Death of a boyhood hero.

Discussion in 'Arsenal' started by Brodo, Oct 7, 2003.

  1. Brodo

    Brodo New Member

    Aug 7, 2003
    Deep in Spurs territ
    I doubt that many here will recognize the name of Joe Baker. It's been nearly forty years since the day my uncle took me to see my first ever Arsenal game. An FA Cup 4th round replay against West Bromwich (we won 2-0). that season Arsenal had two outstanding talents in an otherwise nonsdescript team of journeymen. They were Joe Baker and George Eastham.

    Joe Baker was the centre forward, our Number 9. He had been bought by Billy Wright (spits) from Torino for the princely sum of £70,000 in 1962. As a player he would take your breath away. So fast. so audacious, a born crowd pleaser.

    He had a fiery temperament and I remember his fight with the Liverpool captain Ron Yeats. Joe was 5ft 8 and big Ron was not called big for nothing, he towered over Joe. But Joe managed to smack him six or seven times without Ron landing a blow. Both players were sent off of course.

    He scored 100 goals in 156 games, one of only 16 players to score over 100 goals for Arsenal.

    I clearly remember where I was when I heard that he and Eastham had been put on the transfer list. As a 10 year old I was adamant that I would never go to another Arsenal game, that soon went out of the window of course. He was sold to Nottingham Forest the next day.

    Joe died suddenly yesterday of a heart attack whilst playing golf. Thank you for letting me share part of our history with you.
  2. fox point fury

    May 19, 2001
    No, thank you for sharing it with us.

  3. Martin Daoust

    Martin Daoust New Member

    Feb 14, 2003
    Hartford, CT
    Agree with Fox Point Fury...Baker was from what I know a very special player made all the moreso by the fact that he played at a time that really wasn't very special for the Club, although he proves the adage that it is ALWAYS special for the TRUE supporters...something we ALL should ALWAYS remember. My sympathies to Mr. Baker's family the Club and to you and other supporters from that time, Brodo...
  4. OPArsenal

    OPArsenal New Member

    Dec 17, 2002
    Jacksonville, FL
    Arsenal FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Re: Re: Death of a boyhood hero.

    Is right. Let's raise a pint for Joe Baker, everyone.
  5. Dave Brother

    Dave Brother New Member

    Jun 10, 2001
    Re: Re: Re: Death of a boyhood hero.

    Consider that pint raised. Truly a very sad loss.
  6. Brodo

    Brodo New Member

    Aug 7, 2003
    Deep in Spurs territ
    Apparently his brother Gerry was born in New York State and represented the USA on 16 occasions in the sixties. I had no idea
  7. Jeff L

    Jeff L Member

    May 12, 2002
    Arsenal FC
    I echo the sentiments. JOe, togethre with George Eastham were my first "Arsenal heros".
    A good player and sorry to hear of his untimely deather.
    He never seemed to "hit the headlines" in the way that Denis Law or Jimmy Greaves did, but he too was one of the early pioneers of British players going to Italy to play.
    Whilst he was at Hibernian, he was the first player to be capped for England whilst not playing club football in England.

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