Monday, September 2, 2013

2 September 1893 - The League Comes To London

On 2 September 1893, London hosted its very first Football League match as Arsenal and Newcastle United played to a 2-2 draw.

Established in 1888, the Football League was based in the north of England and had, for the first few years, consisted solely of northern clubs. But a series of expansions saw the addition of the Second Division in 1982, followed by the inclusion of five new clubs for the 1893-94 season, including Liverpool, Newcastle, Middlesbrough Ironopolis, Rotherham, and Arsenal, the first southern team to join.

For opening day, Newcastle traveled to Arsenal's Manor Ground in Plumstead, where a crowd of 10,000 assembled for the occasion. Arsenal took a quick lead, as Walter Shaw scored in just the sixth minute, and the first half ended 1-0. Shortly after the restart, the hosts extended their lead with a goal from Arthur Elliott.

Newcastle came back, though, with late strikes from their right and left wingers, Crate and Sorley, to split the points. They went on to finish the season in fifth, while Arsenal ended up in ninth, and fellow newcomers Liverpool won the title by eight points over Birmingham City.

1 comment:

  1. WOW :) 1888 how far it was... British always were on top of everything, specially sports :) First match and first bookmakers soon after open for bets :D