Arsenal’s Best Attackers Ever: Nr18 – first player ever to appear in 5 Wembley finals

Arsenal’s Century Club – Joe Hulme 

Joe Hulme on the right (1)

Joseph Harold Anthony Hulme (26 August 1904 – 27 September 1991) was born in Stafford.

Early on he played for the Stafford YMCA usually on the right wing. He started his career in non-league football in October 1922 with York City and moved on to Blackburn Rovers in February 1924 where he made 74 league appearances.

In February 1926 Arsenal manager Herbert Chapman was looking for a fast skilful winger and he purchased Joe Hulme for £3,500. He joined a team that included – David Jack, Jimmy Brain, Jack Lambert, Bob John, Jack Butler, Andy Neil, Jimmy Ramsey, Billy Blyth, Cliff Bastin, Herbert Roberts, Alf Baker and Tom Parker.

Joe Hulme made his debut against Leeds United on 6th February 1926. He was an immediate success and by the end of the first season Hulme’s startling pace had become his trade mark, his main trick being to push the ball past the opposing full-back then tear past him.

Hulme won his first international cap for England against Scotland on 2nd April 1927. England won the game 2-1. Hulme retained his place in the team and that year played against Belgium (9-1), France (6-0), Northern Ireland (0-2) and Wales (1-2). Other members of the England team that year included Dixie Dean, Tom Cooper, Stanley Earle, Edward Hufton and Alf Baker. In total Joe won nine caps for England, between 1927 and 1933.

In October 1927, Herbert Chapman signed Eddie Hapgood, a 19 year old milkman, who was playing for non-league Kettering Town for a fee of £750. This was followed by the purchase of David Jack (£10,000), Cliff Bastin (£2,000) and Alex James (£8,750).In the 1929-30 season Arsenal finished in 14th place in the First Division. However in the FA Cup they beat Birmingham City (1-0), Middlesbrough (2-0), West Ham United (3-0) and Hull City (1-0) to reach the final against Chapman’s old club, Huddersfield Town. Arsenal won the game 2-0 with goals from Alex James and Jack Lambert and Joe Hulme had his first cup winners’ medal.

The following season Arsenal won their first ever First Division Championship with a record 66 points. The Gunners only lost four games that season. Jack Lambert was top-scorer with 38 goals. Other important players in the team included Joe Hulme, Frank Moss, Alex James, David Jack, Cliff Bastin, Eddie Hapgood, Bob John, Jimmy Brain, Tom Parker, Herbert Roberts, Alf Baker and George Male.

Joe Hulme at Highbury (3)

Arsenal’s Century Club
# Player Years Games ** Goals GPG
18 Joe Hulme 1926-38 374 307 125 0.33
19 Theo Walcott 2005-18 397 370 108 0.27
** Games played to reach 100 goals.

Joe Hulme scored his 100th goal for Arsenal in his 307th game.

In January 1938 Hulme was transferred to Huddersfield Town. His last senior appearance was in the 1938 FA Cup Final against Preston North End making him the first player ever to appear in five Wembley cup finals.



Football League Division 1 winner – 1930–31, 1932–33, 1933–34, 1934–35

FA Cup winner – 1930, 1936

FA Cup finalist – 1927, 1932

Huddersfield Town

FA Cup finalist – 1938

Joe Hulme was also a fine all round cricketer he was a right-handed middle order batsman, right-arm medium bowler and superb deep fieldsman. He represented Middlesex 223 times between 1929 and 1939 and accumulated 8,103 runs (av. 26.56) with twelve centuries and a top score of 143. He hit 1,000 runs in a season three times with a best of 1,258 (av. 34.94) in 1934. He bagged 89 wickets (av. 36.40) with a best of 4 for 44 and he held 110 catches.

After World War II he worked as a police reserve and played for the Metropolitan Police side; he went on to manage Tottenham Hotspur for four years after which he became a sports journalist up until his retirement in 1965.

He passed away at Winchmore Hill, Middlesex, aged 87, on September 26, 1991.

Joe Hulme card (1)


30 thoughts on “Arsenal’s Best Attackers Ever: Nr18 – first player ever to appear in 5 Wembley finals

  • Great post, GN5. Nr18 will be unknown to most of us but what a nice story. But by the sounds of it he was not too dissimilar to Theo… pushing the ball past a player and then outpace them?!

  • Morning TA, I don’t think any of us got to watch Arsenal in Joe’s era but it was the beginning of one of our greatest periods. Herbert Chapman was an incredible manager and skillful negotiator who using Sir Henry’s bank account bought up some of the best players in the 30’s and 40’s.

  • Morning GN5, indeed, I heard a lot of good stuff about Chapman. I would imagine he laid a similar foundation back then as Arsene did in the last twenty years?

  • TA, I’ve got a lot of information on Chapman, after this series I’ll write a post about him.

  • Good post on Hulme.

    Not much comments here, as Hulme was not known much by any of us. Looked like he was a great sportsman of his era.

    We have entered partial lockdown mode. We are still able to work from now until April 6, and will turn to work from home from April 7th to May 6th.

