Tottenham Hotspur Football Club was founded in 1882 and has been a part of English soccer's top league for most of its existence. Spurs have had some successful stretches in claiming titles during that time, namely in the 1960s, when some of the most famous ex-Tottenham players came together to form one of the best squads in club history.

Compiling a top 10 list of Tottenham’s best players is a tough task, and players such as Paul Gascoigne, Robbie Keane, Jermain Defoe, Gareth Bale and Sol Campbell all just missed out on making the list.

Spurs club history is strong, and the roster of legendary players who have donned the iconic white shirt is truly impressive. In recent years, Tottenham fans have witnessed the brilliance of Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son, who have brought immense joy to the club. However, it is important to recognize the many generations of talented players who came before them. In this list, we pay tribute to remarkable individuals who have contributed to the rich legacy of Tottenham Hotspur.

Are there any U.S. players on Tottenham Hotspur team?

There are no current U.S. players on the Tottenham squad, but two of Spurs’ greatest goalkeepers were American-born talents.

Kasey Keller played college soccer with the Portland Pilots and then played professionally for the Portland Timbers before moving to the UK to play for Millwall. He spent time with Leicester City and Rayo Vallecano in Spain before landing at Tottenham, where he made 85 appearances between 2001 and 2005.

Brad Friedel, one of the best American soccer players of all time, also played for Spurs between 2011 and 2015. He holds the record for the most consecutive appearances in Premier League history with 310 straight games played, and the last stop of his Premier League journey was with Spurs.

Friedel played 288 games for Blackburn Rovers during the peak of his career before a stint with Aston Villa. He then landed with Spurs in 2011 and played in 50 games for the club.

Famous Tottenham Players

The current Spurs squad features a couple of world-class stars, including English striker Harry Kane, one of the most prolific goal scorers of all time for both his club and country, and Korean sensation Heung-Min Son.

Son has captivated the English Premier League since his arrival from Bayer Leverkusen in 2015. He has since scored 103 goals for Spurs and is one of the most exciting Tottenham Hotspur players in recent history.

David Mackay and Jimmy Greaves are two of the most decorated players in club history, and Glenn Hoddle became a fan favorite while appearing in 377 games for Spurs from 1975 to 1987.

In more recent years, names such as Gareth Bale and David Ginola have captured the attention of Spurs soccer fans worldwide. Bale made such a strong impression on the soccer world that he earned himself a stunning transfer to Spanish giant Real Madrid.

Ranking the 10 greatest Tottenham players of all time

  1. Ledley King

Position: Center back
Years at Tottenham: 1999 to 2012 

Ledley King is undoubtedly a legendary Spurs figure, having risen through the ranks of the club's youth system. With a remarkable career, he not only became a cherished player but also held the esteemed position of club captain for an extended period. King's journey with Tottenham began when he joined the team in 1996, and his dedication and skill propelled him to the first team just three years later in 1999.

Ledley had a talent for understanding the game and reading situations before they happened, which made him one of the most instinctive defenders in the Premier League. He played his entire career for Tottenham, making 323 appearances and scoring 14 goals from the back.

King was the driving force at the back of a Spurs push for Champions League soccer in the 2000s, and after accomplishing that goal he was called up to the England squad for the 2010 World Cup.

Unfortunately, knee injuries started to play a serious role in his career, which eventually led to his premature retirement in 2012. He is one of the most popular Tottenham players in club history, and the fans regularly chant his name during the 26th minute of Spurs home games to honor the number he wore for the club.

  1. Steve Perryman

Positions: Midfielder, Fullback
Years at Tottenham: 1969 to 1986 

Steve Perryman is an all-time club legend. He is one of the most famous Tottenham players for his longevity and unbreakable commitment to the team.

Perryman holds the club record with 854 appearances over a span of 17 years. He was a hard-working, box-to-box midfielder who was never afraid to get stuck in. In terms of club appearances, his Tottenham player stats are off the charts. Steve is currently more than 200 games ahead of any other player.

From an early age, Perryman showcased exceptional ball control and swiftly assumed a commanding presence in his role at Spurs. Remarkably, he clinched his first trophy, the 1971 League Cup, at the tender age of 19. Building on this success, Perryman continued to shine, securing the UEFA Cup in the following season and triumphing once again in the 1973 League Cup.

In 1978, the club faced the disappointment of relegation from the pinnacle of English soccer. However, it was Perryman, the esteemed club captain, who stood tall and guided the team back to the first division in 1979. Under his leadership, Tottenham experienced a renaissance, capturing consecutive FA Cups in 1981 and 1982, followed by another UEFA Cup victory in 1984.

Perryman embodied the essence of playing for Tottenham. Leading by example, he set the standard and is remembered as one of the most well-respected captains in the club's storied history.

  1. Heung Min-Son

Position: Winger
Years at Tottenham: 2015 to Present 

Heung-Min Son, who was born in South Korea, moved to Germany as a youth prospect with Hamburger SV. He broke into the first team two years later, and after a couple of impressive seasons in the Bundesliga with Bayer Leverkusen he made his move to the English Premier League with Spurs.

