Born: 16 September 2000 (Welwyn Garden City, England)
An Academy graduate who first stepped into a Spurs Development Centre at the age of five in 2005, Oliver Skipp is now an integral member of the squad.
Unfortunately, injury struck for 'Skippy' both at the end of his successful loan spell at Norwich City in 2020/21, then again after he'd started 14 of our 18 Premier League matches and made 28 appearances in all competitions in 2021/22.
In and around the first team since the summer of 2018, Skippy worked through the summer to recover from a foot injury sustained in May, 2021, returned to action in a friendly at Colchester on 21 July, 2021, and impressed enough to earn a starting place against Manchester City on the opening day of the 2021/22 campaign. However, having played so well, injury struck again in January, an issue that eventually needed surgery. Again, he worked overtime in the summer to join the squad for pre-season ahead of 2022/23.
Born in Welwyn Garden City and brought up in Hertford, Oliver was one of the leading appearance makers for our Under-18s in 2016/17 despite still being a schoolboy, featuring 23 times and starting 20 of those, including three FA Youth Cup ties. A defensive midfielder who can also operate at centre-half, he also played twice in our debut campaign in the UEFA Youth League against Bayer Leverkusen and CSKA Moscow.
Over the course of 2017/18, he featured primarily for our Under-23s, despite only being in his first year of full-time football with us. He made 16 appearances in the Premier League 2, memorably scoring his first goal in our colours with a cracking strike in a 3-1 win at Arsenal in March, 2018, and made two starts apiece in the EFL Trophy and Premier League International Cup. He was the only player to start all eight of our games in the UEFA Youth League, scoring the decisive spot kick in a penalty shootout victory over AS Monaco to reach the quarter-finals, and played 11 times for the Under-18s in all competitions.
He made his senior debut during our 2018 pre-season tour of the United States and appeared in a first team competitive matchday squad for the first time when we took on Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League at the start of October, 2018. He followed that up a few days later with a first Premier League bench appearance in our 1-0 win over Cardiff and, around the same time, was named Premier League 2 Player of the Month for September, 2018, for his performances for the Under-23s. His competitive first team debut followed in a 3-1 win at West Ham in the Carabao Cup at the end of October, 2018, before he made his Premier League debut as a second-half substitute in a 3-1 win over Southampton at Wembley in December, 2018. By the end of that campaign, he'd made 12 first team appearances for us, training and travelling with the squad on a regular basis, including on our epic run to the Champions League Final.
'Skippy' actually featured in seven different competitions across four age groups in 2018/19. He played once in the Under-18 Premier League - in nothing less than the first ever football fixture to be played at our new stadium as our Under-18s beat Southampton in a Test Event match in March, 2019 - and played three times in the Under-19 UEFA Youth League, in addition to five Premier League 2 appearances for our Under-23s in the first two months of the season and an additional game for the Development Squad against Gillingham's senior side in the EFL Trophy in October, 2018. For the first team, he picked up game time in the Premier League, FA Cup and Carabao Cup.
Skippy continued to earn praise - this time from Jose Mourinho - in 2019/20, when he added another 11 appearances in all competitions. He started the 1-1 draw at Burnley in March, 2020 - our last game before lockdown - and was trusted as a late substitute to see out victory in the north London derby in July, 2020.
Skippy took full advantage of his loan to Norwich City in 2020/21. The midfielder played a starring role in central midfield and started 45 of 46 league games as the Canaries won the Championship and promotion back to the Premier League. His performances earned a place in the PFA's Championship Team of the Season. However, there was a good reason why he wasn't ever-present - Skippy suffered a foot injury in that 45th game in May, 2021, and had to spend the summer in rehabilitation to make sure he was ready for the start of 2021/22.
Now a regular for England Under-21s, Skippy featured in the UEFA European Under-21 Championship Finals in March, 2021. He has also represented England's Under-18s, Under-17s and Under-16s.