RECORD BREAKERS!

We’re sure that most of you are aware that David O’Leary has played most first team games for Arsenal and that Thierry Henry is the club’s record goalscorer. But what about before them? Which players previously held those records?

APPEARANCES

For the appearances record we have started with the first player to play 100 times for the club – Gavin Crawford. Gavin hit that milestone on 19 December 1896, and went on to play a further 38 games. The table below shows how the record has been broken and the total appearances that player made. The exception is John Dick who actually played 284 games but was overtaken by Jimmy Ashcroft who was a virtual ever-present during his time at Woolwich Arsenal whilst Dick played only sporadically after breaking the record.

We’re not a big fan of including Charity Shield figures in first team statistics but it appears to have become the norm over recent years, so we have bowed to public pressure. Figures shown after the + sign are those made as a substitute.

Player Date record broken Total  League FA Cup League Cup Europe CS
Gavin Crawford 23/04/1898 138 122 16
Fred Davis 24/12/1898 150 137 13
John Anderson 06/12/1902 153 144 9
John Dick 07/02/1903 254 239 15
Jimmy Ashcroft 23/03/1907 303 273 30
Roddy McEachrane 16/01/1911 346 313 33
Percy Sands 05/04/1915 350 327 23
Alf Baker 07/03/1931 351 310 41
Bob John 09/01/1932 470 421 46 3
George Armstrong 04/09/1973 621 490+10 58+2 35 24+2
David O’Leary 04/11/1989 722 523+35 66+4 68+2 21 3
Alf Baker, George Armstrong and David O'Leary

Alf Baker, George Armstrong and David O’Leary

GOALSCORERS

For the goalscorers we started with the first player to reach 25 goals. This was James Henderson who scored his quarter century on 22 September 1894, helped along with a healthy number of goals in the FA Cup qualifying competition against the likes of City Ramblers, Ashford and 2nd Scots Guards. Henry Boyd is Arsenal’s most prolific goalscorer of those who have scored more than 30 goals.

Player Date record broken Total League FA Cup League Cup Europe CS
James Henderson 26/01/1895 31 19 12
Henry Boyd 05/12/1896 32 32
Adam Haywood 18/03/1899 36 31 5
Bill Gooing 26/10/1903 48 45 3
Tim Coleman 07/10/1905 84 79 5
Jimmy Brain 07/05/1927 139 125 14
Cliff Bastin 28/12/1935 178 150 26 2
Ian Wright 13/09/1997 185 128 12 29 15 1
Thierry Henry 02/11/2005 228 175 8 2 42 1

Thierry Henry looks likely to hold on to his record for quite a while. Theo Walcott is the current player with the most goals having amassed just 69 goals in nine years.

Jimmy Brain and Cliff Bastin

Jimmy Brain and Cliff Bastin

Finally, we have how the record for most goals scored in a season has progressed. Prior to 1893-94 Arsenal only played in the FA Cup, hence the low figures.

Player Season Total League FA Cup CS
Humphrey Barbour 1889-90 4 4
Jimmy Meggs 4
Hope Robertson 4
William Scott 4
Charlie Booth 1892-93 5 5
James Henderson 5
James Henderson 1893-94 19 12 7
John “Tim” Coleman 1902-03 19 17 2
Tommy Shanks 1903-04 25 24 1
Harry King 1914-15 29 26 3
Jimmy Brain 1925-26 37 34 3
Jack Lambert 1930-31 39 38 1
Ted Drake 1934-35 44 42 1 1

Since Ted Drake’s record was set, the most goals scored by an Arsenal player in one season is 39 by Thierry Henry in 2003-04.

For those purists who only count league goals, the record was broken and equalled twice between James Henderson’s 12 and Tim Coleman’s 17. Peter Mortimer scored 14 in 1894-95, which was equalled by Paddy O’Brien in 1896-97. Fergus Hunt upped it to 15 in 1898-99, and Ralph Gaudie matched him in 1899-1900. After that, it was as per the list.

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The books…

 Woolwich A and Crowd

 

6 thoughts on “Arsenal’s Appearance and Goalscoring Records: A Chronology

  1. A goals-per-games ratio analysis might be a way of presenting Baker’s brilliant goal-scoring record at Arsenal.

  2. Ken George on 21 January 2015 at 10:30 am said:

    A pity that the sadly departed Joe Baker did not qualify for any list with exactly 100 goals in 4 seasons with a well below average side .

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