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Top 5s continued.........

Now I have suitably depressed you all further, I shall embark on the greatest games. Now their may be some glaring omissions. For example, Anfield 89 was the night of my fifth birthday so I am really a little young to reminisce. Anderlecht in 1970 was well before my time. But largely thanks to Arsene Wenger, I have been in on the ground floor as the club made unprecedented history. I had the privilege of being in attendance at every one of our 49 consecutive unbeaten matches, and my Grandkids will never hear the end of it. (Fast forward fifty years, me in my arm chair lecturing them that this dude from Venus isn't a patch on Bergkamp and that in my day, players only earned 100k a week if they were really lucky!!!)

5) Internazionale Milano 1 Arsenal 5
With minutes to go against Dynamo Kyiv, and Arsenal heading out of the European Cup, my mates and I were wondering whether the 2p return flights we had bagged to Bergomo were in fact a waste, until Ashley Cole popped up with a last gasp winner. Travelling to the San Siro only a win would suffice to keep us alive, and boy did we produce! With the Gunners 2-1 up, we were clinging on for dear life, Henry looked in one of his sulky moods as the ball pinballed around our area. Henry produced an unforgettable moment of genius which was the catalyst for three goals in four minutes. For the travelling ranks in the Giuseppe Meazza, the last four minutes was just one great big celebration. Lord Lowe literally, and I promise this is true, lost count of the score as three huge celebrations wracked with relief and disbelief amalgamated into one. The San Siro, the only Italian stadium I have ever visited with any sort of character witnessed a masterclass. I remember around twenty minutes after the final whistle surveying the faces around me and being awestruck at just how many people stood open mouthed in splendour. Sometimes in life, do you ever just take a mental photograph? Because I have this really vivid memory of our end looking like something out of 'One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest.'

4) Real Madrid 0 Arsenal 1.
The Santiago Bernebeu was a stadium I longed to visit, so when this one was drawn out I was made up. Ticket demand was at an all time high as we were offered six figures for our seats high in the Arsenal end. The stadium tour the day before whetted our appetites and the enormity of the task hit us. The Gunners troubled season turned around as young Cesc Fabregas and Alex Hleb came to life, Gilberto proved himself to be genuinely world class and Henry provided yet another moment of genius. The celebrations at the end were little to do with a good first leg result and more to do with the prestige of the Arsenal winning at the Bernebeu. I had always been an enormous admirer of Zidane and think he will be considered in the same breath as Puskas, Beckenbeur and de Stefano one day. The chance to see him play in his swansong season was a true privilege. (Especially because he played sh*t).

3) Villarreal 0 Arsenal 0.
Horrible flight, awful game, terrible performance. Nerves were balanced tenuously on a knife edge as the Spaniards piled on the pressure and missed gilt edged chances. With one minute left, a very harsh penalty was awarded and the travelling Gooners shoehorned into the far east corner felt we had blown it. But Lehmann wrote himself into folklore with an improbable penalty save (which Riquelme has not recovered from). The ensuing scrum in our end was even more ferocious than the one which greeted Horseface's penalty miss, as I sent a guy of around six feet flying to the ground. The final whistle was greeted with the sight of tears and kisses, it was to be Paris in the Spring time. Dancing through the streets of Eastern Spain is a thought which still brings goosepimples to the back of my neck.

2) Manchester United 0 Arsenal 1.
Another horrible journey, riddled with flu and with my A Levels impending, I boarded the coach to Old Trafford more in hope than expectation. But the Gunners swept to victory (we only needed a draw), as one of my least favourite players ever, Sylvain Wiltord, gave me one of the happiest moments of my life. Unfortunately, I was seated next to a steel partition in the away end, which meant that the goal saw me hurled into it by an entire row of delirious Gooners. This was about more than rivalry, this was a statement of intent and in all fairness the United fans applauded the Arsenal players off the pitch. Our coach arrived back at Avenell Road to see the road littered with a sea of champagne bottles and pint glasses (all empty natch) as a party spilled out onto the streets.

