The world's greatest ground? A photographic centenary celebration of Highbury

4. Here come the crowds

 
Good Friday, 14 April 1933: A huge crowd crams into Highbury for the visit of Sheffield Wednesday. After a faltering February of one win in four games (albeit an 8-0 win over Blackburn) and a miserable March of one draw and three losses, Arsenal had seen their lead cut to one point, but had got back on track with a 5-0 win over title rivals Aston Villa and a 4-3 victory at Middlesbrough. The Good Friday crowd would be rewarded with a 4-2 win over Wednesday… and many would come back again the next day for a 2-0 win over Portsmouth which all but guaranteed the title.
 
By now, the crowds descending on Highbury knew exactly where to go on the Tube, after Chapman had persuaded the London Underground to rename the Gillespie Road station to Arsenal - the only stop on the network to be named after a football team. 
 
Arsenal had followed up their 1930 FA Cup win with the League title in 1931 - the first time they had been champions of England. The following season they had finished second, two points behind Everton, but roared back to take the title in 1933 with a campaign which racked up 118 goals to just 61 conceded - the third lowest that season: it was an era in which defences were certainly were not on top. Hats off to that.

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Only realise now how lucky I was that my first ever Premier League match was at Highbury, taken by a season ticket holder during my first visit to London. Thank you Barrie! :-)