Arsenal managers who were worse than Mikel Arteta

It could be worse Gunners fans, you could still have one of these ex-bosses in charge.

The season hadn't even started before #artetaout was trending on social media and the Arsenal boss looks a dead man walking.

Three successive defeats to open the campaign have done little to help Mikel Arteta's cause and defeat to Norwich on Saturday will surely spell the end of his time at the Emirates.

Should he depart after the weekend, Arteta will leave with a win record hovering around the 50% mark, higher even than club legends Herbert Chapman and George Graham.

So for all the vitriol coming his way for Gunners fans, it is worth remembering there were times when things were much, much worse at the club.

Planet Sport looks back at five former Arsenal managers who could only dream of achieving the numbers Arteta has in his time in north London.

Billy Wright

Billy Wright Arsenal May62

Despite being a Wolves and England legend, Wright's playing success did not translate to his managerial tenure at Arsenal.

Wright took over from George Swindin in 1962 and his first season in charge was surprisingly effective. Wright led the Gunners to seventh place, qualifying them for Europe for the first time in the club's history.

However, their first taste of Europe - the Inter-City Fairs Cup - would end in the second round following a 4-2 aggregate defeat to Belgian side RFC Liege.

The promise of the first season could not be built up and despite Wright bringing in Bob Wilson and Frank McLintock during his spell at Highbury, the Gunners slid down the table, finishing 13th in 1964/65 and 14th the following campaign.

Early FA Cup exits to Peterborough United, and Blackburn Rovers only compounded the decline and Wright was dismissed in the summer of 1966.

Wright departed with a win rate of 38.46%, the lowest in Arsenal's post-war history.

He never managed again.

George Morrell

Morrell took over at Woolwich Arsenal from Phil Kelso in 1908 and would go on to become the only Gunners manager to oversee a relegation.

Morrell joined a club in financial turmoil, with many of their best players sold. Nevertheless, he achieved a sixth place finish in his first season - the club's highest-ever position.

However, the financial constraints took their toll and they slid to 18th the following campaign.

Following the takeover of Sir Henry Norris, the Gunners rallied to finish 10th in 1910/11 and 1911/12.

The 1912/13 campaign was their final season at the Manor Ground in Plumstead before a move to Highbury.

It was to prove one to forget on the pitch, as Arsenal suffered relegation after finishing rock-bottom in Division One.

Their final home game that season was witnessed by a crowd of just 3,000.

Morrell hung on to his job but was unable to guide the Gunners back to the top flight, finishing third and fifth in Division Two before resigning in April 1915.

Stewart Houston

Stewart Houston Arsenal Aug 96

Houston appears on this list despite never having been permanently appointed as Arsenal manager.

Nevertheless, 25 games (across two spells, admittedly) is more than enough time to prove yourself and a win ratio of 36% tells its own story.

Houston first took the reins at Arsenal following George Graham's sacking in early 1995. His three months in charge led to a European Cup Winners Cup final defeat and a 12th-placed finish.

He stayed on as assistant manager following Bruce Rioch's appointment in the summer but was back in caretaker-charge again at the start of the 1996/97 campaign, overseeing two wins from six before leaving to take the manager's job at QPR.

Leslie Knighton

Leslie Knighton took over as Arsenal manager in 1919, shortly after the club returned to the First Division.

In Knighton's six years at the club, Arsenal never finished higher than ninth. That was in 1920/21 with a team assembled before Knighton took over.

Fallouts with Norris were also common with the chairman placing a strict cap of £1,000 on transfer fees and refusing to sign any player under 5ft 8in or 11st.

Arsenal were a club in decline towards the end of Knighton's tenure, finishing 19th and 20th in 1923/24 and 1924/25, respectively (21st and 22nd went down).

He was replaced by Herbert Chapman, leaving with a win rate of 36.71%, though he had brought in Bob John, Jimmy Brain and Alf Baker, who would go on to form part of the title-winning side of the early 1930s.

George Swindin

George Swindin Arsenal dec48

A fine goalkeeper for the club, he played almost 300 times over an 18-year spell.

However, he was unable to match that longevity as a manager.

Initial signs had been good, with a third-placed finish in 1958/59.

However, despite adding George Eastham and Tommy Docherty, the Gunners succumbed to mid-table mediocrity, finishing 13th, 11th and 10th.

Seeing north London rivals Tottenham win the double in 1960/61 only added to the feeling of gloom around Highbury.

Swindin left at the conclusion of the 1961/62 season, while Tottenham have not won the title since.

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