1) Tottenham Hotspur 2 Arsenal 2.
This one was ALL to do with rivalry. All the ingredients were there, a beautiful Spring day, I was recovering from gastric flu (why do all of our great nights coincide with ill health? Excuse me while I stick my head in the fridge for a few hours). I am told it had nothing on 71 (repeatedly), but it was a day where everything went our way. Chelsea lost, meaning we only needed a draw to saunter to the title with four games left. We even let the Totts back in at 2-2. The amusement as they celebrated, thinking the draw had prevented us from winning the title. The tangible drop in atmosphere as they saw Thierry and co race over to the away end in glee was extremely amusing! Even more amusing, the travelling Gooners were given a police escort to Tottenham Hale, as the tube pulled in at Seven Sisters, hundreds of Tottenham fans stalked the platform, smashing bottles against the windows of our train. My heart dropped as I expected a real kicking (I'm talking a drinking your food from a straw kicking). The doors never opened and the tube pulled away in comedic slow motion, leaving the hoards of Spuds stranded, watching our train chuff away. It also presented all present to direct some choice hand signals, inches away from Tottenham's top boys. On that day, God wore red and white! LD.




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The Journalist

Writer: Tim Stillman Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday March 13 2007

Time: 1:46PM

Your Comments

he always wears red and white.
Jacky B
He must have forgotten to wear his lucky socks over the last two weeks!!!
Little Dutch
I will only believe that, if you now capitulate in the league, and end up in the Uefa, whilst we seal a cup double. That would be truly miraculous, but we are talkin God here. ;-)
Jacky B
lol God has seemed to be wearing the blue and white for the last two seasons :(
AB_Arsenal
Yes, god is chav, lmao.God is a true blue!
k_chelski
Works in mysterious ways. For every Anfield 89, there's a Paris 95, for every Cardiff 01, there's a Cardiff 05. For every Bergkamp penalty miss, there's an unbeaten season.
Little Dutch
I was at 4 of the games you mention (I didn't make Villareal) and would agree that they should be in the top 5. My other would be O.T '98. That was the day that we were 'Gunner win the League' dawned on most of us. Oh Overmars!!!
hatespur
If you mean Chelsea, then that is the devil's work, not God's
Jacky B
kevin, surely he'd have blessed you with a team that entertains whilst delivering success?
hatespur
I thought spud was the devil's work , trying to compare with the mighties blues, as you know, the devil never gets it right!So, jacky, what are spuds plans for next season(besides trying not to be relegated) ?
k_chelski
For every Ian Selley theres a Patrick Vieira. No actually, we've had more Ian Selleys than patrick Vieiras over the years.
hatespur
this is a TOUGH choice as there are many games, but here's a try:.... 5) Sp*rs - Arsenal 4-5 04/05; there are so many games against the lot from the Lane that I fondly remember, but this one was a fantastic contest that went in our favour with 5 different players scoring (of course Pires was one of them). It was one of those 'we'll always score 1 more than you' games. as usual. 4) Real M. - Arsenal 0-1, which I remember well because I nearly broke the little glass table I have in my living room.... 3) Arsenal - ManUtd 3-2 97/98; Platt coming up with the unlikely winner from a corner after outjumping Beckham and placing the ball between the head of sister Neville (or Irwin) and the bar. An unbelievable game with Anelka and Paddy scoring for Arsenal and the obnoxious Sheringham scoring 2 to pull them level. I remember Platty's run down the side line as if it were yesterday..... 2) Sp*rs - Arsenal 2-2 03/04; a late comeback to save their dignity...NOT (Sagdiyev, 2006); the lane errupted after Keane scored the 'deserved' penalty only to realise that we still WON the TITLE at their little ground. hehe... 1) ManUtd - Arsenal 0-1 97/98, Marc Overmars scoring after an Anelka flick on through the legs of the onrushing Schmeichel. fan-f@cking-tastic!
G4L
I always rated Selley, I think he would have played for this club for years. His leg break happened about seven or eight yards from me in the Family Enclosure when I was a wee bairn, the sound of the crack is one of the most sickening things I've ever heard and it was clear he would never properly recover from it.
Little Dutch
Chelski.... lets just take one step at a time. what you gonna do on tues morning when you are out of the FA cup?