Since becoming a Tottenham player in 2015, Son has become one of the most successful attacking players and goal-scorers in club history. With an impressive tally of 145 goals in 371 appearances across various competitions, he has etched his name as the sixth-highest goal-scorer in the illustrious history of the club.

In 2022, his exceptional performance led him to share the Premier League's prestigious Golden Boot award with Mo Salah of Liverpool, as both men scored an impressive 23 goals.

Son's remarkable skills were recognized globally when he was honored with the FIFA Puskas Award in 2020. This accolade came as a result of his breathtaking goal against Burnley, where he went on a mesmerizing run from the edge of his own penalty area, bypassing almost the entire Burnley team before calmly slotting the ball past the goalkeeper.

Since his arrival in 2015, Son has continuously progressed and evolved, solidifying his position as one of the most influential players at the club in recent years. Already regarded as a club legend, Son's legacy at Tottenham Hotspur is set to endure. By the time Son’s time at Tottenham comes to an end, he will have cemented himself as one of the very best in Tottenham Hotspur history.

  1. Pat Jennings

Position: Goalkeeper
Years at Tottenham: 1964 to 1977 

Pat Jennings is the best goalkeeper in Tottenham's history and one of the very best in English soccer altogether.

He appeared in 591 games across all competitions for Spurs, winning an FA Cup, two League Cups and a UEFA Cup during his run as the team’s starting shot-stopper. He was one of the best Tottenham international players at the time, also playing in goal for Northern Ireland.

In 1973 he was named the Football Writers Association Player of the Year, and three years later in 1976 won the PFA Player of the Year award. To this day, he remains one of just two goalkeepers to ever win the award, along with soccer legend Peter Shilton.

“Big Pat” is a beloved part of Spurs history. Well-respected by the fans, he continued to support the club post-retirement as a goalkeeping coach. He is a member of the English Football Hall of Fame, and considered one of the best British goalkeepers of all time.

  1. Cliff Jones

Position: Winger
Years at Tottenham: 1958 to 1968 

Cliff Jones had already made a name for himself as a prolific winger in the 1950s, catching the attention of Tottenham. In 1958, the Welsh maestro was acquired for a fee of £35,000, and he swiftly established himself as a mainstay in the Spurs' starting lineup for the next decade.

Renowned for his elusiveness, Jones possessed a unique ability to take on defenders head-on, relentlessly attacking the goal. His one-on-one skills often left opponents in disarray, causing havoc in their defensive lines.

Not only did Jones excel in creating opportunities for his striking partners, such as Les Allen and Bobby Smith, but he also had an impressive goal-scoring record of his own. Across 378 appearances in all competitions, Jones found the back of the net an impressive 159 times while playing on either wing.

Such was his brilliance that Italian giant Juventus offered a then-world record fee of £125,000 for his services, an offer which Tottenham declined. Jones played a pivotal role in Tottenham's remarkable double triumph in the 1960-61 season, clinching both the Division 1 title and FA Cup trophy.

Jones is currently (and proudly) the fifth-highest goal-scorer in Tottenham's history, and his contributions have earned him a well-deserved place in the English Football Hall of Fame.

  1. Harry Kane

Position: Striker
Years at Tottenham: 2009 to present 

Harry Kane has dedicated his entire career to Tottenham. By the time he retires, it will be possible to make the case for calling him the greatest Tottenham player of all time.

At the tender age of 11 in 2004, Kane was on a six-week trial with Watford when he put in an impressive display against Tottenham. This remarkable performance earned him an opportunity with Spurs, a chance he embraced wholeheartedly. Ever since, he has remained a loyal member of the club, honing his skills in the youth academy before making his professional debut in 2011.

Over the years, Kane has etched his name among the greatest goal-scorers in the history of the Premier League. With a staggering tally of 211 league goals for Tottenham, his total puts him at No. 2 in the all-time Premier League goal-scoring record books, trailing only Alan Shearer.

Kane's prowess in front of the goal has been consistent for more than a decade. He recently secured the Spurs' all-time scoring record, surpassing the iconic Jimmy Greaves, who remains an enduring figure in club history.

Beyond his contributions at the club level, Harry Kane has proudly represented and captained both Tottenham and the England national team. Under his guidance, the Tottenham squad has experienced some of its most remarkable campaigns to date. The prolific striker has clinched the Premier League's Golden Boot on four separate occasions, affirming his position as one of the most formidable goal-scoring talents of our time. Today, he continues to shine brightly as one of the premier stars among strikers.

  1. Glenn Hoddle

Position: Midfielder
Years at Tottenham: 1975 to 1987

Glenn Hoddle emerged as a superstar of his generation, proudly becoming another Tottenham legend who blossomed within the club's youth academy. 

