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Huddersfield Town FC, Arsenal FC and Herbert Chapman – standing side by side……

On Sunday Huddersfield Town come to The Emirates in the FA Cup, both teams will stand side by side in the tunnel before entering on to the green grass.

Born in 1878, Chapman played for many clubs, including the Tiny Totts but most Arsenal and Huddersfield fans will think of his managerial career when hearing his name.

Chapman was at Leeds when naughtiness surrounding illegal payments hit the headlines. Chapman was banned from football along with a few others and employment took him to the Coke Works in Selby. In the winter of 1920, the company was sold and he was laid off.

Huddersfield FC stepped in, successfully appealed his ban and he became their assistant manager in February the following year. The following month Chapman took over as manager. Chapman bought in a few good players and the following year Huddersfield won the FA Cup, beating Preston North End 1-0 in the final. The league results were not good but they finished 14th that season.

One of Englands Finest

Chapman believed in a strong defence, fast counter attacking football and short mazy runs from the wingers –  this was passed down through the club at reserve and beyond making it easy for players to slot into the first team when needed. Tactics and further purchases of good players changed Huddersfield and in the 1923/24 season they won their first league title. The following season they retained title despite falling to ninth at one stage. Injury meant Chapman signed a new keeper, Billy Mercer – they climbed back up the table, reaching top spot following a 5-0 win over Arsenal!! They finished the season as Champions.

In 1925, Chapman moved on from Huddersfield after applying for a ‘job’ in the Athletic News – He was the new manager of Arsenal Football Club, salary and larger crowds attracted him to the job…

He went on to repeat the same achievements with us as he did at Huddersfield, taking us from a mediocre club to runners up in the league in the 1925-26 season, funny enough five points behind his old club. Sadly, the following few seasons we would finish mid-table but Chapman was building his side.

Some of his signings were: pacy winger Joe Hulme, forward Jack Lambert and full-back Tom Parker. Despite struggling in the league, in 1927 we reached the FA Cup Final, only to lose 1-0 to Cardiff. The same year, Arsenal became embroiled in a scandal; footballers’ pay at the time was limited by a maximum wage, but an FA enquiry found that Charlie Buchan had received illegal payments from Arsenal as an incentive to sign. Sir Henry Norris was sacked for his part and banned from football, but Chapman survived. Norris was replaced by Samuel Hill-Wood.

Chapman bought in more players – David Jack in 1928, Alex James and Cliff Bastin in 1929. He added defensive players, Herbie Roberts and Eddie Hapgood. Herbert Chapman was a cunning old devil, the signing of David Jack proved this,  Bolton wanted a record fee of £13,000 for their player.

This is how Chapman got his man on the cheap according to his assistant Bob Wall:

We arrived at the hotel half-an-hour early. Chapman immediately went into the lounge bar. He called the waiter, placed two pound notes in his hand and said: “George, this is Mr Wall, my assistant. He will drink whisky and dry ginger. I will drink gin and tonic. We shall be joined by guests. They will drink whatever they like. See that our guests are given double of everything, but Mr Wall’s whisky and dry ginger will contain no whisky, and my gin and tonic will contain no gin.

The Bolton directors got tiddled and the deal was made at £10,890.

Chapman had a five year plan when he arrived and almost to the day we beat Huddersfield Town in the FA Cup Final 2-0, the league remained a struggle that season but that FA Cup win seemed to spur the team on and Chapman had laid the foundations for a decade in which became the most dominant team in England, eventually winning five league titles.

Chapman fell ill with a cold in the winter of 1933, a cold that turned into pneumonia, pneumonia that would take his life.

Herbert Chapman passed away on the 6 January 1934, his football club sat four points clear at the top of the league.

Chapman will be remembered as one of the first football managers in the modern sense of the word. Taking full charge of the team, rather than letting board members pick the side. As well as his tactical innovations, he was also a strong believer in physical fitness in football – he instituted a strict training regime and the use of physiotherapists and masseurs.

In tribute to his achievements at Arsenal, a bronze bust of Chapman, sculpted by Jacob Epstein resided inside the marble halls of the East Stand of Arsenal Stadium, Highbury until its closure in 2006 and will be reinstated there once redevelopment work in the stadium is completed. A replica sits in the Directors’ Entrance at Emirates Stadium; he is one of only two Arsenal managers to be honoured this way, the other being current manager Arsène Wenger. Furthermore, Arsenal’s white away kit for the 2007–08 season was dedicated to Chapman and his achievements.

Unlike many other English managers of his day, Chapman was a fan of the continental game and counted among his friends Hugo Meisl, coach of the Austrian “Wunderteam” of the 1930s. As long ago as 1909, he had taken his Northampton side on a tour of Germany to play Nuremberg  and at Arsenal he had instituted an ongoing series of home-and-away friendlies against the likes of Racing Club de Paris.

Chapman had proposed a Europe-wide club competition more than twenty years before the European Cup was instituted, and regularly took his teams abroad to play foreign sides. He was one of the first managers to consider signing black and foreign players; as well as signing Walter Tull, one of the first black professionals in the game, for Northampton Town in 1911, he attempted to recruit Austrian international goalkeeper Rudy Hiden for Arsenal in 1930, but was blocked by the Ministry of Labour, after protests from the Players’ Union and the Football League. He did however succeed in signing Gerard Keyser, the first Dutchman to play English league football, as an amateur the same year.

