GUERNSEY HISTORY 

12th May 1948
Guernsey plays Tottenham Hotspur

Guernsey’s highest profile football game took place in 1948. It was a friendly, at home, against London club Tottenham Hotspur.

Hosted at The Track, the game kicked off at 5pm, and wouldn’t have come about at all had it not been for promoter Teddy Zabiela. He had met the London team when he’d been working on a mail ship, which had been taking them to Buenos Aires.

He met the team again when it played a game in Cardiff between the wars. From that point on his connection with it was fixed. Through that connection, he managed to persuade the players to come to Guernsey for a game against the local team.

A local abroad

For one player on Spurs’ side, there must have been very mixed feelings about playing on the island. Len Duquemin had been born on Guernsey, but signed to play for Spurs, and quickly became one of the team’s most valued players.

Duquemin played in more than 300 matches in the ten years from 1947 and scored 134 goals for the side. When Spurs travelled to Guernsey, he played in the number 9 position opposite his former countrymen.

Liberation celebration

Although Liberation Day is celebrated on 9 May, this 12 May match was timetabled to fall on Liberation Day – a point made on the cover of the programme. Spurs had also played Jersey four days earlier, on 8 May, again to mark that island’s liberation.

The game was billed as “Guernsey Island XI versus Tottenham Hotspur FC”. Referee HW Bisson was assisted by H Trustum and one other unnamed linesmen. A draw of programme numbers was made after the game. The winner earned the right to buy the ball that had been used in the game for a penny.

Category: Guernsey History | Other events tagged

Check out The Sarnian’s email newsletter for Guernsey history, features, puzzles and pictures. It’s also the first place where you’ll find out about the Sarnian series of books, including sneak previews and discounts.

We will never sell your data to third parties, and there’s an unsubscribe link in every email, so you can leave whenever you like.

What else happened in Guernsey in May?

Guernsey history newsletter

Check out The Sarnian’s email newsletter for Guernsey history, features, puzzles and pictures. It’s also the first place where you’ll find out about the Sarnian series of books, including sneak previews and discounts.

We will never sell your data to third parties, and there’s an unsubscribe link in every email, so you can leave whenever you like.

* indicates required

Explore Guernsey's history

The Sarnian

The Sarnian Book 1: Dead in the Water

A body on a beach, an impossible alibi and an unstoppable race against time!

Check out the first book in The Sarnian series, set on the Channel Island of Guernsey.

Click here to get your copy today…

May in Guernsey through the years…

The head of Guernsey CID was shot in St Peter Port

27th May 1949

Game of Thrones actor Roy Dotrice was born

26th May 1923

The City of Paris acquires Hauteville House

21st May 1927

The lease of Herm was back on the market

17th May 2008

Alderney was liberated at the end of the war

16th May 1945

Sarnian secrets

Sign up to The Sarnian's occasional newsletter for updates on your favourite characters and locations, to go behind the scenes on the writing process, and for early-bird discounts on every new book. We promise not to share your details with anyone else, and you can easily unsubscribe whenever you choose.
* indicates required

Search the archiveWarning