les allen - fact file

1959 - 1965            forward


Born on 4th September 1937 in Dagenham, Essex, England

Position :   Forward

Height : - .m  (5' 10")

Weight : -  - kgs    (10st 3lbs)

Turned down by West Ham United, Les Allen started his career with Brigg Sports before Chelsea scouted him and although he did score a few goals for the West London club, it was only when he moved to White Hart Lane that his goal-scoring potential was fully realised in the great Double team.

Jimmy Greaves and Ron Tindall were above Les in the forward line pecking order and he felt that he would have to move on to further his career, which is exactly what happened when Bill Nicholson suggested the swap of inside right Johnny Brooks for Allen in December 1959 in an attempt to bring more goals into the team.  His integration alongside Bobby Smith and Cliff Jones was not smooth and it took him a while to start knocking the goals in, but his five against Crewe Alexandra in the 13-2 FA Cup replay win, kicked started his scoring and he got 15 in 19 games to the end of the season.

In the Double season that followed, Allen scored 27 goals and finished second top goal-scorer.  It was perhaps fitting that a man who had added a new dimension to the side should score the goal that won the title against Sheffield Wednesday at White Hart Lane in March. 

Les was a player who possessed good movement and control and his speed was used to maximum effect in and around the box.  With Smith as the target man, he played off him very well and made goals for his colleague too.  It seemed as though he had boundless energy, as he harried defenders on the ball and won possession by dropping deep.

Won his first international honour in playing for England Under-23s against Wales Under-23 at Goodison Park on Wednesday 8th February 1961, but failed to break into the senior side, although he did play for the Football League representative side.  When Jimmy Greaves was signed by Spurs in 1961, Les found himself in competition with Bobby Smith for the role of partnering the great goal-scorer.  It was unfortunate that he failed to make either the final of the FA Cup in 1962 nor the European Cup Winners Cup final of 1963, with Smith being preferred alongside Greaves.

He continued to get games in the Spurs team until Alan Gilzean arrived from Dundee and he took the position with Greaves up front.  Allen's chances were severely limited and he choose to move on to Queens Park Rangers in the close season of 1965, for a then club record, where he became a father figure to a team of talented youngsters and the side blossomed under his captaincy rising through the divisions from the Third to the top flight.  On the way, they became the lowest placed side to win the League Cup by beating West Bromwich Albion at Wembley in 1967 and when Les' playing days were at an end, he took over the manager's role at the club, with later posts at Woodford Town, Swindon Town (where he moved from Chief Scout to caretaker manager on 07.11.1972) and a club in Greece.

While not one of the big name stars of the Double side, Les Allen played a vital part in securing the trophies in the most memorable season of the club's history, being an ever-present during the season.  His natural goal-scoring ability and general play should not be under-estimated in what was achieved in that era.

As part of the Allen footballing clan, his son Clive later played for Spurs as a free-scoring striker, with his nephew Paul an industrious midfielder who did great service for Tottenham.



Career Record
Club Signed Fee Debut Apps Goals
Chelsea 1954 ?? ??  ?? ??
TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR December 1959 20,000 (straight swap for Johnny Brooks) 19th December 1959 v Newcastle United (First Division) (home)  won 4-0 137 61
Queens Park Rangers July 1965 20,000 ??  ?? ??
- ?? ?? ??  ?? ??

Career Record
- League appearances; - goals
- FA Cup appearances; goals
- League Cup appearances; goals
Other appearances; goals
119 League appearances;  47 goals
15 FA Cup appearances; 12 goals
3 European appearances; 1 goal
- League appearances; goals
- FA Cup appearances; goals
- League Cup appearances; goals
Other appearances; goals
- League appearances; goals
- FA Cup appearances; goals
- League Cup appearances; goals
European appearances; goals

England international
0 full caps;  0 goals
1 Under-21 cap; 0 goals
FA Cup winners medal 1960-1961
First Division Championship winners medal 1960-1961
FA Cup winners medal 1961-1962

- appearance



In a match for QPR against Colchester United in August 1966, Les Allen collided with the U's half-back Bobby Blackwood and broke his jaw.  The player recovered and later in the season when Colchester played the return against QPR, Allen once more broke Blackwood's jaw !!


Was a keen shooter and went onto local farms in Essex with a 12 bore shotgun.  His skill was put to use at Loftus Road to scare pigeons off the pitch.


Became caretaker manager at Swindon Town on 07.11.1972.  Although he lived in Hornchurch, Les spent a large part of the week in Swindon..



What they said about Les Allen
? ...  .. ()




What Les Allen said about ...
... what moving to Tottenham did for his career ...  11.11.1972 (THFC prgoramme)

"Without meaning any disrespect to Chelsea, I feel that Spurs are the club that really taught me what football is all about. The influence of Bill Nicholson and the calibre of other players in the team made a big difference to my own game."

... ? ...  .. ()




Season League FA Cup European Cup European Cup Winners Cup Others
1959-60 - (- goals) - - - -
1960-61 - (- goals) - - - -
1961-62 - (- goals) - - - -
1962-63 - (- goals) - - - -
1963-64 - (- goals) - - - -
1964-65 - (- goals) - - - -
Total 119 (47 goals) 15 (13 goals) - (- goals) 2 (1 goals) 10 (14 goals)


            For other articles on Les Allen

         By Richard Porter

Back to homepage