Continuing the three part journey through Terry Neill’s Cup Finals. as always details below are from backslips but althought the third mentione Alan Sunderland it looks more like Graham Rix to me.
“Arsenal Ecstasy. May 12th 1979.
Wembley, London, Saturday.
Athletic embrace for Arsenal pair Liam Brady (left) and Alan Sunderland as they celebrate their 3-2 win over Manchester United as the final whistle ends this afternoon’s FA Cup Final at Wembley.
Both played major parts in the dramatic clash. Brady made all three Arsenal goals and Sunderland snatched the winner with just seconds to go.”
A few random press photo scans before we get to the 1970s. As usual the script underneath is from the backslips.
“Baker’s Goal Attempt Foiled:
The ball gets fouled up in the legs of Bolton Wanderers’ goalkeeper Hopkinson as he tangles with Arsenal centre-forward Baker as he tried to shoot for goal during the match here today. Looking on (centre backgroound) is Arsenal inside-left Eastham.
September 7th 1963.”
“Arsenal v Birmingham 9.3.68.
Arsenal’s Storey gets tied up with Birmingham’s Vowden.”
“Arsenal end Leeds Title Dream 8.5.68.
The last flames of Leeds’ great dream of multi-success this seasonwere finally stamped out by an avenging Arsenal in the last minute of a feverish battle.
In a game in which the tempers and the drama ran overpoweringly high it was Leeds who were going strongest for the winner as balance trembled at 3-3.
Then Arsenal broke away and inside right George Johnston somehow crashed through three tackles in the penalty area to score the winner.
From Highbury’s point of view there could not have been more acceptable victims. It was Leeds who grimly beat Arsenal in the League Cup Final in March. It was Leeds who had never been beaten by Arsenal in the years since the Yorkshire club returned to Division One.
Photo shows: Gould lunges but it was Leeds centre half Madeley who put Arsenal’s first goal into the net. Gould connected later in the game – with the ball for the third goal and with Leeds Goalkeeper Harvey to earn a booking from FA Cup Final referee Leo Callaghan.”
“15.3.69. Swindon v Arsenal in Mudbath.
Arsenal’s Bobby Gould is brought down by Swindon’s Rod Thomas and Stan Harland.”
“Goal number 3 for Arsenal.
Derby County centre-half Roy McFarland slides to the ground as Arsenal forward Jon Sammels races by to score Arsenal’s third goal in the match at Highbury this afternoon.
Today I’ve scanned some press photo’s from the match. As always the details below the photo’s are taken from the backslips. Although they have no slips the last four photo’s are stills produced by British paramount of the build up to the first goal.
Finally, an absolutely delightful Movietone clip of the game.
“Goalline save by Swindin in Cup Final.
Swindin, Arsenal goalkeeper, makes a save on the goalline from a shot by Payne, Loverpool outside-right during the Football Association Cup Final at Empire Stadium, Wembley, to-day (Saturday).
April 29th 1950”
“Prelude to goal. Sidlow, the Liverpool goalie comes out to punch away, leaving his net unguarded, while Arsenal attackers and liverpool all jump up to the ball. A split second after this The Gunners scored the opener, at the Wembley Cup Final today.
April 29 1950.”
“Arsenal win FA Cup.
Arsenal goalie George Swindin and left back Wally Barnes (3) combine to smash a Liverpool attack during the close of the FA Cup Final at London’s Wembley Stadium, April 29.
Arsenal won 2-0.”
“Mercer reaches heights with F.A.Cup.
Climax to the season in which he was voted Footballer of the Year, Arsenal captain Joe Mercer holds the Football Association Cup he has just received from the King as he is chaired by his team mates at Empire Stadium, Wembley to-day (Saturday).
Arsenal had defeated Liverpool by two goals to nil in the F.A. Cup Final.
April 29th 1950.”
With the outbreak of World War II the Football League was suspended. Official records ignore the various regionalised competitions that were played but it would be a mistake to ignore them completely as the fans certainly didn’t. Despite all that was going on crowds were good and the football was taken very seriously although the number of players moved around due to war duties and serving in the forces meant that rules on registrations were relaxed and teams were allowed to use players stationed locally as guests. Amongst others Stanley Matthews and Stan Mortensen (who is listed as scoring 25 goals in 19 appearances) turned out in the Arsenal colours.
Highbury was closed to football to be used as an ARP stronghold and shelters, and the club played it’s home games at White Hart Lane. As a mark of gratitude our Directors presented our hosts with a plaque after the war, although whether they held an open top bus parade to celebrate this trophy is unknown.
Today’s scans are all from the war period. Rather than the official programmes for the two Cup Finals we played in I thought I’d scan tickets from the matches as they seem to be far rarer – indeed if you look at the second it asks for the ticket to be placed in a paper salvage receptacles after the match. Despite this, and other hardships, people still took any chance to make a few bob as can be seen by the pirate version of a programme shown. For our regular home games a single sheet programme was produced and that often featured, as this one does, updates on our players abroad. Interestingly, although the sheets were red, this was not because of our colours but was actually the colour they used for their programmes pre-war.
Finally, a clip featuring us in War Cup Finals.
Today I thought I’d show a couple of my photo’s that show the rougher side of the game at the time. When keepers had the ball in their hands they were fair game to be charged; part of a centre forward’s trade was to be strong enough to knock keeper and ball into the net together when the opportunity arose and this meant the full back’s first priority when their keeper was catching the ball was to protect him.
In the first shot you can see Joy running a block across the forward with his keeper vulnerable in the air, and the second shows Bowden trying to get a barge on the keeper as he scurries away along his line to safety.
The third one is, I think, quite wonderful. A brave forward gets his cross in as a true hard man in the days of very hard men, Wilf Copping, charges in to go for the ball muscles straining. Neither player with a thought of the other, eyes fixed firmly on the ball.
As always any words below the photo’s are from the original backslip as they are written there.
“Football – Arsenal v Bolton Wanderers at Highbury.
Arsenal defeat the visitors by 3 goals to 1.
Wilson (Arsenal) saves while Bernard Joy holds off Hunt (Bolton).
“Smith (Sheffield Goalkeeper) eluding Drake and Bowden (Arsenal) in the F.A. Cup Final at Wembley.
Arsenal won 1-0.”
“Arsenal v West Bromwich Albion at Highbury.
Richardson, the W.B.A. centre forward, gets in his centre in spite of the efforts of Copping (Arsenal).”
1930, and Arsenal win our first major trophy. The picture is of two fine men in their Cup Final shirts, then a clip of the semi’s and the final.
Finally, in 1927, we got to our first major cup final. Although it didn’t result in a win, as Tony Adams was to say (much) later it’s only by tasting defeat that you can enjoy the victories that will come. Two slightly different clips.