Tottenham vs. Arsenal: The 8 Players Who Have Been on Both Sides of the DerbySeptember 28, 2011
Tottenham vs. Arsenal: The 8 Players Who Have Been on Both Sides of the Derby
In the long history of English football, only 15 players have ever played for both Arsenal and Tottenham, the two sides of one of the most heated and hate-filled rivalries in existence: the North London Derby.
Of those 15 players, only seven have actually appeared for both clubs in the derby itself, a move that inherently brings with it the sort of reactions from supporters that is only reserved for the most despicable of traitors.
The most despicable of traitors in their eyes, anyway.
With the North London Derby now looming just a few days away and another player set to add his name to that list, it seems fitting to to take a look at who Emmanuel Adebayor will be joining when he takes the pitch in the derby once again, only this time for Tottenham instead of Arsenal.
In no particular order, here are those players. All right, fine. It's chronological. Chronological is the order.
The first player to ever find himself on both sides of the North London Derby, Laurence Brown, was signed by Arsenal in 1961.
Though Arsenal maintained their status as an English first division side at the time, it was a period during which Tottenham were actually the more dominant force in England's top tier.
Brown was known to play both striker and defensive-back roles throughout his professional career, and was often utilized in both positions during his career with Arsenal. In three seasons with the Gunners, he took part in the fierce North London rivalry four times against Spurs.
His skill did not go unnoticed in those matches, and in February of 1964 Laurie Brown completed a controversial transfer to the rival side for an enormous fee of £40,000 (times were a bit different back then).
He showed little hesitation in competing against his former employers, playing on the Tottenham side of the derby a further three times in two years at White Hart Lane.
That's seven derbies in five years on either side of the rivalry, before Brown decided to high-tail it out of North London in favor of Norwich City, probably while thinking to himself "I've got to get out of here. These fans aren't very forgiving."
In 1963, Arsenal found an exciting 19-year-old prospect in the form of David Jenkins, whom they immediately signed and developed. It wouldn't be until four years later, in November 1967, that Jenkins would make his first professional appearance in a Gunners kit in a 0-0 draw against West Ham.
From there, Jenkins impressed fans by scoring nine times in 25 appearances and faced Tottenham in the derby twice before Spurs decided they wanted him in their ranks.
Tottenham offered Arsenal a player-exchange deal, which was gladly accepted. David Jenkins would go to Spurs, and Jimmy Robertson would go to Arsenal.
Jenkins never quite succeeded at White Hart Lane as well as Robertson did with his new club, and he never adequately managed to fill the gap that Robertson left in Tottenham's lineup, either.
In four seasons with Spurs, Jenkins only scored twice and only appeared in 17 matches. But one of those matches happened to be against Arsenal, making him one of only seven players to ever appear for both sides of the rivalry on derby day.
Right winger Jimmy Robertson regularly featured for Tottenham for nearly six years before ending up at Arsenal as part of the same deal that saw Spurs adding David Jenkins to their ranks.
Robertson made 181 total appearances for Tottenham in those years, scoring 31 goals in the process, including one crucial goal in Tottenham's 1967 FA Cup final victory over Chelsea.
He also faced off against Arsenal eight times before making the switch in 1968.
His career with Arsenal wasn't quite as successful as it was with Spurs (though much more successful than Jenkins was with Tottenham), staying for only 18 months before moving on to Ipswich Town. He appeared 59 times for Arsenal, scoring eight times in that period. Just one of those matches was against Tottenham in the North London Derby.
Still, Robertson managed to score in the rivalry match against Spurs, making him the only player ever (so far) to net for both sides.
Centre-back William Young signed for Tottenham Hotspur in 1975 at the age of 23. For two seasons, he played a primary role in Tottenham's defensive line, appearing 54 times before switching to Spurs' local rivals.
Young immediately made a huge impact at Arsenal, easily fitting into to their starting lineup for four seasons. He helped them reach three consecutive FA Cup finals, winning one against Manchester United in 1979.
He was sold to Nottingham Forest during the 1981-82 season, but not before appearing 237 times for Arsenal and managing to score 11 times in the process.
On the Tottenham side of the North London Derby, Young made three appearances against Arsenal before he was sold. For Arsenal, he appeared eight times in the rivalry.
