Tottenham 1972, European class
Buoyed by the leadership and tactical flag of their famous manager Bill Nicholson, Tottenham won their first UEFA Cup in history in 1972. The culmination of the London club’s first golden era, which began in the early 1960’s.
The 1971-72 season has begun, and European football is on the verge of reform. The old Inter-City Fairs Cup, a European competition that saw clubs from host cities competing only for international fairs, has been canceled and UEFA decides to replace it with another competition, also more attractive and modern, the UEFA Cup. Next, the top-ranked teams from different European leagues see each other face off, with the exception of the Champions (who participate in the European Cup for Champions Clubs) and the National Cup winners. Thus, Tottenham, who finished third in the English championship in 1971, will be among the first British representatives to compete for this new trophy.
Bill Nicholson, King of “Push and Rush”
At that time, it was
the England champion in 1961, looks like strangers: he is regularly ranked at the top of the table in Britain’s top flight,
They are feared and respected thanks to their charismatic coach Bill Nicholson. The ex-Tottenham player, who has coached the club since 1958, has a style of play, which is
“push and push”
, which favors short passes, movement, permutations and offensive sprinting. What you should decide using the tactic was then appreciated by many English clubs, which is
“Kick and rush”
A direct, physical style of play that favors the use of long passes towards the attacking players. The football played by Tottenham will immediately prove itself at the continental level:
Their UEFA Cup campaign begins with a crushing of Icelandic club ÍBK Keflavík (6-1, 9-0).
“With the fans behind us, I think we were playing the most exciting football we’ve seen at the club in the seventies.” Martin Chivers
It would come as no surprise that the second round of competition, against FC Nantes, is much more difficult. Third place in Division 1 In 1971, the people of Nantes held their ranks at La Beaujoire (0-0), while the English failed to develop their usual football. Dissatisfied with the poverty of the game published by his men
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