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Edris Albert "Eddie" Hapgood (September 24, 1908 — April 20, 1973) was an English footballer, who captained Arsenal and England.

Born in Bristol, he started his career as an amateur (while employed as a milkman), before getting his big break at Kettering Town. He was signed by Herbert Chapman to Arsenal for £950 in 1927. Playing at left back, Hapgood went on to become captain of the Arsenal team which dominated English football in the 1930s, winning five League Championships and two FA Cups. He played 440 times in all.

Hapgood played for England 30 times, wearing the captain's armband 21 times. His first match as captain was the infamous "Battle of Highbury" on November 14, 1934, against Italy, who were then World Champions (England had declined to take part in the World Cup, so the match was billed a "true world champions" match). The match was notoriously dirty, with many players sustaining injuries, including Hapgood himself with a broken nose; England beat the Italians (who were effectively reduced to ten men for most of the match) 3-2.

Hapgood also captained England in an even more infamous match, against Germany in Berlin on May 14, 1938, where Hapgood and his players were made to give the Nazi salute before the match, under pressure from British diplomats. Hitler was not in attendance; England won the match 6-3.

The Second World War cut short Hapgood's career, but after the war he had stints managing Blackburn Rovers, and then Watford and Bath City. After that he left football completely, and spent his later years running a YMCA hostel in Harwell, Berkshire and in Weymouth, Dorset. He died in Leamington Spa on Good Friday 1973.

 

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