Edward Joseph ‘Ted’ Drake was one of Arsenal’s most prolific goalscorers of all time, scoring 42 goals in total during the 1934/35 season alone.
The striker, born 16 August 1912, started his football career at Winchester City before missing his trial with Spurs through injury and signing for Southampton in 1931. He made 33 Second Division appearances, scoring 20 goals in that time, before Herbert Chapman, Arsenal’s manager at the time, came a-knocking. However, Drake turned down a move.
In 1934, Arsenal, now coached by George Allison, returned for Drake and this time he accepted the offer of a move to north London. He scored a total of 48 goals in 74 appearances for the Saints before he left.
Drake signed for Arsenal for £6,500 and scored his debut goal during his first match the same month he joined (March) in the Gunners’ 3-2 win over Wolves. He would go on to score 42 goals in 41 League appearances during the 1934/35 season.
Perhaps his most notable game was a 7-1 win over Aston Villa where Drake scored all of Arsenal’s seven goals. SEVEN. A club and top-flight record that still stands to this day.
During Drake’s time at Arsenal, he scored a total of 136 goals in 182 games and it could have been even higher if it wasn’t for the break for World War II.
After he retired from playing football, Drake went into management, coaching at Hendon and Reading before helping Chelsea to their first ever League title in 1955. After this, he ended up coaching Fulham’s reserves where his son played.
Ted Drake passed away in 1995.