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Spurs’ Cult Heroes – Who Would You Choose?

The clue is in the title – the first all-action book on Spurs is imminent, and all lilywhite fans are most warmly invited to pitch in.A list of 20 fans’ favourites is being compiled, and frankly, for a team as steeped in history as ours, there just ain’t enough room for everyone. Some names effortlessly pick themselves – true Lane legends such as Blanchflower, Perryman, Mabbutt, Greaves and Bill Nick. Numerous others had more fleeting Tottenham careers, but by golly left an indelible imprint – Gazza, Ginola, Klinsmann et al. So feel free to hurl your suggestions this way – each and every one will be pored over by the tireless scribes at AANP, as we look to whittle down the list to 20. The planned tome will eventually chart each player’s Tottenham career, examining why they became a fans’ favourite. It will be heavy on anecdotes and reminiscences – so by all means include your own memories of your personal cult heroes, from both on and off the pitch.

To set the ball rolling, here’s a provisional list, of not-quite 20:
Bill Nicholson
Danny Blanchflower
Dave Mackay
Jimmy Greaves
Bobby Smith
Cliff Jones
Steve Perryman
Cyril Knowles
Glenn Hoddle
Pat Jennings
Ossie Ardiles
Ricky Villa
Gary Mabbutt
Graham Roberts
Chris Waddle
Paul Gascoigne
Jurgen Klinsmann
David Ginola
Steffen Freund

Other names to be considered (in no particular order) include Martin Chivers, Mike England, Len Duquemin, Sandy Brown, Neil Ruddock, Ted Ditchburn, Ralph Coates, Arthur Grimsdell, Jimmy Dimmock, Ron Burgess, Eddie Baily,  Alan Mullery, Nayim, Robbie Keane, Ledley, Ronnie Rosenthal, Garth Crooks, Steve Archibald, Ray Clemence, Erik Thorstvedt, Gary Lineker.

Get involved!

53 Responses

  1. toppsy7 Says:

    Robbie Keane?!?! He should be nowhere near that list! consider it a disgrace you even include it anywhere near names like Bill Nick, Perryman, Mackay or Archibald!!

    Next you will put Zokora in there

  2. Spooky Says:

    I wish there was footage of Burgess. Wasn’t he meant to be even better than Mackay? Although I only say that because of the Best Spurs Eleven vid from around 15 years back (the one with El Tel presenting it).

  3. Rlowspur Says:

    What no Mabbutt or John White

  4. Saul Says:

    Burgess was more like Blanchflower than Mackay

  5. Park Laner Says:

    As a cult hero imo, it must be someone that may divide opinions. Graham Roberts is just a hero to all for his never say die attitude.
    Nico Claesen – 80’s supersub
    Steffend Freund – not a great but played for the club with passion
    Mark Falco – 3rd choice behind Crooks & Archibald but a top striker in his own right.
    Paul Miller – Tough tackling, no nonsense full back
    Chris Armstrong – Injury prone, derided by some sections of thefans but still scored over 60 goals for the club
    Richard Gough – we’re it not for the lure of Rangers IMo would have
    probably been our best ever defender
    Tony Galvin – Russian speaking, flying left winger

    The list could go on..

  6. JOHN ADAM Says:

    My order of preference would be DANNY BLANCHFLOWER, JIMMY GREAVES and PAT JENNINGS.

  7. bobby boy Says:

    Where the hell is the late great Bill Brown

  8. provence Says:

    1. Bill Nicholson
    2. Glenn Hoddle
    3. Danny Blanchflower
    4. Dave Mackay
    5. Jimmy Greaves
    6. Steve Perryman
    7. Pat Jennings
    8. Cliff Jones
    9. Bobby Smith
    10. Martin Chivers
    11. Alan Gilzean
    12. Cyril Knowles
    13. Ossie Ardiles
    14. Martin Peters
    15. Gary Mabbutt
    16. Gary Lineker
    17. Mike England
    18. John White
    19. Alan Mullery
    20. Ted Ditchburn

  9. Arthur Rowe Says:

    JOHN WHITE He would probably start and you don’t even mention him.

    Any list of Spurs legends has to start as follows:

    Bill Brown

    Peter Baker – Ron Henry – Maurice Norman

    Danny Blanchflower -Dave Mackay- John White – Cliff Jones -Terry Dyson

    Les Allen – Bobby Smith

    I know some are in but they should all be in

  10. Martin Says:

    A guy called Brown. Scored two goals in the 1901 cup final replay. Also scored in the 3-3 first game.

