Friday Night Football at the Emirates

For the first time in the Premier League history the season will kick off on Friday August 11th when Arsenal will host Leicester City at the Emirates with the game starting at 19:45.

We played our first game against Leicester 125 years ago on January 7th 1895 – back then the teams were known as Leicester Fosse and Woolwich Arsenal, we lost the game 3-1. Overall we have played 124 league games against each other with Arsenal having an overall record of – W58, D38, L28, GF247, GA169.

Woolwich Arsenal 1895 – courtesy

We have not lost a league game against them for 23 years when Leicester beat us 2-1 at their ground on November 23rd 1994.

Our starting line up then was:

Goalkeeper David Seaman

Defender/Right back Lee Dixon

Defender Steve Bould

Centre back Martin Keown

Centre back Andy Linighan

Left back Nigel Winterburn

Midfielder Jimmy Carter

Midfielder Stefan Schwarz

Midfielder Ian Selley

Forward Paul Dickov

Forward Ian Wright

Ian Wright scored from a penalty in the 19th minute while Leicester’s goals came from Andy Linighan 16′ (og) and David Lowe 28′.

Here is our league record against Leicester for the past 40 seasons.

After our performance against Chelsea in the Community Shield I’m feeling very confident that we will win our opening game to set us on the right track for the season ahead.

Written by GunnerN5

(Ed – other notable Friday night Arsenal fixtures….)

Friday May 26th 1989

Friday April 16th 2004


49 Responses to Friday Night Football at the Emirates

  1. Gööner In Exile says:

    Maybe in honour of the first Friday night game, we can sing “We won the league on Friday Night” 🙂

    More speculation around Ox, do we just assume he has a clever agent who knows at 23 he has a lot of football ahead of him, so not overly worried about injuries as a 30 year old might be, and therefore a contract where no transfer fee is worth waiting for and also strengthens his hand negotiating with us if we want to keep him.

  2. Big Raddy says:

    GN5. Thank you.

    I look at the 1994 team and shudder. Playing at home against a team we hadn’t lost to for 23 years and George G puts out a team with 6 defenders and Selley. Thank goodness he took the “paper bag”.

    And it is no wonder that Ian Wright would love to have played in an AW team.

    The Leeds vid is a much happier memory with TH14 in his pomp. What a privilege to have seen him grace the hallowed Highbury turf.

  3. Gööner In Exile says:

    Thanks for post GN5, I am quietly optimistic about the season, but it’s all going to be about how we start the campaign, put together some good results in all competitions and build from there

  4. Big Raddy says:

    What a great song

  5. Junior kibamba says:

    We are gona make it 2-0

  6. Rasp says:

    Thanks GN5, a great mix of nostalgia and research as always.

    We need to get off to a good start this season as I suspect that the chavs and one or two others have some big signings up their sleeves. Like you, I was impressed with our play in the CS.

    I’m loving Kolasinac’s strength .. with him, Xhaka and Holding, we shouldn’t be a team that can be bullied out of games any more.

    P.S. …I f the chavs don’t make any big signings, I can see Conte imploding in a Moaninho type way if result6s don’t go his way.

    The bookies currently have us equal 6th with pool (behind totnum) to win the league … maybe we can be this season’s underdogs 🙂

  7. Gööner In Exile says:

    To be fair Rasp watching ManUre struggle for first 45 minutes to clear the ball and looking at their back 4 I can see Mourinho and Conte losing it. All very well making big money signings like Pogba for £90m and Lukaku for allegedly £75m. But some clubs could buy 4/5 players without the headlines.

  8. LB says:

    Killing time here. I think it’s a fair shout that Conte could implode, I always thought that he could have so easily have done so three games after we beat them 3-0 last season, had he continued loosing that is; but, as we know, he changed the system and never looked back, so fair play to him for that but there still remains a whiff of luck about it, what with their injury free season and all, but what is becoming clear is that they are not the force they were. Morata is no Costa, the latter is a street fighter the former looks like he a nice boy who phones his mum every night and is not going to intimidate any one.

    I find the bigger picture of how things have changed for Chelsea equally as interesting. No longer is it good enough to have a billionaire owner; they can be out muscled by clubs that are owned by countries. Five years ago it would have been Chelsea who would out bid everyone for Neymar but now — they had about as much chance of signing the Brazilian as we did.

    OK our billionaire wants the books to balance whereas it doesn’t seem as important to Abramavich so they probably still have the edge but not by anywhere near as much, all demonstrated now by how they are having to box clever in the transfer market in the same way as Wenger is and I think it is pretty clear who is moving ahead in that race.

