John Pickford (@theN5er on twitter) has put this short piece together for me on the status of Arsenal and Tottenham, as witnessed by one of Spurs’ greatest legends, Jimmy Greaves.
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Tottenham are forever in Arsenal’s shadow, that’s the boast we hear most often from the Islington faithful but you don’t need to just believe me: let’s hear what their former favourite and scoring legend Jimmy Greaves has got to say.
In 1994 when George Graham’s Arsenal clinched the Cup Winners Cup in Copenhagen. Greavsie was complimentary, saying:
“I’m not going to win many friends at Spurs by saying Arsenal are my idea of a football club. In many ways the perfect club.”
He went on:
“Many of the principles that have been the hallmark of successful football through the years were refined at Arsenal. It pains me to say it but Bill Nicholson borrowed freely from his rivals when he was putting together his great Spurs side.”
If that wasn’t enough, in 1998 after Arsenal won the first of Arsène Wenger’s Doubles, Jimmy had this to say:
“Arsenal have class. I remember when I was at Spurs, the Arsenal players would arrive for matches in their navy blazers with the gold gun emblem sewn into their pockets and grey slacks. We couldn’t match their ground with that beautiful main entrance, marble halls and spiral staircase. Even in 1961 when we won the Double, we were never as big a club as Arsenal.”
In 2007 he was again considering Tottenham’s poor form at the time and he said:
“In the early 1960s, Spurs had a great manager and a great team. But they have never been a great club. Even when we had Bill Nicholson as manager and the likes of Dave Mackay, Cliff Jones, Danny Blanchflower and myself, Spurs still lived in the shadow of Arsenal.”
So there you have it Tottenham fans. Don’t bother with the shades today because whatever happens you’ll be forever in our shadow. Greavsie knew it and, deep down, so do you.