Arsenal on this day in history.
Note: The anniversary file pages have over time been split and split again as they have grown. Please use the index at the foot of the page to find the month you want. A note on sources also appears at the end.
Last major update 31 May 2016
1 April 1889: Debut of David Howat, Arsenal 6 2nd Rifle Brigade 1. He became a league regular in 1893/4 and 1894/5 but then suddenly moved to Third Lanark, and we know no more of him.
1 April 1897: Reflecting Woolwich Arsenal’s change of status within south east Kent they play the rest of Kent and win 3-0
1 April 1901: The friendlies against local rivals Millwall continued into the new century with a 1-1 draw but the crowd of only 2000 showed that some of the rivalry had gone
1 April 1931: Arsenal wrote to the BBC banning all future radio broadcasts from Highbury. (Exact date uncertain, but certainly within two days either way). They rather bizarrely failed to let George Allison know – even though he was the BBC’s chief commentator.
1 April 1933: Joe Hulme got his 9th and last England cap, although even without him Arsenal still beat Aston Villa 5-0.
1 April 1936: Bernard Joy’s first match in front of just 10485 at home to Bolton. He was Arsenal’s most famous amateur player of the era and his book “Forward Arsenal!” has become a central source of information for what life within Arsenal was like in the 30s.
1 April 1949: Sammy Nelson born. He was too young to make an impact on the 1971 Double season but he played in three FA Cup finals (1978, 1979 and 1980) and the Cup Winners’ Cup final against Valencia.
1 April 1955: Alfred Baker died. He played 351 league matches for Arsenal, including the first ever 1st division match at Highbury.
1 April 1966: Sammy Nelson joined Arsenal on his birthday. He went on to make 245 league starts for Arsenal between 1969 and 1981 before moving on to Brighton and Hove Albion.
1 April 1972: Arsenal 3 Nottingham Forest 0; in a season when Arsenal were riding high and Forest were heading for relegation. Kennedy, George and Graham scored, and worse for Forest, Derby County won the League.
1 April 1995: Arsenal beat Norwich 5-1. In the previous four games, Arsenal had scored just one goal, and lost both the subsequent games scoring just one more. Hartson got two, Dixon and Merson one apiece, and there was one own goal.
1 April 1998: Arsène Wenger won Premier Manager of the Month award, the first Arsenal manager ever to do so since it was set up in August 1993. Alan Ball won it when with Man C in 1995 and George Graham with Leeds in 1997.
1 April 2000: 10 man Arsenal beat Wimbledon 3-1. Kanu scored two and Henry got a penalty as Wimbledon sank towards relegation.
1 April 2002: Arsenal beat Charlton 3-0 away to go top of the league with two goals from Henry and one from Ljungberg. League match 32 of the 3rd Double season
1 April 2006: Arsenal beat Aston Villa 5-0 with goals from Adebayor, Henry (2), Van Persie and Diaby.
2 April 1887: Archibald Devine was born in Lochore, Fife. He won the FA Cup with Bradford and played a game for Scotland before playing in the last season in Plumstead and first at Highbury, after which he went back to Bradford.
2 April 1887: The date of the cup final defined the end to Arsenal’s first ever season during which the name Royal Arsenal FC was established, and the club was opened up to all employees of the ordnance factories on the south bank of the Thames.
2 April 1897: The Woolwich Herald reported that Thomas Mitchell the highly successful former Blackburn manager had arrived at Plumstead to take up his job as manager.
2 April 1910: Bristol City 0 Arsenal 1. It was the 7th game in a row in which neither side scored more than one goal. The run ended on the last day of the season after 11 consecutive matches. See also here
2 April 1914: Gillespie Road stadium re-opened for the game Arsenal Res v Fulham Res after repairs to the leaning wall were complete.
2 April 1915: Manchester United beat Liverpool 2-0 in the greatest match fixing controversy in English football thus far. Both clubs were found guilty but neither received any punishment – which had a major impact on the first post-war season
2 April 1915: Hull 1 Arsenal 0. Last game for George Grant. Born in Plumstead he came from Invicta in Dartford and moved on to Millwall.
2 April 1926: Last Arsenal game (in the reserves) for Clem Voysey. He was one of the most controversial figures in Arsenal’s history but quite what happened is forever shrouded in mystery.
2 April 1926: A bad defeat for Arsenal(3-0 away to Aston Villa) meant Bill Harper was dropped but he was back for another 23 league games in the following season.
2 April 1927: Joe Hulme made his England debut v Scotland in Glasgow. England won 2-1 in front of over 111,000 fans.
2 April 1927: Arsenal 0 Huddersfield 2. An injury to Horace Cope keeps him out of the team for the rest of the season, and the cup final. It is the third of six consecutive defeats. Last game for Billy Milne
2 April 1932: Bob John broke the club appearance record held by Percy Sands of 327 games. He went on to play 421 league games and 46 FA Cup games. The result was a 1-1 draw with Chelsea – part of a run of five without a win.
2 April 1951: A trial match using the new floodlights at Highbury was played: The Boxers v The Jockeys. It was a regular event that raised money for charity.
2 April 1974: Jimmy Rimmer signed from Manchester Utd. In the following three seasons he was Arsenal’s first choice keeper and played 124 league games.
2 April 1977: Graham Rix’ first game – a 3-0 victory over Leicester in which Rix scored one of the goals. As unlikely as it seems O’Leary got the other two!
2 April 1989: Tony Adams scored to put Arsenal ahead, but then put into his own net in a 1-1 away draw with Man U. It was a run of seven without defeat which took Arsenal so close to Liverpool in the league table the season was decided in its final seconds.
2 April 2005: Arsenal 4 Norwich 1. Gilberto Silva returned after his long layoff with the back injury which it was feared might end his career. He went on to play over 80 more league games for the club.
3 April 1897: Arsenal 0 Newton Heath 2. Gavin Crawford became the first player to play 100 league games for Woolwich Arsenal. He played 83 times for Royal Arsenal and 122 league games in total.
3 April 1899: David Jack born. He scored the first ever FA Cup final goal at Wembley and was the first Arsenal player to captain England. He played 181 league games for Arsenal and won the league three times.
3 April 1909. Arsenal 0 Chelsea 0. Arsenal’s second home league game v Chelsea. Both ended 0-0 with attendances of 30,000 each time.
3 April 1915: Last game for Thomas Winship. Bristol C 1 Arsenal 1. The game followed a run of three defeats and just one win in six. After the war Winship played for Darlington and put over the cross for the first ever goal scored in the third division north.
3 April 1926: Tom Parker’s first game. It was the start of a continuous 172 game sequence. Arsenal 4 Blackburn 2. Baker, Blyth, Lawson and Buchan got the goals.
3 April 1948: Arsenal 2 Blackburn 0. Logie and Rooke got the goals. Arsenal followed this game with three draws and a defeat but were already so far ahead they still won the league easily. And also here
3 April 1953: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 1, making it six without a win. But Arsenal played 8 games in April including five straight wins, and won the league on goal average on the last day.
3 April 1966: Remi Garde born. He joined Lyon in 1982, when they were a league 2 side, became captain, and was a part of their promotion winning side. He joined Arsenal from Strasbourg in 1996 as the first transfer of Arsène Wenger – made while he was still in Japan. See also here
3 April 1971: 62,087 – the highest of the season – watched Kennedy get both goals in Arsenal 2 Chelsea 0. This was League match 33 of the first Double season and started the run of 10 games in one month.
3 April 1983: Jimmy Bloomfield died. He came to Arsenal from Brentford in 1954 and went on to play 210 league games scoring 54 goals. He later managed Leicester and then Orient – taking the Os to the FA Cup semi final in 1978 where they played Arsenal.
3 April 1991: Arsenal 5 Aston Villa 0. David Platt took over in goal for Villa with Nigel Spink injured. Campbell (2), Smith (2) and Davis showed no mercy.
3 April 2008: Almunia signed contract extension saying “hopefully I can finish my career here.” It wasn’t to be however and he left in 2011 after playing 109 league games for Arsenal.
4 April 1896: Grimsby 1 Woolwich Arsenal 1. A goal for Boyd gave him 13 for the season and made him top league scorer as Arsenal moved towards 7th position in the final league table in the club’s third league season. He became our most prolific goal scorer ever.
4 April 1903: Woolwich Arsenal 6 Small Heath 1. It was a remarkable result as Small Heath ended the season above Arsenal and gained promotion to the 1st Division, as Arsenal secured third.
4 April 1904: Woolwich Arsenal 2 Glossop NE 1. Shanks scored to make it 24 goals (he played 30 league games in the season) and become (with Coleman) one of the two first men to score over 20 league goals in a season for the club. He scored three hat tricks and four goals in one other game.
4 April 1907: Alf Haynes born, although other sources quote 1906 or 1910. He started with Oxford City, and later played 29 league games in all for Arsenal, and went on to be a scout for the club.
4 April 1912: Archie Gray transferred to Fulham for £250 (at a time when Henry Norris had a major influence on both clubs). He had come from Hibernian and played 184 league games and 16 FA Cup games between 1904 and 1912.
4 April 1913: Spurred on by Tottenham Hotspur’s objections, the Highbury Defence Committee persuaded Islington Council to push through a vote protesting against Arsenal moving to the Gillespie Road ground. Also here
4 April 1914: Last game for George Jobey the man who scored the first Arsenal goal at Highbury. It was a 1-1 draw with Bristol City and Jobey went on to play with Bradford for the final season before football was suspended.
4 April 1919: The complaint against Fulham by Sir Henry Norris over their playing unregistered players in the post-war knock out cup was heard by the Committee of the London Combination.
4 April 1922: Joe Toner won his first cap (of eight) for N Ireland. He played 89 league games for Arsenal before moving on to St Johnstone.
4 April 1929: Mike Tiddy born in Helston. He started out with Torquay, and then Cardiff before making 48 league appearances for Arsenal. He was one of the few Arsenal players to have been a lay preacher.
4 April 1933: Derby Daily Telegraph published what was probably the first newspaper report on Arsenal’s new shirts with the white sleeves – a design change that required approval by the FA before the shirts could be worn.
4 April 1983: Tottenham 5 Arsenal 0. It was the first time since Christmas Day 1911 that Tottenham had scored five against Arsenal. It was also the last time that Tottenham scored five against Arsenal in a league match.
4 April 1988: Arsenal 2 Norwich 0. Only 19,341 turned up at Highbury following four uninspiring draws. Smith and Groves scored.
4 April 1992: Coventry City 0 Arsenal 1. Match 11 of a 17 match unbeaten run which took Arsenal from 8th to 4th where Arsenal ended the season. The run involved 10 wins, scoring 41 goals in the 17 games.
4 April 1997: Fever Pitch, the movie about supporting Arsenal, based on the novel of the same name, was released.
4 April 2001: Arsenal beat Valencia 2-1 in the quarterfinals of the Champions League. Valencia took the lead but Henry and Parlour scored in the 58th and 60th minute. Valencia won the second leg 1-0 to go through on the away goals rule.
4 April 2002: Middlesbrough 0 Arsenal 1. FA Cup semi final. Part of the 3rd Double. Arsenal got through thanks to an own goal from Festa. Two days later Arsenal played Tottenham in the league, winning 2-1.
4 April 2009: Arsenal made it 17 unbeaten by beating Man City 2-0. Adebayor scored both upon his return from injury. Arsène Wenger said he felt Arsenal were going from strength to strength.
4 April 2015: In the most stunning league performance of the season Arsenal destroyed Liverpool 4-1 with goals from Bellerin, Ozil, Sanchez and Giroud. It left pundits who had predicted Liverpool would push for honours this season, struggling for excuses.
5 April 1890: Royal Arsenal beat Old Westminsters 3-1 in London Charity Cup Final. Although the competition continued until the 1970s Arsenal only entered it twice, in 1890 and 1891.