In 2003, Chapman was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame in recognition of his impact as a manager. An English Heritage blue plaque commemorating Chapman was unveiled in March 2005, at the house in Hendon where Chapman lived from 1926 until his death. The first player or manager to be commemorated in this way by English Heritage. In 2004, on the seventieth anniversary of his death, The Sunday Times named him the greatest British manager of all time in a poll.

From Huddersfield FC to Arsenal FC

Huddersfield Town were presented with a replica of Chapman’s bust by Arsenal to celebrate their centenary in 2008, Huddersfield also contested the inaugural Herbert Chapman Trophy against Arsenal at the Galpharm Stadium on 6 August 2008, which Arsenal won 2–1.

It was in the 1930 FA Cup Final between his old and current club he suggested the two teams walk onto the pitch side by side – that was the first time of this ever happening and we all know it remains that way today.

So, for all Huddersfield and Arsenal fans, Sunday will be quite a special day……

Sorry it’s gone on a bit! There is plenty more to write about the great Herbert Chapman and I hope today both sets of fans can bring that to the comments……

And yes, I had to research Wikkipedia as even at my old age, I cannot recall the Herbert Chapman era…. ;)

Have a good day all………

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121 comments on “Huddersfield Town FC, Arsenal FC and Herbert Chapman – standing side by side……

  1. Morning all…

  2. Morning Rico, guys.

    The guy was a visionary and a total genius. We should make a list of the innovations he brought into football.

    He also said, a team can have the ball too long to make an attack work. Maybe Arsene should heed that advice.

  3. Morning Will,

    Its funny really just how Chapman and Wenger are so similar in many ways yest gulfs apart when it comes to believing in a strong defence and building on that..

    But many other of their views and tactics are quite similar

  4. I thought you were there Rico…only kidding girl ;).
    Great piece.

  5. Arsenal has always been at the cutting edge of the football world. And no man in Arsenal’s illustrious history has been more innovative than Herbert Chapman.

    In a special series we highlight some of the forward-thinking ideas from our legendary manager.

    White Sleeves
    Chapman introduced white sleeves to the previously all-red Arsenal shirts in 1934 but how this idea came about depends on which source you believe. One version of events has Chapman spotting someone in the Highbury crowd wearing a red sleeveless sweater over a white shirt. A look that he felt it would help the players identify each other on the pitch.

    Another school of thought has it that famous cartoonist Tom Webster had worn a sleeveless blue pullover over a white shirt whilst playing golf with Chelsea chairman, Claude Kirby. Kirby was struck by the colour combination and flirted with the possibility of adding white sleeves to the blue Chelsea shirt. Herbert Chapman on being told of the incident by Webster asked the cartoonist to sketch out the idea, which met with Chapman’s approval and was adopted. The new design also incorporated the Club badge, which was positioned on the left-hand side of the shirt. Another change to the playing kit saw hoops added to the players socks in 1930 to help them pick each other out whilst looking down at the ball. Chapman also felt that having a brown ball on a muddly pitch made it difficult for spectators and players alike to follow the game. Chapman therefore introduced a white ball which made the game more of a spectacle.

    Creating Traditions
    Chapman created many traditions that remain in the fabric of the Club to this day. He understood that the loyalty of supporters to any football club was vital to its success. He insisted that the players clap all four sides of the ground, as a mark of respect to those who paid to watch them play. Another club tradition that Chapman started was having flowers in the oppositions colours in the Directors Lounge. Chapman’s dignified nod of respect continues at Emirates Stadium unchanged after 70 years.

    Taking Football Forwards
    His passion to improve English football as a spectacle led to him advocating changes, often years before they were implemented. These included the use of the penalty area semi-circle, goal judges and two referees. He promoted the use of floodlights as a tool to offset the threat of speedway and dog-racing as a spectator sport. Indeed in 1932, floodlights were installed at Highbury but the authorities did not sanction their use until the 1950s. The first floodlit game at Highbury was in fact a Boxers vs. Jockeys charity football match in April 1951!

    Off as on the pitch, Chapman’s methods portrayed an attention to detail. For example his ideas included a ticket system similar to that used on the Underground in order to cut queuing times. He oversaw the development of an an electronic turnstile that could count the numbers passing through it this helping safety and securing income. He developed a PA system which passed team news onto fans and created a letter and number scoreboard which was widely copied throughout the country over the next 50 years (and resurrected in the final season at Highbury). Probably Chapman’s most enduring legacy are Highbury’s art-deco West Stand and East Stand developments which were his brainchild. Chapman’s appetite for new ideas knew no bounds. “I would borrow one from a programme boy at Highbury, if it were a good one,” he once wrote.

    Promoting the Club
    Chapman encouraged his players to play county or international cricket in the summer to keep fit but also keep the Club in the public eye. He also wrote a regular column in the Sunday Express to help raise the profile of the Club and introduce the Club to a wider audience. In 1927 Chapman dropped the ‘The’ from the Club’s name, becoming simply Arsenal. His rationale was that they would now come first on the list of League clubs.

