When Arsenal first played without an Englishman in the side

The latest post from our series on Henry Norris at the Arsenal

The FA thanks Norris, the League expanded again. May 1920.

Today’s headline is taken from this day in 2005.

14 February 1891.  Arsenal beat Crusaders 1-0 in the London Charity Cup   This was Arsenal’s second and final entry into what is a rather mysterious Cup competition, of which few details remain, and they were knocked out in the next round, after two replays, by Old Carthusians.

14 February 1912: Bryn Jones (whose transfer smashed the transfer record) born in Merthyr.   He played for a variety of clubs including Merthyr Amateurs,Glenavon and Aberaman Athletic, before signing for Wolverhampton Wanderers in 1933 for a fee of £1500.

14 February 1920: Arsenal lost 3-0 to Oldham in front of 14,000.  However results elsewhere meant Arsenal stayed in 11th – and mid table security was the target in the first year back in the 1st division.  But Arsenal had lost four and won just one game in the last five and were in need of a change of fortune if they were to avoid slipping back towards division 2.

14 February 1925:  The International Board experimented with the proposed new offside law in the Arsenal v Huddersfield Town game on this day and Chapman as Huddersfield manager used the new rule successfully to defeat Arsenal 5-0.  It was Arsenal’s worst home defeat since 28 October 1893 when Arsenal lost to Liverpool by the same score.

14 February 1925: Dan Lewis dropped from the Arsenal team for first time.  Herbert Chapman had a habit of dropping goalkeepers, but reinstated Dan in time for him to play in the 1927 Cup Final, where Dan made the mistake that led to Cardiff’s victory.

14 February 1927: Dan Lewis made his Welsh international début against England, two years to the day from his Cup Final disaster, subsequently winning two more caps for his country.

14 February 1931: Arsenal were top of the league and on on this day at home to Derby, secured that position winning 6-3, the goals coming from a Bastin hattrick, James, Hulme and Jack.

14 February 1970: Arsenal 0 Chelsea 3.  Last senior appearance of Bobby Gould.  He went on to play for West Bromwich Albion (then managed by Don Howe) and then Bristol City, West Ham, Wolverhampton (for a second time), and Bristol Rovers (as player coach), before moving into management.

14 February 1978: For the second leg of the League Cup Semi-Final 49,561 came to Highbury in the knowledge that the 1-2 defeat in the first leg should have given Arsenal a strong chance to reach Wembley.  But Liverpool “used their long experience in two-legged affairs” (as the press would have it) or in common parlance played for a 0-0 draw, and got what they came for.

14 February 1989: Arsenal 2 France 0.  Hayes and Smith scored.  This friendly was part of the League’s attempt to rehabilitate English football with all clubs having been banned due to Liverpool fans’ behaviour in the European Cup Final.

14 February 1991: Herschel Oulio Sanchez Watt born.  He never played a league match for Arsenal, and after half a dozen loan spells settled at Colchester.

14 February 1995: Glenn Helder signed from Vitesse Arnhem.  After leaving football he admitted to attempting suicide because of his gambling addiction.  In 2007 he served a prison sentence for threatening one girlfriend and abusing another.

14 February 1996: Arsenal 2 Aston Villa 2, league cup semi-final.  Bergkamp got both goals.  The second leg one week later was a goalless draw, and Arsenal went out.  It was the nearest Rioch got to a trophy with Arsenal.  

14 February 1997: John Hartson sold to WHU for £5m.  He later set up a foundation to raise money to fight testicular cancer and became a pundit with BBC Radio.

14 February 2002: Kolo Toure signed for Arsenal from ASEC Mimosas for £150,000.  He played 225 league games for Arsenal, before leaving for Manchester City.

14 February 2005: Arsenal 5 Crystal Palace 1, this was supposedly the first Premier League match with no Englishmen in the starting XI for Arsenal or any other team, as the media ignored the fact that Liverpool had played the FA Cup final of 1986 without a single player who could qualify to play for England.

14 February 2014: Chuba Akpom started a loan deal with Coventry.  He joined Arsenal aged six, and at the age of 19 started to make first team appearances as a centre forward.  In 2015/6 he went on loan to Hull and hit a hattrick in the 4th round FA Cup match that took Hull through to an appearance against Arsenal, in which he could not play.


This daily review of Arsenal anniversaries is from the Arsenal day by day  files prepared by the AISA Arsenal History Society.   We expect by the end of this year to have approaching 6000 entries in our anniversaries list.


Yesterday’s anniversaries:

When Arsenal scored after the ball was thrown back, and then agreed to take a replay.


What’s on the Arsenal History Society site

An index to the various series that contain over 1,900 articles on this site concerning the history of Arsenal appears on our home page.  Our current series is “Henry Norris at the Arsenal”

“Woolwich Arsenal, the club that changed football” and “Making the Arsenal” are both available on Kindle, and we have a small number of copies of the printed edition available at £10 each + £2.00 postage and packing for delivery in UK.   Please  see here for more details

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