Arsenal have come a long way since their formation in Woolwich in December 1886. The first team from Southern England to join the Football League, Arsenal are one of English football’s most successful clubs. To date, the Roll of Honour is:
Premier League (First Division before 1992/93) Champions 13 times,
FA Cup winners, 11 times (joint record holders),
2 League Cups,
1 European Cup Winners Cup, and,
1 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup.
The richness of the club’s history is such that there is no need to mention any Hospital Cups won; we concentrate on the major trophies.
Winners of the League and FA Cup double three times, Arsenal were the first English club to win both domestic cup competitions in the same season. 1992-93 may not have been auspicious in style but there was substance.
Yet it all pales compared to 2003/04. A season unbeaten; the second side to do so. Preston North End, one hundred years before Anfield witnessed Arsenal win the title in the most gripping climax in the history of English football, completed their unbeaten First Division season on 20th February 1889. A record-breaking 22 matches unbeaten, a record that would never be equalled or so it was thought. It was and taken to a new level.
Two season previous, Arsenal had completed the season unbeaten on their travels, which in itself is a staggering feat. Clubs come close to that but always falter. In 2003/04, they took the step further, equalling that record and matching it at home as well. History needs just two columns to reflect their achievement: Played 38, Lost 0.
As the season wore on, there was an inevitability about the outcome. Even the bookmakers agreed, with hundreds of thousands of pounds paid out by one of the sports betting sites, before Leicester City were beaten in the final game of the season.
And it was a run which continued, not just for one or two games the following season but 49 – one short of a half-century matches unbeaten. The increased competitiveness of the Premier League makes it seem even less likely that either record will be equalled.
I am sure William Sudell thought the same of his Preston team which won the title in the Football League’s inaugural season.
These are the tangibles, the treasured moments of a club which has the richest of histories. But one that is so much more than that, a journey which is travelled on the other pages of the site.
The Copyright on all of these photos is held by but not limited to such excellent resources as the BBC, Getty Images, Reuters, Empics. If I have forgotten anyone, whoops, sorry. No commerical gain or advantage is sought by their inclusion on this site, this page merely intended to show the illustrious history of Arsenal Football Club. The squad photos have come from Arsenal.com which has as you would expect, a large collection of squad pictures and if you want to know more than just the nice, shiny bits of the Clubs history, go there to see all those who worn the Club’s shirt with, I hope, pride. Thanks to for the unwitting supply of photos from, and again not limited to, Perry Groves World, EuroArsenal, John Davies, MU1. If I’ve forgotten you, let me know and I will quite happily add you to this somewhat dubious roll of honour.
If any of the Copyright holders object to their pictures being included, let me know at the email address provided on the ‘About’ page and I will remove them.
I thought long and hard about the inclusion of Merse’s 1993 photo. At the time it was thought to be a vaguely amusing photo, given his reputation. However, it masked an appalling addiction on his part. I have included it as a reminder to us all that footballers are human and that none are exempt from addictions that beset everyday life.