Skip to main content


  • Sully on Chelsea switch
Subscribe to newsfeed 

Sully on Chelsea switch

Posted on 13 September 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).

Amid all the speculation surrounding Chelsea's summer spending spree, it came of something of a surprise to Neil Sullivan that his name should find its way onto the shopping list.

Backed by new owner Roman Abramovich, Claudio Ranieri spent the close-season assembling an all-star cast - recruiting on a grand scale and the likes of Damien Duff, Joe Cole, Adrian Mutu, Juan Veron, Geremi, Hernan Crespo and Claude Makelele duly checked in at Stamford Bridge.

Meanwhile, despite reports linking him with a move away from White Hart Lane, Sully was preparing for the new season with the rest of the squad and, like most others, reading about events at Chelsea in the newspapers.

"I was at Tottenham and not really thinking of it - it's funny how just one call can change your mind about a lot of things," said Neil, who raised a wry smile when asked if he has be right on top of his game just in training.

"There's one or two decent players... "

A double quirk of the fixture list saw to it that Neil's opening game in Chelsea colours was against Spurs reserves and the first senior game since his leaving is this weekend's encounter at Stamford Bridge.

"I've got a move and it's like I'm starting all over again. It is a fresh start, a fresh challenge and a new experience. Hopefully I can do well, get a few games under my belt and see where it takes me.

"It's funny how the fixtures work out."

Reflecting on his three season's at the club, Neil has fondest memories of the first where he established himself as No.1 with some fine displays that were recognised by the fans.

"In the first season I was honoured with the Player of the Year from a lot of the supporters clubs which I am very proud of and I have the trophies in a little cabinet at home.

"I look at them every now and again and it was a great honour to be voted for that at a club like Tottenham.

"Obviously the cup run we went on was a big thrill - Charlton and West Ham were great times. Arsenal in the semi-final was a bit of a hiccup. It was a good run, I enjoyed those games and they were big nights for us.

"The Worthington Cup final, again, unfortunately we were a bit unlucky to lose.

"I've got a lot of good memories from the place and it will be interesting when we play them on Saturday."

A hip injury towards the end of his second season at the Lane, followed by the suffering of a broken thumb at the beginning of last saw Kasey Keller seize his opportunity to secure a first team place.

"Kasey took his chance and that is how it goes. You're either playing or you're not, that is the thing, outfield players might get a game in a different position - as a goalkeeper it is either in or out.

"The only way you're really going to get in is injury or lack of form - Kasey did neither and performed well. That's the way it goes and I had to move on."