  11. Eeejit Says:

    Sol Campbell?? Oh hang on… Scratch that…

    Is Jose Dominguez in with a shout?

  12. Ridge Says:

    By not including Ramon Vega you are all absolute idiots!!! He is my idol and always will be!!! Now everyone sort it out and get this man on the list!!!

  13. Park Laner Says:

    Bobby Boy: Bill Brown was Goalkeeper in the double winning side

    Arthur Rowe: The double winning side are all legends – but cult heroes was what the author of the question asked for

  14. Park Laner Says:

    Thimothee Atouba – stepovers in his own box – never lost the ball, Curling one around Stephen Carr vs Barcodes – quality

  15. mark 36 Says:

    I,m 36 and in my lifetime there can be only one and thats Glenn Hoddle but surely cult hero of all time is a toss up between Danny Blanchflower and Bill Nicolson.

  16. Ridge Says:

    p.s. I still dream of Rasiak

  17. AllActionNoPlot Says:

    Oops, apologies for Clive Allen and Gary Mabbutt omissions – genuine mistakes, they somehow got wiped when I was formatting this.

    I think the 1901 goalscorer was a lad called Sandy Brown.

    (Will do my damnedest to get Ramon Vega in there somehow…)

  18. Paul Johnny Says:

    I had a dream last night about Helder Postiga, that goal about Liverpool. I mean what a goal, if only he could have scored more for us.

    Stalteri should be on the list as well for that goal against West Ham.

    Andy Sinton is up there as well.

    I think maybe Teddy Sheringham should have come in with a shout.

  19. Chris Says:

    If you were on the terraces in the 80s you’d have to say Danny Thomas!

  20. Ridge Says:

    well if ur gonna throw Any Sinton in there then u have to look at the other side in the form of Ruel Fox… he was an out and out legend… I remember I used to chant “Ruel Fox… from the 6 yard box”… as he could not score from the half way line like Nayim but get him in that 6 yard box and he was lethal… if only Lennon could be as good!!!

  21. Anonymous Says:

    Steffen Freund?! r u kidding??

    i would include Teddy Sheringham, Darren Anderton, Nick Barmby, Ian Walker

  22. mark 36 Says:

    What about Taricco!!

  23. Ted from HK Says:

    These aren’t cult players. They’re more like all-time best Spurs players. Cult would be somepne like Alfie Conn, Jimmy Neighbour, Terry Naylor, Jimmy Pearce, Gary Stevens etc.

  24. AllActionNoPlot Says:

    Aye, not necessarily our best players – to give recent examples, Berba and Sol will get nowhere near a cult heroes list.

    Thinking more along the fans’ favourites theme, and guys synonymous with the club.

  25. Paul Johnny Says:


    He is the new Norwich Captain!!

  26. mark 36 Says:

    jose domingez was so small he could run between peoples legs!

  27. Paul Johnny Says:

    Could you count Chirpy into the list!!

    He has been there years!!

  28. Ridge Says:

    I know Ian Walker was great but lets not forget the Great …. Erik ‘the Viking’ Thorstvedt!! The first Norwegian to ever win the FA Cup… fact!!

  29. tottenhamtony Says:

    Sir Gary Mabbutt, Micky Hazard & Ricky Villa – all Spurs icons 2 me

  30. Ridge Says:

    When people say do you remember that thunderous freekick against Arsenal most people think Gazza… I think Christian Ziege… that man was brilliant…. he was like goals on tap from left back… when speaking to his mum n dad before christmas he would ask for goals for christmas not tackles like most defenders… especially sol campbell that man loves a bit of tackle but that’s different!! Speaking of Ziege another of my cult heroes having been an attacking left back is Reto Ziegler… if only he’d been given more time at the Lane I think he would of won himself a place in every Spurs fans hearts!!

  31. tj Says:

    John Pratt, Danny Thomas, Ralph Coates & Alfie Conn

  32. The Fox Says:

    Er… Do you guys know what ‘cult hero’ means? Someone who divides opinion but is a hero only to a small group of people. So tell me how Bill Nick is a ‘cult hero’ again?

  33. Anonymous Says:

    Alfie Conn – a true cult hero

  34. Young Pyo-Lee Says:

    my cult hero was Toda, he was the reason I joined Tottenham in the first place!

  35. tim Says:

    cult is the key word here and only one man fits the bill… nayim

  36. Toda Says:

    Thank you Young- I love you!

