Consent Preferences Spurs Odyssey - Norman Giller's Blog (No. 366 - 17.05.21)
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Norman Giller's Spurs Odyssey Blog (No. 366) (17.05.21)

Submitted by Norman Giller

Who will be our SOQL Champion Number 7

The convincing victory over woeful Wolves yesterday gave us a feel-good feeling that I am about to wreck for all those of you competing for the crown of Spurs Odyssey Quiz League champion. Over 100 of you have taken part in the lockdown chase over the season, and after the final question there are more than 40 of you level at the top of the table with a maximum 108 points.

I have come up with a devilishly difficult tie break challenge that will have you wanting to kick me in what I will politely call the footballs. There are ladies present, and in particular our reigning Quiz Queen, Emily Hadjinicolaou, an actuary from Surrey who is among those leading the pack this year.

Just to remind you, the previous winners to Queen Em – featured left to right in the top line of the heading above – have been:

Graham Eyre (New South Wales, Australia) 2019
David Guthrie (Wokingham) 2015 and 2018
Glenn Scarcliffe (Hampstead) 2016
Edward Benson (New York) 2017

The competition continues to have an international flavour, with contestants firing in their occasional answers from far and wide, including the United States, Canada, Denmark, Norway, Holland, South Africa, Singapore, Hungary, Hawaii, Israel and Cyprus.

As regulars will know, this is when we fall out, because it is really only my opinion that matters in this tiebreak decider. You become manager for the day to play the selecting game, and all you have to do is just try to agree with my line-up to take the esteemed SOQL title. Easy!

Many of you are on the maximum 108 points. I had computer problems midway through the season and failed to receive some entries, so I am going to allow all those with 90 points or more to start this last test on level terms with the leaders. Please address any complaints to the Ombudsman.

Included among the usual suspects in the running for the title this year are 2019 champion Graham Eyre, two-times winner David Guthrie and – yet again – the only woman in with a chance of the title, our current champion Queen Emily Hadjinicolaou, BSc FIA, from Reigate in Surrey. Omniscient Emily has taken over the Tottenham-supporting baton from her father, who used to follow Spurs in the 1950s from his homeland of Cyprus.

Emily Hadjinicolaou with her Quiz League Champion Certificate

Queen Emily with her framed SOQL championship certificate. Note the autographed Ricky Villa 1981 wonder goal photograph on the wall!

Spurs Odyssey web master Paul H. Smith and I would like to thank Emily and all you other grand people who regularly compete in our weekly challenge. Without you, I’d be talking to myself (true, nothing new).

This year’s prizes for the champion: a Harry Kane framed and signed photo, two books from my Greavsie collection with autographs from Jimmy Greaves, Steve Perryman and Dave Mackay, and, most important of all, a framed certificate announcing the winner as SOQL champion 2021.

And I am adding a signed copy of My 70 Years of Spurs book, although I would much rather you bought it direct from me at I am sharing profits with the Tottenham Tribute Trust that quietly looks after our old heroes, who missed the gravy train. Please give us your support, thank you. Back to annoying you …

To try to separate you all and come up with the 2021 champion we arrive at the dreaded tiebreak teaser:

Here are five great Tottenham teams from the past. You must select a side taking just two players from each team. I give you the goalkeeper, of course, Pat Jennings. Now you must pick a side in 3-4-3 formation. Then add five balanced outfield substitutes, one from each of the teams. Here they are:

1961 Double side
1967 FA Cup winners
1981 FA Cup winners
1991 FA Cup winners
2019 European Cup runners-up

Please select your ten players in 3-4-3 formation, plus FIVE outfield substitutes (one player from each of the five teams). Also, please name your captain – which will only be taken into account if there is a dead heat.

You get three points for every selection that agrees with a player in my team, plus three points each for picking the same five substitutes as me. That’s 45 points in total. Remember, Pat Jennings is your non-scoring goalkeeper (and no jokes about his 1967 Charity Shield goal, thank you).

The contestant with most points who gets closest to my team plus choice of substitutes takes the crown. If more than one agrees with me – and also choice of captain – then we would have another tie-breaker if their points tally is equal.

You have until midnight on Friday to get your choices to me. Email your selections, please, to Give your name, the district where you live and how long you’ve supported Spurs. Good luck!

I am the sole adjudicator, and will not enter into correspondence with anybody who wants to dispute my selection (now I know how Putin feels. Wow, power!).

Enjoy it. This is just for fun, while cementing our shared love and admiration for all things Tottenham.

I am taking this opportunity on behalf of all of us to thank Paul H. Smith for his efforts in keeping this website going. We must never take him for granted. It is a labour of love and I want him to know we appreciate his dedication and endeavour, particularly in what have become dark days for the Beautiful Game (and for all walks of life). There is a PayPal button at the top of this page where we can show our appreciation. I am inserting this paragraph without Paul’s permission. Let’s all support him.

I will announce the winner and 2021 champion in my next Spurs Odyssey blog … hopefully when we are celebrating victories over Aston Villa (Wednesday, 6pm) and Leicester City (Sunday, 4pm).

Last week’s question:

Who has scored a first-half hat-trick for Tottenham this season, was briefly with Napoli and which Spurs squad number does he wear? As all the front-runners agreed, Carlos Vinicius, who wears the number 45 shirt.

Now, on with the selecting game. Good luck.


See you back here same time, same place next week. Carry On Regardless. COYS!

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