5 April 1902: Arsenal 2 Lincoln 0 made it two defeats in 13 but with two games left after this it was clear Arsenal would not get promotion. They did end up 4th however, their highest ever position.
5 April 1902: The Ibrox Stadium disaster in which part of the terracing collapsed. The architect Leitch was implicated, but ultimately found not responsible. However the disaster tainted his reputation and he subsequently sought work in London, including with Arsenal, Fulham and Chelsea.
5 April 1915: Last game for Tommy Winship in the 1-0 home win against Barnsley. He had left Arsenal for a few months in 1913 to join Fulham, but then returned.
5 April 1920: Arsenal 1 WBA 0. It was the fifth time 40,000+ attended a game at Highbury as crowds flocked back to football in the first post-war season. Only the game against Chelsea got a higher crowd.
5 April 1929: Herbert Chapman resigned from Arsenal after a 1-2 home defeat to Newcastle. In his four seasons thus far Arsenal had been league runners’ up and defeated FA Cup finalists, both previously unachieved, but he felt this was not enough. His resignation was rejected. The following season Arsenal won the Cup and the season after the League.
5 April 1930: David Jack was the first Arsenal player to captain England. He made nine appearances for England at a time when England only played three games a season, and scored three goals.
5 April 1952: Arsenal 1 Chelsea 1. Arsenal’s ninth FA Cup semi final. Cox scored – one of five FA Cup goals he scored – which is surprising as he only scored three goals in 25 league games during the season.
5 April 1966: 8,738 turned up at Highbury for Arsenal 1 WBA 1. Aside from the 1914/15 season (where crowds were very low due to the start of the war) this was the lowest crowd at Highbury until the match just one month later which 4554 attended.
5 April 1975: John Hartson born. He was brought in from Luton Town and played 43 league games scoring just 10 goals, before moving on to West Ham.
5 April 1980: Arsenal 1 Southampton 1. One of five games in 12 days, caused by the FA cup semi final being replayed three times, and Arsenal’s involvement in the Cup winners Cup. Alan Sunderland got the goal.
5 April 1987: Arsenal 2 Liverpool 1. League Cup Final. Until this moment every commentator would say, “Liverpool never lose if Rush scores…” He scored, but two goals from Charlie Nicholas gave Arsenal the League Cup for the first time.
5 April 1997: Chelsea 0 Arsenal 3. Last game for Ian Selly. He won the Cup Winners Cup with Arsenal. Wright, Platt and Bergkamp scored as Arsenal fought with Newcastle and Liverpool for third place.
5 April 1998: Wolverhampton 0 Arsenal 1. FA Cup semi final no 19. Christopher Wreh scored – it was his only cup goal of the season, as Arsenal moved towards the second Double. (For a quick guide to season see here)
5 April 2003: The longest unbeaten away sequence in league football of 27 games begins with an own goal by Kolo Toure in the match against Aston Villa, balanced by a goal at the right end by Ljungburg.
5 April 2006: The match nominated as “Bergkamp Day”. Bergkamp himself was a sub. The score was Arsenal 3 WBA 1. Helb got the first, Bergkamp set up Pirès for the second and the third was scored by… Dennis Bergkamp on 89 minutes.
5 April 2007: ITV sold its 10% shareholding in Arsenal to Stan Kroenke. It had paid £50m for the shares in 2004, and sold for £38m. ITV also started the process of selling its stake in Arsenal Broadband which was completed a year later.
5 April 2008: Traore league début in the match Arsenal 1 Liverpool 1. He went on to play 13 times for Arsenal before moving on to QPR. The game left Arsenal with just one win in seven, and Arsenal lost the next game as well, before recovering their form.
6 April 1895: For the second time in one season Arsenal scored seven beating Crewe 7-0. The club then beat Walsall 6-1 just six days later. By the end of the season Arsenal had scored 75 goals in 30 league games. In only three games did they fail to score.
6 April 1896: Encouraged by the scoring of seven goals in the previous home match, a record crowd of 14,000 turned out to see Arsenal beat Newcastle 2-1.
6 April 1907: Sunderland 2 Arsenal 3 made it four wins in a row as Arsenal headed for their highest end of the season position thus far: seventh in the first division.
6 April 1914: The Islington Gazette reported (not completely accurately) that “Woolwich Arsenal” had become “The Arsenal”. The club publically changed its name on 23 April, but the board did not formally approve the change until 10 May 1915.
6 April 1920: Tom Whittaker’s debut. He joined Arsenal (his only club) after being demobbed in 1919, and played 64 league games over six seasons. It was Chapman who saw in him the ability to become a powerful trainer and coach – and ultimately league winning manager.
6 April 1927: Distracted by the thought of the forthcoming final Arsenal lost 6-1 to Newcastle, followed three days later with a 5-1 defeat to Sunderland. It was only the subsequent six wins in the last seven games that saved Arsenal from relegation. See also here
6 April 1928: Arsenal 3 Cardiff 0. Arsenal won for the last time in the 1927/8 season. After this the club played 8 drawing 6 and losing 2.
6 April 1929: Final game for Billy Blyth – Arsenal’s first film star. He survived the change from Knighton to Chapman playing 314 league games and 29 cup games for the club. He moved on to Birmingham
6 April 1932: Sunderland 0 Arsenal 2. Last game for Ted Pat Beasley after 79 league games and 19 league goals. He won the league twice with Chapman before moving on to Huddersfield.
6 April 1965: Tommy Baldwin’s first Arsenal game. He played just 17 games for Arsenal before being transferred to Chelsea in 1966.
6 April 1971: Arsenal 1 Coventry 0. Ray Kennedy’s 25th of the season. Leeds drew with Newcastle meaning Arsenal were just four points behind with two games in hand – the first time Arsenal were in this position since mid-January. Arsenal’s goal difference was 0.03 goals better than Leeds’.
6 April 1993: Middlesbrough 1 Arsenal 0 symbolised the plight of Arsenal. Middlesbrough were relegated but Arsenal could not manage a goal as they headed to just 40 league goals all season in 42 games – fewer than any other club in the division.
6 April 1995: Arsenal 3 Sampdoria 2 Cup Winners Cup semi final 1st leg. Two from Bould (rather extraordinarily) and one from Wright gave Arsenal a narrow win.
6 April 2000: Arsenal 1 Lens 0; Uefa cup semi final. Arsenal won this first leg through a goal from Bergkamp in the 2nd minute and the opinion from the media was that this was nowhere near enough. (See 20 April).
6 April 2002: Arsenal 2 Tottenham 1. League match 33 of the 3rd Double season, the 8th game of 13 consecutive wins to the end of the season. Ljungberg and Lauren scored.
6 April 2004: Arsenal 1 Chelsea 2: Champions League Quarter Final second leg. Reyes gave Arsenal the lead, but Lehmann gifted the equaliser and Bridge scored with three minutes to go. The press headlines were “It’s all Gun wrong” and “Arsenal season in ruins”. The ruins included winning the Premier League unbeaten just 39 days later.
7 April 1900: Arsenal 5 New Brighton Tower 0. New Brighton Tower were one of the clubs created to fill a stadium (like Chelsea and Thames Association). Crowds of 4000 or less were common in the stadium that held 80,000. See also here
7 April 1902: Arsenal 2 Portsmouth 1. Southern Professional Charity Cup. Arsenal reached the semi-final but were knocked out by Tottenham.
7 April 1928: Tottenham 2 Arsenal 0. A most disappointing result given that Tottenham were relegated at the end of the season. In the remaining seven games of the season Arsenal drew six and lost one.
7 April 1934: Arsenal 3 Huddersfield Town 1. With the league championship clearly between the last two teams of Chapman’s career, 55,930 packed Highbury to see Shaw’s team take a major step to the second consecutive league title.
7 April 1952: Arsenal reached the F.A. Cup Final by beating Chelsea 3-0 in the semi-final replay, at White Hart Lane. Cox got two of the goals making it five cup goals in three games.
7 April 1967: First game for Pat Rice. He could not have imagined that 48 years later he’d be parking his car below a 60,000 stadium for each home game as an honoured guest of the club.
7 April 1973: FA Cup semi-final no 12: 2-1 to Sunderland. This and coming runners up in the league was the final serious attempt of the 1971 Double side to achieve further success. A year on they were 10th in the league and out of the cup in the 4th round.
7 April 1979: Steve Brignall became the Arsenal player with the shortest ever career at the time. Liverpool 3 Arsenal 0 was his only game (as a sub) and his contract was cancelled the following December.
7 April 1980: Arsenal asked Tottenham to rearrange the derby at WHL as Arsenal had five games in 12 days, including a Cup Winners Cup match against Juventus scheduled two days after this. They declined and despite resting numerous players Arsenal won 2-1. It was also the Arsenal début for Paul Davis. He won the league, the league cup twice, plus the FA Cup and Cup Winners’ Cup in a 16 year career.
7 April 1994: Death of Albert Sigurður Guðmundsson, the man who played for Arsenal and later became Icelandic Minister of Finance.
7 April 2008: Having pulled out of shareholdings with Liverpool and Man U, ITV sold its 50% shareholding in Arsenal Broadband to Stan Kroenke for £22.7m
7 April 2009: Robert Pires played for Villareal against Arsenal in the Champions League quarter final. It was a 1-1 draw.
8 April 1891: Arsenal 2 Old Carthusians 2 in the replay of the London Charity Cup semi-final. It was in effect the County Cup for London teams, for which Arsenal had made it to the final the previous season.
8 April 1899: Arsenal 4 New Brighton Tower 0; the first win in five, after a promising season. A goal from Hunt gave him 15 for the season, and secured to place of being top league scorer.for the club.
8 April 1910: Arsenal revealed the club’s debt to be £6200 including £1630 to Mr Leavey, who had kept Arsenal going with his loans, and £1347 to Archie Leitch the architect and ground developer who had designed the Manor Ground’s grandstand years earlier.
8 April 1911: Arsenal 2 Tottenham 0. Division 1. 24,583 turned up for the game which was part of an 11 match unbeaten run lasting to the end of the season. Chalmers and Common got the goals.
8 April 1922: Last senior game for Angus McKinnon. He played 211 games for Arsenal – his only senior club. He spent many of his post-playing years as trainer and coach for New Brighton FC.
8 April 1939: Last senior game for Alex Wilson. He was signed as cover for Frank Moss and won the FA Cup with Arsenal, but was ultimately replaced by George Swindin. He later worked as a trainer and physio in England and America.
8 April 1947: George Curtis played his last game for Arsenal. He spent time playing for the nursery club Margate but after 13 games for Arsenal he moved to Southampton, later managing teams across the world including managing Norway
8 April 1961: Brian McDermott born. He played 61 league games for Arsenal, and played for 10 other clubs before managing Reading and Leeds, later returning to Arsenal as chief scout.
8 April 1970: Arsenal 3 Ajax 0. Fairs Cup semi final first leg. (George 2, Sammels) 46,271 came to Highbury
8 April 1978: Arsenal 3 Orient 0. 13th FA Cup semi final, played at Stamford Bridge. Macdonald scored two, continuing his run of scoring in each round. Rix got the other.
8 April 1986: Last senior game for Paul Mariner – Arsenal 1 Nottm Forest 1. In his final season he made just five starts and seven sub appearances in league and cup but failed to score.
8 April 1987: In Graham’s first season WHU 3 Arsenal 1 made it 10 without a victory. It did however end the even worse run of six games without scoring. Arsenal’s goal was a penalty from Martin Hayes.
8 April 1992: Stephen Morrow’s first game: Arsenal 3 Norwich 1. He had joined from Bangor and went on to make 39 starts in the League scoring one goal.