Jacky B
Are you following me or what LD? Now I think I'm just in front of you in the green quad lower east. I sat in the West Lower right above the wall. The crack still haunts me today. It was the season after I broke my tib and fib in an identical incident.
hatespur
Jacky, could you two go and flirt on a scum site??
hatespur
Wow jacky b, cocky again.I love that atitude , mate.Oh, you're gonna beat us just like you did at stamford bridge?Oh wait, you *****ed that up.Hmm, so you're gonna beat us like you did against arsenal?Wait, you *****ed that up too!!!The question is, when will you ever stop *****in it up?
k_chelski
Weird, cos I sat in row 8 with my back to the wall. Block R. I think that tit Alan Davies sat right behind me.
Little Dutch
chelski..... When have i ever got cocky to you? If memory serves me correctly the only encounter i have had with you was when you claimed that if you are not Brazilian the you cant possibly be any good at football. In answer to your (stupid) question we will prob stop doing that when someone comes along and ploughs millions of dirty pounds into our club.
Jacky B
hatespur, join in... you know you want to. actually, take my place... i cant be bothered with this moron.
Jacky B
Ld, I sat in row 10 bang on the half way line. Block Q. Alan Davies sat in row 9, 5 seats along from me. This is getting ******y. I was on the aisle.
hatespur
Why has that blanked out a word that begings with s, continues with p o o and ends in k y??
hatespur
******y
Jacky B
oh yeah! very odd. must blank anything end ky!
Jacky B
Mister Jacky.I've realised you are an idiot.TELL ME WHERE I'VE EVER SAID THAT.Sir_Harry (as usual) was the one that said MANY south american players are overrated.So i challenged him and/or you, to tell me the greatest player in spud history, better than a CURRENT, brazilian player.Something which you failed to do.
k_chelski
There is so much sexual tension in the air with you 2. Just f*** and get it over with.
hatespur
1) Arsenal 4-0 Everton, 1st title under Wenger sealed with a through ball by Bould and a rasping left foot half volley by.....Tony Adams! Would you believe it?! (2) 2-0 vs Chelsea Fa cup final the day we got back to being winners under wenger after a few barren years, Romford pele with a 20 yarder and Freddie ripping terry to shreds and curling a beauty into the corner (3) 1-0 Old Trafford..we won the league in Manchester....need I say more? (4) 2-2 the shoebox, watching the spuds go mental as keane equalised but we won the league in their ground 2-0 and we f*@ked it up Arsenal stylee! (5) 2-0 vs Juventus at highbury, the best and most complete European performance under Arsene.
iceman10
Jacky whilst your here why dont you give us your high 5?!
iceman10
Iceman.... well my five favourite films are... lol
Jacky B
Actually Chelski. You said i couldn't name a player in Spurs history better than any Brazilian, so don't try lying about it now. lol I'd even go as far as saying some of our worst players (Andy Sinton, Ruel fox for example) are better than such greats like Kleberson and Roque Junior who have (dis)graced the famous yellow shirt. At the time i also listed several players better than many brazilians. Now run along, or at least reproduce things wuith an element of truth you plum
Jacky B
"So i challenged him and/or you, to tell me the greatest player in spud history, better than a CURRENT, brazilian player.Something which you failed to do." No, i said you couldn't name a player in spuds history better than a current national team player.Kleberson won the world cup.surely one of the greats, don't you think?Now, you failed to tell me where did i mention, "you have to be brazilian to be a good footballer".? ????????
k_chelski
You never ever said the word current. it was any. And i did list some of our greats. But if it shuts you up... Gazza, Lineker, Blanchflower, Ginola, Hoddle, Greaves, Mackay are all better than.... drum roll please... Fred or Baptista. Now PHUCK OFF
Jacky B
Jacky don't encourage him to reproduce anything. I don't think the world deserves a mini Kevin. The only beneficiary would be Jeremy Kyle and his daytime dropouts.
hatespur
Okay, Fred is a current national player, baptista isn't.Now....drums.........Ronaldo.That's it.He's better than all of them combined and multiplied by 25.Was that enough for you?Finally some truth, i never said that.Thank you for being honest.I didn't even start this argument, it was sir_harry's , about south american players being overrated.I know it was any, i was talking about current brazilians.If you don't want ronaldo, i can give you Ronaldinho, or romario maybe?