    A 25 million pound bid for Oxlade-Chamberlain? Is that good business or does that show how far the mighty have fallen?
    As much as I would like to see Chelsea implode I think it is unlikely, although, a little more clarity as to how many teams there are in London is always welcome.

  9. LB says:

    And just in case you were wondering — there is, of course, only one team in London.


  10. Rasp says:

    Hi GiE and LB … we’d all take immense pleasure out of seeing Moaninho and Conte lose it. The special one seems on the verge most of the time. I love his disgust at having to receive a loser’s medal.

    I agree Manu look ordinary … they keep having to resort to bringing that blunt (rhyming slang?) instrument Fellaini on to bludgeon the opposition … and Pool will be devoid of creativity without Coutinho. Surely the totts luck will run out and they’ll get a few key injuries. I’m developing delusions of optimism at the moment 🙂

  11. Rasp says:

    I have to laugh at all the spouting totts fans telling me they had a better season than us ….oh yea? … I reply … what’s in your trophy cabinet? … apart from dust 🙂

  12. chas says:

    Cheers, GN5.
    It looks like we have a good record against Leicester.
    Let’s hope it continues on Friday.

    Hope you didn’t mind me adding the Friday bit at the bottom.

  13. fred1266 says:

    Any news on Per

  14. GunnerN5 says:

    Morning all,

    Chas you are always welcome to make additions to my posts.

  15. GunnerN5 says:

    Lets all hope that this is not a sign of things to come……………

    Arsene Wenger says Alexis Sanchez to miss Arsenal opener against Leicester
    By Rory O’Callaghan

    Last Updated: 09/08/17 10:33am

    Arsene Wenger has confirmed Alexis Sanchez will miss Arsenal’s Premier League opener against Leicester City

    Arsene Wenger has confirmed Alexis Sanchez will miss Arsenal’s opening Premier League match of the season against Leicester after suffering an abdominal strain in training.

    The Gunners will be without the Chilean when Craig Shakespeare’s side travel to the Emirates on Friday night, live on Sky Sports Premier League.

    Sanchez sustained the injury during a training session ahead of the Community Shield on Sunday and Wenger admits he is unsure how long the 28-year-old will be out of action, although he believes
    “Sanchez will not be available,” Wenger said. “He had a little abdominal strain that he caught in training on Sunday morning before he came to Wembley.

    “He had a scan two days ago and he’s out for a while. I don’t know [how long he will be out] – two weeks, one more week. He will not be available.

    “He will not play at Stoke.”

    Wenger admits he is unsure how long Sanchez will be out of action

    Sanchez has been reportedly linked with a move away from the Emirates during the summer transfer window, with Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City potential suitors.

    Wenger insists PSG have made no approach for Sanchez and that he has held no talks with the French club’s chairman, Nasser Al-Khelaifi.

    “It’s a long time since I spoke with Nasser because he was certainly very busy to complete the transfer of Neymar,” Wenger said.

    “It’s a long time since I spoke to him.”

    Asked if Paris Saint-Germain had made an approach for Sanchez, Wenger replied: “No. I think, if you read the French papers, [Kylian] Mbappe is how they will look to finish their transfer market.

    Sanchez will also miss Arsenal’s first away game of the season at Stoke, says Wenger

    “That’s what I’ve read in the papers and on my side I’ve had no contact with Paris Saint-Germain.”

    Arsenal legend Ian Wright expects Sanchez to remain at the club for one more season before leaving on a free transfer next summer.

    “It doesn’t look like he’s going to sign,” said Wright, speaking on The Debate – the new nightly show on Sky Sports Premier League.

    “He will score you 20 goals a season and that will be gone and will put more pressure on Lacazette.

    “I think he’ll run his contract down. I remember watching him at Bournemouth last season and he looked angry. He wasn’t right and he hasn’t been right ever since.”

    Wenger also refused to comment on speculation linking Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain with London rivals Chelsea.

    The England international has struggled to secure a regular first-team place since joining the Gunners six years ago, but Wenger believes the former Southampton winger is finally starting to fulfil his potential.

    Wenger refused to comment on Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s future at the club

    “I think he had in his career some bad moments because he had some small injuries,” Wenger said.

    “Last year he was much more stable. Personally I think he is a hugely talented player, he’s on the way up and he will continue to move up because the potential is there.

    “He’s very conscious of his qualities, he was not always. I believe he will be a very great player.”