    The Famous Clock
    The Arsenal clock has famously graced Highbury for over 70 years. First erected in the 1930/31 season, it was one of the many features of Highbury instigated by Chapman. Originally the clock provided supporters with a 45-minute countdown, but the football association believed this undermined the match officials and the Club soon changed the clock to a conventional timepiece.

    It was first positioned on the north stand, then known as the ‘Laundry End’ but it was eventually moved to the south stand then the ‘College End’ in 1935 when the North Bank was covered. Over the years it became synonymous to that stand with most people now referring to ‘The Clock End’. The clock has now been moved to Emirates Stadium where it overlooks the Clock End bridge.

    Feeder Clubs
    Herbert Chapman saw the benefits of unofficial feeder clubs, 70 years or so before they became popular. In 1931 Chapman effectively took over Clapton Orient, later known as Leyton Orient, as he felt it was be much better to have Arsenal youngsters competing in a real League rather than against other juniors. On a grassroots level he worked with amateur side Corinthians to develop public service soccer schools.

    Visionary tactician
    By the 1930s Arsenal were the most famous club in the world, a team that was the natural and perfect expression of Chapman’s professionalism. Yet the Club were actually dubbed by many as ‘Lucky Arsenal’. In 1925 the offside rule had changed so that a team would remain onside if two, rather than three defenders were between the goal and the foremost attacker. This led to a glut of high-scoring games.

    On Arsenal skipper Charlie Buchan’s advice, Chapman, who felt a team could ‘attack for too long’ instigated a 3-2-2-3 deployment which included a free-roving anchor player to police the edge of the area. The WM system, named after the shape which the formation resembled, changed football as a spectacle with many Clubs using it to nullify their opposition.

    However Arsenal, with the attacking triumvirate of Alex James, Cliff Bastin and Joe Hulme and inspired selection of Herbie Roberts in the anchor role, used it to mix tight collective defence with devastating counter-attack. Wingers until then had hugged the touchline, but with James putting passes inside the full-backs Hulme and Bastin averaged a goal a game between them from 1929-35.

    Spectators watched spellbound as the Gunners switched from attack to defence in a matter of seconds, intelligent players acting as a single, organic unit with a thrilling and devastating efficiency. On muscle jellifying pitches it was a tribute to the preparation of the management and players that they put on such an exhilarating spectacle for an audience badly in need of escape from the misery of economic depression and imminent war.

    The Championship trophy was first won in 1931 when Arsenal scored 127 First Division goals – three per game. Visionary off-field developments also made Arsenal formidable in the transfer market. It was a potent cocktail and the ‘Bank of England Club’ were champions once more in 1933, 1934, 1935 and 1938.

    Team spirit
    Herbert Chapman was a firm advocate of mind over matter and felt golf would help his players relax and also foster a sense of unity. He also encouraged players to think tactically as a team, to discuss matches on their journeys to and from games on the team bus or private train carriage which he insisted the team travelled on.

    In the 1930 FA Cup Final, under the stooping spectre of the Graf Zeppelin, Alex James, so often architect, became destroyer. Seven minutes from time, James’ through-ball found Jack Lambert who sealed the victory. It was a planned move which symbolised the change in football that Chapman had orchestrated.

    The renaming of Gillespie Road
    Arsenal are the only football team in London with an underground station named after them.

    This is largely down to foresight of Chapman, who pushed hard for the Tube stop just behind the North Bank to be re-christened. “Whoever heard of Gillespie Road?” he said at one point in the talks. “It is Arsenal around here!”

    The idea had first occurred to Chapman when he visited the newly-relegated Arsenal in 1913 as manager of Leeds City. It took months of lobbying and the change meant that thousands of tickets, maps and signs had to be replaced. Even machinery had to be re-configured.

    Eventually, on November 5, 1932, Arsenal made its debut on the London Underground.

    Introduction of European travel
    Long before the days of official European competition, the name of Arsenal was inked into the consciousness of the football world. Showpiece overseas friendlies and tours made Chapman’s, Allison’s, and Whittaker’s Arsenal stars household names and Arsenal synonymous with dazzling attacking football and remarkable spirit.

    Arsenal played Racing Club of Paris on November 11, 1930 at the instigation of Chapman and Jean Bernard-Levy, the Paris club’s president. The game was in aid of Great War veterans, so was held close to Armistice Day. It was the first of 27 eagerly-anticipated meetings with the prestigious French Ccub that made Arsenal and their players household names throughout Western Europe.

    Indeed the French gave nicknames to many Arsenal stars including Le Feu d’Artfice (The Firework) for Cliff Bastin and Le Miracle (The Miracle) for Alex James. The Parisien games provided the first experience of air travel for many players and James, for one, preferred to do his flying on the pitch!

  6. Hi Chary, thanks re the post – i missed him by a year… :)

  7. Will, whilst reading around i saw the bits about the turnstiles, kit and applauding the fans but the post would have been far too long to include it all…

    I wonder if many football fans other that those of teams who he played for or managed realise just wht HC did for football to make it what it is today…

  8. Fantastic piece Rico and a nice little addendum Will!

    Was a great read this morning instead of mulling over the latest players that the tabloid hacks associate us with!!