k_chelski
Hatespur, just because you said that, your son will be a blue, no, wait, BETTER, your son will be a SPUD.
k_chelski
hang.. i didn't know Romario was still getting a game for you. And anyway, if you cant admit the words "any" and "ever2 then there is no point debating. btw, i forgot your 2 favourites Ardiles and Villa
Jacky B
Dont be a spoilsport Jacky! Does it go a little something like this (hit it!) (1) League cup final, Sol and Georgie Graham lifting the cup arm in arm (2) 5th of november fireworks victory vs Chelsea (3) 1st 17 minutes vs Arsenal at the lane (4) 1st half vs Chelsea at the bridge (5) 1-1 Arsenal vs PSV.
iceman10
typo 2 should be "
Jacky B
something like that Iceman, but i sure as hell aint gonna type it. 91 cup semi and final count as 2 entries though mate, which you conveniently omitted
Jacky B
It will never happen Kevin. I have 2 boys and they are both already red, white and very bright.
hatespur
I will turn them over to blue side, you'll see!. Well, since you said every spud player in all your history, why can't i say romario?Alright, Ronaldinho then, is there any spud player, with more trophies than ronaldinho?Ah , nah.ALright, i said any, you can say anyone you want. Now, if you can't admit that you were wrong about what i said( someone has to be brazilian to be good at football) then there is really no point debating.
k_chelski
Sorry mate I was thinking more along the lines of the last 10 years! We can go back to the days of hippies singing round campfires and the ZX spectrum + 2 being the worlds most incredible gaming system if you want!
iceman10
Selley was very talented player who had an eye for a pass...I also remember that leg break and its dramatic sound effects...I think Glenn Helders debut against Forest in 1995 has to be included in any top 5..Graham had just been sacked and here was his parting gift, that night a Dutchman with funny hair produced one of the finest debuts I have ever seen.
Anon 1
I remember that too, Kiwomya produced a pretty fine debut too. A depressing lesson in how **** first impressions can be. A bit like thinking you've pulled a stunner until closing time and the lights come on.
Little Dutch
Helder was quality a few days later at Palace too..it started to go wrong when he cut his hair
Anon 1
yeah hatespur,i went to 4/5 missed villareal also,couldnt get a ticket,couldnt get a ticket for madrid,still went though and got a ticket outside for 120,was on the opposite side to the gooners,must admit my fav,games were against manu at old trafford,1-0 overmars 1-0 wiltord and even this seasons 1-0 adebayor.....i just love to see those angry manc faces,oh yeah cardiff,when paddy scored that pen,those manc faces outside were as purple with rage as fergies nose.psv 4-0 gilberto fasted goal,that was rocking,edu against celta,didnt know he had it in him,away to chel$ki,when they scored after 5 mins and vieira and edu,won it,also winterburns winner at the bridge,kanu hattrick.and the two spud games 2-2,5-4
fran merida
henry in milan and breaking the record at praha
fran merida
What, no great memories of this season??? What about all of the special moments provided by the youngsters? Also, why no mention of the George Graham years?
Westl
Jesus,you lot feelig a bit 'LOST' at the moment!
HATEtheGOONS
Best first- 1) Man Utd 1-0 - Clinching the league in nik nak heads backyard, the Champions section and the cow jumping over the moon, or Kanu over Wiltord if you like. 2) Liverpool 2-0 - Michael Thomas scores and for a few minutes at least the Kop is silent. 3) Parma 1-0 ECWC Final - Smudgers classy strike, soiled pants as Brolin hits the post. 4) Man Utd 5-4 - FA Cup Final - Scholes missses othe only penalty, and though the win was totally undeserved it felt that a little bit of justice had been done after the battle of the pizza. 5) Chelsea 2-1 - FA Cup Final - It's only Parlour
flv
These arent in any particular order but anyways, 1)Inter 1-5 Arsenal; apart from the improbalble score line and what it meant my family is also from Italy and before i discovered the beauty of Wengers Arsenal and live coverage of the EPL in Oz i had always liked Milan so seeing Inter get stuffed at the San Siro was particular enjoyable, the 3rd goal was created by a true peice of Henry magic i have scarred into memory. So simple yet so brilliant the way he lead the defender (Cannavaro i think?) into that was like getting the perfect hand in poker and winning it all by playing it perfectly too(I like poker).
Ozi Gooner
2) