Francis confident that his resurgent Spurs will escape ban
Monday 15 January 1996
Tottenham Hotspur 1 Manchester City 0
Even at White Hart Lane, a byword for conflict in recent times, there is unanimity on one issue - Terry Venables is the man for the England job.
Alan Sugar said as much on Saturday "My gut feeling is that he will continue as England manager," the Spurs chairman said. "I know Terry has said that he is not going to do it, but in a couple of months things may be different."
El Tel's successor in N17, Gerry Francis, is also in no doubt. He put the onus on the Football Association. "I urge the FA to talk to Terry and get him to change his mind," he said after again ruling himself out of the job.
Not that it was all encouraging news for the man who has given debate on the rights and wrongs of the TV era a new meaning. Francis was also full of praise for Sugar's ability in fighting for what he thinks is right.
Sugar, having got the FA to overturn Tottenham's FA Cup ban last season, is now calling on them for support to overturn a ban from European competition. He, and Francis, feel Spurs and the similarly suffering Wimbledon have been hung out to dry over their ill-fated, ill-considered involvement in the Intertoto Cup.
Both are confident that Spurs will win this off-pitch battle, as they claim the backing of the FA and the Premier League in using begged, borrowed and green players. "We did everyone a favour by taking part when Uefa threatened to ban all English clubs from Europe if no clubs entered, and we've got nothing but stick over it ever since," Francis said.
The ban appears not so pressing for Wimbledon, unless they win the FA Cup, but Francis has propelled Spurs into third in the Premiership, unexpected heights achieved on the back of a run of only two defeats in their last 20 League games. He said he would be devastated if the European reward for being third in May was taken away.
He is proud of Tottenham's record and has just as much reason for pride in one of the most significant contributors to it. Chris Armstrong was his choice to come in after Jurgen Klinsmann left - the former Crystal Palace forward would not have been everybody's.
On Saturday, though, he was again superb and headed the winner from a cross by Tottenham's other prime mover in the match, Sol Campbell, who shackled City's creative force, Georgi Kinkladze. Armstrong's display of skill, pace and intelligence is, in this TV age, the only kind of salute to the critics that anyone can get away with.
Goal: Armstrong (66) 0-1.
Tottenham Hotspur (4-4-2): Walker; Austin, Mabbutt, Nethercott, Edinburgh; Caskey, Dozzell, Campbell, Rosenthal; Armstrong, Sheringham. Substitutes not used: Wilson, Slade, Day (gk).
Manchester CIty (4-4-2): Immel; Summerbee, Curle, Symons, Ingram; Ekelund (Brown, 60), Lomas, Flitcroft, Kinkladze; Rosler, Quinn. Substitutes not used: Kernaghan, Margetson (gk).
Referee: D Gallagher (Banbury).
Bookings: Tottenham Hotspur: Rosenthal.
Man of the match: Armstrong. Attendance: 31,438.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal transfer news: Atletico Madrid closing in on Santi Cazorla - reports
Arsenal transfer news: Arsene Wenger set to cancel moves for Sami Khedira and Morgan Schneiderlin in favour of Jack Wilshere - reports
Arturo Vidal: Manchester United bid £39m for Juventus midfielder
Chelsea transfer news: Jose Mourinho wants both Thibaut Courtois and Petr Cech to stay at Stamford Bridge
Malaysian cyclist could face disciplinary action after 'Save Gaza' gloves protest
- 1 Malaysian cyclist could face disciplinary action after 'Save Gaza' gloves protest
- 2 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 3 Fifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage from US parenting groups
- 4 McDonald’s removes chicken nuggets from the menu in Hong Kong amid major food scare
- 5 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss
£600 - £650 per day: Orgtel: Conduct Risk Liaison Manager - Banking - London -...
Highly Attractive Package: Austen Lloyd: CITY - COMMERCIAL LITIGATION - GLOBAL...
£65000 - £75000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: The client is a...
£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A well-established software house ba...