  9. Morning Alan, thank you – i’m really looking forward to the game, thinking about the sides lined up in the tunnel and its incredible that just one man is responsible, not the FA, or Blatter etc, just one man….

  10. Sorry Rico but I had to add it, it is the manager and his innovations and vision that makes us The Arsenal, the only team great enough to have The before their name.

    This is why, no mater how much they spend, Man Utd, Man City and Chelsea will never be us.

  11. No probs Will, I loved reading it, its best shared and maybe a lot of younger fans don’t realise just what HC did for our club. I am assuming that the Hill-Wood who replaced the naughty Norris was the same family as the Hill-Wood of today….

    It will be a very sad day when/if we gte bought out in the same fashion as the the mancs, chavs etc, a very sad day…..

    And I guess it also makes us realise how lucky we are to have a board/manager who won’t risk the history of our club just to buy a couple of £50M players…..

  12. as a huddersfield fan that was a great read he really was the best manager that has ever been forseeing a european copetition 20 years ahead of its time.

    Looking forward to Sunday just hope we dont lose by many :)

  13. Morning everyone,thanks for the two cracking pieces!!

  14. Hello, just read this great article about Herbert Chapman. I’m a Huddersfield Town fan and am looking forward to attending the game on Sunday. Through Chapman both clubs have a link, and I think this breeds respect between the two clubs. Obviously you’ve left Town behind in most respects, but Huddersfield Town remains a proud club. The club may be down in Division One but under Dean Hoyle’s chairmanship its prospects for recovery and future success are good. I hope we do ourselves justice on Sunday and gain renewed respect, which, I can assure you, is mutual.

  15. Hi scott and chris, good to see you on here, we may be playing you on sunday but you won’t get any stick on here i promise..

    both our clubs are lucky to have had the privilage of being managed by such a great man

  16. Morning all,
    Very informative post.
    With what Arsenal have achieved with Managers and players past and present, we deserve to sit at the top of any list. And with fingers crossed hopefully we will be rewarded this year.

  17. morning Colin, glad you enjoyed the read, have to say i enjoyed reading all about him again and certainly enjoyed writing it….

  18. scott, i hope you come to the emirates and really give it a go, then we should see a cracking game of footie, a proper cup tie…

  19. Morning Steve, we certainly do….

  20. Morning Scott& Chris,
    If your still on, what can you tell us about your present players, only i hate to say, i dont know much about them

  21. Steve, i’m in the same boat….

  22. 1st, WM was the one the most important contributes for the soccer heritage. Nowadays, the official teams are present at the european away but it’s not a long time ago, in Britain, they are presen like 1;2,3 and 5 players; 2th was the responsible for the grow up of Arsenal and his move from South to North London and in consequence, become the most importan London football team; 3th, Arsenal will be not so big without the heritage of Chapman.

  23. I think we have lost them rico, will have to wait till Sunday

  24. i think so too steve…

  25. Joaquim – WM??

  26. I love my club, traditional but innovating, ground breaking yet humble and run by one family longer than some clubs have existed.

    I love my club, we truly are The Home Of Football.

  27. Rico, the WM formation that the Brazilians took on in the 50’s and turned into 4-4-2. Chapman was the innovator of that.

  28. Woops, thanks Will, i read about that but forgot :(

  29. i have so many books on the history of the game.

  30. I thought you were just showing your age Will ;) Its interesting though to look back sometimes and see how the game became as it is today – the bit i found funny was when HC got the bolton directors tiddled and managed to get a cheaper deal for the player…

  31. No, my dad was semi-pro and I had two brothers who signed pro. When I was a kid and at Christmas, when other kids were getting cartoon annuals, I was getting hardback books on the history of formations, the great managers of the game and of course, the history of Arsenal.

    And then during games, my dad would explain what was happening and why.

  32. Been looking up on some of the Huddersfield players
    GK.Alex Smithies 6’3 2009.2010 15 clean sheets
    RB Lee Peltier, has play champions league (Liverpool)
    LB Garry Naysmith Scottish international
    CD Peter Clark dominant in the air. Club Captain
    CD Nathan clark coming upto 300 appearances
    Mid Joey Gudjohnson played in five top division in five countries
    MID Garry Roberts scored 9 in 45. L wing
    MID Anthony Kay scored 6 in 48
    MID Anthony pilkington flying winger with good crossing ability

  33. Maybe they will play a little in the air then Steve?

  34. Morning Will Most teams do against us

  35. This is true but I think that will stop if we get TV and JD to play together.

  36. Hi Rico, Will, Steve and all,

    What an excellent read. I did not know as much about Herbert Chapman and his innovations as I had thought, and therefore the history of the club. :-)

  37. I think they will come for a match though Will. could be a good game

  38. Morning RA,
    allways good to read about our history, lets hope we make some more this year

  39. Will, that must have been wonderful, i played from a very early age, my family weren’t interested in womens football :(

  40. Steve – never heard of any of those players Steve, but who ever turns up will give it a go i’m sure, Huddersfield will possibly hope for a replay too… But that’s not something we need…

  41. To be honest, no. I was overly pressured and because of this rebelled and probably wasted my talents. My sister told me my dad said to her that I had the most talent out of all of the family but he pushed me so hard, football became a chore. If I only knew then what I know now.