8 April 2001: Arsenal 2 Tottenham 1. FA Cup semi final. Tottenham had just sacked George Graham as their manager, and brought in Glen Hoddle, but it did them no good in this game at Old Trafford. Tottenham took the lead on 14 mins but Vieira and Pires gave Arsenal the victory.
8 April 2008: Liverpool knocked Arsenal out of Champions League winning 4-2 (5-3 on aggregate). After a 1-1 draw at Highbury, Diaby’s goal on 13 minutes gave everyone hope, but Liverpool got two and when Adebayor got Arsenal’s second, Liverpool immediately restored their lead.
8 April 2009: Luke Freeman, the youngest ever player to play in the FA Cup (on 10 November 2007) signed professionally for Arsenal. After Arsenal he played over 100 games for Stevenage before joining Bristol City.
9 April 1904: Arsenal and Preston NE battled it out for top spot in the league in front of 28,000. It was the final game for Tommy Shanks who rather than lead Arsenal into the first division returned to failing Southern League team Brentford.
9 April 1906: Tottenham 0 Arsenal 0; Southern Professional Charity Cup. The Cup was played for between 1901 and 1908 between seven or eight teams from London and the south.
9 April 1910: Woolwich Arsenal 0 Bury 0. Arsenal were on the edge of relegation and also financial collapse. Chelsea’s poor form however helped them avoid the former, Henry Norris saved Arsenal from destitution. Also here
9 April 1917: Spencer Bassett died in action. He had played just one game for Arsenal in 1909 and moved on to Exeter City in 1910 followed by Swansea and Southend.
9 April 1924: Arthur Shaw born. He gained notoriety in the cigarette incident in which a reporter from the South Wales Football Echo and Express said several Arsenal players had come out for the second half of a reserve game against Cardiff, smoking.
9 April 1927: Sunderland 5 Arsenal 1. It was the sixth consecutive defeat during which run 26 goals were conceded and Arsenal sank from 11th to 19th. However they then won five in a run and finished the season back in 11th.
9 April 1930: Middlesbrough 1 Arsenal 1. Charles Preedy began his return as goalkeeper – a run that eventually led to his appearance in the Cup Final – and a winner’s medal.
9 April 1938: John Milne’s first international appearance for Scotland v England. Despite his international success he left the club “unexpectedly” and little is known about what happened thereafter.
9 April 1943: James Ashcroft died. He made 303 appearances and was the first goalkeeper to play for us in the first division, the first Arsenal player to play for England (he won three caps), the first Woolwich Arsenal player to get over 300 games, and the first player to play eight consecutive seasons getting over 30 league games a season.
9 April 1980: Arsenal drew 1-1 with Juventus in the Cup Winners’ Cup semi-final 1st leg, despite Tottenham refusing to reschedule a game with Arsenal and playing it two days earlier. (see 7 April) And here
9 April 1988: Steve Williams final senior appearance in Southampton 4 Arsenal 2. In July he moved on to Luton Town playing 40 times for them, and then 48 times for Exeter City.
9 April 1988: The start of the notorious racial abuse of Paul Davis by Glenn Cockerill of Southampton. The issue boiled over on 17 September when Davis hit Cockerill and was banned for an unprecedented nine matches in a case using TV evidence.
9 April 2004: Arsenal came back from 2-1 down to beat Liverpool 4-2. The 31st league game of the unbeaten season. Henry scored a hat trick, Pires got the other.
10 April 1897: Arsenal 1 Arsenal Reserves 2. Such games were common for many years at the start of the season, and occasionally near the end of the season, and the reserves were not supposed to win!
10 April 1919: The Committee of the London Combination ordered the game between Fulham and Arsenal to be replayed on this day. However a set of appeals and counter appeals resulted in a final Fulham appeal being heard without Henry Norris being told about it.
10 April 1919: Leslie Knighton joined Arsenal as the first post-war manager. Towards the end of his tenure Arsenal struggled against relegation and he was relieved of his duties in 1925 to be replaced by Chapman. His autobiography written 20 years later made numerous serious allegations against Henry Norris, which has since been shown to be unfounded.
10 April 1925 Sunderland 2 Arsenal 1. First game for Bill Seddon. He was signed 18 months before from Gillingham and made 69 league appearances. He got his first run in the side in November.
10 April 1939: George Curtis played his first match for Arsenal having served his apprenticeship with Margate, and left after 11 league games in 1946/7. He went on to become manager of numerous clubs and the Norwegian team. He died in 2004.
10 April 1948: Arsenal won the First Division Championship by drawing with Huddersfield 1-1 with four games to go. Arsenal lost one and drew two of the remaining games before winning the final match 8-0.
10 April 1954: Final appearance for Joe Mercer, aged 39. He won the league twice with Arsenal, and was also Footballer of the Year in 1950 but was treated badly by every club he played for or managed – except Arsenal. Everton refused to pay for an operation he need, Villa sacked him after he had a minor stroke, Manchester City sacked him appallingly after he brought them major triumphs… Only Arsenal it seems, offered him any sense of class and stability.
10 April 1954: League debut for Derek Tapscott Arsenal 3 Liverpool 0 – with Tapscott scoring two of the goals. He had come from Barry Town on 1 October 1953 and went on to play 119 times for Arsenal.
10 April 1971: Southampton 1 Arsenal 2. League match 35 of the first Double. Arsenal were thus three points behind Leeds with two games in hand. Radford and McLintock scored.
10 April 1979: Arsenal 1 Tottenham 0. 53,896 saw Stapleton score. But in the remaining seven matches Arsenal had only one more win… 5-2 against Chelsea.
10 April 2011: Jens Lehmann played against Blackpool after Almunia was injured in the warm up. It was his 200th Arsenal game, and he had been brought in as an emergency sub while doing his coaching badges.
11 April 1885: Luton Town formed. They later claimed to be the first professional team in the south, but only offered professional contracts to two players. Royal Arsenal were the first club to go professional as they became Woolwich Arsenal in 1891.
11 April 1891: Arsenal 1 Old Carthusians 2. London Charity Cup semi-final replay. There is a suggestion that Arsenal played again in this competition in the 1960s, but the suspicion is that was a competition for the reserves.
11 April 1896: Arsenal 2 Millwall Athletic 2. 9,000 turned up for the friendly against the rivals from across the water.
11 April 1898: William Elcoat took up the post as Arsenal manager. He totally changed the team, but after one season only two of them survived in Bradshaw’s first game: Ord the goalkeeper and Dick, the centre half.
11 April 1910: Arsenal beat champions Aston Villa 1-0, and thus gave Arsenal valuable points in their battle with relegation. However Villa, having already won the league, put out a reserve side and Chelsea and Middlesbrough protested vigorously but to no avail.
11 April 1914: Leeds City 0 Arsenal 0. Henry Norris met Leeds’ manager Herbert Chapman for the first time. Leeds were wound up after the war and Chapman barred from football for life – but he later appealed and joined Huddersfield.
11 April 1919 Sir Henry Norris wrote an open letter complaining about the behaviour of the London Combination’s committee, in relation to their holding an appeal hearing without him present to represent Arsenal’s position.
11 April 1936: Last appearance for Frank “Tiger” Hill. He went on to manage five different league teams over a 20 year period post-war.
11 April 1959: Tommy Docherty gained his 25th and last Scottish cap. He played 83 league games for Arsenal between 1958 and 1961.
11 April 1961: Bob Dylan made his first live appearance. You might not be aware that on the internet there is also Untold Dylan – that gets quite a big audience too.
11 April 1962. Fulham 5 Arsenal 2. The result came just two weeks after a 4-5 home defeat to Aston Villa. During the run of six games of which these were part Skirton scored five and Strong scored six.
11 April 1964: Arsenal 0 Blackburn 0. Arsenal had brought forward their final home game in order to install undersoil heating in the summer. The matchday programme included a note saying that a meeting among London clubs had agreed to fix next season’s ground entry price at 4 shillings (20p) with an enclosure for schoolchildren added (admission 10p).
11 April 1992: Paul Merson got a hat-trick as Arsenal beat Crystal Palace 4-1. It was the start of a five match run to the end of the season in which Arsenal scored 15 goals.
11 April 1998: Arsenal 3 Newcastle Utd 1. Manninger’s record of 8 consecutive games without conceding ended on the 31st league game of the 2nd Double season. The second double: part 1, part 2, part 3.
11 April 1999: Arsenal 0 Man U 0 FA Cup semi final. It was a pivotal moment at which point either Arsenal or Man U (or of course neither) could win the Double.
11 April 2004: Newcastle 0 Arsenal 0. The 32nd league game of the unbeaten season. It was the third of four 0-0 draws during the season.
11 April 2009: Alex Song scored his first premier league goal. Wigan 1 Arsenal 4 was Arsenal’s fifth successive win during which the club scored 16 goals, after having scored none in the previous four, and just four in the previous eight. Silvestre, Walcott and Arshavin scored the other goals – all coming in the last half hour.
11 April 2015: Burnley 0 Arsenal 1. Ramsey’s goal in 12 minutes gave Arsenal their 8th consecutive Premier League win. The unbeaten run continued for two more games.
12 April 1895: Arsenal beat Walsall TS 6-1 to make it 13 goals in two games. Buchanan made it 4 goals scored in 3 games, but Mortimer’s two goals made him top league scorer for the season with 14.
12 April 1913 – Woolwich Arsenal 1 Derby 2, and so Arsenal were relegated for the only time in their entire history in front of a crowd of 4,000. In fact they drew their final two games (including one away to Tottenham) but by then it was too late.
12 April 1948: Arthur Shaw signed from Brentford. He was involved in the cigarette allegation story, playing 57 league games for Arsenal. Despite being a league winner with Arsenal little is known of him other than that he played also played for Watford and later for Southall, Hayes and Gravesend & Northfleet.
12 April 1930: Arsenal played eight games in April 1930 and ended up a poor 14th in the league, but had the compensation of winning the cup. On this day however they Sheffield U 8-1. Lambert got a hat trick
12 April 1947: Alexander Rooney Forbes got his first Scotland cap. He went on to play 217 league games for Arsenal between 1948 and 1956.
12 April 1980: Arsenal 0 Liverpool 0; FA Cup Semifinal number 15. It was the second season running that Arsenal needed four or more games to win an FA Cup tie, but then this didn’t happen again until Leeds in 1991.
12 April 1982: Arsenal 1 Tottenham 3 in a run of just one win in 6 as Arsenal slipped to 10th, the club’s worst position since 1976. Hawley got the goal, 48,897 were in the crowd.
12 April 1994: Arsenal reached the final of the Cup Winners Cup by beating PSG 1-0 in the semi-final 2nd leg at Highbury, having drawn the first match 1-1. Campbell got the goal on seven minutes.
12 April 1995: Arsenal 0 Liverpool 1 made it one win and six defeats in seven as Arsenal sank to 12th in the table, after 37 matches. They were at this moment 39 points behind the league leaders and five points off relegation.
12 April 2013: Ex-Arsenal man Brian McDermott took over as manager of Leeds United, but the chaotic nature of the ownership of the club eventually saw him leave and return to the more stable Arsenal.
12 April 2014: In beating Wigan 4-2 on penalties in the FA Cup semi-final Arsenal equalled the all time record for Cup semi success. One year later they beat the record. Mertesacker got the goal in normal time, Arteta, Kallstrom, Giroud and Cazorla scored their penalties.
13 April 1895: Harry Storer played on this day for Football League XI and became the first Arsenal player to get representative honours playing for Arsenal but was booed at home, He was suspended following an “altercation” with supporters and then sold to Liverpool.
13 April 1889: The final game against Millwall Rovers; Arsenal won 3-0. After this Millwall Rovers became Millwall Athletic, but the games against the biggest local rivals of the era continued.
