Big Martin Jol


One of the better introductions to the match day experience at White Hart Lane during the last decade has been the clips compilation played over the Jumbotron before the teams come out. The quick pick ‘n’ mix delight of goals, tackles and saves accompanied by a faux operatic soundtrack ends these days with the French Fawlty lookey-likey in full water bottle destroying mode. For a few years though the image that was left to linger was that of a strong jaw beneath pursed lips and a steely eyed stare. Yes we loved Martin Jol, and Martin Jol loved us.

BMJ, a bit like Redknapp, fell into the role of manager almost by chance after the board’s Chosen One, appointed after long deliberation and consultation, proved to have a leaden rather than Ledley like touch. Jacques Santini disappeared around Bonfire Night 2004 (apparently without trace) and Jol was promoted from within. His three seasons in charge were generally successful as he took us back into Europe whilst we took some key steps forward. It wasn’t enough though apparently as Levy and chums actively pursued Juande Ramos whilst the big man was still in charge and Jol’s managerial reign was brought to an undignified end at some time during the evening of the home defeat to Getafe.

Since then despite some near misses in European competition we’ve not crossed paths since, until now. It’s Fulham and Craven Cottage on Sunday and I bet the home manager cannot wait to take the walk across the pitch in front of the away end when he’ll surely receive a greeting befitting the size of the affection we had for the man. If nothing else his face off with Wenger on the Highbury touchline as we chased fourth in 2006 should be high in everyone’s list of favoured images.

The man was only a stomach virus away from leading us into the Champions League years. He’s got no hair but we don’t care, Martin Martin Jol.


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  1. Um, I actually supported Wenger in that stand off. MJ is a clown, a poor coach, unambitious and fed our players toffees and pudding. He was bursting with pride when Manchester United bought Michael Carrick off him and he said (then) Crystal Palace manager Ian Dowie wasn't fit to clean his boots, just before Dowie's boys hammered us 3-0! What an embarrassment. Fulham's poor start to the season was entirely predictable under him. I regret that his departure was undignified but I was very, very glad when he left. I hope we hammer his club, who are otherwise actually quite likeable.

    • A tad harsh I think. Plus Jol was in the right in that stand off with Wenger… But I do agree that Jol is a limited manager, but could be right for Fulham. But I wish him well….AFTER Sunday.

      • Wenger at least doesn't pretend to be what he isn't. He's a sore loser, unlike Martin Jol who is a sure loser! Wenger doesn't seek approval from fans and the press with nonsensical sound bites. I like Wenger, and if he had been our manager we might have won something. Shoot me!

  2. Harry hardly fell into the role by chance. Levy tried to sign Redknapp once before. Harry was no.1 choice. Jol was lucky to get the Spurs job, despite being a seasoned manager in the Dutch league. It says a lot about the Dutch league when a manager leaves to become assistant manager at an English non-top 5 club (as we were at the time). Jol did well – initially. Likeable guy.

  3. Some people gave short memories, or rose tinted specs.

    I remember all the clueless tactics, baffling use of players out of position and even more baffling substitutions Jol used to make.

    Being a likeable bloke shouldn’t make you a legend.

  4. hes got no hair but we dont care
    most of which spurs fans share
    we're the baldest fuckers around
    martin was the coolest hound (dog)

    Thats not exact eulogy in an English garden but the best poem you lot ever gonna read

  5. we could have got that bloke who sings with that poofda group…er…whats his name? He did that song my Sharona. He told us to go fuck ourselves when we offered him a ten year contract.


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