by Tony Attwood
With thanks for the list of players and their games played in 1916/17 to Andy Kelly. The figures for games played and goals this season come from TheArsenalHistory website.
1916/17 was the second season for the wartime leagues, and the first in which a London league (known as the London Combination) had been organised to run all the way through the season.
Arsenal played 40 games in the League of 14 clubs, and used 44 players during the season – a remarkably similar number to the previous season when 46 players were used during the two league campaigns of that season.
14 of the 44 players who turned out for Arsenal played just one game for the club and a further five played two games. 11 of the players had appeared for Arsenal in the 1914/15 season – the last professional season before the league was abandoned for the duration of the war. The Arsenal 14/15 column shows how many games the player had played in that final professional season before the war. These Arsenal professionals are indicated in red.
The numbers in the left column are simply for convenience in trying to track all these players.
|Player||Guest’s Club||Games||Goals||Arsenal 14/15|
|1||MWA Allman||Croydon Common||18||4|
|9||JJ Chipperfield||Luton Clarence||29||12|
|12||A Ducat||Aston Villa||2||1|
|19||W Hibbert||Newcastle United||1||–|
|20||AV Hutchins||Arsenal from 1919||32||2|
|23||F Knowles||Manchester City||6||–|
|40||JA Weaver||Croydon Common||10||2|
|42||D Williams||Notts County||16||4|
|43||EC Williamson||Croydon Common||40|
Ernest Williamson, the goalkeeper through this season was registered with Croydon Common, but that club, from the Southern League did not compete in wartime football after the 1916/17 season and so he found regular games with Arsenal. Indeed he went on to play for Arsenal professionally after the war.
As far as I can tell Croydon Common had effectively gone into administration or receivership after the 1916/17 season, as I can find no record of them playing any further games after that season. They were the one Southern League team not to return to the League in 1919 when professional football resumed.
There is a slight indication that Henry Norris had an interest in Croydon Common FC, and it is interesting that three of the Common players were by now getting occasional games with Arsenal.
We are currently evolving a complete series on Henry Norris at the Arsenal. The full index to the articles that cover the period from 1910 to this point are given in Henry Norris at the Arsenal
Perhaps the most popular element in the Norris story is that of Arsenal’s promotion to the first division in 1919. Therefore we have separated that story out below. It raises in part the question of the validity of the chief critic of Henry Norris: the Arsenal manager from 1919 to 1925 who Norris sacked. Thus in the selection below we include articles which consider the question as to the validity of Knighton’s testimony.
For the complete index on Norris at the Arsenal please see the link above.
- April 1915: New revelations concerning perhaps the most important month in Arsenal’s history
- November / December 1915: the match fixing scandal comes to the fore: Norris is armed
The voting and the comments before and after the election
- The first suggestion that Arsenal could be elected to the 1st division.
- Arsenal in January 1919: rioting in the streets and the question of promotion
- What the media said about the election of Arsenal to the 1st division in 1919
- Arsenal prepare for the vote on who should be promoted to the First Division
- March 1919: The vote to extend the league and what the media said
- Why did the clubs vote for Arsenal rather than Tottenham in March 1919?
The Second Libel
The Third Allegation
The Fourth Allegation
Did Henry Norris really beg Leslie Knighton to stay and offer him the hugest bonus ever? And if so, why were there no new players?
- May/June 1921: Knighton the fantasist. The fourth allegation.
- Why did Arsenal manager Knighton turn down Man City but not buy players? Summer of 1921.
The Fifth Story:
The Sixth Allegation
- March 1922: Desperate times for Arsenal, Norris returns and the transfer limit allegation overturned
The Seventh Allegation
- Arsenal in the Summer 1923: another Knighton allegation but the evidence is again against him.
- Anticipation a plenty but another terrible start to the season: August 1923 – the non-signing of Moffatt.
The Eighth Strange Story