13 April 1903: Arsenal 0 Leicester 0 as Arsenal finished the season in 3rd – their highest ever position thus far. Arsenal missed promotion by just three points. 12000 attended the game, but 28,000 turned up a year later when Arsenal were promoted.
13 April 1906: Arsenal 2 Aston Villa 1. The match was played on Good Friday and resulted in the first 30,000 crowd for a league game at the Manor Ground.
13 April 1936: Last game for Ehud “Tim” Rogers. West Bromwich 1 Arsenal 0. Tim had played 16 league games and scored five goals, and moved on to Newcastle.
13 April 1957: John Barnwell’s league debut – a 1-0 defeat away to Sunderland. He later went on to become a manager (winning the league cup with Wolverhampton) and the Chief Executive of the League Managers’ Association
13 April 1957: It is stated in some quarters that the FA Amateur Cup final was held at Highbury on this day, but this is not so. However the Amateur Cup final was held 3 times at Highbury: 1929, 1931, and 1947.
13 April 1962: Peter Simpson signed a professional contract. A member of the first Double team, he played 353 league games for Arsenal and later spent time playing in America before dropping off the radar completely.
13 April 1971: Following Leeds’ draw with Huddersfield the day before, the result in game 36 of the first Double season was everything Arsenal needed: Nottm Forest 0 Arsenal 3. This left Arsenal two points behind Leeds, with two games in hand. McLintock, Kennedy and George scored.
13 April 1974: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 3. Arsenal crept up to 12th in the league and the press reported for the first time that through skillful editing of such matches the games looked attractive while in fact they were mind-numbingly dull. Kennedy got two and Radford the other goal.
13 April 1998…Arsenal won 4-1 at Blackburn Rovers. 32nd league game of the 2nd Double season. Bergkamp, Parlour (2) and Anelka got the goals. It was the 14th game unbeaten. The second double: part 1, part 2, part 3.
13 April 2009, Kolo Touré demanded a transfer, claiming he could not get on with William Gallas. Although Mr Hill Wood turned down the request, Toure moved to Man City for £14m on 28 July. It was a profit of £13,850,000 seven years after he was bought.
14 April 1900: Ex Arsenal goalkeeper Charlie Williams scored for Manchester City against Sunderland – the first ever league goal recorded as being direct from a goal kick.
14 April 1919. Athletic News published the Sir Henry Norris complaint about the London Combination. Norris resigned from Fulham as a director for the second and final time (date unclear but certainly between 11 April and 21 April 1919).
14 April 1919: Arthur Hutchins and Ernie Williamson signed from Croydon Common. CC were the only Southern League team not to return after the first world war, and although the details are unclear it seems Henry Norris had a significant involvement with the club. It is suspected that his lack of on-going support post-war, led to the closure.
14 April 1923: John “Alex” Mackie played his first international for Ireland at the age of just 20. Forever condemned to be known for the false story about demanding a monkey as a signing on fee he was actually very talented and played over 100 games for Arsenal.
14 April 1933: Despite winning the league Arsenal only got one 60,000 crowd in the season – on this day for Arsenal 4 Sheffield W 2 (Hulme 2, Lambert and Bastin). Arsenal scored 13 goals in the first three league games of April.
14 April 1934: Arsenal Reserves v Watford Reserves was advertised as “Admission 7d (including tax).” Less than half a penny in 2016 prices and money.
14 April 1934: Frank Moss made his international debut. When Arsenal bought him he was a reserve goal keeper for second division Preston, yet he went on to play in the three consecutive title winning seasons.
14 April 1934: Cliff Bastin scored for England against Scotland – six years after playing his first game ever – for Exeter Reserves against Bath City
14 April 1936: George Swindin signed by George Allison for £4000 from Bradford City. He won the league with Arsenal in 1938, 1948 and 1953 and subsequently went on to be Arsenal’s manager.
14 April 1958: Geoff Strong turned pro with Arsenal. He started playing with the first team in 1960/1 scoring ten in 19 games in his first season. He played 125 games before being transferred to Liverpool where he became a focal point in their team.
14 April 1959: Birmingham 4 Arsenal 1. With seven without a win, all thought of the championship had gone, although by winning the remaining three games Arsenal came third. Arsenal would not come higher until 1971. DR Clapton scored the goal.
14 April 1964: John McClelland’s final appearance before moving on to Fulham. He was replaced by McKechnie and Furnell. John tragically died of a brain tumour aged 35. In all he played 46 league games for Arsenal.
14 April 1973: Arsenal 1 Tottenham 1. Peter Storey scored and the result left Arsenal in second two points behind Liverpool. But draws in the next two games saw Arsenal slip away from the title and ultimately they won only one of their last six of the season.
14 April 1979: West Bromwich Albion 1 Arsenal 1. Attendance: 28,353. This was part of a run of nine games in 34 days as Arsenal approached the FA Cup final, Only two of those games were won – against Tottenham and Chelsea.
14 April 1991: Arsenal lost to Tottenham in the FA Cup Semi-final at Wembley 1-3 with Gascoigne and Lineker doing the damage. Smith scored for Arsenal. But most attention was on winning the League while losing only one game all season.
14 April 1999: Man U 2 Arsenal 1. FA Cup semi-final replay. Bergkamp scored but at the end Schmeichel saved a Bergkamp penalty and Man U raced to the other end to score the winner.
14 April 2001 Arsenal 0 Middlesbrough 3. The last match until 30 November 2003 in which Arsenal failed to score at Highbury. However on this day both Silvinho and Edu scored own goals!
15 April 1912: George Leavey resigned from the board of Woolwich Arsenal after 14 years with the club. Quite where his wealth came from (he ran a gentleman’s outfitters shop in Plumstead) has never been clear, but he was a major force in Arsenal’s survival until the arrival of Henry Norris.
15 April 1899: Jack Robson born. At 5 feet 8 inches he was Arsenal’s smallest ever keeper, and was signed by Arsenal from Innerleithen in 1921 to be third choice keeper, for reputedly just £5. But he was a success, for in 1923/4 he was an ever present for the club.
15 April 1905: Last game for Thomas Briercliffe. He had been a vital part of the promotion winning team, but after 28 games in his fourth season he was sold on to Plymouth in the Southern League.
15 April 1934: David Herd born. He was one of the players along with Jimmy Bloomfield, Jo Haverty, and Danny Clapton who came in to rebuild the side after the championship team of 1953 slipped badly in 1954.
15 April 1950: Arsenal 4 Newcastle 2. 103rd and last League game for Archie Macaulay. He later became a successful manager at Norwich (replacing Tom Parker) taking them to a promotion and an FA Cup semi-final.
15 April 1953: Arsenal 4 Bolton 1, as Arsenal headed for the title. Bill Dodgin’s first game for Arsenal. Bill had been signed by his father both at Southampton and Fulham and joined Arsenal in December 1952.
15 April 1970: Arsenal lost to Ajax 0-1 in the second leg of the Fairs Cup semi-final but having won the first match at Highbury 3-0 reached their first Euro final. In the other semi-final Anderlecht beat Internazionale 2-1 on aggregate having lost 0-1 at home in the first leg.
15 April 1972: Arsenal drew 1-1 with Stoke in the FA Cup Semi-Final with Radford taking over in goal replacing the injured Bob Wilson. Armstrong scored the goal.
15 April 2006: Arsenal nominated the home match v WBA match as “Dennis Bergkamp Day”. Dennis came on as a sub… and of course scored in the 89th minute! It was his final goal for Arsenal as they club beat WBA 3-1 with the other goals coming from Hleb and Pires.
16 April 1900: Arsenal signed right back Archie Cross from New Brompton. He later played at left back in over 100 games for the club before moving back to Dartford – his first ever club – in 1909.
16 April 1910: Tottenham 1 Arsenal 1 in front of 39,000. The first ever Tottenham v Arsenal league match at Tottenham. Despite five games unbeaten Arsenal’s problems continued. This was the 16th consecutive match in which neither side scored more than one goal.
16 April 1912: Ted Drake was born. He started playing for Winchester City, and then went on to Southampton, playing for them for the first time on 14 November 1931. Herbert Chapman quickly spotted him, but tragically passed on before he was able to sign him. See also Ted Drake Day
16 April 1912: One of the club’s pivotal days. George Leavey wrote to the Kentish Independent explaining that he could no longer spend the time nor provide adequate support for the club, wished Norris and Hall success in the venture, and resigned.
16 April 1921: Bradford PA 0 Arsenal 1. It was the last league meeting of the clubs. 14,000 were at the game, and Toner scored the only goal of the match.
16 April 1949: Everton 0 Arsenal 0. This made it six draws and one defeat in the last seven. The crowd was 58,987 despite Everton’s lowly league position and Arsenal’s poor form. The season represented the height of post-war league attendances.
16 April 1960: With just one win in eight and 10 goals conceded in the last four games, Arsenal sank to below mid table with a 3-0 away defeat to Birmingham and managed just one win against three defeats in the last four games of the season.
16 April 1962: Arsenal recorded their first win at Old Trafford since 1930. George Eastham scored the first in a 3-2 win, Noel Cantwell o.g for the second and Alan Skirton the third and winning goal.
16 April 1966: WHU 2 Arsenal 1. Baldwin scored for Arsenal but it was 10 without a win as Billy Wright’s days come to an ignominious end as Arsenal sank to 16th in the table just three points above the relegation spot.
16 April 1977: Freddie Ljungberg born. He made his debut for Halmstads on 23 October 1994 and was signed by Arsenal in 1998 for £3m. It is said that Arsène Wenger had never seen him play when he signed him – but just saw him on TV, although this seems very unlikely.
16 April 1979: Arsenal 5 Chelsea 2. Arsenal scored five in three different games all against London clubs during the season, but didn’t win any of the remaining five games after this derby. Stapleton (2) O’Leary, Sunderland and Price got the goals.
16 April 1980: Arsenal 1 Liverpool 1. FA Cup Semi final 1st replay. Sunderland scored. Arsenal were involved in the FA Cup, the Cup Winners’ Cup and a desire to get into the top three (for European inclusion next season). There is a more detailed account here.
16 April 1983. Arsenal lost 1-2 to Man U in their 16th Cup semi-final appearance, played at Villa Park. Woodcock scored for Arsenal. Arsenal had beaten Bolton, Leeds, Middlesbrough and Aston Villa to reach the semi. Man U beat Brighton in the final after a replay.
16 April 2000: Before the game Arsène Wenger and the players presented bouquets of flowers to their counterparts to honour the Leeds fans murdered in Istanbul. Arsenal beat Leeds 4-0 away as Henry scored his 20th of the season to go above Leeds having been 10 points behind, last time they met.
16 April 2004: Arsenal 5 Leeds 0. Henry got four after Pires had scored the opener. The 33rd league game of the unbeaten season and the third defeat of Leeds after two 1-4 away victories one in the League, one if the FA Cup.
16 April 2012: After a disappointing defeat against QPR in March there was another disappointment with Arsenal 1 Wigan 2 – both Wigan’s goals coming in first 8 minutes. The result left Arsenal in 3rd, 18 points behind the leaders, 13 behind the second place team.
18 April 1884: Gordon Rahere Hoare born. In his footballing life he had 13 clubs – two of which were Woolwich Arsenal, and one of which was Arsenal! He also seems to have been connected with the Hill-Wood family who ran Glossop NE, as he moved between the clubs.
18 April 1903: Arsenal 0 Millwall Athletic 2. The last game against Millwall under its Athletic guise. 4000 saw the game – after this our local rivals became just “Millwall”. They moved across the river in 1910.
18 April 1914: Arsenal 2 Clapton Orient 2. 35,000 attended – the biggest crowd thus far at Highbury, but the draw meant Arsenal were not promoted. It was also the last ever game of Woolwich Arsenal. By the next game they were The Arsenal.
