Paul Davis: Arsenal And After
Paul Davis’s story is a journey through almost 50 years at the very top in football: a leading player’s take on an extraordinary period in Arsenal’s
history, during which the club and football changed radically around him.
Davis won titles and cups with Arsenal but had to battle against career-threatening injuries and to handle the frustrations and injustices of the worst kinds of club and dressing room politics. His subsequent experiences as a coach and as a coach developer have been just as challenging and emotionally charged.
Paul Davis: Arsenal And After is more than just a fascinating football story. Paul’s mum, Ruby, came to England from Jamaica in the late 1950s. Much of his family history was – and is – a mystery to Paul, who never knew his father. Born in South London, he was a senior player at Arsenal before he first met the older siblings who stayed behind in Kingston.
As a teenager, Davis was often the only black player wearing Arsenal colours. As often as not, he’d be the only black player on the pitch. With that came challenges: racism in football and beyond in the early 1980s was undiluted and unapologetic. The fight for recognition – for opportunity and for change – has been part of the Davis story ever since.
His own emotional experiences are the lens through which he now looks back on everything he’s achieved. It’s a life story worth the telling, that’s for sure.