London Saints

LSSC legends: David Armstrong

The £600,000 that Lawrie McMenemy paid Middlesbrough in August 1981 for midfielder David Armstrong proved to be a fantastic piece of business. Armstrong was signed as a workmanlike player wtih a healthy goals to games ratio who rarely missed a game.

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LSSC legends: David Armstrong-Body-2

January/February 2011
At Middlesbrough, Armstrong was noted for his remarkable durability – for many years he was ever-present in the number 11 shirt, and as a testament to this was awarded a testimonial whilst aged only 25. He holds the Boro’ record for most consecutive appearances with 305 consecutive league games and 358 consecutive games in all competitions between March 1972 and August 1980.

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It would be fair to suggest that he was bought in to supplement a Saints squad that had plenty of ‘names’ but were of a certain age! Armstrong was just 26 at the time (looked older though) and provided ‘box to box’ energy and goalscoring to Southampton throughout their most successful period (’76 FA Cup apart).

In his first season Armstrong scored 15 league goals as the Saints led the table for most of the first three months of 1982 before finishing seventh. He came close to a league title medal in 1984, as the Saints finished runners-up to Liverpool in the league and were also semi-finalists in the FA Cup. He scored 15 league goals once again. And in 1984/85, he scored 10 times in the league and the Saints finished fifth. He played in the UEFA Cup in 1984 but that was not added to due to the Heysel ban on English sides.

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Armstrong, affectionately known as ‘Spike’ was Saints’ Player of the Season in 1983/84, and he also made three appearances for England between 1980 and 1984.

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He was dropped from the team during the 1986/87 season, scoring just once in 22 league games. At the end of that season, he dropped down two divisions to sign for Bournemouth, where he spent one season before retiring as a player. At Southampton, he had scored 80 goals in six seasons.

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LSSC legends: David Armstrong-Body

He was in fact due to sign for Sheffield Wednesday but a change of mind led him to Dean Court but a serious injury ended his career within a few months.

Armstrong went onto perform various roles for Hampshire based non-league clubs as well as work as radio summariser on Saints matches.

David Armstrong factfile
Born: 26th December 1954, Durham

Appearances and goals
1971-81: Middlesbrough 359 (59)
1981-87: Southampton 289 (80)
1987-88: Bournemouth 9 (2)

Previous legends
November/December ’10: Brian O’Neil
September/October ’10: Jason Dodd
July/August ’10: Peter Shilton
June ’10: Tony Knapp
May ’10: Nick Holmes
April ’10: Derek Reeves
March ’10: Bobby Stokes
February ’10: John Sydenham
January ’10: Jimmy Case
December ’09: Alan Ball
November ’09: George O’Brien
October ’09: Francis Benali
September ’09: Steve Williams
August ’09: Terry Paine
July ’09: Charlie Wayman
June ’09: Jimmy Steele
May ’09: Matt Le Tissier
April ’09: Antti Niemi
March ’09: Steve Moran
February ’09: Ted Bates
January ’09: Marian Pahars
December ’08: Mick Channon
November ’08: Ivan Golac
October ’08: Ron Davies
September ’08: Chris Marsden
August ’08: Danny Wallace
July ’08: John McGrath

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