About Arsenal Football Club

The Football League in England and Wales, and successors thereof, consists of English and Welsh professional football clubs and was established in 1888. With the formation of a second division in 1892, it was renamed as the First Division. Football remained suspended during the the First World War from 1915 to 1919. A Third Division was established for one season two seasons after resumption of the competition following the war.

The Division was then regionalised as North and South. Prior to the 1958-59 season, a fourth division was established  saw the introduction of a Fourth Division, and the top twelve teams from the North and South Divisions remained in the Third Division while the rest fell to the lowest tier.

The Premier League replaced the First Division as the top-flight of English football, set about a reorganisation of the league in 1992, and the lowest tier was dispensed with. The former Second, Third and Fourth divisions were renamed as the Championship, League One and League Two, respectively, at the start of the 2004-05 season. From 1986-87, the club finishing last in the league was to be relegated to the National Conference, subject to ability of the Conference champions to meet FA requirements.

Since 2002-03, the bottom two clubs of League Two face relegation to the Conference. With the 2012-2013 Season over, sixty-four clubs have so far played top flight football in the old First Division and the Premier League in England. 


Year formed: 1886
First League Game: September 2, 1893 versus Newcastle United
Previous Name(s): Dial Square, Royal Arsenal, Woolwich Arsenal
Nickname(s): The Gunners
Ground: Emirates Stadium, London
Ground Capacity: 60,361

ARSENAL FC HAVE BEEN LONGEST IN THE TOP FLIGHT OF ENGLISH FOOTBALL THAN ANY OTHER CLUB! Founded as Dial Square and renamed Royal Arsenal soon afterwards, the club turned professional in 1891 and took the name Woolwich Arsenal on joining the Second Division in 1893. It took Arsenal eleven years to reach top flight of English football when they achieved promotion to the First Division in 1904. Financial problems forced the owners to relocate to North London and in 1913, after being demoted to the Second Division, the club moved to the Arsenal Stadium in Highbury and dropped “Woolwich” from their name.

In 1919, Arsenal won a controversial promotion to the First Division at the expense of local rivals Tottenham Hotspur, and have not been relegated since then. Amongst all teams still involved in professional or non-league football in the country, the Gunners are the only one to have been relegated from top flight just once, except Wigan Athletic who were demoted at the end of the 2012-13 season. Arsenal are thus the longest surviving club in top flight and have performed the League and Cup double thrice, a record they share with Manchester United, along with a domestic cup double. In 2001-02, Arsenal were the first club to achieve a third double and went through the season scoring in all games and not losing away from their home ground.

Better was to come in 2003-04 when the Gunners lifted the Premier League crown without losing a single match, something that had been done only once previously by Preston in the first season of professional football in England but by playing only twenty-two games against Arsenal’s thirty-eight. The club established a national record by going forty-nine games unbeaten in that season. In the 2018-19 Season, the club shall enjoy its one hundred and second year in the top division and after excluding seven war years when professional football remained suspended, ninety-third consecutive season in top flight. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was the first non-British manager in the football league in 1998 to win the league title. During 1997-98 to 2004-05, Arsenal finished in the top two positions of the Premier League for eight consecutive seasons, winning the title thrice.

Reaching three consecutive F.A. Cup finals during 1978-80, though losing twice, Arsenal repeated the feat during 2001-03, lifting the cup twice. Arsenal equaled Manchester United's record of eleven FA Cup trophies when they came back from two goals down to defeat Hull City 3-2 in the season finale in 2013-14, and winning the trophy twice again in the following years to establish an all-time record. Arsenal won the curtain-raiser to the 2017-18 season against league champions Manchester City to lift the Community Schield for the fifteenth time.

The club is the only in the football league to have an underground train station named after it. This happened on November 5, 1932 after the club manager, Herbert Chapman, persuaded the railway company to change the name of the station from Gillespie Road.


League Championships: 13
League Runners-up: 7
F.A. Cup Winners: 13
F.A. Cup Runners-up: 7
Doubles performed: 3
League Cup Winners: 2
League Cup Runners-up: 6
Total playing seasons: 115
Total seasons in top flight: 102
Spells in top flight: 2
Relegations (total, including from other divisions): 1
Longest consecutive seasons in top flight: 93
Seasons taken to reach top flight football: 11
Seasons in first top flight: 9
Longest spell away from top flight (seasons): 2
Present spell in top flight (seasons): 93
Seasons in top flight as compared to playing history: 88.70 percent

To view Arsenal's standing in each season of professional football, please visit www.topflight.info