Gray Archie Image 4 Woolwich Arsenal 1907

Gray Archie Image 4 Woolwich Arsenal 1907


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Cambuslang, Lanarkshire born right back Archie Gray began his career at local junior clubs Govan Columbia in 1897 and Glasgow Ashfield in 1898, before joining Edinburgh side Hibernian in 1899, making his Scottish League debut against Third Lanark that December. He spent five seasons with Hibs but was a fringe player until 1902, but he played as Hibs won the 1902 Scottish Cup, beating Celtic 1-0 in the Final at Celtic Park. Gray als0 made 18 First Division appearances and scored twice as Hibs then won the 1902-03 Scottish League Championship. In March 1903 he represented The Scottish League against The Football League in a 3-0 defeat at Celtic Park, and a week later won his first and only cap for Scotland when he played in a 2-0 defeat to Ireland, again at Parkhead.

In the summer of 1904, after 2 goals in 62 appearances for Hibernian, Gray moved south to London to join Woolwich Arsenal, who had just been promoted to the First Division for the first time.. Gray made his Football League debut in Arsenal’s very first First Division match, against Newcastle United on 3rd September 1904 and immediately became the club’s first-choice right back for the next five seasons; With Gray in the team, The Gunners Arsenal reached the 1907 FA Cup semi-final where they were beaten by eventual winners Sheffield Wednesday at St Andrews, while in the League they usually occupied a comfortable spot in mid-table.

Gray lost his regular place to fellow Scot Duncan McDonald in 1909, but he returned to the team during the 1910-11 season. He played in both full back positions, often as cover for Joe Shaw. However, having passed the age of 30 he found his place came under threat from newer, younger players (such as Jack Peart), and he was largely left out in the 1911-12 season. He played his final Arsenal match, his 200th, against Notts County on 23rd December 1911, having played exactly 200 games for The Gunners without scoring. In April 1912 he was transferred to Second Division club Fulham for £250, where he was again a fringe player and played 25 times over three seasons at Craven Cottage, before his retirement in 1915.

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