Spurs Snatch Draw at the Death

Tuesday August 19 1969

Burnley   2           (Coates 57, Casper 80)

Tottenham  2     (Chivers 6, Pearce 90)

Spurs celebrate the equaliser at the death.

Spurs celebrate the equaliser at the death.

For a game that gave us four goals, it didn’t have much to offer in attempts at goal. In effect the four goals came from the only chances the two sides created. It was a miasma of a midfield battle, no one side able to command the situation.

However in the beginning it seems like the visitors had the strongest intent. In the 6th minute a Burnley attack was easily dismissed by the Spurs defence. Up ran Mullery passing one, two, three  opponents. He crossed the ball to a sprinting Chivers. His run had blindsided the Burnley defence.  Chivers astutely trapped the ball and finished truly. A sublime piece of work. And hope sprang eternal that a good  game was to be had. No such luck, it remained 1-0 to Tottenham at half time.

Mullery on the attack.

Mullery on the attack.

An unseen Chivers head for goal.

An unseen Chivers head for goal.

Chivers scores. 1-0 to the traveling Spurs.

Chivers scores. 1-0 to the traveling Spurs.

There were moments of good football in the second half. Those moments resulted in goals.

Before the hour Coates finished a delightful piece of work that leveled the scores. His interplay with Casper outside the Tottenham penalty box allowed him to confuse the visiting defence and, like a spiritual entity, found himself appearing in the penalty box surrounded by defenders who couldn’t fathom how they had not see him enter. He quickly shot passed Jennings and disappeared once more.

Casper...

Casper…

...to Coates.

…to Coates.

Coates slides through the Spurs defence and on to score.

Coates slides through the Spurs defence and on to score.

With a mere ten minutes remaining Casper floated into the box and readied himself for an attempt on the Jennings goal. England, who didn’t much float as rumble like a boulder down a hill, fell upon Casper. Literally. A penalty was awarded and Casper had duly changed the complexion of the match from a grey drizzly day to a ray of sunshine for Burnley. Surely Spurs had been defeated.

Casper scores the penalty and Burnley are in front!

Casper scores the penalty and Burnley are in front!

But there was one more twist. It’s a long trip back to London, doubly so on a cold August night after a defeat.  With only injury time awaiting to be played, Gilzean scampered down the left hand side. He cut it into the centre to Chivers who passed it forward to Greaves, who was positioned on the edge of the Burnley area. Normally from a position like this Greaves would not hesitate to turn and shoot . However overcautious Burnley had surrounded Greaves. Sensing this, Greaves casually rolled the ball to his side to an approaching Pearce who duly  earned this week’s wages with an equaliser. 2-2 it finished, a point shared and a journey back to London for a Tottenham side who would’ve been content with a point.

Burnley: Mellor, Docherty, Latcham, O’Neil, Waldron, Todd, Thomas, Coates, Casper, Kindon, Collins (Bellamy).

 Tottenham: Jennings, Want, Knowles, Mullery, England, Collins, Pearce, Greaves, Chivers, Gilzean, Morgan.

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