continue to do so this season I feel confident that they will be in the top three. When they play at their best they will simply beat City, Chelsea, United – and Arsenal, of course!”
Jo’s busy writing and travelling schedule, in addition to his commitments as a musician – he is the lead singer and guitarist for Norwegian rock band Di Dierre – means he doesn’t get a chance to attend football matches very often and, as such, he’s yet to see us in action in person at White Hart Lane.
He has visited our world-famous stadium before, though.
“I‘ve been to White Hart Lane once – in the summer when I was 14 years old. Me and my brother went there but the place was closed so we couldn’t get in!” he recalled with a smile.
“My brother had saved up a lot of money to buy supporter gear and he was so frustrated that all the shops were closed that he actually went to Highbury and bought some Arsenal supporter gear instead – we have never forgiven him for that and he is still embarrassed about it!”
Speaking to Spurs TV pitchside on Friday, Jo was asked how he would cast our current squad in one of his novels. Interestingly, he picked Hugo Lloris as “a good guy and defender of law and order” while Dele Alli was identified as the hero and the killer was Harry Kane! Check out Jo’s answer in full in the video below…
Look out for more from Jo – including a chat about his favourite Spurs players of all time and his own endeavours in the beautiful game – in our official matchday programme in the opening weeks of the season.