He joined the Tottenham soccer team at the age of 12 and spent six years in the youth academy before being promoted to the first team in 1975.

Hoddle possessed a mesmerizing ability in the midfield, as his magical touch and exceptional ball skills often ignited opportunities for Spurs. He formed an integral part of the midfield lineup during the early 1980s, a period that witnessed remarkable victories --- including consecutive FA Cup championships in 1981 and 1982 as well as a memorable UEFA Cup triumph in 1984.

The Tottenham legend proudly represented England on 53 occasions during his prime years. Hoddle is widely regarded as the most gifted player to have ever donned the Tottenham jersey, undoubtedly earning his place as one of the best Tottenham players in club history.

  1. Danny Blanchflower

Position: Midfielder
Years at Tottenham: 1954 to 1964 

In 1954, Tottenham Hotspur secured the services of Danny Blanchflower, who was acquired from Aston Villa for a fee of £30,000. Over the next remarkable decade, Blanchflower became an integral part of the club, leading the team as captain to a momentous double-winning season in 1961, when Tottenham clinched both the league title and the FA Cup.

Blanchflower's role as a defensive midfielder showcased his exceptional passing abilities and uncanny ability to find his teammates with pinpoint accuracy on a consistent basis. The team's play revolved around him, as he effortlessly controlled the game and dictated possession for Tottenham. His innate understanding of the game allowed him to seemingly anticipate every move, possessing a soccer intellect that was second to none.

The remarkable talent of Blanchflower earned him the esteemed Football Writers Association Player of the Year award on two occasions, both in 1958 and 1961 -- a testament to his exceptional contributions. Notably, he also held the captaincy not only for Spurs but also for the Northern Ireland national team for large portions of his playing career.

Many consider Blanchflower to be one of Tottenham's best players and another one of the club’s all-time greatest leaders.

  1. Jimmy Greaves

Position: Striker
Years at Tottenham: 1961 to 1970 

Jimmy Greaves is one of the greatest strikers to ever play the game of soccer. He was electric and scored at will throughout his career, which had started at rival Chelsea.

Greaves netted 124 goals in 157 league appearances for Chelsea after climbing through the club’s youth ranks, and after a short time in Italy with AC Milan, he returned to England to play for Spurs.

He was signed for £99,999 after bids from both Tottenham and Chelsea had been accepted, and he scored a hat trick in his debut against Blackpool. Greaves would go on to score 266 goals in 379 appearances across all competitions for the London club.

Greaves was a master of his craft in front of the goal. He could score from anywhere at any time and simply loved to put the ball in the back of the net. He was as accurate as they come in close range and was the very best at creating shooting opportunities both for himself and for his teammates.

“Greavsie” led the top flight of English soccer in goal-scoring for three seasons in a row and made 57 caps for England after impressing in the domestic game.

He is a member of the English Football Hall of Fame, and held the club goal-scoring record at Spurs for many years until it was recently broken by Harry Kane. The trio of Kane, Greaves and Bobby Smith are the only three players in Spurs history to score over 200 goals for the club.

  1. David Mackay

Position: Midfielder/Sweeper
Years at Tottenham: 1959 to 1968 

Dave Mackay, widely regarded as the "heartbeat" of the most successful Tottenham teams in the club's history, left an indelible mark on the game. His pivotal role on the 1961 double-winning Tottenham team solidified his status as one of the most important players of his era, as his tough and unwavering on-field attitude inspired his teammates to deliver their best performances week after week.

No other club legend in the history of Tottenham, or “Spurs,” has contributed more to the club's success than Dave Mackay. His influence was instrumental in Tottenham's back-to-back FA Cup championships in 1961 and 1962, followed by another victory in 1967. In total, Mackay played a vital part in securing one league title, three FA Cup trophies, one European Cup Winners' Cup, and two Charity Shields for the club.

Mackay's arrival at Spurs brought about a significant shift in the team's dynamic. While they were already a strong unit, it was Mackay's presence that elevated them to greatness. He amassed over 300 appearances for Tottenham before his move to Brian Clough's Derby County, where the legendary manager himself later proclaimed Mackay as the greatest Tottenham player of all time.

Mackay's career was not without adversity. A double leg fracture suffered against Manchester United in December 1963 could have ended his playing days, but his determination to return and overcome the setback was a testament to his unwavering character. Just nine months later, as he fought his way back to health, Mackay endured another fracture on the same leg. Yet, he refused to be defeated, showcasing the resilience that underpinned his exceptional career.

Jimmy Greaves scored all the goals, but Dave Mackay tops the list of the best Tottenham players of all-time because of all the things he was able to do for the club.

Parameters for Ranking

These all-time great current and former Tottenham players have been ranked based on their accomplishments for the club as well as the impact their presence had on the team.

Many of the greatest soccer players are not goal-scorers but contribute in other ways, such as elite-level defending or commanding the midfield with the kind of captain’s presence that a player like Danny Blanchflower brought to the club.


Top 10 Tottenham managers of all time

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