18 April 1925: Arsenal 5 Burnley 0. Knighton’s last victory. He oversaw two more games (both defeats) and was then sacked to make way for Chapman. He won 34.33% of the games in total, the worst of any long-term manager.
18 April 1927: First league game for Herbie Roberts. He became the first brilliant exponent of the “stopper” system, and a regular all the way through the 1930s era. He broke his leg in the 1937/8 season and retired after 335 games scoring five goals.
18 April 1930: Arsenal 1 Leicester 1, leaving Arsenal 12th, just six points above the relegation positions. However Arsenal won the cup for the first time and avoided the drop, but only by three points.
18 April 1931: Having come 14th in 1930, Arsenal won the League for the very first time with two games spare, by beating Liverpool 3-1 at home during a nine match unbeaten run to the end of the season.
18 April 1936: Arsenal 1 Aston Villa 0. It was Arsenal’s only win in the last six games of the season and one of only two in the last 14 as the 3 times champions fell from grace, but despite it all, they were still fifth on this day.
18 April 1953: Arsenal 3 Stoke 1 – all three goals from Lishman, making it five wins in a row scoring 18 goals to go top of the league, equal on points with Wolverhampton and with two games in hand.
18 April 1960: Last league game for Gordon Nutt. He then moved to Southend had a year with PSV Eindhoven, and after playing non-league moved to Australia where he played, set up a film lighting company in Sydney, and was head coach of the Tasmanian Soccer Schools for ten years.
18 April 1964: The season ended Liverpool 5 Arsenal 0 with Arsenal having two wins in the last 11 games – and an exit to Liverpool in the 5th round of the cup. Despite ending 8th Wright was given more time, but the worst was yet to come.
18 April 1969: Stefan Schwarz born. He came to Arsenal from Benfica, and played 34 games in 1994/5 before moving on to Fiorentina. He finished his career with Sunderland and won a Bronze World Cup Medal in 1994 with Sweden.
18 April 1979: Matthew Upson born. He came through the Ipswich Academy, went to Luton Town for whom he played just four minutes as a substitute, and then to Arsenal for £2m in May 1997.
18 April 1993: Tony Adams dropped Steve Morrow as Arsenal won the league cup 2-1. This was the first of three games against Sheffield Wed at Wembley and was Cup match 15 of the Cup Double season. The FA Cup was also won 2-1.
18 April 1998: Arsenal 5 Wimbledon 0. Arsenal’s first win against the Dons at Highbury in six attempts. The goals came from Adams, Overmars, Bergkamp, Petit and Wreh in the 33rd league game of the 2nd Double season. The second double: part 1, part 2, part 3.
18 April 2007: David Dein was sacked as director of Arsenal. He had preferred an Arsenal move to Wembley instead of building the Emirates, and it is said he continued to speak in favour of this move, even after the board voted against it.
18 April 2009: Chelsea 2 Arsenal 1, FA Cup semi final. It was the 26th Arsenal semi-final in the FA Cup, and the sixth semi-final in the first decade of the 21st century.
18 April 2015: Reading 1 Arsenal 2, FA Cup semi-final. Arsenal became the most successful team in the FA Cup ever, even before the FA Cup final. Sanchez and Gabriel scored.
19 April 1864: Birth of George Davie, the Arsenal player who sued the Royal Arsenal Committee and in losing that fight changed the transfer system, invoking “retain and transfer” – a system which stayed until George Eastham challenged that.
19 April 1897: After three consecutive defeats, Arsenal make it 3 consecutive wins by beating Darwen 1-0. The goal by O’Brien gave him 14 in 26 league games to become top scorer for the season.
19 April 1904: Bradford City 0 Arsenal 3 making it 91 scored, 22 let in – a goal difference of +69 – equalled only in 1934/5 but never bettered. Coleman scored to make it 23 league goals for the season. Arsenal drew the last match 0-0 to secure promotion.
19 April 1913: Tottenham 1 Arsenal 1. Last game for Hugh Macdonald in his second spell at Arsenal – he moved on to Fulham in November. The goal was scored by George Grant – one of just two goals he scored that season.
19 April 1915: George Morrell resigned as Arsenal manager; having become Arsenal’s longest serving manager thus far. His win percentage was 35.27 – just above Knighton’s but he was the manager who got Arsenal promotion.
19 April 1919: The semi final of the highly controversial London Victory Cup match at Highbury. Sir Henry Norris was outraged by Fulham’s manipulation of the situation and ultimately resigned as a director of the club.
19 April 1930: Huddersfield 2 Arsenal 2. This league match took place one week before the two met in the Cup Final at Wembley, and relegation looked a possibility. Only 11,988 turned up for the league match. Bastin and Hulme scored.
19 April 1935: Arsenal 8 Middlesbrough 0. Amazingly it was the third time Arsenal scored eight in a league game and in each Drake got at least three. This time he got four. 45,719 watched the fun. Rogers (2) Bastin and Beasley got the other goals. It was Rogers first game.
19 April 1957 Good Friday 11am kick off Arsenal draw 1-1 with Blackpool before 50,000 + crowd at Highbury. Many came to see 42 years old Stanley Matthews play ‘for the last time’ – wrong by 8 years. David Durie of Blackpool and Mike Tiddy of Arsenal refused to play on religious grounds – both were lay preachers.
19 April 1965: Arsenal 3 Blackpool 1, made it three home games in a row with under 20,000 present. Baker got two of the goals to give him 25 in 42 league games. The result left Arsenal 9th, 16 points behind the leaders.
19 April 1965: Perry Groves born in Bow – so no doubt of him being a cockney. He was the nephew of Vic Groves who played for Arsenal in the 50s and 60s. He was also George Graham’s first signing (from Colchester).
19 April 1972: Arsenal 2 Stoke 1. FA Cup semifinal replay. George and Radford scored and took Arsenal to successive cup finals for the first time ever.
19 April 1975: Ian Allinson played his first game for Colchester – the club that allowed him to move to Arsenal after an administrative error.
19 April 1976: Last game for Brian Kidd. He played 37 league games in the second of the two seasons he was with Arsenal, scoring 11, before returning to Manchester, but this time with City.
19 April 1980: Liverpool 1 Arsenal 1, in the League. Arsenal’s previous two games had been draws with Liverpool in the FA Cup. There was then a game against WBA before two more attempts to resolve the cup games, as Arsenal ultimately did.
19 April 1999: Arsenal beat Wimbledon 5-1 as Kanu scored his first league goal for Arsenal (he had scored in the cup on March 6). Parlour, Vieira and Bergkamp plus an own goal completed the rout in front of 37,982.
19 April 2006: Arsenal v Villareal, Champions League semi-final. Toure scored the last Highbury goal under floodlights while a squirrel on the pitch led to comments about the squirrel having more Champions League experience than Tottenham.
19 April 1997: Vieira kicked the ball out as Stephen Hughes was down injured. Blackburn took the throw and deliberately sent it behind the defence, chased it down, got a corner and scored. Blackburn shrugged off the Arsenal protests and gained a 1-1 draw.
20 April 1889: Arsenal beat Spartan Rovers 8-0. In the course of 30 days of friendlies they also had 9-0, 6-1 and 7-2 victories
20 April 1912: Rangers 0 Arsenal 0. This appears to be the first game between the two sides, who later set up regular friendlies through the efforts of Herbert Chapman.
20-23 April 1914: The word ‘Woolwich’ was officially dropped from the club name as Woolwich Arsenal became (for a while) The Arsenal.
20 April 1964: Dave Bacuzzi transferred to Manchester City. He had played 46 league games and two FA Cup games across four seasons. He also won the Football Combination with Arsenal, and later became a manager in Ireland.
20 April 1966: Sunderland 0 Arsenal 2; one of only two wins for Billy Wright in his last 16 games in charge. During that run Arsenal scored just 12 goals. Skirton and Sammels scorte.
20 April 1968: Sunderland 2 Arsenal 0 made it two wins in 16 for Bertie Mee and left the club 12th in the League. But Arsenal won all of the remaining five games in the League in the season to offer some hope.
20 April 1971: Arsenal 1 Burnley 0. Charlie George scored to give the 9th straight win (during which run only one goal was conceded), and this with McNab and Storey absent playing for England! Arsenal went two points ahead and Burnley were relegated in the 38th league game of the first Double season.
20 April 1973: Eddie Hapgood died of a heart attack while attending a sports forum in Leamington Spa aged 64. His autobiography “Football Ambassador” was the first ever such book. So ground breaking was the book that Sir Stanley Rous, who went on to become president of FIFA wrote the introduction.
20 April 1983: Norwich 3 Arsenal 1. League debut for Colin Hill, last game for George Wood. Hill went on to have just one season for Arsenal as a regular full back, while Wood ended a three year spell with 60 league games and a move to Crystal Palace.
20 April 1995: For the second year running Arsenal reached the CWC Final after losing 2-3 but beating Sampdoria on penalties in the semi-final. Wright scored on the hour but it looked like Arsenal were going out until Schwarz got the second on 88 mins. Dixon, Hartson and Adams scored penalties to take Arsenal through.
20 April 2000: Lens 1 Arsenal 2; Arsenal went through to Uefa Cup final after drawing 0-0 in the first leg. Henry and Kanu got the victory.
20 April 2011: Tottenham 3 Arsenal 3. Arsenal had lost at home to Tottenham in the league, but won away in the League Cup before this game. Walcott, Nasri and Van Persie scored to make it 16 games unbeaten in the premier league.
20 April 2013: Arsenal beat Fulham 1-0 at Craven Cottage in the fourth of 10 consecutive away wins. Giroud was sent off and Mertersacker scored only goal.
20 April 2014: In a match delayed by advertising hoardings blowing across the pitch, Ramsey and Özil returned after long lay-offs as Arsenal easily beat Hull away, proving if it needed proving, how important these two players were. Ramsey scored and Podolski got two.
21 April 1880: Birth of Charles McGibbon. He was the 7th centre forward of the 1909/10 season and came with no league experience but scored three goals in the last four games of the season to ensure Arsenal continued in the first division.
21 April 1908: Hearts 1 Arsenal 3. With the league season having finished the day before with a home game against Sheffield Wednesday, Arsenal immediately boarded a train and started a crazy tour of eight matches in nine days in Scotland.
21 April 1917: James Maxwell died in action against the Turks (fighting with Indian troops/Black Watch in 51 Division) in the Samarrah Offensive. His body was not recovered and no grave is known.
21 April 1930 Leicester City 6 Arsenal 6: the all time record top league score, Four goals for David Halliday, but that wasn’t enough to get him a place in the cup final. 21 April 1930 was also the last first team game for Dan Lewis. Despite being blamed for the 1927 cup final defeat he played over 30 times in each of the next three seasons.
21 April 1936: The demolition of the old East Stand at Highbury began. even though Arsenal had two more home games (against Chelsea and Leeds) to play. The new stand was opened on October 24, 1936.
21 April 1959: Arsenal 0 Rangers 3 – part of the continuing run of games between the clubs which was initiated by Herbert Chapman.
21 April 1963: Jock Rutherford died. He had already retired twice from football when he came back for a third and final time in January 1926 under Chapman to become the oldest man ever to play for Arsenal. Over 40,000 turned up for the Chelsea game, despite the building work.
21 April 1964: Don Howe signed from WBA for £42,000 – a record for a full back. He played on until 1967 when he became chief coach moving to caretaker manager in 1983.
21 April 1970: Sammy Nelson made his international debut for N Ireland v England. He played 51 times for the Province, all while with Arsenal except the last four (when he was with Brighton).
21 April 1971: Peter Storey’s international debut for England v Greece. He played 19 times for his country between 1971 and 1973.
