Spurs' Cult Heroes - Fans' Memories

Spurs’ Cult Heroes – Your Memories of Cliff Jones…

Cristiano who? Cliff Jones was the original goalscoring winger, equally at home on the right or left of the glorious double-winning team of 1961 – and AANP wants to hear your favourite memories of the man. Jones is the latest great to feature in Spurs’ Cult Heroes, the forthcoming book looking at players who achieved legendary status amongst us fans for what they did at the club, and including reminiscences from former players, managers and you the fans. 

As ever, all are most welcome to leave memories – and browse those of others – regarding some of the featured players: Glenn Hoddle here, Ossie and Ricky here, Gary Mabbutt here, Graham Roberts here, Jimmy Greaves here, Clive Allen here, Jurgen Klinsmann here

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24 replies on “Spurs’ Cult Heroes – Your Memories of Cliff Jones…”

i went to WHL during the early 1960s and see what i called proper football a class act in all positions of the field ,none better than the welsh wizard cliff jones ,it was a real art form to see him take up the ball around the half way line and defenders not know how to take the ball from him without giving away a foul,a true master of his trade.When players stayed loyal to one club a tottenham player thru and thru

I have never forgotten the thrill of watching Cliff Jones motoring down the wing at WHL as part of one of the best all time Tottenham sides. I now live in the same village & bump into him in the Coop!

I also had the pleasure of watching Spurs in the early sixties and Cliff Jones was one of my favourintes. To a young lad – as I was at the time – he seemed to me to be unbleievably fast.

The pitch then was surrounded by red a shale path and then a low white wall topped with half-hoops through which we boys would watch the game, having been passed through to the front by all the adults. My spot was on the touchline towards the north-east corner of the Lane.

I can remember more than once, when Cliff Jones was tripped when running at full speed. He would skid off the pitch and across the shale before thumping into the wall. Up he would get, white shirt stained red from the shale and back into the fray.

I suppose Aaron Lennon is as quick if not quicker but, to my now adult eyes, it seems he is pedestrian in comparison.

Like a greyhound he sped down either flank, although I always believed his best wing was the left. Like an Exocet he flew through the air to meet the ball and head it into the net. P{otent shooting from either feet. Cliff Jones will never be surpassed as a Spurs winger

He was my teacher at Highbury Grove in the mid 80’s, a lovely lovely fella and even back then, he was fitter than any of the kids in the school, a true class act.

He was also my sports teacher at Highbury Grove in the 90’s and yep he was faster then any of us! He once chipped the ball in the air from a corner,and then ran in the box to head the ball(still in the air!) into the goal…the whole class was amazed!

I once remember seeing Cliff Jones pick up the ball just outside our penalty box and set off up the left wing leaving a trail of beaten defenders as he arrived at the opposition corner flag, looking up and seeing no-one to pass to he then dribbeld all the way back to our penalty area before passing to Maurice Norman to set another attack going. For me, his ability to run at speed but always keep the ball on the end of his stride was the secret to beating defenders and he was the best I have ever seen. Add his shooting and heading abilities, especially with the proper footballs used in those days, and he was, and remains, the best in the game. Only Ronalso comes close, but he doesn’t have Cliff’s class.

I watched Cliff Jones in my youth in the 60’s. He was agreat winger, although I do remember him beating player after player until he ran out of space and crossed the opposition goal line. he was’nt tall but I have a clear memory of him going for a corner and heading the ball out of Gordon Bank’s hands.- And Banksy was jumping to catch the cross.

From the description of where you stood Geoff H we must have been vitually rubbing shoulders. The only difference being that my buddy and I got to the ground for the gates to open at 1pm so we could take up our position pitch side and then while away the next two hours in anticipation.
As young boys from the late 50s on we watched that great Double team assembled right before oue eyes.
Of all the young gods who paraded their skills on that hallowed turf Cliff Jones was the one who excited me the most. The sight of him in full flight steaming down the wing, leaving defenders litttered in his wake, was more thrilling than I can put into words.
His party piece was to fly past 3 or 4 defenders, one after the other, bear down on the opposition goal and, without breaking stride, cooly lob the ball over the advancing keeper into the net.
A memory embellished by the passage of time? No. I really saw him do it. The man was different class.
He became, and has remained, my model for wing play. A classic footballing thoroughbred.

Great memories, thanks for sharing these. AANP Snr is another big fan of Jones; it’s seems a shame that there’s so little footage of him today.

