Statue for Kiveton footballing legend

Guardian News
Guardian News

A FOOTBALLING legend who was born in Kiveton has had a statue unveiled in his honour at Arsenal’s stadium.

Arsenal unveiled the statue of Herbert Chapman outside the Emirates Stadium as part of the club’s 125th anniversary celebrations.

Chapman was Arsenal manager between 1925 and 1934 and his team won the league four times in five years.

Born in 1878, Herbert Chapman is best known for his managerial successes, and countless honours with Huddersfield Town and Arsenal.

As a player, he turned out for Northampton Town, Spurs and earned £3 a week for his services at Sheffield United in the early 1900s.

He introduced a white football during his nine-year spell as boss at Highbury, a move the FA later sanctioned, when more matches began to be played under floodlights.

He is also known for his highly researched methods of training which became revolutionary in the development of football and what happens in training today.

The statue of Chapman is located underneath the clock close to the Danny Fiszman Bridge and sees him looking towards the 60,000-seater Emerates Stadium as a symbol of the club’s progressiveness since he revolutionised the club.

Proud nephew Ken Chapman, of Kiveton, said the statue was a ‘splendid honour.’

“I was unable to attend the ceremony at the Emirates due to ill health but managed to see it on the internet,” he said.

“It is of course a splendid honour for a man born and brought up in Kiveton Park and one who was such an influence on our national sport.”

“Whilst I appreciate the honour I am unimpressed with the statue itself which hardly resembles my uncle.”

“It is ironic that he has been honoured in such a manner in North London when he only came second in the local poll to have a statue erected in Rotherham Valley Country Park.”

Chapman wasn’t the only Arsenal legend to have a statue unveiled.

Tony Adams, who captained Arsenal to five league titles across three decades, and Thierry Henry, the club’s record goalscorer with 226 goals, were also honoured.

The statues have been cast in bronze and are all life size and a half of the individuals. They have taken around 625 hours to create and weighing about 200kg each.