What does pre-season tell us? Not always that much, it seems.

On 11 July 2003 Arsenal played Peterborough in a pre-season friendly, and lost.  I remember the Peterborough fans getting rather excited, and doing a lot of arm waving and shouting about how rubbish Arsenal were.   In the following match we drew with Barnet.   And if you know your Arsenal history you will know what happened in the 2003/4 season.  Which rather goes to show that pre-season results don’t always count for much.

Here are the rest of the anniversaries…

11 July 1866: James Boyle born in Glasgow and started out playing for Towerhill before joining Celtic in 1890.  He moved to Arsenal in 1893 and scored the goal which gave the club its first away point in the Football League

11 July 1890: Alex Graham born.  He played at first for several Scottish clubs before getting a trial with Woolwich Arsenal in December 1911, by when he was 21.  He went on to play over 179 games for Arsenal.  (See also here)

11 July 1922: Angus McKinnon transferred to Charlton after 217 appearances in 14 years.  In 1923 he joined Wigan Borough who were then under the managership of former Woolwich Arsenal player Charlie Bell before moving on to New Brighton.

11 July 1956: Ralph Guthrie transferred to Hartlepools Utd, his home town club.  He had only played twice for Arsenal, but was part of Hartlepools push for promotion following his return.

11 July 1977: Don Revie resigned as manager of the England national football team after three years in charge.  The following day he accepted a four-year contract worth £340,000 to take charge of the United Arab Emirates national team, making him the highest-paid football manager in the world.  He was considered utterly disloyal.

11 July 2003: Peterborough 1 Arsenal 0 – it was followed by Barnet 0 Arsenal 0.  In fact the club only won four out of nine pre-season games, but still did rather well in the season to come.  As you might recall.

11 July 2008: Arsenal fans voted Robert Pirès as the club’s sixth greatest player of all time, having spent six seasons at the club and played 189 games.  He continued playing after leaving Arsenal, including eight games for FC Goa in 2014/15.

11 July 2008: Samir Nasri signed from Olympique de Marseille for whom he had played for four years, making 121 league appearances. After leaving Arsenal he was banned in 2018 for breaching WADA drugs rules and given an 18 month ban. After a period with West Ham in July 2019, Nasri signed for  Anderlecht.

11 July 2011: Arsenal signed Gervinho from Lille. He had played for Beveren and Le Mans previously, and made 67 appearances for Lille, scoring 28 goals.

11 July 2016: Isaac Hayden sold to Newcastle for a fee thought to be around £2.5m. By 2019 he had won the Championship with Newcastle and played nearly 100 games.

11 July 2018: Arsenal announced the transfer of Matteo Guendouzi from Lorient for a rumoured £7 million.  He played 33 games in his first season.



And here are the main features from the site   There is an index to all our series on the home page.

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.


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