    Coaching ladies football was geed except for the two women who thought they were better than I was and knew more about the game and really disrupted training and the squad,

  42. Hi RA, thanks re the post, Will’s additions after are really interesting too – so much to learn in life, well, there is for me… ;)

  43. I didn’t give that side of it a thought, not all rosy then….. You always get one or two bad apples who know best, either that or training gets treated as just a laugh, either way its annoying when you just want to improve….

    Bet Hope Powell doesn’t have to worry about that in her role ….

  44. Liverpool and Chelsea are ‘negotiating’ over Torres… How I wish Wenger would just ask the dippers to name their price and go get him…..

  45. Thing is Rico, it is cheating as the Chavs have not made that money so they should not be allowed to spend it.

  46. When does that new ruling come in Will, this summer?

  47. Steve Palmer was asking about HTFC player profiles. Here you go:

    Alex Smithies: very young goalie via Academy. Played for every England representative team up to U21’s. Magnificent potential, clubs like Villa, Liverpool, Stoke been linked with him. Only 19-20 years old. First team regular for last 2 seasons. Unfortunately got his first serious injury 2 weeks ago, so out for a few weeks. Could do a job for Arsenal in the future!
    Ian Bennett: very experienced (39) back-up goalie. Been excellent whenever he’s played. Will be playing Sunday
    Lee Peltier (RB): Excellent first season last year, not so great this one.
    Liam Ridehalgh (LB): Academy product, done OK. May be replaced by Tamas Kadar on loan from Newcastle on Sunday
    Peter Clarke (CB & Captain). Good, consistent CB at Div 1 level. Never gives up.
    Jamie McCombe (CB): 6’7″, scored a few, but not been too consistent in his first season at the club.
    Scott Arfield (midfield). Scottish U21. Excellent potential. Been a bit mixed recently but excellent at start of season.
    Joey Gudjonnson (midfield). Easily identifiable with his long hair. Meant to have brought higher level experience to a young squad but been a major let down.
    Antony Kay (midfield or CB). Not a crowd favourite. Pops up with goals occasionally. Passing lets him down.
    Damian Johnson. Ex Brum midfielder, been outstanding but injured for rest of season.
    Kevin Kilbane (midfield). Ex Sunderland, WBA, on loan from Hull. Excellent start, brings skill and experience to the team.
    Gary Roberts (winger). Crowd favourite, very skilful, can be frustrating. Very influential on his day and regularly scores 10+ a season.
    Anthony Pilkington. Mainly plays on the right wing but genuinely two-footed. Scored plenty already. Bigger clubs are watching him. If Town don’t go up I suspect he’ll be off.
    Jordan Rhodes (striker). Fantastic scoring record, unfortunately out for 6-8 weeks.
    Lee Novak (striker). Ex non-league, great first season last year, struggled a bit this season. Never stops trying. Crowd favourite.
    Benik Afobe: Arsenal loanee. We’d like to see more of him!
    Alan Lee (“striker”, apparently). Experienced signing from Palace bought to take weight off Rhodes et al. Absolute garbage so far but likely to start Sunday as we have few option with Rhodes injured and Afobe not allowed to play. He’ll probably get a hat-trick now ;-)

    In addition to Peter Clarke, we have Tom Clarke and Nathan Clarke who are brothers. Tom could play Sunday. Oh, and our manager is a Clark as well!

  48. Yes but clubs have three years to comply which is a joke to me. Basically UEFA have said to these clubs, do all your spending now boys.

    I talk with Chelsea fans and they think it is wrong that there are these restrictions coming in because it stops competition. they really can’t see that having a couple of teams who can spend hundreds of millions a year on players stops competition.

    They say, I just want a return to when Arsenal were on top so I have to remind them that we did it the right way. We got a manager who was given time to build and any club could do that but not every club can afford to lose £100 million a year.

    Which way breeds competition?

  49. Best we watch out for a Clark then Chris.. ;)

    Thanks for that info, Afobe is going to be an awesome player, most Arsenal fans are glad he can’t play as he could harm us…

  50. To be honest Will, I cannot see the rules changing anything much with the rich clubs, they’ll get the money in the account somehow and uder something which can be classed as ‘legal’…

  51. What narks me is not the fact they can buy the higher valued players, its th fact that they buy players who they don’t play….

    I know I believe in the reap what you sow for players who end up getting splinters on the bench but clubs should not be permitted to just buy for buying sake, especially with the older players, under 18’s etc is a big different….

  52. Just like they did with SWP. They bought him solely to stop us getting him and that is not right. I like the 25 player rule but even that has open loop-holes.

    It needs to be, you can spend on transfers and wages what you make after paying off your debts.

  53. Wasn’t only him though Will, did they play Bridge or Parker that much? I’m sure there was another player too…

    But regardless, it is wrong but sadly, I fear one day our own club will be run in a similar fashion, unless a ‘Mr Arsenal’ come in with enough money to buy us outright but maintains with running the club is a ‘proper way’ – I wish Wenger would spend a bit mor on ‘ready’ players but not just spend for the sake of it…..

