BY IAN CASTLE
April 1980 proved to be the most exhausting month in the club’s history. In the 30 days between 2 April and 1 May Arsenal played 11 games – five in the league and six cup ties. Incredibly, although we only won three of those games we still entered the history books.
I went up to Hillsborough for the FA Cup semi-final against Liverpool on 12 April; it was not a memorable match. The game ended 0–0 prompting The Observer to report ‘that this was a match from which no one was due a victory. Rarely can so many gifted players have combined to produce so much scuffling mundanity’.
The replay at Villa Park followed four days later and provided a far more competitive game, but again it ended with the scores level. And so it went on. Three days after the replay, one of those oddities of the League calendar meant we played Liverpool in the League at Anfield – another 1-1 draw – then the Cup marathon continued at Villa Park with yet another 1–1 stalemate.