Review : The Spurs Cartoon Strip Ė A Cartoon History of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club By Bob Bond

2002

 

This 32-page romp through the edited highlights of the history of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club shows the characters and the moments that have made Spurs a club with such a rich history.

From the early days in the Southern League and the FA Cup win as a non-league club in 1901 right through to the current side with Sullivan, King and Davies, there are familiar faces strewn throughout the book thanks to Bob Bondís caricatures, which intersperse the cartoon strip story.

Bondís drawings show the notable events in the story of Tottenhamís progress over 120 years and all the trophies, big names and news stories are there. Both good and bad !!

Starting with the acquisition of the clubís name and the early grounds (and basic changing facilities) to their establishing a firm base at White Hart Lane, the first two players featured are the ďDavid Beckham of his dayĒ, Vivian Woodward (who scored the clubís first League goal and got 29 goals in 23 games for England) and John Cameron, who was the Tottenham player manager at the start of the 1900s.

Into the 1910-1920 era, Fanny Walden, the diminutive, but tricky winger and team captain Arthur Grimsdell are next for the Bond treatment, just prior to the coverage of Spursí run to the 1921 FA Cup win over Wolves at Stamford Bridge. Jimmy Seed was influential in the Tottenham team of the 20ís, but having been sold to Charlton Athletic, he was also instrumental in the eventual relegation of the Lilywhites in 1928 !!

After World War II, the manager Joe Hulme took over at White Hart Lane and his team included the likes of winger Les Medley, towering goalkeeper Ted Ditchburn, defender Bill Nicholson, Welsh half back Ron Burgess and Eddie Baily (later to be assistant manager to Nicholson). All are portrayed in the book and the story tells of how Hulme failed in his attempt to get Tottenham back to the top division and how Arthur Rowe (a former player) was brought in as manager. The book outlines his simple, but effective theory on the game and how it lifted Spurs to two championships in two years at the turn of the Fifties. The Div. 2 title was followed in the next season by the First Division championship for the first time in the clubís history.

One member of the team at that time featured was Alf Ramsey, who was a rock in the right back position and weighed in with many a penalty for the team. His time from a place in the development in the 1951 Championship team to his retirement in 1955 is covered here.

The major part of the story covers the formation and success of the Double side, through to their European Cup Winners Cup victory over Athletico Madrid in 1963. As well as individual portraits of Brown, Blanchflower, Smith, White, Jones, Dyson and Mackay, there is a two page spread of the Double team in typical team photo format, but with the players as caricatures. They are very well drawn likenesses.

Through the trophy winning years of the late Sixties and early 70s, onto the era of Ossie Ardiles and Ricky ViIla alongside Hoddle and Perryman and to the Cup successes of 1981 and 1982, the famous names keep on coming. Such famous Spurs players as Clive Allen, Lineker, Gascoigne, Klinsmann, Ginola and Rebrov follow them to bring the history up to date.


The words put into the mouths of the players, fans and crowd in the book adds a light-hearted commentary to the events taking place in the drawings. It contains great times, great names and great games. Thatís why it is a really good book, with itís easily digestible and entertaining content.
 

Ray of the Reviewers

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