Walter Shaw: the man who scored the first ever Arsenal league goal

By Tony Attwood

Walter Shaw scored the first ever league goal for Arsenal, scoring the first goal in the 2-2 draw with Newcastle United on 2 September 1893.

He was a centre forward who also played inside left.  Born in Birmingham in 1870 and played for…

Singers FC (the original name of Coventry City),

Unity Gas (of which there are one or two tantalising references on the internet which suggest it was a small Birmingham side, but nothing more),

Birmingham St George’s (1886-1892).  In fact it looks like Walter Shaw might well have come to Woolwich Arsenal after finding his own club wound up.  They had failed twice to get into the Football League, and their own league (the Alliance) had itself been wound up.  They also had the inevitable “financial difficulties.

In 1893/94 Walter Shaw played 17 games and scored 11 goals (plus four in the cup and scored 1), but in 1894/5 he played two (one in September and one in February) plus one in the FA Cup and scored 0.  The club records show that he joined the club for the new season in the league and left in 1895.

There is no further trace of him.

The team for our first ever league match was…

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