For 13 years, between 1964 and 1977, Pat Jennings was the go-to goalkeeper for Tottenham Hotspur in almost every competition that they had a hand in.
He appeared 591 times for Spurs, seeing them through to an FA Cup title in 1967, League Cup titles in 1971 and 1973, and a UEFA Cup title in 1972. In 1973, he was named the Football Writers' Association's Footballer of the Year and the PFA's Footballer of the Year in 1976. He was the first goalkeeper to ever receive the latter honor.
It appeared that Pat Jennings' career would very much be defined as an ever-present feature for Tottenham. Until he moved to Arsenal, that is.
Jennings completed the move thinking that his career was surely almost over, but ended up staying for a full eight seasons with Arsenal, joining them in three FA Cup finals.
When he finally neared retirement, he did the unthinkable one more time, moving to Tottenham once again, if only to play a mere five matches on their reserve squad to maintain his form for the 1986 World Cup.
In total, Jennings appeared in the North London Derby 32 times: 23 for Spurs and nine for Arsenal.
Sol Campbell made his professional debut with Tottenham Hotspur in 1992, and between that moment and the summer of 2001 he was a club favorite and a consistent feature in Tottenham's defensive structure.
Despite captaining Tottenham through a 1998-99 League Cup victory, the club's rate of success was never enough to truly satisfy the centre-back. When his contract expired in 2001, he insisted for months that he would remain with Tottenham. Instead, he turned down a contract that would make him the highest-paid player in club history and moved to Arsenal.
Sol enjoyed immense success at Arsenal, winning the Premier League and FA Cup titles both within his first season at the club. In 2003-04, he won the league again with Arsenal, this time at White Hart Lane during a North London Derby match.
His defection to Arsenal, and the manner in which he left, created a largely unprecedented degree of animosity from Tottenham supporters, whom to this day still often refer to him as "Judas" in casual conversation.
In 2009, The Daily Mail published a feature listing the biggest traitors in English football. Topping the list: Sol Campbell, who will surely never earn forgiveness from at least one half of North London.
When Arsenal signed William Gallas in 2006, he was already a hugely controversial figure, being publicly accused by his former club Chelsea of threatening to score own goals if the club didn't let him leave.
True or not, the end result was Gallas' transfer to Arsenal, where he remained for four seasons, during which he often found ways to cause a stir whenever he could.
On one such occasion, Gallas had to be restrained as he appeared to confront the away crowd in anger following a penalty decision that didn't exactly sit well with him. But his hot-headed nature was always forgivable given his defensive skills on the pitch, which earned him the honors of regularly captaining Arsenal's first team while he was there and being named to the PFA Team of the Year in 2006.
What wasn't so forgivable in the eyes of Arsenal's outspoken fanbase was his decision to leave the club after demanding ludicrous amounts of money that the club insisted they just couldn't justify paying.
So Gallas moved on. To Tottenham. Another controversial move seemingly made only to rattle some nerves.
Gallas remains with Tottenham to this day, though injuries have kept him out of the lineup throughout most of EPL's newest campaign. He has faced off against his former side in the North London Derby twice already (he appeared six times in the derby with Arsenal), with more appearances surely to come.
Also notable: William Gallas is the only player to have ever appeared for Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham.
A thoroughly loathed figure at White Hart Lane for years, Emmanuel Adebayor has haunted Tottenham Hotspur in just about every competition they've competed in.
He was a regular feature in the North London Derby for Arsenal from 2006-2009, a nightmare to defend after his transfer to Manchester City, and even a central figure in the end of Tottenham's Champions League run in 2010-11 when he just happened to be on loan at Real Madrid when Spurs faced them in the quarterfinals.
Given the history of the venom and hatred shared among Spurs fans for Emmanuel Adebayor, it was certainly a huge surprise to learn in the summer 2011 transfer window that Tottenham was signing the Togolese striker on a one-year loan.
On Sunday, Adebayor will become only the eighth player to appear on both sides of the North London Derby, and could easily become only the second player to score for both sides as well.
Arsenal fans are sure to give him an earful for his disloyalty, but if he performs for Tottenham as well as he did against them in the years past, then Spurs fans might be finally ready to forgive him for having once worn the red at White Hart Lane.