ron henry - fact file
1954 - 1999 defender
|Born on 17th August 1934 in Plaistow, East London.
Height : . m (5' 11")
Weight : kgs (11st 13lbs)
Battled to win a place in the side for the first three seasons of his time at White Hart Lane, playing only once. Mel Hopkins had been first choice and Henry's only look-ins came when the Welshman was off on international duty or injured.
Two injuries to Hopkins playing for Wales opened up a place at left back for Ron and while Mel got back into the side after the first injury, the second saw the local lad establish his place in the team and hold onto it. So well did Henry do, that he held the place for all but one match over the next four and a half years.
Ron had begun his Spurs career as a centre half, but once he switched to left back, he found his true position. The most notable part of Ron Henry's game was his fierce tackle, but he was calm in possession and his use of the ball was more often than not accurate, being aware that he needed to make space to receive a return pass from team-mates too. His assessment of when to intercept and when to tackle marked him out as an exceptional reader of the game and with a liking for over-lapping on the wing, he also provided an attacking threat. With Peter Baker on the other flank being of a similar mind, they made a fine full-back pairing. Ron's ability to push players into areas they did not want to go helped ensure that the penalty area was not put under threat and his being an ever-present in the Double season was testimony to his right to a place in the club's finest campaign. Was hailed as man of the match in the 1961 FA Cup final.
The following season, he won another FA Cup winners medal, while missing only one game and then played every game ending in a European Cup-Winners Cup triumph against Atletico Madrid in 1963. His performances drew the attention of the FA and Ron played for England in 1963 against France in Paris - his one and only cap.
His place in the side was put under serious threat by the arrival of Cyril Knowles and the Yorkshireman eventually replaced Henry, who had made 247 appearances for the first team. Taking a club-man's view of his situation, Ron went into the reserves to act as a mentor to many big names coming up through the ranks as captain of the side and then onto coaching schoolboys and juniors on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and physio roles. Took training with the Centre of Excellence kids until 1999 and helped with the Youth team until 2006.
Retired to Redbourn in Hertfordshire, running a 14 nursery producing bedding plants, but still maintained his links with the club, visiting often, although when the 50th anniversary of the Double came around, he had been very ill and his place was taken by his son in the celebrations.
Ronnie's son was at Spurs, but did not progress beyond the juniors and his grandson Ronnie, played a couple of pre-season friendlies in the first team, but was a regular in the reserves before going to play for Stevenage Borough.Will possibly go down in club history as the longest serving player for Tottenham as he played reserve games well into the late 1990s.
After some ill health Ron Henry died on 27th December 2014 at a hospice in Redbourn, Hertfordshire.
Ron Henry was back on the road to recovery
after a cartilage operation.
Ron Henry played in a Football
Combination match against Reading in March 1977.
|What they said about Ron Henry|
Steve Perryman ... on Henry's appearance for the Reserves in a 8-1 win over Crystal Palace in 1968 .. (THFC programme)
"It showed the mark of the man that after all that he had achieved he was willing to play in the A team with all those youngsters. We played just two in midfield at that time – Ron and I – and we were top of the league !"
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|What Ron Henry said about ...|
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For other articles on Ron Henry
By - Richard Porter - Ronnie Henry ... Like Grandfather like Grandson
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