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Tranmere Rovers & Cheltenham Town Stare Into The Abyss
We’ve got a little late night video for you this evening, with highlights of the 1982 FA Cup quarter-final match between Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur. For both clubs, the match was an opportunity to renew rivalries after a gap of several season. Spurs had been promoted back into the First Division after a season away in 1978, and ended a run without a major trophy with an FA Cup final win against Manchester City in 1981. Their run to the quarter-finals had already been eventful, including wins against Arsenal, (a then-Second Division) Leeds United and the then-defending league champions, Aston Villa on the way.
Chelsea, meanwhile, were in the middle of a slump that threatened the very existence of the club. Crippled by the cost of building their East Stand, they were relegated from the First Division in 1979 and, after a near miss with promotion straight back, continued their descent into medocrity over the next two or three years or so. Ken Bates bought the club, who were said to be losing £12,000 per week at the time, for £1 in 1982 and the following year they had the worst season in their entire history, narrowly avoiding relegation to the Third Division.
Still, the FA Cup provided them with some respite during an otherwise turgid 1981/82 season, and their win against Liverpool in the Fifth Round of the competition will have been more than enough to give the Spurs manager Keith Burkinshaw something ahead of this match, which was featured on that evening’s “Match Of The Day”. These highlights are approximately twenty minutes long, and the commentary comes from John Motson.
You can see this video a bigger screen, should you wish to, here.
Ian began writing Twohundredpercent in May 2006. He lives in Brighton. He has also written for, amongst others, Pitch Invasion, FC Business Magazine, The Score, When Saturday Comes, Stand Against Modern Football and The Football Supporter. Ian was the first winner of the Socrates Award For Not Being Dead Yet at the 2010 NOPA awards for football bloggers.