- Arsenal Great!
- A Great Evening To Remember As He Shares Some Very Interesting & Funny Moments From His Career!
Charlie George was born in Islington, London 10 October 1950 and is a former footballer.
Coming from Islington, London, George supported Arsenal as a boy and played for Islington Schoolboys before joining his favoured club in May 1966. He turned professional in 1968 and made his first-team debut for the club on 9 August 1969 against Everton, on the first day of the 1969-70 season; Arsenal lost 1-0. He became a regular in the side that season, playing 39 times, including in Arsenal’s 1969-70 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup campaign; he scored goals against Dinamo Bacau and Ajax, as well as playing in both legs of the final against RSC Anderlecht, which Arsenal won 4-3 on aggregate.
George broke his ankle at the start of the following season following a collision with Everton goalkeeper Gordon West, but returned after being out for five months and played a significant part in Arsenal’s run-in to the 1970-71 Division One title, scoring five times in 17 appearances in the League. However, the highlight of his season came in the FA Cup; he scored in the fourth, fifth and sixth rounds as well as proving the difference in the Final against Liverpool. The game was locked at 1-1 in extra time, Arsenal having been 1-0 down before Eddie Kelly’s equaliser; in the 111th minute George latched onto John Radford’s square ball and scored a spectacular winner from 20 yards to win the match. He famously celebrated by lying flat on his back with arms aloft. With that Cup win, Arsenal completed their first Double win.
George played four more seasons at Highbury, also playing in the 1972 FA Cup Final, which Arsenal lost to Leeds United. However the latter stages of his career with Arsenal were hampered with injuries and a rebellious streak at odds with the club’s management; during the 1971-72 season he was disciplined by the club twice, first after headbutting Liverpool’s Kevin Keegan, and then for flicking a V-sign at Derby County’s fans after scoring away at the Baseball Ground.
As the Double-winning side were gradually broken up Arsenal began to descend down the table, and although George hit eleven goals in both 1971-72 and 1972-73 his form declined with Arsenal’s; he only scored five times in 28 matches in 1973-74 and he was dropped from the first team in 1974-75 after falling out with manager Bertie Mee. By Christmas 1974 he had been transfer listed, and he moved to Derby County in July 1975 for £100,000. In total he played 179 times for Arsenal and having scored 49 goals.
He spent three and half years at Derby, where he memorably scored a hat-trick against Real Madrid in a European Cup match (although Derby eventually lost 5-6 on aggregate); in total he played 117 games for Derby County, scoring 36 goals. Whilst with Derby, he won a solitary cap for England, playing for 60 minutes against the Republic of Ireland on 8 September 1976 out of position on the left wing, but fell out with coach Don Revie after being substituted and was never picked again. He also had a loan spell at St George’s Budapest in Australia while at the club.
After Derby, he went on to play for the Minnesota Kicks in the United States before returning to Southampton in December 1978. His appearances there were limited by a knee injury and he had a short period on loan to Nottingham Forest in 1980, playing four games including both legs of the 1980 UEFA Super Cup Final against FC Barcelona, scoring the only goal in the home leg as Forest won 2-1 on aggregate. George could not agree an extension to his loan at Forest and soon returned to Southampton. In the summer of 1981 he left the club to move to Bulova in Hong Kong.
A year later, in 1982, he returned to England to have short spells with AFC Bournemouth and Derby County for a second time, and had a short time with Scottish side Dundee United before retiring in 1983, although never played for the Tannadice outfit. Later in his career, George lost a finger in a lawnmower accident.
After retiring from football he moved to New Milton, Hampshire to run a pub. He later worked as a mechanic for some years and is now one of the hosts of the “Legends” tours at Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium.
Charlie is without doubt, one of the Arsenal greats and is happy to appear at Sports Clubs Dinners and undertake a Q&A (questions & answers) session. Charlie was a character from the 1970’s and 80’s and will provide you a great evening to remember as he shares some very interesting and funny moments from his career!