Today we sad a fond farewell to eight Arsenal players

This is the day in modern times when contracts come to an end, and those who have not made the grade, or whose contracts have not been extended, go their own ways.

Many of the youngsters who have left Arsenal at this time in recent years have ended up in the lower divisions or in non-league but recognition must be given to Luke Ayling who dropped down to Yeovil but has since moved up again and nearly got back into the Premier League with Leeds United this season.

This year eight players leave the club.  We know about Cech and Ramsey, but we’ll keep an eye on where the others go and update the files as we move along.

Here are the anniversaries.

30 June 1884: Tower Bridge was opened.  It was the furthest easterly bridge over the Thames until the opening of the Queen Elizabeth II bridge at Dartford.

30 June 1905: The Kentish Independent published a list of season ticket prices at Woolwich Arsenal – showing a price of £2 2s – about two thirds of the weekly wage of a skilled artisan.  At the same time Woolwich Gazette revealed that Arsenal did not run the bars in the Manor Ground but leased them to others.

30 June 1914: Steve Stonley transferred to Brentford.  He scored 13 goals in 28 league games in 1913/14, but left for Southern League Brentford after Harry King was signed.

30 June 1915:  The 177th (Fulham) Royal Field Artillery Brigade which was raised and paid for by Henry Norris had, by this day, recruited everyone it needed apart from the hard to find skilled metal workers who maintained the guns in the field.  Norris was immediately asked to raise a second artillery brigade and subsequently went on to raise a third.  They were billeted in Fulham Town Hall, at Norris’ expense.

30 June 1932: Derek Tapscott born in Barry.  He was one of 16 children, After leaving school at 14 he worked as a delivery boy, TV repairman’s assistant and bricklayer, before serving with the Royal Engineers.  He was signed by Arsenal in 1953.

30 June 1975: Rami Shaaban born in Stockholm of Egyptian and Finnish parents.He started at Saltsjöbadens IF before playing in Cairo while also studying at university. He later moved to Djurgården and in August 2002 to Arsenal.

30 June 1995: Kevin Campbell transferred to Nottingham Forest who were European Champions.  However the side were relegated and then promoted during his time there.

30 June 1999: Michael Black given a free transfer.  He had signed as a pro for Arsenal in July 1995 having won the Youth Cup in 1994 and played his one and only game for the club as a sub in the Champions League match away to Panathinaikos in December 1998.  Subsequently he played for Millwall, Tranmere, Southend, and then for a wide variety of non-league clubs.

30 June 2009: Amaury Bischoff and Rui Fonte left Arsenal while Luke Ayling, Craig Eastmond, Cedric Evina signed pro forms.  Bischoff was signed as “a gamble” because of his injury record and only made 1 appearance.  Rui Fonte did not make the first team appearance and signed for Sporting Lisbon but didn’t play for them either.

30 June 2009: Craig Eastmond signed pro forms, and went on to make 10 first-team appearances for Arsenal before being loaned to Colchester Utd on 27 September 2012.In 2015 he signed for Sutton United

30 June 2010: Luke Ayling transferred to Yeovil one year after signing professional forms with Arsenal.  After 162 games for Yeovil he moved on to Bristol City and won League One with them in 2014.  During the 2018–19 he played 42 games for Leeds United in the Championship.

30 June 2010: Kerrea Gilbert transferred to Portland Timbers.  He was unable to obtain a visa to play in the US however, and ultimately signed for Yeovil and played for them 8 times.  He subsequently played for Shamrock Rovers, Maidenhead and St Albans City.

30 June 2010: Jens Lehmann, the only goalkeeper ever to go 42 games in a 1st Division or Premier League season unbeaten, retired as a player.  Although he did make a comeback – by chance.

30 June 2010: Jérémie Aliadière’s contract at Arsenal ended and he left as a free agent, but injured himself in pre-season training, and was left without a club and without being able to play.

30 June 2012: Manuel Almunia at the age of 35 was released by Arsenal and moved on first to West Ham and then to Watford for whom he played 76 league games in two seasons. His transfer is also reported as 30 July.

30 June 2013:  Andrey Arshavin released and transferred to Zenit for whom he had been on loan in 2011/12.

30 June 2014:  Park Chu Young left Arsenal after just seven games in three years.  His transfer was one of the strangest in the history of the club and appeared to have as much to do with passport requirements as anything else.  (See link for details).

30 June 2015: The loans of a number of young Arsenal players expired, including Wellington Silva, Carl Jenkinson, Austin Lipman, Jon Toral, Ryo, Josh Vickers, Lukas Podolski, Yaya Sanogo, Joel Campbell, Semi Ajayi, Chuba Akpom and Jack Jebb

30 June 2017: Arsenal’s loan of Calum Chambers to Middlesbrough and Jack Wilshere to Bournemouth officially came to an end and the players joined the first team squad at Arsenal.

30 June 2017: Chris Willock joined Benfica upon the expiry of his contract, signing a five-year deal.

30 June 2018: The loans of Takuma Asano, Marc Bola, and Emiliano Martínez to Stuggart, Bristol Rovers and Getaffe respectively, came to an end.

30 June 2019: Arsenal released a whole clutch of players: including Petr Cech (to Chelsea), Daley-Campbell, Gilmour, Lichsteiner, Pleguezuelo (to FC Twente), Ramsey (to Juventus), Spencer-Adams, and Welbeck.


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