  54. I’m intrigued at the attitude Arsenal fans seem to have to clubs like Chelsea spending money that they “earned”. FWIW, I agree with you. To be honest, I’m not sure I want Town to get to the Premiership. What I’ve seen of it, I don’t like. Money is ruining it. Arsenal are clearly one of the wealthiest of the lot, but at least you seem to want to do things the right way. Watching Town do well in the Championship would be fine with me.

    Every Chelsea fan you talk to swears blind they went every week when they were getting gates of 7 to 8k in the 1980’s! Yeah, right!

    Town are fortunate to have a fantastic chairman who is a GENUINE Town fan, very popular and very wealthy who also wants Town to do things “the right way”. He wants stability in the club and has provided superb support to Lee Clark in his first managerial job. Clark is making mistakes and the style of football this season hasn’t been as pleasing on the eye as last, but overall he’s doing a good job and most fans want him to succeed.

  55. I have a strong suspicion that Kroenke will run the club the right way. As much as I don’t want him, he is a sports fan and knows how to run a club.

  56. Chris, we are rich but with all our own money, we don’t want or need some rich boy coming in and making us a plaything.

    I hope your team do get up and do things the right way, we need more clubs who are willing to do that.

  57. Chris, many thanks for coming back with the info, i understand what your saying about the spending power at the Arsenal, most fans want the manager to spend, not fortunes but enough to strengthen some positions in the team, but owing to our new stadium we have limited funds until our debts are finished. The board have said there is funds available but the actions of our club makes me think differently.

  58. Chris – good comment, that’s the biggest problem in the PL, money – look at the likes of Villa and West Ham, both have been taken over but neither of the clubs owners have the amount of money to compete, i think its all gone way too far….

  59. Will, I don’t want Stan either, but I want the russian even less….

  60. Exactly Rico but at least Stan has previous regarding owning sports clubs.

  61. Afternoon arsenally peeps!!

    Superb write up(s), well done.

    This Sunday afternoon we welcome Huddersfield town, may I just say good luck and may the best team win. What what ?! (in a 1930’s posh accent)..

  62. So Chelsea are in advanced talks with Torres and Luiz?.,. Revert to type, things start going wrong= throw cash at the problem!

    And I was thinking abramovich wanted away with that and wanted to build a youth system to rival ours!!?? Hahahaha

  63. I dont know about the rest of you but i have a theory why we loan out players. We bring young players in teach them the Arsenal way which is supposedly the right way, but when they dont come upto expectations we loan them out.
    is this just to let them play and be watched and build their price up for selling on, after all if they have been taught how to play, what do they learn from playing for a lesser team, from what i have seen from some of the out of form first team players, i cannot see the point of playing these players in a team that is buzzing, years ago when a player had lost form it allowed others to come in and take their chance, very hard to do that when loaned out.

  64. ‘No January signings’ says Wenger….

    Shock horror….

  65. The lesser of the two evils Will ;)

    Hi Rocastle, what what old chap….

  66. I’ve got a whizzer idea rico, let’s start with the Dutch fellow and the speedy chap on the wing and put the blighters to bed early, what what what?!

  67. Afternoon HHers, Gr8 read rico how wonderful it is to have Chapman in our history the man who invented the modern way football more or less.
    re the WM formation, this is a nice read http://bleacherreport.com/articles/221934-the-forgotten-w-m-formation-of-herbert-chapman

    Regarding our current formation I think this the closest http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:4-2-3-1.gif

    except we are more attacking minded: our Full Backs are more like wingers in occasions, the DM’s are more like CM’s or AM’s when push the opposition, The side midfielders are our Wing Forwards, Central Forwards or Attacking Midfielders.

  68. I went to moderation :( am I being punished rico :?

    I would say I am sorry give me a chance for crying out loud! :D

    …..I’ll be a good boy from now on I’ll promise ;) cross my hearth hope (not) to die.

  69. Frightfully decent idea old chap, then rest a few of the chappies who jolly well have to play next week, what you say old chap?

  70. Hi Stef, i don’t know why you went into moderation but you are free now :)

  71. Popping off for a bit, back shortly…..

  72. whoopie free from the shackles, HH dungeon is a very scary place, mirrors every where, dim light, no exit or entrance I almost cried. :cry:

    On another note it’s snowing here for few days now but we have only an inch at most. I’ll almost forgot how the snow look like, it’s has been rare in the recent years.

  73. morning all…great write-up, rico…i think so many of arsenal supporters don’t know so much about the club pre-1971. nike honored champman (a bit cynically, in my view) as an innovator a few years back. unfortunately, the extent of that seemed to be to attach his name and image to their latest innovation – spuds colored shirts…

    if there is anyone who wants some snow, we are getting plenty of it here…much of it is still on the ground from wednesday, and we are getting another fresh coat right now.

  74. Hi Oliver u probably have a 2 feet snow by now :)

    Red nose wants to grab oxo boy and take him hostage at the trafford.

    ‘Alex Chamberlain is only young but he has potential,’ said Ferguson.
    Tough act to follow: Fergie rates the job Adkins has done at St Mary’s

    Tough act to follow: Fergie rates the job Adkins has done at St Mary’s

    ‘Southampton have done very well bringing young players through over the years.

