Arsenal

Arsenal Facts Only True Gooners Understand

James McNicholasFeatured ColumnistOctober 2, 2013

Arsenal Facts Only True Gooners Understand

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    A club with Arsenal's rich history inevitably racks up some extraordinary facts and statistics.

    However, some facts take on greater significance: they have true emotional value for supporters. They become a point of pride and a weapon in the constant tribal warfare against fans of other clubs.

    Over the next 10 slides we look at the trivia that means most to Gooners across the globe. 

49 Games Unbeaten

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    When Arsenal went through the entire 2003/04 season unbeaten, they completed an immaculate season and were immortalised as The Invincibles. It is an achievement that has never been matched in the Premier League era.

    The run went on in to the next season too, with Arsenal eventually suffering defeat after an incredible 49-game streak.

    Arsene Wenger may never have lifted the Champions League, but he achieved something truly unique with his 2004 team.

49 Nationalities

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    Ian Walton/Getty Images

    The number 49 has greater significance than Arsenal's unbeaten run.

    At last count, the Gunners have been represented by 49 different nationalities in their 127-year existence.

    It's a sure sign that Arsenal are a truly international club. Writing in a 2011 matchday programme, Arsene Wenger said:

    I believe Arsenal has become, through these players, a worldwide club that is admired everywhere.

    The values of the Club are open-minded and down to pure sporting qualities.

    We can be very proud of that – it’s highly important in the modern world that football can be ahead of society and contribute to a better world tomorrow, so long may this progress continue.

    Arsenal fans across the globe would surely echo those sentiments.

10 FA Cups

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    Arsenal have a fantastic history in the FA Cup.

    There have been some wonderful memories along the way, from Alan Sunderland's winning goal against Manchester United at Wembley to Ray Parlour's gob-smacking strike against Chelsea in Cardiff.

    The fans adore the competition; hence the collective frustration at Arsene Wenger's decision to field a weaker team in the competition in recent years. Hopefully Arsenal's burgeoning squad strength will enable the Gunners to mount a significant challenge this year.

Arsenal's Youngest Goalscorer

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    Harold Cunningham/Getty Images

    Arsenal’s youngest goalscorer remains Cesc Fabregas.

    When he netted in the League Cup against Wolverhampton Wanderers in December 2003, he was aged just 16 years and 212 days.

    Although Fabregas has since returned to Barcelona, he is still adored by the Arsenal faithful, who hope to see him return to North London in the not-too-distant future.

    Although he has Barcelona in his blood, Gooners hope that Fabregas still has Arsenal in his heart.

The Club Motto

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    Arsenal's Latin club motto is "Victoria Concordia Crescit." It translates literally as "Victory Through Harmony," which perfectly sums up Arsenal's collective spirit.

    It's an inclusive club with a hugely diverse fanbase and playing staff.

    The playing style also is based around team play rather than putting any individual to the forefront.

    Arsenal have stayed true to their motto and their guiding principle.

The Last Goal at Highbury

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    The last goal at Highbury was a penalty scored by Thierry Henry.

    It was a perfect moment. You couldn't have scripted it better. The penalty sealed Henry's hat-trick and guaranteed Arsenal a place in the following season's Champions League. What's more, it did so at the expense of rivals Tottenham.

    After scoring, Henry fell to his knees and kissed the Highbury turf. The moment is burned indelibly into the memory of all true Arsenal fans.

Emirates Stadium Capacity: 60,361

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    Paul Gilham/Getty Images

    The Emirates Stadium holds more than 60,000 people. When its full and rocking, there is no greater sight or sound in English football.

    Moving to the Emirates in 2006 was protracted and painful, but essential. It has allowed Arsenal to compete with the petro-fuelled superclubs and land stellar signings like Mesut Ozil.

    The Emirates is now starting to feel like home.

Three Doubles

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    Ben Radford/Getty Images

    Completing a domestic double is a remarkable achievement. It requires enormous consistency. Not only must you navigate a 38-game domestic season, but you must also face the hazards of the cup competitions.

    Arsenal share the record with Manchester United of doing the League and FA Cup double on three separate occasions. The Gunners completed the feat in 1971, 1998 and most recently in 2002.

     

Sheer Consistency

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    Paul Gilham/Getty Images

    Arsenal are arguably the most consistent team in the history of English football.

    In their 92 seasons of top-flight football, they have only finished below 14th seven times.

    They also hold the record for the longest uninterrupted period of English top-tier football, having not been relegated since 1919.

    Arsene Wenger has continued the tradition of consistency. During his 17-year reign, the Gunners have not once dropped out of the hallowed top four.

European Kings of the Clean Sheet

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    Arsenal hold the record for consecutive clean sheets in the Champions League. Back in 2006, they managed to go 10 games without conceding. That's an incredible 995 minutes without their goal being breached.

    The most extraordinary thing about this run is that it was largely achieved without key figures like Lauren, Ashley Cole and Sol Campbell. The likes of Philippe Senderos and Mathieu Flamini filled in and played their hearts out to ensure Arsenal made it all the way to the Champions League final.

    Gunners fans will be hoping that their current back four can show similar resolve this season. 

     

    What are your favourite Arsenal facts? Let us know below.

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