Bobby Gould Is First Substitute To Score For Arsenal, On This Day, 13th August 1968

Substitutions had only been allowed in English football since 1965-66 season and even then, they were restricted to replacing injured players. It was not until the 1967-68 season that changes were allowed for tactical reasons.

Those donning the No.12 shirt had been sparingly required since the initial rule change, Alan Skirton was the first Arsenal substitute in a competitive match on 28th September 1965 against Northampton. Changes were only forced upon Arsenal on seven occasions in that first season, fourteen the season after.

Seventeen tactical changes were made by Bertie Mee in his first season in charge in 1967-68s campaign when the Laws were relaxed but in 1968-69, substitutions were becoming habuitual with 25 made that season.

But on this day forty-five years ago, Bobby Gould came on to devastating effect. With thirty-seven minutes remaining, the match was goalless. David Court broke the deadlock and then Gould added his brace, becoming the first Arsenal substitute to score in a competitive match.


One thought on “Bobby Gould Is First Substitute To Score For Arsenal, On This Day, 13th August 1968

  1. Good historical stuff again, thanks.

    Note two (future) top players: Peter Shilton, and Allan Clarke.
    And note the final transfer blurb re Willie Morgan…
    wiki info: He [Morgan] took over from John Connelly who was transferred to Manchester United and scored his first Burnley goal, when he scored twice in a Boxing Day demolition of Manchester United in a 6–1 win at Turf Moor.
    During the summer of 1968 he was transferred to Manchester United where he took over from John Connelly again.

    He was a good winger.

    I quite liked Bobby Gould. 90,000 smackers was a sizeable fee back then. Described above as “stocky” and “bustling”.
    He was the sort of player well-suited to awful muddy pitches; always got stuck in; a very brave, honest player.

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