Memory Lane – Spurs 4-3 Everton (April 5th, 1958):

This old First Division fixture with Everton occurred well over 60 years ago, at a time before Bill Nicholson had even taken over as manager of Spurs. The year was 1958, and Spurs, whose manager at the time was Jimmy Anderson, were in Liverpool to face Everton, at a time of the year when the Grand National was taking place. The Spurs team were staying at the Adelphi Hotel the night before the game, with the Spurs players meeting all of the famous jockeys of the time, as well as stars and actors such as Laurence Olivier. However, the game which took place at Goodison Park the following day, couldn’t have started any better for Spurs, who took the lead early on through a young part-time/amateur player – Eddie Clayton, on his first team debut (he had only found out that he was playing for Spurs earlier that day). The Spurs team had great players such as the goalkeeper Ted Ditchburn starting, plus other top players of the time, such as Bobby Smith and Danny Blanchflower. In front of over 30,000 spectators, Spurs doubled their lead thanks to a goal from Bobby Smith, before Clayton got his second goal of the game, to make it 3-0.

Early on in the second half, Spurs made it 4-0, with Bobby Smith getting his second goal of the game. Everton responded really well to conceding their fourth goal of the game, and they ended up getting three second half goals, to make it a nervous end to the game for Jimmy Anderson’s side, although Spurs did manage to hold on. During the game, Eddie Clayton thought that he’d got his hat-trick, to make it a dream debut, after scoring with a headed goal from a corner-kick, but he’d given one of the Everton players a little push, and so the referee ended up disallowing the goal. Clayton also had an effort which hit the woodwork during that game. It was an incredibly memorable debut for the east Londoner, and the former Eton Manor player still remembers that game really well to this day. Spurs finished in third place in the First Division during the 1957/58 season. It was to be Jimmy Anderson’s last full season in charge of the side, with Bill Nicholson taking charge of the team during the following season. Those years post Arthur Rowe and pre Bill Nicholson, were very interesting ones in the history of Spurs.

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