  16. Big Raddy says:

    I have to say I am disappointed with Ox. True, he is dynamic on the ball and yes, he is a strong player with considerable energy BUT … his final ball is terrible. So many times he beats the FB and crosses to no-one.

    AW says he needs to be less intense and I can only agree. Without checking Ox’s pass stats I would say he is one of the worst in the team.

  17. GunnerN5 says:

    Raddy Ox is like so many of our players that have teased with glimpses of their capabilities, they continue to improve but they seem to hit a wall and rarely end up as the finished article. ie: Ox, Walcott, Welbeck, Coquelin, Ramsey, Gibbs, Jenkinson. They are all very capable players but are they world class ???

  18. GunnerN5 says:

    I enjoyed reading you 12:21 comment LB. It seems to me that “fair play” is now just a figment and football will be dominated by the super rich.

    When Man U’s money dominated English football only one set of fans were happy until things started to even out with likes of Chelsea and Man C being able to outbid them in the market place. Then the top players were spread around and the game became more competitive.

    What happened to FFP has it just been abandoned?

    Could be the subject of a new post for the right author (Zee)

  19. chas mobile says:

  20. Zee says:

    A really top class Post, GN5, and I salute you sir. I would never have the patience to collate those statistics, or the creativity to think of that Post in the first place. 😀

    It must be obvious to all, but the result of Friday night’s game is going to have a huge impact on the team’s confidence and their feeling of well being — if we win.

    Alternatively, it could be a devastating blow should the team fail to kick ass, and manage to lose.

    AW’s vacillating over his contract throughout last season makes everything so much more keenly felt, and the fans’ reaction will be paramount to avoid another season of bitching and more of the ‘Wenger outing’ unpleasantness.

    We cannot afford to lose, in my view.

    I told you the Post writing would soon be back in safe hands — so well done to you and Raddy. 🙂

  21. Zee says:

    I am and always have been a big fan of the Ox even thru his ‘down’ times, but he has never seemed to be the sharpest tool in the box to me, and he has made no secret of his desire to play for ‘Pool, his boyhood team.

    That’s not the problem – the problem is his ‘playing-the-wait-it-out-game’ for the next season, because the fans will not take too kindly to that if he has a few moderate games — and he will probably sign for the Chavs anyway.

    Silly chap.

  22. Zee says:

    The Sanchez tactic of becoming ‘ill’ suddenly with ‘flu, and now having unspecified abdominal problems stopping him from playing for at least 2 games.

    And this from the man who had to be almost forcibly held back from playing even when he had hamstring and swollen ankle problems, and raged at Wenger when he substituted him.

    Makes the whole contract nonsense smell like a festering kipper.

    Let him go, Arsene, do not let pride affect your judgement, we do not need him.

  23. GunnerN5 says:

    Hi Zee, good to read your comments again. I’m really bemused that so many players have not been resigned and are now just months away from a free transfer to wherever team they wish.

    It may well be that Arsenal have tried but the agents are holding our feet to the fire, whatever the cause the players are now in the drivers seat and it could all go very badly for us.

  24. GunnerN5 says:

    The first game Sanchez plays will tell the story Zee – but it stinks like hell right now.

  25. GunnerN5 says:

    With Stoke, Liverpool & Chelsea away in our first 5 games we need our squad to be free of any distractions and right now that seems unlikely so we really do need to get off to a great start.

  26. Zee says:

    With three important players out of contract next year, and unlikely to sign contract extensions, it is inevitable there will be distractions for the team as a whole.

    We could do without that, GN5.

    I am not going to predict who will win on Friday – Arsenal cough, cough, in case of bringing bad luck, because based on your stats we should be in with a chance of a good start. 😀

  27. GunnerN5 says:

    I’m surprised that no one mentioned our most famous Friday night game, I felt sure that May 26 1989 would have been spoken about.

  28. fred1266 says:

    BR your comment about Ox passing as I read it I remembered his ball to monreal against City, I wouldn’t say his passing is the worse in the team just the players don’t predict well

    In Emirates cup you see how welbeck completed miss Ox great ball

  29. LB says:

    Will Sanchez still leave?

    The start of the season is upon us and the excitement is starting to build. Ozil, Ramsey and yes, Sanchez will be missing on Friday and yet no one’s enthusiasm has been dampened in the slightest. Our squad is so deep that Welbeck, Iwobi and Elneny seem more than adequate replacements to handle the ever diminishing threat that Leicester once posed.

    3-1 to the good guys I am going with. We shall see, but that is not the reason for this comment, I want to give my two penny worth on the recent Alexis Sanchez shenanigans. In particular in response to some of the comments generated from Zee’s recent fine posts.