    Not something unexpected, and we have expected this to happen.

  • NJK, I don’t think any of us knew Hulme as he is an Arsenal player out of the history books, but he played 374 games for us. My family would have known him but I was too young to have seen him play.

    Covid-19 has changed our lives and changed the World – the only thing that remains the same is Donald Trump’s lying and blaming others for his shortcomings.

  • I knew 3 out of the 20 (Bergkamp, Iniesta, van Persie), and managed to guess 1 out of the remaining 17.
    That must be a skill, too. 🙂

  • Thanks for that bit of history, GN5. As most have pointed out, can hardly say much about a player I didn’t see anything of, but still great to know if he is No. 18 in our fastest-to-centurion list.

    In the early years of organized sports, it was not odd to find sportsmen playing more than just one game. Fancy being such a good cricketer (by the sounds of it) and play soccer at top level.

  • You beat me, GN5! 🙂 It is amazing how much more we remember the goal scorer than the assist. I am embarrassed to say I got the Tony Adam’s one wrong!

    Well done for taking part and being honest, Pb! 🙂

  • Hi guys… I’m late to the party but nonetheless appreciative that it (the party…) continues…

    Well done again with the post, N5…

    In fact, I read it when I got up on Thursday morning and I was intending to say something (though, of course, I’ve got nothing to add re: Joe Hulme…) but then it was time to go out for provisions! Shopping is pretty exciting stuff in these days of “shelter-in-place.” I think I did a good (and safe enough) job but it seems it took a couple of days to recover…

    Or maybe I’m just struggling a bit with the whole scenario. I think the weather (some late snow coming again this weekend) is getting me down. How are other folks doing?…

    Like I say, I don’t quite know what to say about the post beyond thanks. I will add that Tim Stillman has written another good historical piece (in his weekly column on Arseblog). Certainly the Chapman era is fascinating stuff and it must be fun for those Gooners who have a more direct link to it. For every written history, there are thousands of oral ones, told over (even more) pints from Gooners of one generation to the next…

    So, keep ’em coming, I say… (And, in truth, it kind of reminds me of when I was young and trying to understand how baseball worked, with the games on the radio and reported in the newspaper with the box scores and 3 or 4 statistical categories. Attending games and seeing a few links to the deeper past–I saw Carl Yastremski’s final at bat against the Oakland, nee Philadelphia, Athletics, and his home run and the following standing ovation and doffing of the cap are still memorable almost 50 years on…)

    And then there’s the musical stuff (not to mention the excellent “stay-at-hoom” vid… 😀 ). Clicking on the Dire Straits video gets me some sort of strange series of songs which must be from TA’s youtube feed (it was followed by Donna Summer, and now, New Order?…) Down in Mexico (where I wish I was–but with family, of course) I got into a much balder version of the Dire Straits guy…singing with the finest of all the back-up/harmony singers… Here’s a promo from some stuff I’ve been watching/listening to… Probably not to everybody’s taste, but there you go…

  • You are not alone 17HT I don’t believe any of us know anything about him, I come closest and remember many of his team mates. I know about Chapman through my father and his 8 brothers, we are a family that was rich in Arsenal stories; as a kid I was awed just listening – until the day came when my maternal grandfather took me to my first game – a gift for my 10th birthday in November 1947.

    I seem to know more than most people about our Arsenal and enjoy poring through their history.

  • 8/20 for me. Mainly good guesses, remembering the goal and what player was likely to have given the pass. I got the Tony Adams goal wrong….and to think I have seen it so many times.

    It’s a good time for Quizzes, I guess. Cheers all.

  • Eris, 8/20 is not bad and puts you on a par with GN5.

    17HT, shopping is a nervous thing to do for most of us. I write a list and find that helps me to focus and be quick. These are challenging times and I guess there is a lot of panic, fear and frustration in the USA right now. We get to see here the queues at the gunshops and that is not a pretty picture.

    Hope your mother and her twin-sister are doing okay. Keep strong and be kind to yourself. 🙂

  • 8/20 for me, out of those 8 I actually knew about 5 so a few lucky guesses.

    Nice day in the garden today, the only downer was reading all that Lingard crap first thing this morning, what all the recent crackpot links to Lovren I’m really not enjoying the rumour mill atm.

  • Oh, come on, Kev. How else do you think the rags and (some of) the blogs get to sell and get clicks? It’s not the time to take these rumours to heart.

  • Total/Eris, yes I get it and I know it’s rubbish, well most of it, but Arsenal do have previous when it comes to shopping in the bargain basement dept and with no european football next season, as seems likely and a restricted budget then I worry that Raul is going to focus on doing business with his agent chums, looking to make a silk purse out of a sows ear…

  • I seriously hope that the club next season will continue to develop our young players, if we lose a big name or two I’d much prefer to see internal solutions rather than bringing in other clubs cast offs…

  • Kev, to me it depends on how much Arteta is the one to pick the ‘cast off’. We have a couple of gaps in the team and sometimes it takes a shrewd move to fill them well. I trust Arteta knows what he needs by now.

    However, if indeed it is a Raul dictate then I would also be disappointed.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s