My memories of the welsh wizard was every time he played he never failed to please the fans and always gave on hundred percent and more for Super Spurs.But mu favourite memory was recently talking on the time of our lives with Bobby Smith and Terry Dyson .Telling tales from the Glory Glory years you could smell the dubbing boots the leather ball and half time oranges and wintergreen. A gentleman amongst legends priceless.COYSL

My dad first toook me to Spurs when I was 7/8, in 64/65. I think this was towards the end of his Spurs career but if my memory doesn’t deceive me he scored from a far post header in a match vs Ason Villa which Spurs drew 5-5 I think having been 5-1 up – although dad thought Spurs won 6-5. He was fantastic in the air for a short fella. I met him on the train a few years back – still very recognisable and he responded to my “Are you Cliff Jones?” with no sign of irritation.

I only saw Cliff Jones in his last year or so at the Lane. One of his last matches was a 7-0 drubbing of Burnley in 1968. Greaves scored a hat-trick, Martin Chivers and Jimmy Roberstson scored one a piece, and Jones scored the other two. One of his goals was scored after he hit the post. HE Actually HIT the post with his head crashing into it following a diving header. Incredibly brave from what I remember…

At the age of 14. 48 years ago I had this article published in the Tottenham Local newspaper. Cliff Jones is my favourite player he signed for Spurs Feb 1958 and is a Welsh International.
Cliff is known throughout the world for his devastating runs, and his wonderful ball control. Also his very good with his head.
One game I remember was the season before last against Sheffield Wednesday. He played a brilliant game and scored 3 wonderful goals.
Another game which comes to mind was home to Fulham Cliff was handicapped with a leg injury. He played on at centre forward and scored two great headed goals. I was one of the people who thought Cliffs goal in the Cup Final at Wembley should have been allowed.

cliff jones one of the best but that team of 61 was the best side we will ever have we talk about cliff and all the rest but the best footballer in the side was the late great john white spurs man for 55 years here

The mere mention of Cliff Jones puts a broad smile on my face.
Thanks Cliff for all the memories. Thanks for your bravery and commitment to Spurs, equalled by few, surpassed by none.
You were as good an all round footballer as any I have ever seen. Left foot or right foot, heading ability, speed, acceleration, positional sense, goal scorer, goal maker, you could outjump taller opponents, you could run rings around others and scare them witless.
I was never much of an autograph hunter but I made sure I got yours.
I saw you score the first goal in the 1961 FA Cup Final, even though a poor refereeing decision disallowed it. I watched you in Rotterdam on that glorious day in May 1963.
Another memory is the penalty you took against Man City, which the goalie parried and you knocked it in, only for the B@#*$y pedantic ref to disallow it as he said he had blown for half time.
In 1960-61 you formed part of the best football team of all time. If only you were on our left wing now, with Bobby Smith up front!

Have to agree with all above and would like to add two more comments

1. Cliff with all the skills already noted had the unbelievable ability to run at full speed and then take off in to a vertical jump and scored many great headed goals in such a fashion

2. Cliff and my father got their big fight tickets from the same bookmaker and I would often end up sitting next to Cliff, lovely man who loved the big fights
On one occasion he showed me the shin damage to both legs he had collected throughout his career and the likes of Ronaldo would never have shown the same character when getting back up without complaint and getting on with the game
They threw the mold away when Cliff and his likes left the game

I live round the corner to Cliff, and occasionly see him out the front, gardening or whatever. On this occasion, it was the summer, he had on shorts and a pair of wellingtons, theres not an ounce of fat on him either by the way. The subject got round to football, and I said to him, “Cliff, Thierry Henry, he’s pretty quick, isnt he”, Cliff’s immediate response to this was, “I’ll tell you what boy (in his welsh accent), I’d give him 10 yards start in my wellies!”
A true winner, a first class footballer, and a gentleman.

I have been very lucky in my time watching Spurs for 50 odd years. I have seen many ordinary players many very good players but above all I have seen some great players and Cliff Jones was one of the latter.He would dive through a brick wall to head a goal, watching him in full flight down the line was a magnificent sight week in week out. I believe
he was brave to the point of madness, but he loved Bill Nick
and would do anything for him. As for John White I could go on all night but I would say he was a beautiful footballer in a team full of giants. If only the young ones who watch Spurs today could glimpse that team they would know all about the so called beautiful game.

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