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December 2019
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Appointing a successful manager is not just a matter of finding an Arsenal man.

Successful runs of managers are hard to achieve, although Arsenal did this in the 1930s with Chapman, Shaw and Allison resulting in five league titles and two FA Cups in nine years.  In one of the two years where nothing was won, Arsenal came second in the league and were beaten finalists in the FA Cup.  The run continued after the war with Tom Whittaker, like Shaw and Allison an Arsenal man, and he, like Chapman and Allison, won the league twice and the FA Cup.

But after Whittaker, things went wrong.  Captured by the notion of using ex-Arsenal players as managers Arsenal tried first Crayston and then Swindin, but to no avail.  Moving to a man from outside the club – Wright – was an even greater disaster with crowds sinking to below 10,000 by the end of his tenure.

On this day in 1958 Swindin became manager – the last ex-Arsenal player to achieve this post until George Graham.

21 June 1919:  Admiral Ludwig von Reuter, fearful that the German fleet might be taken over by the British navy, which had interned it in Scapa Flow, scuttled the whole fleet.  52 vessels sank, and all but seven were eventually salvaged and the metal reused.

21 June 1951: Alan Hudson born.  He was rejected Fulham after a trial as a schoolboy but then signed for Chelsea Juniors.  After six years in the first team squad he moved to Stoke, and then in 1976 to Arsenal. After a period of alcoholism, declared bankrupt and a very serious road accident he re-invented himself as an author

21 June 1958   George Swindin became manager.  He was the final manager after the Shaw – Allison – Whittaker – Crayston sequence who had worked for the club in various guises before becoming manager but he was not a success.  He died in 2005 aged 90.

21 June 1995: Dennis Bergkamp arrived from Inter where he had played just 52 league games.  He had been attacked by the press in Italy where a column highlighting the worst mistake of the weekend’s games was named Bergkamp della settimana  See also here.    And particularly about Inter, here.

21 June 2014: Chuks Aneke left Arsenal on a free transfer to Zulte Waregem.  He never played for Arsenal in the league, but subsequently played regularly for the Belgium club. In 2016 he joined MK Dons.

Publications

“Woolwich Arsenal, the club that changed football” and “Making the Arsenal” are now available as printed books, and on Kindle.    Please see here for more details.

Elsewhere on the site…

Henry Norris at the Arsenal:  There is a full index to the series here.

Arsenal in the 1930s: The most comprehensive series on the decade ever

Arsenal in the 1970s: Every match and every intrigue reviewed in detail.

A full index of our series can be found on the home page.

 

 

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