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From undefeated in the first 17 to 2 wins in the first 10.

 

Here are the Anniversaries from 23 August – part of our regular daily look at Arsenal’s history.

Our most recent article on Arsenal’s history is The end of Woolwich Arsenal and of the first season at Highbury.

 


23 August 1920: Lionel Smith born.  He played for various local non-league clubs and signed for Arsenal as an amateur in April 1939, but his progress was stopped by the second world war.  

23 August 1947: League Debut for Archie Macauley and Don Roper.  One year on from the worst start since 1923, 58184 turned up to see McPherson, Logie and Rooke make it Arsenal 3 Sunderland 1 on the opening day of the season – a season which saw Arsenal open with six consecutive wins and go undefeated in the first 17 games.

23 August 1952: Arsenal 2 Villa 1 started the march to the First Division title for the last time until Mee won the double in 19 years later.

23 August 1952 Lycurgus Burrows died.  By retaining an amateur status he had managed to be registered for both Tottenham and Arsenal at the same time – playing for Arsenal between 1893 and 1896.

23 August 1955: Arsenal 3 Cardiff 1.  Tommy Lawton scored a hat trick but Arsenal then did not win another game until 1 October when they defeated Aston Villa 1-0.

23 August 1958: Tommy Docherty signed for £20,000 from Preston North End for whom he had played 323 league games.  He went on to play 83 times for Arsenal before moving on to Chelsea.

23 August 1958: George Swindin’s first match as manager:  Preston 2 Arsenal 1.  Arsenal however then won five of the next six, scoring 24 goals in the process.  But he never won an opening day’s match.

23 August 1966: Arsenal 2 WHU 1.  Radford and Baldwin scored in Alan Skirton’s final game for Arsenal.  He scored 53 goals in 145 league games as a winger, including two in the previous game.

23 August 1975: Arsenal 0 Stoke 1. Arsenal won only two games in the first ten and ultimately ended the league in 17th.

23 August 1986: Arsenal 1 Man U 0.  George Graham started his career as Arsenal manager.  Unfortunately this was one of only two wins in the first eight.  Charlie Nicholas scored.

23 August 1996: Paul Dikov sold to Manchester City for £1m.  He had played 22 league games and scored four goals in his six years with Arsenal.

23 August 1997: Luis Boa Morte’s first league game as the press increased their criticism of “foreign imports”.   Overmars scored his first goal for Arsenal.  Southampton 1 Arsenal 3.  The third league game of the 2nd Double Season

23 August 2000: Brian McGovern sold to Norwich.  He played one game for Arsenal, and five games for QPR while on loan.

23 August 2006: Theo Walcott became the youngest Arsenal player to play a match in a European competition against Dinamo Zagreb.  He was 17 years 129 days old.

23 August 2008: Arsenal lost 1–0 to Fulham in the second game of the season but then went on to win the next three game to go top of the league.


Elsewhere on this day, on 23 August 410, Alaric, King of the Visigoths stormed the gates of Rome after Emperor Honorius ran away.  And so 450 years after the fall of the Roman Republic, the planet’s first large scale, long lasting republic with a semblance of democracy at its heart, was overthrown by the dictator Julius Caesar, the Roman Empire which replaced the Republic now fell under the weight of its own incompetence, arrogance, corruption and downright stupidity.


 

The current series from the Arsenal History Series being developed on this site is  Henry Norris at the Arsenal, covering all aspects off the life and work of the man who rescued Arsenal from extinction, secured the club’s future by moving it to Highbury, and then brought in Herbert Chapman as manager.

The previously untold tale of how it was that Norris came to choose Highbury as the suitable location for Arsenal’s new ground.

The series is being worked on daily, and the articles thus far are here.

Among the many other series we have run are…

There are details of many other series covered by this site on our home page.

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