Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur 1981/82

tottenham home 1981 to 82 prog


League Division 1

26th September 1981

Attendance 39,085

Scorers Falco(51)

Ref M Peck

City Corrigan, Ranson, McDonald, Reid, O’Neill, Caton, Tueart, Gow, Boyer, Hutchison, Reeves – sub Bond(68)

Tottenham Clemence, Miller, Hughton, Roberts, Galvin, Perryman, Ardilles, Archibald, Villa, Hoddle, Falco – sub Hazard

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Patrick Barclay writing for The Guardian 28th September 1981


If every team played like Tottenham Hotspur, football’s only problem would be pacifying the hordes of would·be spectators unable to get into packed grounds. They bring beauty to the game, and people like that. If all that people wanted was to see one side win and another lose, they would go to the nearest public park and save money.

At Maine Road on Saturday, the majority oi a crowd of 39,085 managed to swallow the disappointment of defeat in appreciation of a decent match amd John Bond, the City manager, was clearly not making excuses for his own team when, he said of Tottenham: “However long you look at football and think of all the great teams, you won’t find any who could knock it about better than Tottenham did today. They are not a great team, they might not win the championship because they are a bit vulnerable when they haven’t got the ball, but they are great for the game.”

Unfortunately for Match of the Day viewers, the edited version contained few of Tottenham’s best moves; television simply could not cover the broad canvas on which Hoddle, Ardiles and Villa painted their bold strokes. The meaning of it all was not, however, completely lost on Jimmy Hill and company, who let a wide- angled camera behind the goal transmit the patient lateral probings that led to Falco scoring early in the second-half.

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Through the lashings of rain it was always clear where the quality was coming from; Ardiles and Villa were the men of the match and Keith Burkinshaw amused himself afterwards by recalling the scepticism that met his decision to bring the Argentines to White Hart Lane in 1978: “People said they wouldn’t be able to play in the rain. . .”

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In fairness to a City team who worked hard albeit unimaginatively, the two players who would have worried Tottenham most in the slippery conditions, Francis and Power, were absent, injured. “I’m not making excuses.” Bond said. “after all Tottenham were without Crooks, but not having pacey players does limit you. Even so, our players today didn’t really want to make things happen for each other in the way Tottenham did. They didn’t do enough running and they weren’t attack-minded enough. I mean, Bobby McDonald was beating people in our half as if they weren’t there, what’s wrong with doing it in their half.

tottenham home 1981 to 82 action

One thought on “Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur 1981/82

  1. Was at this game as a spurs fan….we were stood on the kippax separated by a fence.i think this was where away fans were housed. Poured down city hated us gave it to us all game.we had beaten you at Wembley…not easily forgotten. Best easy game amongst a few.

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