21 April 1979: Derby County 2 Arsenal 0. One of nine Arsenal games in 32 days, but despite this high level of activity Arsenal nevertheless went on to win the cup.
21 April 2001: Arsenal 4 Everton 1, as Arsenal moved to being runners up for the third year running. This was also the start of the longest ever sequence of scoring in home games. It lasted until November 2003.
21 April 2002: Arsenal 2 Ipswich 0. One of the 13 consecutive victories; League match 34 of the 3rd Double season. Ljungberg got both goals. The result left Arsenal one point clear at the top of the league with one game in hand.
22 April 1905. Last game for James Jackson. With Duncan McNichol he formed the original back two, making 204 appearances at full back. He moved onto Leyton, and after retiring from football became a blacksmith.
22 April 1905: Arsenal 2 Everton 1 – the first win (in the last game of the season) after 4 defeats and 3 draws. It left Arsenal 10th in the league, but still only 12 points off Everton at the top.
22 April 1908: James Sharp transferred to Rangers after three years at Woolwich Arsenal. His transfer was part of the notorious policy of selling top players in order to try and reduce the debts.
22 April 1911: Although no one thought of calling it St Totteringham Day, the first occasion on which Arsenal finished above Tottenham was on this day – with one game to spare. Between 1894 and 2014 there were 49 occasions when Arsenal were above Tottenham at the conclusion, and only 28 the other way round. On 32 other seasons the clubs were not in the same league. Arsenal and Tottenham
22 April 1912: For the first time since March 3 1906 Arsenal scored five in a league match in beating Blackburn 5-1. It was the third win in a row, but was aided by Blackburn putting out a weakened team as they were in the FA Cup semis.
22 April 1912: Andy Ducat’s final game – his departure was undoubtedly a major factor in the decline of the club in 1912/13. It was his 125th league game and as always he didn’t play the last game of the season due to cricketing commitments. He joined Aston Villa on 15 June.
22 April 1931: Arsenal’s first Sheriff of London game – a competition which was set up to be played between and amateur and a professional side in England once a year by Sir Thomas Dewar. Arsenal beat Corinthians 5-3 at Highbury; attendance 12,000.
22 April 1933: Chelsea 1 Arsenal 3 in front of 72,000 and as a result Arsenal became champions with two games spare. Bastin got 2 and Jack the other. It was part of a run in which Bastin scored in five consecutive games. It was also Chapman’s final triumph.
22 April 1935: Two years to the day on from Chapman’s 1933 trophy Arsenal made it 3 championships under 3 different managers, again with 2 games to spare, beating Middlesbrough 1-0 with a goal from Drake (giving him 42 goals in 41 league games – Arsenal’s all time record). He failed to score in the remaining two games.
22 April 1939: Stoke 1 Arsenal 0; Reg Cumner’s last league game. He had come through the ranks at Margate to play both for Arsenal and England, but only played 14 times for Arsenal, due to the war.
22 April 1947: Death of Frederick Coles. He had played 78 league games for Woolwich Arsenal at the start of the century before moving to Grimsby, later becoming a football and cricket coach in Gothenburg.
22 April 1953: Cardiff 0 Arsenal 0. After 18 goals in five games Arsenal were one point clear of second placed Wolverhampton with two games to play. The crowd was an extraordinary 57,800 in Ninian Park.
22 April 1959: Last international appearance of Dave Bowen. He played 19 times for Wales, and scored one goal.
22 April 1961: Arsenal 1 Wolverhampton 5. This was one of three consecutive defeats during which Arsenal let in 12 goals. It was Arsenal’s worst home defeat in the league since 14 February 1925 when Herbert Chapman’s Huddersfield won 0-5 at Highbury.
22 April 1967: Arsenal 1 Nottm F 1. Arsenal’s 5th successive draw during which Arsenal scored four goals. This time Storey scored. The previous three were scored by George Graham.
22 April 1970: Anderlecht 3 Arsenal 1, Fairs Cup final 1st leg. Ray Kennedy scored. It was widely thought that Anderlecht would see out the second leg to take the trophy.
22 April 1978: John Devine’s first league game. Leeds 1 Arsenal 3. First Arsenal win at Leeds for 40 years. Pat Jennings captain for the first time. Stapleton and Macdonald scored – the third was an og.
22 April 1998: Tony Adams gained his 50th international cap. He went on to get 64 in total, and scored five goals in international matches.
23 April 1898: Last appearance for John Caldwell. He then moved on with two other players to Brighton United. He played 93 times in the League for Woolwich Arsenal and scored twice.
23 April 1902: Arsenal 0 Tottenham 0. Southern Professional Charity Cup. Tottenham had won the FA Cup in 1901 but were not in the League, so this competition was an opportunity for the two old rivals to meet.
23 April 1910: Arsenal’s season ended with a 1-3 home defeat to Preston. Arsenal finished 18th in the league with the 19th and 20th clubs being relegated. Chelsea gained two points fewer than Arsenal but had a better goal average so the finish was nail biting to the last.
23 April1913: Robert (“Bobby”) Davidson born. He played for Saint Johnston against Arsenal in a friendly in September 1934 and was selected for the Scottish League team a few weeks later. Arsenal offered £4,000 and on 1st February 1935 he moved to Arsenal.
23 April 1914: Although as yet not officially sanctioned, Arsenal played their first match under the new name of The Arsenal. The board accepted the special resolution to officially change the name but the name was not formally changed on 10 May 1915.
23 April 1917: Laurie Scott born. He was signed by George Allison for Arsenal in 1937 and was changed from being a winger to being a right back, and after the war emerged in the first team at the start of the 1946-7 season.
23 April 1927: Arsenal’s first FA Cup Final – lost to Cardiff 0-1 at Wembley. The crowd of 91,206 was the largest thus far to see an Arsenal game. This was also the first cup final broadcast on radio.
23 April 1932: Arsenal’s 3rd cup final, losing 1-2 to Newcastle. It was a season of being runner’s up as Arsenal also came second in the First Division.
23 April 1962: Arsenal achieve a 2-2 draw against Ipswich before a record crowd of 30,649 at Portman Road on Good Friday. Hundreds of fans were locked out and many hung precariously from the floodlight pylons. John MacLeod got Arsenal’s first goal and Eastham the second with a spectacular overhead bicycle kick.
23 April 1966: Arsenal 1 Sunderland 1. After only 8,738 attended the previous home game 25,699 turned up to see relegation threatened Sunderland whom Arsenal had beaten away three days before.
23 April 1966: The decline of interest in Arsenal was emphasised by the fact that on the same day as Arsenal were playing Sunderland Northampton managed by ex-Arsenal man Dave Bowen got a crowd of 24,523 into their 3 sided ground, despite heading for relegation.
23 April 1997: Dennis Compton CBE died on the first day of the new cricket season. Flags at cricket clubs were flown at half mast and later the MCC named the stand at the Nursery End at Lords after him.
23 April 1980: Arsenal became the first British club to win at Juventus in a competitive match winning 1-0. The scorer was Paul Vaessen who gained immediate fame but was unable to develop his career due to injury.
23 April 1994: Aston Villa 1 Arsenal 2. Ian Wright scored two goals to end the season with 23 league goals, but with no chance of ending higher than fourth the season fell away in the remaining three games.
23 April 2000. Arsène Wenger criticised the FA for allowing Man U a winter break from the league and a non-appearance in the FA Cup in order to play in a Fifa confederations competition.
24 April 1897: Millwall Athletic 3 Arsenal 1. A crowd of 8000 was very high for the United League match of the Isle of Dogs, although the game between the local rivals in February in Plumstead had attracted nearly twice this number.
24 April 1900: Arsenal 2 Tottenham 1. Southern District Combination; match abandoned due to abusive behaviour by the crowd. Arsenal were ordered to post notices instructing the crowd to behave properly, and the referee was also criticised for his handling of the game. The game was not replayed.
24 April 1907: Jack Humble’s wife presented with an item of furniture (a tradition in England at this time) to thank Jack for his years of work as he stepped down as director. He had played for the club, and had been Woolwich Arsenal’s first chairman. He returned at Henry Norris’ request in 1910.
24 April 1915: Arsenal 7-0 Nottingham Forest. Arsenal’s last game inthe second division and the last league game under Punch McEwen. Arsenal finished 5th but were wrongly given 6th place in the league table. It was the last game for Joseph Lievesley, and Percy Sands. Harry King scored four goals to make it four hat tricks in the season – a record. He got 26 goals in 37 league games – at the time a record for the club.
24 April 1928: Tommy Docherty born. After his National Service he joined Celtic, and two years later Preston, who were runners up to Arsenal on goal average in 1953. In 1958 he left to play for Arsenal.
24 April 1932: Leslie Compton’s first game. He had just turned professional and was played at right back but then when George Male took that place, he moved back to the reserves before later moving to the centre of defence.
24 April 1964: David Bacuzzi transferred to Manchester City. After a successful promotion campaign from the second division he moved onto Reading.
24 April 1971: WBA 2 Arsenal 2. Last game for Jon Sammels. Having just defeated Leeds, West Brom held Arsenal in the 29th league game of the first Double season. The result left Arsenal one point above Leeds with one game in hand, but knowing that the next match was Leeds away.
24 April 1974: First game for Jimmy Rimmer. Liverpool 0 Arsenal 1. It was his only game of the season, but after that he took over from Bob Wilson as Arsenal’s first choice keeper.
24 April 1976: Final game for Terry Mancini. Man City 3 Arsenal 1, Arsenal ended the season in 17th position – the worst position since 1925, the final year of Knighton’s reign, after which Herbert Chapman took over. The game made it just 2 wins in 10 as Arsenal ended the season in 17th; the lowest since 1925 and just six points off relegation.
24 April 1988: Arsenal were the holders of the League Cup going into the 1988 final and utterly firm favourites but lost: Arsenal 2 Luton 3. Hayes and Smith scored but Arsenal’s defence lost the plot once Arsenal were 2-1 up.
24 April 1999: Middlesbrough 1 Arsenal 6. Arsenal went top of the league for the first time in the season, with their 17th unbeaten game. Arsenal had been 0-6 up and with much of the home crowd drifting out, cheered the Boro goal on their behalf. Overmars, Anelka (2), Kanu (2) and Vieira got the goals.
24 April 2002: Arsenal 2 WHU 0. Part of the 13-game consecutive winning streak. This was League match 35 of the 3rd Double season. Ljungberg and Kanu scored in the last 13 minutes.
25 April 1891: Arsenal’s first substitute, in a friendly against Sunderland. Davy Howat was forced to leave the pitch with an injury after 20 minutes and at half time it was agreed that Henry Offer could take Howat’s place. It finished Arsenal 1 Sunderland 3. It was part of the programme of playing league clubs ahead of the first season in the league.
25 April 1895: Royal Ordnance Factories 0 Woolwich Arsenal 0. In 1892/3 Arsenal was embroiled in a battle with their ground landlord and his supporters inside the club, which resulted ultimately in Woolwich Arsenal joining the Football League while the landlord and others formed a new club (ROF FC) and joining the Southern League. They played on grounds opposite each other and this match showed they were at least talking to each other by this date. Further matches followed.
25 April 1903: Arsenal ended their season beating Chesterfield Municipal 1-0 having beaten Chesterfield Town on 10 April 3-0. Quite what the attraction was with Chesterfield at this time is not known.
25 April 1904: Arsenal 0 Port Vale 0. This result gave Arsenal promotion, and left them undefeated at home all season with just two draws. However a win would have given them the championship. The crowd was 20,000
25 April 1908: First game for Matthew Thomson in a friendly away to Dundee. Arsenal lost 1-2. Thomson came from Maryhill for whom he played in the season 1902/03. His first league game was in the 1-1 draw at home with Middlesbrough on March 17 1909
25 April 1910: The limited company that was set up to run Woolwich Arsenal in 1893, The Woolwich Arsenal Football And Athletic Company Limited was dissolved. A new company was set up on the following day: 26 April 1910
25 April 1914: Arsenal finished their first season after the move to Highbury, with a 2-0 win over Glossop North End in front of 25,000. The club came third, missing promotion only on goal average. Bradford and Notts County went up instead.