    ‘He is another one along with Gareth Bale and Theo Walcott. Before that they had the Wallace brothers and Alan Shearer.

    ‘They have been good at that. They have done a lot right.’

  75. hi stef…you’re welcome to some if you haven’t had enough yet…we sure have…

    we were not the only ones interested in this kid. if arsenal really wants him that much, we will need to up the ante, that much is clear. atkins can talk all he wants about selling him to the best situation, and his dad can hint that arsenal is their choice, but at the end of the day, i am sure southampton will accept the best offer. if we really want this kid – and i am not sure he is what we should be focusing all our energies on – then we will need to submit a bid that indicates such.

  76. Boo, afternoon guys/gals –

    Thanks re the post oliver, sadly it hasn’t encouraged many on for chit chat but hey ho, as long as the regular house folk like it, that all that matters in my book ;)

    Talking of snow, just been and bought a snow shovel in anticipation of a fall here soon, maybe my purchase will keep the white stuff away, if so, it will be money well spent ;)

  77. Arsene Wenger has confirmed that Chesney is our number one keeper……

    Wojciech Szczesny is Arsenal’s No 1 at the moment, according to Arsène Wenger.

    The Polish keeper has taken the gloves following injuries to Lukasz Fabianski and Manuel Almunia and now, the manager believes, the 20-year-old has to be ousted from that position.

    At Friday’s press conference, Wenger also confirmed that the Spaniard would return to the squad this weekend after four months out with elbow and ankle injuries – but he might not start against Huddersfield.

    During his absence, Almunia was linked with a move away from Emirates Stadium. But the manager revealed he’s happy to have him at the Club. However the 33-year-old still has a job on his hands to recover his old position.

    “At the moment Wojciech is No 1,” said Wenger. “He’s done nothing for me to take him out.

    “[As for Sunday], I can rotate the goalkeepers. In the Cups I sometimes play different ones. But Almunia has not played for a long, long time.

    “I am happy that he’s here,” Wenger went on. “I don’t feel that any player is happy not to play. But he’s under contract and as long as he is at the Club we’re happy to have him. I like him as a man and as a player and I have shown that in my decisions.”

  78. Am I the only one that think it is actually getting all these kids in is what is killing the kids?

  79. We haven’t bought any kids Will, apart from the two on loan and we wont see them for 2/3 seasons i guess….

  80. bolton blog reporting that vela is going on loan to west brom – i’ve not see anything else to corroborate.

  81. also reports that ajax and liverpool have finally agreed a fee for suarez…

  82. Rico, it is the proposed transfer for this Chamberlain kid, won’t he be taking another kids place? Isn’t that the reason Wenger gives for not signing world stars?

  83. west brom oliver, thats a bit of a turn around….

  84. rico, i don’t know how true it is…i have only seen it in the one place. it may not be so far fetched, as i think arsene appreciates the work dimatteo is doing at the hawthorns.

  85. If we get the Oxo kid Will, it has to be good – he’s something different… he can score ;)

    oliver, i was hoping so much that Vela to Bolton would help secure us Cahill….

  86. great read today rico, different but refreshing, was getting sick of the same old around the net..
    love stuff about our history…love going back in time..takes me back to when i was a young boy and i would sit and watch footy with my grandad and he could reel all that stuff off the top of his head…

    will, you have been on form today…

  87. I know what you are saying Rico, it strikes me as weird that we can bring in 17-20 year old’s but can’t bring in a proven 25 year old because it will hamper the younger players progress.

  88. thanks jj and evening to you ;)

    there is so much history about our club its incredible but thats why we are so prestige, you guys/gals with club history in your family are lucky to have inherited all the knowledge…

    All I heard about was the Biscuit Boys ;)

  89. Trust me Will, I get your point too – it’s like all this surrounding Torres, if we have £60M in the back and that is his get out clause price, who would it really kill if we bought him???

  90. evening rico ;)

  91. back = bank ;)

  92. Exactly Rico, surely it would give the kids a target to reach?

  93. the torres deal is an interesting one.
    yes we could match the players transfer fee..
    but i think wages are a stumbling block more than killing any kids
    i think wenger would love torres but theres no point bidding for him when chelsea are in for him..not only will it start a bidding war, which we will probably lose, but it will also give the player and his agent the upper hand in wage negotiations..
    wenger could have a bid accepted tomorrow for 40mil
    but then chelsea would just offer 50
    and even if liverpool accepted both bids chelsea will just offer him silly money, he will then say to gazidis ‘well chelsea are offering 200k a week’
    do we match it?? and totally fuck up our wage system..
    will players like cesc and robin be happy with a new player coming in and earning more than they do without even kicking a ball, after all the years theyve given the club
    i wouldnt be..if id have worked 10 years at a company and given my all and was regarded as a key memeber and some bloke came in and was earning more than me i would be pissed off and id be knocking on the managements door demanding answers…
    wenger would probably have 4-5 players knocking his door down..
    a deal like that would cost more than the transfer fee..it will have a domino effect on the whole club..
    torres could cost us over 100 million..

