Tom Arrigan

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Tom Arrigan
Personal information
Full name Thomas Arrigan
Date of birth 28 January 1906 [1]
Place of birth Waterford, Ireland
Position(s) Defender
Senior career*
1930–32 Waterford F.C.
1932–33 Cork Bohemians F.C.
1933–34 Glentoran
1935–38 Waterford F.C.
1939–40 Sligo Rovers
International career
1937 Republic of Ireland 1 (0)
*Club domestic league appearances and goals

Tom Arrigan (born 28 January 1906) was an Irish soccer player who was captain of Waterford F.C. in his hometown.


He won his one and only senior cap for the Republic of Ireland on 7 November 1937, in a 3–3 draw with Norway at Dalymount Park. [2] [3] [4] According to the Waterford Standard, he twice represented Ireland, so possibly had a junior cap.

Arrigan first came to attention playing at Ballinaneesagh, Waterford in 1925–1926, and played for the predecessor to the Waterford F.C., the Waterford Celtic, in the late 1920s. [5]

Arrigan played for Glentoran in Belfast from 1933 to 1935. In 1934, he scored one and assisted in another to help Glentoran defeat Belfast Celtic 3–1 in the Gold Cup semi-final to put Glentoran in the final, [6] where they lost 1–0 to Portadown. He helped the Glentoran take the Irish Cup with the team in 1935. [7] [8] In July 1935, he returned to his home city team, [9] and was captain of the first Waterford United team to lift the FAI Cup in the 1936–37 season. [10]

In early June 1938, it was announced he had not been re-signed but only offered match terms for the next season. The controversial decision was discussed during the annual meeting of the Waterford team management — "the most lively and heated in the history of the local club" — that lasted four hours. There was anger over Arrigan not being re-signed, in addition to the chairman refusing to be transparent about the terms offered to Tim O'Keeffe. [note 1] Mr. Byrne stated, "it is a sad reflection on Waterfordmen here to think that they would stand for that sort of thing; that the best player this town has ever produced should be treated like Arrigan has been treated." [11]

However, later that month he was resigned after negotiation, [12] and he was unanimously chosen as team captain again in August 1938: "His re-election will a popular one for his experience, tact, and courtesy make him eminently suited for the duties which the role of generally involves." [13]

Arrigan remained in his hometown and began working as a referee before joining the Sligo Rovers in 1939, [14] and then continued as a referee for some years. [15]

Arrigan may have experienced financial difficulties after his retirement, as the F.A.I. sanctioned a benefit match for him in 1941 at Kilcohan Park, which included six Waterford F.C. players, and the Tom Arrigan XI, which included Arrigan and amateur players. More than 500 people attended, raising £25 (equivalent to £1,000in 2021). The Waterford Standard promoted the match as follows: [16] "Tom's achievements in the realms of Association Football are too well known and too numerous to be recounted here, but it only truth to say that he has upheld the honour of his native city through his exploits in the game during his successful sporting career. The Committee of the Waterford and North Munster League, through whose efforts the game being played, deserve the commendation of Tom's admirers and of every lover of the soccer code in Waterford, and it is to be hoped that when the game is being played the public will show their appreciation and esteem of Tom in a practical way by attending in huge numbers." [17]

In 1946, it was reported he was in England. [18]



  1. From the Waterford Standard's coverage of the meeting: "In reply to Mr. Byrne, the Chairman said that O'Keeffe had been signed on the same conditions as previously—£4 per week, and no signing fee. Mr. Byrne—Did O'Keeffe get £10 or £20 signing fee last year? Chairman—I am not going to answer that question. Mr. Byrne—We were told last year that O'Keeffe got £10, and he actually got £20. Chairman—You were told no such thing. Hon. Treasurer—l was at the Management Committee meeting, and I disclosed that O'Keeffe got £20." [11]

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  1. "SR District/Reg Area - Waterford Birth of Thomas Arrigan on 28 January 1906" (PDF).
  2. "Ireland's International Players". Retrieved 13 March 2016.
  3. "Tom Arrigan". Footballdatabase. Retrieved 13 March 2016.
  4. "Ireland fail to book Paris ticket after draw". Irish Times. 17 November 2010. Retrieved 13 March 2016.
  5. "Waterford Soccer Team – Pen-Pictures of the New Eleven". Waterford Standard. 30 July 1938. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  6. "Gold Cup Semi-Final - Glentoran Defeat Belfast Celtic at Windsor Park". Belfast News-Letter. 9 November 1933. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  7. "Tom Arrigan's Visit". Waterford Standard. 12 May 1934. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  8. "Derry City Players – Retained List for Next Season". Londonderry Sentinel. 28 April 1934. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  9. "Association Football – Inter-league Games". Belfast News-Letter. 15 July 1935. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  10. 17 April 1940, Irish Press from Dublin, Page 10
  11. 1 2 "Stormy Football Meeting – Ends at Midnight – Chairman, Secretary and Committee Member Resign – The Signing of Timothy O'Keeffe – Procedure Questioned". Waterford Standard. 4 June 1938. pp. 8–9. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  12. "Waterford Soccer Signings". Waterford Standard. 25 June 1938. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  13. "Arrigan Honoured – To Captain Waterford Soccer Team". Waterford Standard. 20 August 1938. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  14. "Arrigan for Sligo Rovers". Waterford Standard. 19 August 1939. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  15. "Rookies v. Celtic". Waterford Standard. 8 January 1944. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  16. "Arrigan Benefit Match". Waterford Standard. 24 May 1941. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  17. "Association Football - Tom Arrigan". Waterford Standard. 10 May 1941. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
  18. "Searchlight on Soccer". Waterford Standard. 7 December 1946. Retrieved 7 August 2017.