25 April 1908: Death of Harry Storer. After leaving Arsenal he went to Liverpool and continued to play for them until 1899, staying on the books until 1901. Tragically he died just six years later in Derbyshire of tuberculosis aged 38.
25 April 1919: The London Combination which had been the league for the capital during the first world war prepared to vote itself out of existence, to make way for the return of the Football League. In the event it didn’t, and instead became the reserve league for London.
25 April 1921: Arsenal 2 Present North End 1. This made it seven without defeat as Arsenal challenged for their best position in the first division thus far, beating the 6th of 1909 – although it wasn’t to be. Hopkins and McKinnon scored.
25 April 1932: Aston Villa 1 Arsenal 1. Leslie Compton’s debut. He was transferred from Hampstead Town and went on to play 253 league games for Arsenal in a 20 year career with the club.
25 April 1936: Arsenal 1 Sheffield U 0. FA Cup final. This was Allison’s second trophy in his first two years of management. Ted Drake scored.
25 April 1939: Archie Leitch died. He is remembered as the prime architect of Highbury, but should also be remembered for his work on the Manor Ground in Plumstead. Henry Norris also employed him to work at Fulham while he also worked on Stamford Bridge at the same time!
25 April 1953: Preston 2 Arsenal 0, leaving the teams on equal points at the top with one game to go. Everything thus came down to the final game played on the evening before the cup final, on a mud pile of a Highbury pitch.
25 April 1961: Terry Neill international debut for N Ireland. He went to manage Arsenal for 416 games – more than Herbert Chapman, but unlike Chapman left no lasting legacy at all.
25 April 1977: Arsenal 3 Aston Villa 0. Last league game for Wilf Rostron. He played only 17 times for Arsenal across four years, and went on to Sunderland, but he is best remembered at Watford for his 317 league games for them.
25 April 1979: Nine days after beating Chelsea 5-2 Arsenal lost 1-5 to Villa. In between we lost 0-2 to Derby. In total Arsenal played nine games in 33 days ahead of the Man U cup final.
25 April 1981: Wolverhampton 1 Arsenal 2, which made it six wins and two draws in the last eight games as Arsenal headed for a final position of 3rd – the club’s best since 1972. Stapleton scored, the other goal was an own goal.
25 April 1987: Man City 3 Arsenal 0. Arsenal had just beaten Leicester 4-1 and with Man City bottom of the league, this looked like a certain victory with Arsenal fourth, but it was most certainly not to be.
25 April 1998: Barnsley 0 Arsenal 2. Arsenal moved closer to the championship, and received a standing ovation from the home crowd. 34th league game of the 2nd Double season. Bergkamp scored his 16th and final league goal of the season to end as top scorer. The second double: part 1, part 2, part 3.
25 April 2004. Arsenal won the League, at White Hart Lane, for the second time since Tottenham last won the league. The score was Tottenham 2 Arsenal 2 and this was the 34th league game of the unbeaten season. Lehmann (having conceded a penalty in the 94th minute) failed to return to the pitch to celebrate afterwards. Vieira and Pires got the goals.
25 April 2007: Death of Alan Ball aged 61. After his playing days he became a manager, having eight different stints with clubs the length and breadth of England. He was never a success in the job however, and retired aged 54.
25 April 2007: Death of Arthur Shaw. It is reported that after finishing playing football he became a successful professional gambler, later meeting Malcolm Allison with whom he formed a successful gambling partnership.
25 April 2007: Death of Arthur Milton. Only twelve men played football and cricket for England in full internationals and test matches – Arsenal player Arthur Milton was the last of that remarkable group.
26 April 1893: Sevenoaks 0 Arsenal 11. This was part of the programme of building towards the launch of Arsenal’s league career in September, but as the score suggests, local teams were not really up to Arsenal’s strengths.
26 April 1899: Arsenal 3 Woolwich League 0. This is one of those tantalising friendlies which exist in the results, but for which we have no information. Charlton (formed 1905) certainly played in the Woolwich League for a few years.
26 April 1910 With the original limited Woolwich Arsenal company dissolved on 25 April, and a new company bearing the same name as the old one came into existence on this. This company still trades today and continues to carry out its business as Arsenal FC.
26 April 1913: Arsenal 1 Middlesbrough 1; after a disastrous season Woolwich Arsenal played their last game at the Manor Ground as Arsenal were relegated for the only time in their history. Stonley scored the last Arsenal goal in Plumstead; it was his only goal in Plumstead. 3000 turned up for this final match. Also here And again here
26 April 1926: Arsenal 5 Hibernian 0. Last game for John Alex Mackie. He played 108 league games for the club, 119 overall, before moving to Portsmouth, and later Northampton, ending his career at the outbreak of war.
26 April 1930. Arsenal won their first ever F.A. Cup 2-0 v Huddersfield. It was the final remembered for the Zepplin flying overhead, and because it involved Chapman’s present and past employers playing each other. It was also the first final in which the managers led their teams onto the pitch. See also here
26 April 1952: Manchester United 6 Arsenal 1. Last game for Reg Lewis. His career was hampered by injuries and he retired having played 176 games scoring 116 goals. He went on to run a pub and work in insurance. .
26 April 1958: Last game for Mike Tiddy. Preston 3 Arsenal 0. His career was shortened by repeated injury, and eventually Arsenal brought in Joe Haverty as a replacement. Mike moved on to Brighton and Hove Albion.
26 April 1965: Man U 3 Arsenal 1 ended the season with Arsenal 13th after just two wins in the last 10. George Eastham scored a penalty for Arsenal.
26 April 1971: Leeds 1 Arsenal 0. 0-0 after 90 minutes, Charlton was obviously offside as he took the ball and shot in injury time. The shot hit the post, ran along the line as Charlton ran into McNab and the ball went in. With Arsenal players outraged both by the off-side and the foul on McNab the police came onto the pitch and led the ref away. Arsenal were now one point behind Leeds.
26 April 1975: Arsenal 1 Tottenham 0. The only win in the last five as Arsenal ended the season in 16th. Kidd scored the goal (his 19th of the season) in a far from full Highbury. Arsenal lost the final match 0-1 to West Ham.
26 April 1980: Arsenal 1 WBA 1. Stapleton scored his 13th of the season. Better form could have given Arsenal 3rd instead of 4th at the end of the season, but Arsenal won just one of the last six, and scoring just five goals in those games, while letting in eight.
26 April 2008: Perry Groves was arrested in Colchester and issued with a fixed penalty notice for a Section 5 public order offence of using abusive and insulting words and behaviour, likely to cause harassment.
27 April 1851: George Lawrence, the club’s first major benefactor, was born. He became interested in football when he was nearly 40 starting to watch Royal Arsenal in January 1889, and with his wife was instrumental in organising excursions for the supporters, particularly after the club joined the League in 1893.
27 April 1865: Archie Leitch, the architect involved in both the Manor Ground and Highbury, was born. His first high profile job involved building a new stadium for Rangers but part of the stadium collapsed causing many deaths, and it was after this that he moved to London to find new work.
27 April 1895: Arsenal 3 Millwall Athletic 1. 8000 were in the crowd and this was one of 18 matches in a row against the local rivals without defeat.
27 April 1898: Alfred Baker born. He worked initially as a miner and it is said that manager Knighton signed him at the pit head in order to ward off interest from other teams. He turned pro with Arsenal in May 1919 and stayed until he retired from football.
27 April 1893: Test Matches were played as part of the process of expanding the leagues while the bottom eight clubs of the second division had to stand for re-election. Bootle were ejected, Accrington resigned and the Second Division was expanded to 15, allowing Arsenal the chance to apply for a spare place.
27 April 1901: Final game for James Tennant. He had played in the 12-0 defeat of Loughboro and later played for Falkirk where he was involved in a bizarre and notorious episode in which after a night out he and a fellow player signed for East Stirlingshire while drunk.
27 April 1904: Charles Satterthwaite (the man who scored the first Arsenal goal in the first division), was transferred from WHU. He played 126 games for Arsenal and his brother Joe also played five games for Arsenal in 1907/8
27 April 1907: Arsenal’s lowest crowd of the season (just 2,000) turned up for the final home game of the campaign, in which Arsenal beat Derby 3-2 to take Arsenal 7th in the league.
27 April 1909: 30,000 attended to watch Man U 1 Arsenal 4, in the final match of the campaign, making it five wins and a draw in the month, and a final position of 6th – the best yet. It was also the last ever game for Thomas Fitchie, the travelling sales rep Arsenal signed five times.
27 April 1912: Last game for Leigh Roose. He was the absolute showman goalkeeper and was known to shout, swear and pick fights on and off the pitch. He retired from football at this point, and was killed in action in the Battle of the Somme.
27 April 1929: Cliff Bastin signed for Arsenal after just 17 Third Division games for Exeter. He played in their first team aged 16 years 1 month and in his home debut for the first team he scored two in a 5-1 win against Newport County.
27 April 1935: Leicester 3 Arsenal 5. Beasley (2) Crayston (2) and Davidson scored as Arsenal, already champions, reached 115 league goals. Drake had already got 42, and Bastin 20. Arsenal lost their final match of the season 0-1!
27 April 1954: Arsenal 4 Racing Club de Paris 0. This was part of the series of games that was initiated by Herbert Chapman as a benefit to servicemen injured in the first world war.
27 April 1959: Arsenal won the Southern Floodlight Challenge Cup for the only time beating Crystal Palace 0-2 away. It was Arsenal’s first competitive visit to Selhurst Park with a team that included Mel Charles – who scored the winning goal.
27 April 1963: Blackpool 3 Arsenal 2. Debut for Jon Sammels – who scored one of the two goals. He played just two games this season, but went on to play 212 games all told, including making 21 appearances in the first Double season.
27 April 1973 Double-winning captain Frank McLintock was sold to QPR for £25,000. He played 127 league games for QPR over four years, taking the club to second position in the First Division in 1976, as Arsenal sunk to 17th, retiring one year later.
27 April 1991: Arsenal 1 Liverpool 3. Benefit match for Ray Kennedy. He was Shankly’s last purchase as Liverpool’s manager, and his sale to them was an absolute disaster for Arsenal, a triumph for Liverpool, and a sign of Mee’s total lack of judgement at the time.
27 April 1996: Blackburn 1 Arsenal 1. The 3rd of four without a win left Arsenal in fifth. Wright scored a penalty – his last goal of the season to give him 15 league goals as top scorer.
27 April 2003: Thierry Henry voted PFA Player of the Year. Overall he was runner-up for the FIFA World Player of the Year twice, was PFA Players’ Player of the Year twice, and the FWA Footballer of the Year three times.
28 April 1893. George Lawrence signed the contract on behalf the Woolwich Arsenal Company with W B Jackson of Royal Arsenal Football Club to transfer Royal Arsenal into The Woolwich Arsenal Football And Athletic Company Limited
28 April 1897: Arsenal 1 Man City 2. Last game for James Boyle. In 1895/6 he started as left half, moved back to the centre, and then for three games played in goal, becoming on 14 December 1895 the fourth goalkeeper in 15 matches for the club
28 April 1898: Arsenal 5 Tottenham 0. With the season over Arsenal this was one of three friendlies in five days – the others being away to Thames Ironworks, and Millwall. Arsenal also played Tottenham twice in the United League this season.
28 April 1904: Millwall Athletic 2 Arsenal 1. Southern Pro Charity Cup. The competition ran from 1901 to 1908, and generally involved seven or eight teams from the London region.
