Memory matches: Leeds United vs Tottenham Hotspur
A look back at previous clashes down the years.
Leeds United face Tottenham Hotspur at Elland Road on Sunday. Prior to the game, Ben Scott looks back at some memorable victories over the North London side down the years.
Our first game against Sunday’s opposition came on 18 October, 1924. Percy Whipp scored the only goal as Leeds won at Elland Road. Tottenham tasted defeat by a 4-3 scoreline in Leeds in 1935 on the last day of the season and also the last day of September in 2000.
The first clash in Premiership football fell on 25 August 1992, with Leeds winning 5-0. Rod Wallace and Lee Chapman got a goal each whilst Eric Cantona bagged the first ever hat-trick in the Premier League.
Wallace took all the plaudits in the league clash in April 1994, which Leeds won 2-0. He ran from within his own half and finally curled in a shot which was that amazing it won Match of the Day’s goal of the season – he also got the games second goal which was more of a routine finish.
An FA Cup upset was caused when Leeds defeated The Lilywhites 2-1 on home soil. Ross McCormack got the second goal with a breath-taking finish in a game that saw Championship Leeds fending off Premier League Spurs.
💥 "Ohhhh brilliant!" Tottenham last visited Elland Road in 2013 when Ross McCormack did this... pic.twitter.com/OZuwenrQYU— Leeds United (@LUFC) May 7, 2021
Our featured match comes on January 6th 1973. It was a match Leeds would have to battle in and they did, winning 2-1, in a match where there was a sweeping cold blizzard on the day.
A well worked set-piece on 15 minutes got Mick Jones on the scoresheet at Elland Road and optimism was riding high. The corner was earnt off the back of Spurs’ Ray Evans touching the ball out of play as he thwarted likely danger off Peter Lorimer, who was bearing down on goal.
The corner was quickly swung in by Lorimer and a neat flick-on at the near post fed the ball perfectly for the incoming Jones who was not more than three-yards off the goal line. He nudged in a header and with Spurs keeper Pat Jennings still near his front post, he was beaten.
The attacks continued for the Whites and were without mercy. They had a shout for a penalty, but referee Ken Burns on this occasion wasn’t convinced.
As the break began looming, one that Tottenham would have very much welcomed, they found Leeds pressing them deep in their own half with relentless attacks.
The Whites moved stylishly and quickly down their right as they attacked, with Billy Bremner pushing his way forward. Jones let the ball go wide of him so he could deliver a cross and when he did, it was firstly met by a Spurs defender, but a tame header allowed Johnny Giles to move forward before he was quickly felled by Alan Gilzean. This time the referee did point to the spot.
Penalty duty was taken up by Lorimer, he fired the ball low and hard into the corner as Jennings went the other way, to put his side two goals up, meaning opposition manager, Bill Nicholson cut a dejected figure in the away dug-out.
Into the second half and Leeds continued their attacking play. Jones nearly bagged a second goal for himself from close range, but this time the header whizzed just inches over the crossbar.
Against the run of play, Spurs got back into the match after Gilzean, who had given away the earlier penalty, glanced home a consolation effort.
Leeds then defended resolutely when needed but also kept up their attacking play as well, showing the skills that earned the points and a third placed finish, meaning they hadn’t finished out of the top four since the 1964/65 season.
The year after they won the league as they marched on, into more success.