  37. Ridge Says:

    as if Toda and Pyo-Lee are on here… come on people take this seriously! I think Nayim is defo a cult hero but more for his goal from the half way line after he left Spurs than what he did whilst at the club tho!

  38. Walis Says:

    On playing ability Sol would b there any day- he and mabbs would be my centre back pair with roberts as sub.

    Hoddle is my pick- a midfield maestro that could turn on sixpence, hit a six pence from tens of yards with either foot; could probably keep up one with either foot. And in his playing days cost around sixpence(alright six fifty pences) to see him at the Lane.
    (Please don’t string me up for Sol jibe for this pre-traitor days analysis).

  39. David Says:

    Glen Hoddle true brillance and Gasgcoine that goal alone 🙂

  40. phil Says:

    what’s the difference between ‘cult hero’ and ‘great player’, if any?

  41. AllActionNoPlot Says:

    Cult hero has a connection with the fans, even if a tad limited talent-wise. Freund wasn’t our greatest ever player, but a couple of people have named him before, say, Lineker. Guess I’m looking for players who achieved legendary status amongst the fans for what they did at the club.

  42. JohnnyB Says:

    Cult hero…yeah, I’d put Freund firmly in that bracket. Paul Allen (Clives cousin) great player though Clive stole all the plaudits. Sir Les, there was a man not afraid of a goalpost. Bobby Mimms…he was a cult. Ian Walker? Bit sh1t but enjoyed letting in goals….never without a smile on his face after a tame shot squirmed under his body.

  43. Keith Swanky Says:

    Nayim for his 50 yarder against the arsenal

  44. leonardo Says:

    From the late 70’s the awesome Peter Taylor – speed and finishing ability – he was probably our main man before Hoddle (the best player I’ve ever seen) reached maturity. Soft spot for Taricco – horrible little mutant the opposition hated!

  45. Ginge1 Says:

    I understand this cult hero bit, but I couldn’t put someone like Freund or Atouba in any ‘top’ list just cos they were so, so, limited as footballers. For me Graham Roberts was the man in the 80’s. During his time there were better players at the club (Ossie, Glenn) but Roberts was who I dreamed of being as I chopped down some flying forward while playing junior football! 😉

  46. Willem Korsten Says:

    What about some of the ‘lost’ players of the last few years? Korsten, Erik Edman, Ziegler, Atouba, Rasiak, Postiga, Kazayuki Toda… Mouassa Saib? Perhaps cult figures due to their ability to arrive at Spurs, make a sufficiently mediocre impression, and then disappear back into the wilderness.

  47. Hodgey Says:

    Two words Dean Austin!!

  48. foxy Says:

    does it have to be players? what about Keith Burkinshaw? properspurs hero and is telling “ther used to be a football club over there” still rings true!

  49. Rlowspur Says:

    I really think that the late great Ian Moores & John Lacey should be in there somewhere. Where I don’t know, just somewhere.

  50. Beardo Says:

    I’m far too young to have ever seen the man playing the beautiful game in the flesh, so I know I can’t really make a true assessment of his cult hero status. And I know he made the dreadful error of transferring to L’Arse. But, excuses over with, I must make a plea for the inclusion of Pat Jennings.

    I base my case on the sheer brilliance of the man as a goalkeeper. He can, without doubt, be placed firmly in the top bracket of ‘keepers to have ever played the game, alongside Yashin, Banks, Schmeichel and… well that’s it – he was that good! And he scored with a kick from his hands once. (Feel free to omit Robinson despite his similar feat.) So there, I’ve said it. Criticise me if you will, but the man is an all-time great and long-time servant (time spent down the road excepted) of the club. Get him in.

  51. siberiaspur Says:

    Chivers would get my vote over Villa

  52. claudio Says:

    Can’t believe no mention of the great Alan Gilzean, a wonderfully talented player and in his day well known as King of White Hart Lane as per the song!
    Just ask Jimmy Greaves and he will confirm Gilly as a definite legend of WHL

  53. Kevin Moss Says:

    I know its too late but why didnt the great Alfie Conn get in?.
    I watched his all too few appearances with my mum & granddad. When I grow up, I said, I want to play like that!. To me he was the ultimate Spurs player – wild yet cultured. A man that would sacrifice the league title for a moment of individual glory.
    Alfie, Alfie….. you are Tottenham Hotspur. You saved us from the drop in 76 – we would we be now without you?.

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