Danny Blanchflower is a Tottenham legend and was arguably their best player at the beginning of the 1960’s. An old ‘right – half’ as it was referred to back then, a right sided midfielder in football terms today. Blanchflower in his prime between 1957 and 1962 was extremely creative and capable of dictating the tempo of any match. His influence over other players and motivational attributes made him held in high regard by the Tottenham Hotspur squad.
The Belfast born player began his career in English football with a move from Glentoran to Barnsley in 1949 for £6,000. Two years later he moved onto Aston Villa for a fee of £15,000. He spent three years at the midlands side before becoming disillusioned with life there. Tottenham paid a large £30,000 fee for the player after Arsenal was also in negotiations for his signature in 1954. Blanchflower spent a decade at Tottenham accumulating in captaining the side to two FA Cup victories, a league title and a European Cup Winners Cup.
Danny Blanchflower made 337 appearances for the club with 15 goals. What is even more so remarkable is that by 1963 when Tottenham Hotspur defeat Atletico Madrid in the Cup Winners Cup final, Blanchflower captained the side at 37 years of age. Blanchflower compensated for his lack of pace and strength with a wily experience and awareness of the game. His passing ability was second to none. He won footballer of the year twice, in 1958 and 1961.
The Tottenham legend retired in 1964 with 56 caps for Northern Ireland and numerous winners’ medals at Spurs. He had stints as manager of Northern Ireland and Chelsea in the late seventies which didn’t turn out the best for him leaving both jobs rather quickly after less than impressive starts. The former midfield maestro turned his hand towards commentary and journalism, working for numerous TV stations as a pundit or commentator. Sadly in his later years Blanchflower developed Alzheimer’s disease and died in 2003. As captain and talisman of one of the best Tottenham Hotspur sides ever. He truly is a legend of the game.
You can follow all Matthew Balmforth’s blogs on twitter:http://twitter.com/Soccer_Opinion
There’s a new Tottenham book being written as we speak by The Lane Of Dreams author, Norman Giller. To have your memories of The Double captured in print, email Norman via the address in the Ad above.