    All of Sanchez, the club, Wenger and I bet if you looked hard enough you will find someone blaming Atom and Humber for the poor state that many people seem to see relations between the club and the most important player we have at THOF.

    The principle criticism seems to be that the club should have never let things get this far, that they should have offered what he wanted and sorted out a new contract long ago. Next comes the idea that if Sanchez doesn’t want to play for Arsenal and that being that case he should eff right off sharpish and then Wenger comes under attack for apparently being indecisive, although, that accusation can be placed in any order depending on your like or dislike of the man.

    The upshot is that Sanchez is still at the club but looks far from renewing his contract and as we are constantly reminded that if he doesn’t he could leave next season for free and we would lose out on fifty million plus.

    Hows about we stop for a moment and consider Sanchez’s side of things: the man is twenty eight and right now he is at the top of his game. This is probably the last chance he will get to sign a big five year contract so I ask myself why on earth should he rush to sign a new deal with us when there is still a real possibility that he could double his wages elsewhere.

    The old days of loyalty that Kelsey used to write about have of course long gone and even he was acknowledging that before he departed but as I see it there has been a further change, that being that it is now understood by everyone that no club can keep any player who doesn’t want to stay. There was never a set amount that the club could have offered Sanchez earlier to make him stay.

    We may not have foreseen the figure that was paid for Neymar or his wages but I suspect many agents in the business did and that would have included Sanchez’ agent; if I were he I would be advising do nothing, sign nothing and certainly not before the end of this transfer window, yes he could leave on a free transfer but he runs the risk of his form dipping during the coming season or a bad injury that would considerably reduce the value of any new contract he would hope to get. Got a slight abdominal strain, can’t play on Friday, yeah right. We all know the drill, or at least we all should by now, one slip, a cruciate ligament goes and with it his last ever big contract that will see him through his long retirement.

    I see no fault with the way the club, Wenger or Sanchez for that matter have handled themselves it is just the way transfer dealings have moved. The idea that Arsenal can somehow insist that he doesn’t sign to Man City is laughable; if City offered 50 mil and doubled his wages we would have no choice but to let him go, the alternative would be an unhappy, unmotivated player for the whole of next season and that is simply not practical, think Van Percy if you need to.

    The very same is happening with Ozil who has slipped under the radar a bit recently but if an offer came in for him from say Barcelona with all their new found wealth he would be off, I would miss him but I wouldn’t blame him. I have read people holding up Koscielny as a fine example of someone loyal to the club: Kos was offered a five year contract and he did the right thing and signed – of course he did, the man is so injury prone he and Sanchez’ dogs knew that that was the best offer that he was ever going to get.

    I naturally hope Sanchez stays and if he does it will be with the knowledge that no one else out there was prepared to offer him a better contract than he received from Arsenal which is just fine because safe in that knowledge he should be reinvigorated to help guide us to the title for our first time in a long time.

  30. GunnerN5 says:

    Sensible comment LB, I like the vast majority would like to see him be his normal self this season and leave with his head held high.
    Who could possibly blame him if he does end up leaving – he will get a big signing on bonus plus, in all likelihood, a bigger contract than his current one at Arsenal.

  31. chas says:

  32. chas says:

  33. chas says:

  34. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    6.42. Almost slider quality.

  35. Big Raddy says:

    7.21. It has to be stuffed. That beak could have your eye out

  36. Big Raddy says:

    7.22. I hadn’t noticed that George Armstrong looks like a young Eric Burdon and both are from around Newcastle. Same fathers?

  37. Zee says:

    Good Morning All.

  38. Zee says:

    The LB comment at 10:12 pm which is an excellent appraisal deserves to be a Post in its own right!.

    A first class collection of the various pros and cons, LB – a very good read.

  39. Big Raddy says:

    Zee. Agree, but I have already written today’s post. Perhaps it could be used at a later date (with LB’s approval)

  40. mickydidit89 says:

    Brief Motning All from beneath the parasol

    Thanks all for posts and comments. Fine reading.
    Re Sanchez
    We just signed a Bundesliga seasons best eleven player for free. There’s 35M saved
    Can’t see many blabbing over Schalke’s lost loot

  41. mickydidit89 says:

    Why not scrap contracts in terms of length of years and also transfer fees

    If I worked for Goldman Sachs (ROLF LAMOW) and Barclays wanted me, they’d just make me a better offer with more holidays

  42. Big Raddy says:

    There is a New Post

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