26 March

This is the day to celebrate Arsenal’s journey which led them become the most successful FA Cup club of all time.  For on this day in 1927 the result was Arsenal 2 Southampton 1 in Arsenal’s FA Cup semi-final number 3 –  the first semi-final since the Woolwich Arsenal days and the and the first victory in the semi-final. Hulme and Buchan scored the goals that took Arsenal to Wembley for the first time. 

That first final was lost, but on 26 March 1930 Arsenal beat Hull City 1-0 in a semi-final replay.  David Jack scored the goal at Villa Park which took Arsenal to their second final and ultimately their first major trophy.

Although Arsenal’s success from the 1930s onwards gave them more cup wins, it was as league winners that the club became recognised, winning the league five times in that decade alone (and doing it under three different managers).

But it was during the Wenger era that the club pulled ahead of the rest as an FA Cup winning team, and indeed Mr Wenger became the most successful FA Cup manager of all time, winning the trophy seven times.

Wenger’s nearest rivals were George Ramsey who won the trophy six times between 1887 and 1920, and Alex Ferguson who won it five times between 1990 and 2004.  The Ramsay figure, although valid in terms of the number of wins, is slightly misleading as in the 19th century, the level of competition was nowhere near that of today.

As of March 2021, Arsenal have won the cup 14 times and made 21 final appearances (also a record).  Their nearest rivals remain Manchester United with 12 wins while being runners up eight times.

The next nearest challengers are Chelsea and Tottenham with eight wins each, although Tottenham seem to be slacking a little of late in that their last appearance in the final was 1991.