Consent Preferences Spurs Odyssey - Norman Giller's Blog (No. 465 - 15.01.24)
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Norman Giller's Spurs Odyssey Blog (No. 465) (15.01.24)

Submitted by Norman Giller

Bentancur snookers Man United

I felt privileged yesterday to see two masters at work ... Ronnie O'Sullivan proving himself simply the best snooker player there has ever been (and I saw Joe Davis) ... and Rodrigo Bentancur showing that he is a top-class midfield footballer in true Tottenham traditions.

It speaks volumes about the positive attitude Ange Postecoglou has brought to Tottenham that many of us were disappointed that Spurs "only" got a draw at Old Trafford. There were the usual suspect moaners and groaners on line but I could see only good things after the shaky start, particularly in the polished performance from Bentancur.

What a thoroughbred footballer, all smoothness and style. The goal he scored in the opening moments of the second-half was the highlight of a superb individual display. He has convinced me that he can be as much a midfield motivator as Tottenham greats like Eddie Baily and Ron Burgess, Danny Blanchflower and John White, Ossie Ardiles and Glenn Hoddle.

You will notice I have dealt in pairs and the missing link is James Maddison. I can't wait to see Madders and Rodders operating together with both at peak fitness. Add to that the return of Sonny and Ginger Magician Kulusevski and I think we could be watching one of the great Tottenham teams taking shape.

Our guru Paul H. Smith gives his verdict HERE on a match in which Tottenham scored for a record 33rd consecutive game, and to think we were stuck in a defensive rut with Mourinho and Conte.

Now a stronger Manchester challenge comes from Pep's City slickers in the fourth round of the FA Cup at home on Friday week following the brief winter break. If Spurs can win this one, it will mean Ange is way ahead of his schedule in his quest to make Spurs purr again.

I understand another classy overseas signing will be made in this January window, following on from German Timo Werner and Rumanian Radu Dragusin to make Spurs a truly international force.

Steve 'Skip' Perryman and I have got to 60,000 words in our definitive biography of Bill Nicholson, just over halfway. We have been overwhelmed by the reaction to our joint venture and are determined to do the great man justice.

'Sir Bill' would have loved the brilliance of Bentancur, who plays the Spurs way that Bill always demanded. The Uruguayan's goal against United had Martin Peters written all over it.

I will use the winter interlude to add to our book and will see you back here on Monday week. Keep warm.


Spurs Odyssey Quiz League 2023-24

Week 22 of season nine of the Spurs Odyssey Quiz League challenge, and the question is:

Who won 51 international caps, started his League career with Millwall, has an MBE and a European Champions' League winners' medal and from which Midlands club did he join Spurs the first time?

Please email your answer to me at and make the subject heading Quiz Week 22. Deadline: midnight this Friday. I will do my best to respond to all who take part.

The rules are the same as in the previous eight seasons. I ask a two-pronged question with three points at stake - two for identifying the player and one for the supplementary question. In the closing weeks of the competition I break the logjam of all-knowing Spurs-history experts with a tie-breaking poser that is based on opinion rather than fact. That's when I become as popular as Sol Campbell in an Arsenal shirt.

This year's main prize will be a framed certificate announcing the winner as SOQL champion 2024, plus three signed books to be revealed at a later date. We have retired the omniscient David Guthrie after his three victories.

Last week's question:

Who won 36 international caps, played in the 1998 World Cup finals and which manager signed him for Spurs from Swindon

Answer: Colin Calderwood/Osvaldo Ardiles

See you back here ... on Monday week. COYS!

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