28 April 1906: Arsenal 5 Tottenham 0 (again). Southern Pro Charity Cup semi-final. Arsenal reached the final of the competition for the first time and went on to win it, beating Reading.
28 April 1908: Rangers 1 Arsenal 1. This seems to have been the first ever match between the two clubs, and was part of a major Scottish tour by Arsenal of eight matches in nine days!
28 April 1910: With the season over Arsenal arranged a friendly away to Colchester (where they won 3-2) to try and raise income, as the depth of the club’s financial crisis became clearer.
28 April 1920: Bradford Park Avenue 0 Arsenal 0. Only 7000 turned up for the game. The result left Arsenal in 11th position and Bradford in ninth. It was Arsenal’s third draw in a row, with one more to come… at home to Bradford.
28 April 1923: Arsenal 2 Sheff U 0 completed a nine match unbeaten run to end the season in 11th position. This run showed promise and gave hope for Arsenal, but it was a false dawn, as the next two season’s showed.
28 April 1924: Burnley 4 Arsenal 1. Alexander Graham’s last senior game. He played 47 league matches for Brentford and became the club’s assistant manager in December 1925 and later briefly for Folkestone before leaving football.
28 April 1927: John “Jack” Lee played his 7th and last game for Arsenal – Blackburn 1 Arsenal 2. He stayed with the club one more year, but got no more first team experience, leaving this as Jack’s only experience of winning a match with the club.
28 April 1956: Cardiff 1 Arsenal 2; Alex Forbes’ last game. He moved to Leyton Orient, then Fulham and finally Gravesend & Northfleet. After that he worked at Arsenal training the reserves and A team, before emigrating to South Africa when he coached school children.
28 April 1979: Arsenal 1 Norwich City 1. Arsenal had reached the cup final on 31 March, and the distraction was evident to everyone, as Arsenal won two of their last 13 games. After losing 5-1 to Villa three days earlier this was almost a decent result, leaving Arsenal sixth in the League.
28 April 1980: Arsenal 1 Liverpool 1. FA Cup Semi final 2nd replay. Once more the sides played at Villa Park and as in the previous replay Sunderland scored.
28 April 1982: George Wood’s final cap for Scotland. He was given a free transfer to Crystal Palace in May 1983, before moving on to Cardiff, Hereford, Merthyr and Inter Cardiff.
28 April 1984: Don Howe became permanent manager. Although his win ratio was only fractionally below George Allison, he failed to win any trophies and he left part way through the 1985/6 season.
28 April 2008 Having beaten Derby 5-0 the previous September Arsenal went to Derby and won 6-2. Adebayor got a hat trick while Walcott, Bendtner, and Van Persie supplied the others.
28 April 2014: Arsenal 3 Newcastle 0. The result meant that for the 18th successive season Arsenal were certain to end up above Tottenham in the league – after 36 out of 38 games played. The crowd as always sang, “It’s happened again, It’s happened again, Tottenham Hotspur, It’s happened again”.
29 April 1893. The final game of Royal Arsenal. Arsenal lost 0-1 to Stoke. The club had already plotted their route into the Football League but were distracted by the split within the Committee and the threat of eviction from their ground.
29 April 1899: Final game for Adam Haywood; v Tottenham in United League. An offer of £50 from Glossop North End was accepted but then before he had a chance to play for Glossop he moved again to QPR in the Southern League, where he met up with four other ex-Woolwich men.
29 April 1911: Arsenal ended the season with Notts C 0 Arsenal 2, making it 11 unbeaten including six wins. This was quite remarkable because Arsenal only won seven games in the 27 prior to this but ended 10th. Man U won the title.
29 April 1912: Arsenal 3 Tottenham 0 at White City, in a charity match to raise funds for the families of those who perished on the Titanic. See also here
29 April 1922: Bradford C 0 Arsenal 2. This was the 8th game in April which resulted in four wins, two draws, and two defeats. The run took Arsenal to 17th and saved them from relegation.
29 April 1929: Cliff Holton born. He joined Arsenal from Oxford City in October 1947 initially as a full back, but later became not just a centre forward but one of the most prolific goalscorers in the history of league football.
29 April 1933: Arsenal 2 Huddersfield 2. Two goals for Bastin gave him 33 goals in 42 games to make him top scorer for the season as Arsenal won the league by four points from Aston Villa in second. Bolton and Blackpool went down.
29 April 1939: Arsenal’s mysterious keeper E Bateup died. Much of his life and career is uncertain, but it seems that after leaving Arsenal he played for Port Vale before retiring from football in 1918, having been playing in the war time leagues.
29 April 1950: Arsenal win their 3rd FA Cup beating Liverpool 2-0 with both goals coming from Reg Lewis. It was Arsenal’s 5th cup final, their first in “old gold” shirts and the first ever Arsenal game in front of 100,000.
29 April 1961: Everton 4 Arsenal 1. David Herd’s last game. He moved to Manchester United with whom he won the FA Cup, the championship twice and the European Cup although not playing in the final. The game made it 12 goals conceded in the last three and two wins in the final 12 games. Arsenal finish 11th.
29 April 1969: Although Bertie Mee’s third season ended Everton 1 Arsenal 0, Arsenal finish 4th, the club’s highest place in 10 years.
29 April 1995: Arsenal 1 Tottenham 1. An Ian Wright penalty gave him 18 for the season as top league scorer for the club. But Arsenal were 10th, 36 points behind the leaders Blackburn.
29 April 1998: Arsenal 1 Derby 0. Petit scored for Arsenal in the 35th league game of the 2nd Double season. Arsenal were now four points ahead of Man U with a game in hand. The second double: part 1, part 2, part 3.
29 April 2000: Arsenal beat Everton 0-1 to go second in the league. It was the 6th consecutive win with Overmars scoring the winner on 34 minutes. The run continued for two more games but Arsenal could only finish second to Man U.
29 April 2002: Bolton 0 Arsenal 2. This was game 11 of 13 consecutive wins and League match 36 of the 3rd Double season. Ljungberg and Wiltord scored.
29 April 2009: Man U 1 Arsenal 0. Champions League semi-final first leg. Although unbeaten in the League since November and having beaten Man U 2-1 in the League earlier in the year, Arsenal were unable to get an away goal, and also failed to win the second leg at home.
30 April 1892: Royal Arsenal 2 Rangers 3. It is possible that this early connection between Arsenal and Rangers was linked to the architectural work undertaken by Archie Leitch at the Manor Ground, having previously worked on Ibrox.
30 April 1898: Gavin Crawford’s last game. He was the first player to play 100 games for Arsenal on 3 April 1897. After leaving he moved to Millwall, and QPR, before ultimately becoming head groundsman at Charlton.
30 April 1908: Arsenal’s amazing Scottish tour finally comes to an end with a 2-1 victory over Kilmarnock. Eight matches had been completed between April 21 and 30th.
30 April 1927: Arsenal 3 Birmingham 0. Despite the FA Cup final defeat on April 23, Arsenal made it five straight wins in a row. Brain Tricker and Bob John scored. Arsenal were 12th with two games to go.
30 April 1938: Arsenal 1 Liverpool 0. With one game to go Arsenal had a one point lead at the top, but Wolverhampton had a game in hand. Eddie Carr got the goal – part of a run of five goals for him in three games.
30 April 1952: Continuing the regular end of season fixtures at Highbury, The British Olympic XI played England B Trial XI at Highbury.
30 April 1959 Ian McKechnie signed as professional for Arsenal. He had joined in 1958 as an amateur outside left, but was transformed into a goalkeeper, and became the the first Scot to be chosen to play for the London Youth XI.
30 April 1964: Ernest Williamson died from pneumonia in Norwich. After leaving Arsenal he went to Norwich City, and subsequently he ran a couple of public houses. He was a great friend to the St Dunstan’s charity, which provided training, rehabilitation and lifelong support to soldiers, sailors and airmen who had lost their sight in the First World War.
30 April 1965: Eddie McGoldrick born in Islington. He played for Kettering, Nuneaton, Northampton and Crystal Palace before reaching Arsenal in 1993.
30 April 1968: Arsenal beat Sheffield W 3-2 in front of only 11,262 at Highbury. Court, Radford and Gould scored in what was part of a five consecutive win run taking the club to the end of the season.
30 April 1969: John Roberts signed from Northampton Town for £35,000 and quickly won a league winner’s medal in the First Double season (although he did not play in the cup final.)
30 April 1974: Arsenal 1 QPR 1. Last game for Bob Wilson. With 308 league appearances he was second in the keeper appearance list only to David Seaman. He moved on to TV work with the BBC and also became goalkeeper coach for Arsenal. Liam Brady scored his first goal as Arsenal finish 10th. It was also the last game for Ray Kennedy.
30 April 1977: After an earlier run of consecutive defeats Newcastle 0 Arsenal 2 made it six wins out of seven matches. Macdonald and Matthews scored, but the excitement was short lived as Arsenal failed to win any of their remaining 3 games. Pat Howard made his final appearance.
30 April 1984: Jimmy Logie died. His life after Arsenal is somewhat hard to trace – it is said that he was a very successful manager of Gravesend, but also that he had a gambling problem and ended up selling the evening newspapers in the West End.
30 April 1988: Sheffield W 3 Arsenal 3. Alan Smith scored his final goal of the season becoming the top scorer, with just 11 goals. The result left Arsenal sixth, 23 points behind the leaders.
30 April 1993: Tommy Caton died of a heart attack aged 30. He had retired from football just one month earlier. He left a wife and three children.
30 April 2013: Lukas Podolski agreed to join Arsenal for around £11m at the start of the transfer window. Although a firm crowd favourite he seemed to fall out of favour with Arsene Wenger and in January 2015 moved out on loan.
Month by month index
- And for contemporary events: Untold Arsenal
The anniversaries file aims to be the biggest database of Arsenal events ever produced. However in trying to build it I always openly acknowledge that some of the details recorded here will be wrong, and facts will be inaccurate and will need correcting, not least because information may be taken from inaccurate sources, or (in my specialist way) I may have made copying and typing errors. So far over 200 people have contributed to the articles that make up the anniversary files, and if you can help us improve the data, please do either comment on an article (and I’ll correct the file itself), or write a new article for us. A correction and a citation of sources would be good however, rather than just saying “you’re wrong”. A special mention as always must go to Andy Kelly and Mark Andrews, who have done so much to aid the development of this site by adding so much original research. But whether you can add original research or corrections with the right data, or articles on people we have not yet covered, that will be very welcome indeed.
The dates in this file are being added to all the time, and come from a whole variety of sources including the internet and a variety of printed volumes. If you notice an error please write to Tony.Attwood@aisa.org – ideally with a correction. (Just telling me I am wrong, without giving a clue to either the right information or how you know I am wrong, is not quite as helpful as it might be).
I would particularly like to mention Richard Lerman and David Brown, and their wonderful (but now tragically out of print) volume “The Gunners: Day to Day Life at Highbury”, which is a mine of information. Also thanks of course to Andy Kelly, who has not only supplied dates and information, but who was involved in the “Day to Day Life” volume, and quite rightly is acknowledged therein. Also to Arsenal Football Club whose own On This Day appears on www.arsenal.com And “Arsenal On This Day” by Paul Donnelley (Pitch Publishing). Also where would any of us be without “Arsenal a complete record” by Fred Ollier (Breedon Books), and “Arsenal the football facts” by Dean Hayes (John Blake). If I have missed another sourcebook, please do let me know and I will correct this at once.
If you know of any anniversary dates not yet listed, please do write in and add them. Not only are new dates being added at the rate of about half a dozen a day, but so are links being added to articles on this site. It is intended to produce a book based on this site in due course – but the date gets put back as I find more and more info.