‘King of White Hart Lane’ Gilzean dies aged 79

Former Tottenham striker Alan Gilzean died aged 79 yesterday. — Picture via Facebook/TottenhamHotspur
Former Tottenham striker Alan Gilzean died aged 79 yesterday. — Picture via Facebook/TottenhamHotspur

LONDON, July 9 — Former Tottenham striker Alan Gilzean died aged 79 yesterday, another of his old clubs Dundee announced.

Dundee said he had recently been diagnosed with a brain tumour.

“Everyone at Dundee Football Club are devastated to learn that club legend Alan Gilzean passed away this morning after recently being diagnosed with a brain tumour,” tweeted Dundee.

Gilzean — capped 22 times by Scotland in which he scored 12 goals — formed fruitful partnerships up front for Spurs with England great Jimmy Greaves and Martin Chivers.

Greaves described Gilzean — they earned the nickname as Spurs’ ‘G-men’ — on Twitter as his best strike partner.

“Very sad to say Alan Gilzean passed away today,” read the statement on Greaves’s Twitter account.

“Another one of the greats has gone RIP from all of us associated with Jimmy. He loved you and always said you were the best striking partner ever.”

Gilzean had become a hot property when he played a pivotal role in Dundee’s 1962 Scottish title victory and subsequent run to the European Cup semi-finals.

In all he scored 150 goals in 190 appearances for the Scottish side but left in 1964 for Spurs, who paid a reported £72,500 after seeing off rival bids from Sunderland and Italian outfit Torino.

Gilzean scored 133 goals in 439 matches for the London club, winning four trophies during his spell there, the 1967 FA Cup, the 1971 and 1973 League Cups and the Uefa Cup in 1972, and earning the moniker ‘King of White Hart Lane’.

“Everyone at the club is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our legendary former striker Alan Gilzean,” Spurs tweeted.

The Scottish Football Association said Gilzean was up with the best of Scottish football’s all-time “entertainers”.

Gilzean left Spurs after the 1974 Uefa Cup final defeat by Dutch side Feyenoord and played briefly in South Africa, followed by a short spell in management in England, but ended his working days at a transport company close to White Hart Lane. — AFP

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