Football's Nicholson dies at 85

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The Independent Online

Bill Nicholson, widely regarded as one of the greatest football managers of the 20th century and the first to win the league and FA Cup double in modern times, has died aged 85 after a long illness.

Bill Nicholson, widely regarded as one of the greatest football managers of the 20th century and the first to win the league and FA Cup double in modern times, has died aged 85 after a long illness.

Nicholson's Tottenham Hotspur, captained by Danny Blanchflower, achieved legendary status not just for the trophies won but for the style and panache with which they played the game.

After the double triumph in 1961, Tottenham became the first British club to win in Europe when they claimed the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1963. Nicholson managed the team through three decades from 1958 to 1974.

Daniel Levy, Tottenham's chairman, described him as a "giant of the game", and added: "He was loved by everyone at White Hart Lane and there is no doubt that he in turn loved this club. He will never be forgotten."

Pat Jennings, the former Spurs' goalkeeper, said: "The team he put together in 1961 was impossible to follow."

Nicholson led his team to two further FA Cup victories, two League Cup titles, and the Uefa Cup in 1972 before resigning in 1974.

Supporters at Tottenham's ground yesterday held a minute's silence in memory of their former manager before their Premiership match against Bolton.

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