  94. Maybe we should start a bidding war, thus causing Chelsea more issues when the new laws come into effect ;-)

  95. at least wenger has confirmed ches as number one
    theres our new Gk everyone wanted ;)
    and it didnt cost a thing ;)

  96. Will, doesn’t Theo still aspire to be like Henry, so yes, what harm would it do to have a Torres in our side….

  97. vela w. brom loan deal now being reported in a couple of other places – it seems his agent is the source.

  98. JJ, I am not saying we should buy, I am just questioning Wenger’s reasoning that top class 25 year old’s ruin the youths progression but bringing in more 17-20 year old’s doesn’t.

  99. jj, i bet your bottom dollar that if Torres had a chance to choose between us and the chavs, he’d choose us and i reckon he’d even settle for a lesser wage offer….

    he isn’t happy and wants out to the first buyer imho….. well, as long as its not the Tiny Totts… ;)

  100. oliver – i don’t think AW minds where he goes as long as its the Pl, he wants to keep an eye on him….

    jj, you told us it was all about Bolton and Cahill, see, you are not always right ;)

  101. yeah thats an idea will
    wenger should just match any offer…making chelsea up theres..
    in the end chelsea will have to pay double what they originally offered, and they would be delighted at beating us off
    but in a few years time they would be ‘hang on, this guys cost us 75mil, 250k a day in wages, and hes only played 15 games, and now we are fucked cos romans leaving ;) so we’ll have to sell him for fuck all just so we can get him off the wage bill and so somebody else can afford his wage’s ;)

  102. Tiny Totts are in talks with Forlan…….

  103. Steve won’t be pleased about Chesney …..

    I am :)

  104. That time of day for me, off to cook dinner etc, i’ll catch you all tomorrow,

    be good, stay safe and ta ta for now…..

  105. only wenger really knows why, will
    i would love top signings like torres..would be amazing to see an arsenal press conference with a player like that in the red and white, scarf raised high with wenger smiling like cheshire cat..
    flash photography and world wide media hype..
    like when rioch signed the iceman..ultimate buzz

    rico, i really thought it was, but i think wenger was waiting for news on squige and TV
    koz and JD have been immence, squidge is back in a few days and TV is back in training in a fortnight..
    think wenger was holding out til last minute just to see..he must feel confident, he doesnt need anyone..so velas gone elsewhere
    unless bolton rejected our deal, and wenger said ok you dont get vela then..
    who knows..but theres still a few days left.. ;)

  106. I would love a signing like that again JJ. I remember exactly where I was and who I was with when I heard we signed the great man. When was our last huge signing?

    Henry? Relative unknown
    Pires? As above
    Vieira? Kid sitting in Milan’s reserve team as a 19 year old.

    I would love to wake up tomorrow and watch football focus with Torres standing in the famous red of The Arsenal. Show the world our intent.

  107. i reckon our last really big signing was big sol

    AA comes into that category also but his transfer was wierd..he came in through the back door..then stood by himself in waht looked like a shop door way with 5-6 journos..
    not really that impressive really..

    i reckon we are in for a treat in summer though
    when hazard comes ;) that will be a major coup for the club

  108. Do you rate Hazard up there with a Bergkamp or what a Torres would be?

  109. yeah
    i think hazards going to be up there with the best..
    lille are where they are in the french ligue cos of him
    hes smashing it to bits..although goals wise not so.. he just takes on everybody and the strikers are benefitting…
    hes more of an overmars type player but at 20 can be developed and moulded
    i dont mind signing the kids, when they are wonderkids, and that boy ouzes wonder..

  110. So Theo one side Hazard the other with Van P in the middle?

  111. yeah..
    something like that..
    i think come summer we could lose AA, rosicky and nikki maybe

    wenger will bring vela back depending on how well he does, and buy hazard..

    so it could be
    theo/nasri chamakh/rvp vela/hazard

    fucking hell that would be dynamite..

  112. I would have no issue with Nik B leaving. That one, single, solitary goal did not go anywhere near doing it for me.

    I feel sorry for AA and think we should keep him, all he needs is one thing to spark his confidence and we all know what he can do.

    As for Rosicky, he has to be the unluckiest player on earth, all the talent but constantly injured.

  113. imagine theos pace, with nasris skill..
    and he bangs it like robin

  114. i think rosickys days are numbered to be honest..
    wengers not a fan of players once they reach the wrong side of 30 and hes not exactley first team material any more…

    nik could end up talking himself out of the club but only for the right price..
    i would love to keep AA but hes paid a good wage and if hes admitting hes losing his attributes it maybe a good time to let him go back to russia and replace him with a younger faster version of what he once was…

    this summers going to be a busy one i think…

  115. I agree with you on that one JJ.

  116. the summers always busy when we think about it
    08 we lost loads of midfielders, im sure we made a huge profit in 09…10 we let all our CB’S go
    hope fully this year we sort out our widemen and strikers ;)
    its their turn

  117. 09 ade and kolo

  118. morning will…
    im sure they read this thread…

  119. the torres thing gathered pace last night…
    i hope he dont go to chelsea id rather madrid came in for him and he left the pl…
    but something tells me liverpool wont let him go..hes got a contract that he recently signed, and their chairman is financially stable they dont need to sell..
    they can force torres to stay….

  120. Morning you two :)

    New Post up….

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