Have Tottenham Ever Been Relegated?

By Lucas Pereira, FootballPredictions.NET, 22:59 02/10/2020

Updated at: 20:00 16/01/2021

Have Tottenham Ever Been Relegated?

North London giants Tottenham Hotspur have developed into an established member of the Premier League’s top six during the last ten years under the management of Mauricio Pochettino and Jose Mourinho.

Tottenham Hotspur have been relegated on four separate occasions during their history, all during the 1900s. However, they have not been relegated from the top flight of English football since 1978. 

Of the club’s four relegations, three have seen The Lilywhites finish bottom of the table. 

1914/15: First relegation from the First Division 

After being founded in 1882, Tottenham were promoted to the top flight of English football for the first time at the end of the 1908/09 season following a second-place finish in the Second Division. 

After six seasons in the First Division, Spurs were relegated in 1915 after finishing bottom of the table on 28 points from 38 games, one point below London rivals Chelsea

Football in England was subsequently paused for four years due to the First World War. The club did return to the top flight at the first attempt in 1920, however, as manager Peter McWilliam guided them to a first-place finish in the second tier. 

1927/28: Demoted after a fierce relegation battle 

Spurs spent eight years in the First Division before being relegated for the second time in their history following the conclusion of the 1927/28 campaign. They finished 21st out of 22 teams, with a total of 38 points. 

Billy Minter’s side were unfortunate to finish in the dropzone with the seven clubs directly above them all finishing just one point ahead on 39 points. 

The relegation was followed by a stay of five seasons in the Second Division before Percy Smith led the side to a second-place finish and their third promotion into the top flight of English football.

1934/35: Disastrous follow-up to high league finish 

The club achieved their second-highest league finish to date at the culmination of the 1933/34 season as they ended the campaign in third place in the table. 

The following season was a complete contrast as their seven-year stay in the First Division ended with a bottom-place finish, four points adrift of safety. 

The turbulent campaign included two managerial changes as long-standing manager Percy Smith left to be succeeded by first Wally Harding and then Jack Tresadern. 

The 15 years in the Second Division that followed this relegation are the longest the club has spent outside the top flight in their 138-year history as they failed to regain promotion until 1950. Spurs’ first league title followed a year later at the end of the 1950/51 season. 

1976/77: Prologue to becoming top-flight mainstays 

Having won a second First Division title in 1960/61 (along with the FA Cup), The Lilywhites succumbed to a fourth relegation by 1977. It  ended a 27 season-long association with the top flight of English football.

Keith Burkinshaw’s side finished rock bottom of the 22-team league, just two points below 19th place Coventry City as they were demoted to the Second Division. 

A third-place finish in the second tier the following season sealed an automatic return to the First Division.

Tottenham have remained in the top flight ever since, a period spanning over four decades. 

This has also seen the club become one of just six sides to have featured in every single Premier League season since the top flight of English football was rebranded in 1992. 

Spurs join Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Everton in the exclusive group. The closest Spurs have come to dropping into the second tier since 1977 were 15th place finishes in both 1991/92 and 1993/94. Chelsea were last relegated in 1988.

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