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John Dick (footballer born 1876)

Personal information
Full nameJohn Dick
Date of birth1876
Place of birthEaglesham, Renfrewshire, Scotland
Date of deathUnknown
Playing positionCentre half

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John Dick (1876 unknown) was a Scottish footballer.

Born in Eaglesham, Renfrewshire, Dick first played for Airdrieonians, but in 1898 he was signed by London side Woolwich Arsenal as one of manager William Elcoat's many Scottish signings, with reserve striker James Devlin going the other way. A strong muscular centre half (in those days the centre half played in midfield), Dick immediately made his debut for the Gunners on the first day of the season (against Luton Town on September 3, 1898), and he only missed four games of his first season.

Dick was noted for his formidable stamina (he was a cross-country runner as well and once recorded a time of six-and-a-half miles in 33' 45"), and was a near ever-present in the Woolwich Arsenal side for the next six seasons; he missed only one game in 1899-1900, and although not a prolific goalscorer (he only scored thirteen times in his entire Arsenal career), he did score twice in a 12-0 demolition of Loughborough on March 12, 1900, the Gunners' record win in a competitive match.

With the arrival of Percy Sands in 1903, Dick moved to right half, and continued to be an ever-present as Arsenal won promotion from the Second Division to the First Division in 1903-04. In the meantime he had also become club captain, though by the time promotion had come round, fellow Scot Jimmy Jackson had taken over as skipper. Dick played as first-choice right half for the Gunners' first season in the top flight (and broke the 200 match barrier, one of the first Arsenal players to do so), but at the start of the 1905-06 season he lost his place to John Bigden, and stepped down to the reserves. He continued to play sporadically for the first team for the next five years, but never regained a regular place. In all, he played 262 games for Arsenal in the League and FA Cup, and 30 in other first-class matches.

In the summer of 1912 he left Arsenal to coach abroad in Prague, and became known for being one of the early pioneers of football in Czechoslovakia, where he coached Sparta Prague. His fate after that is unknown.

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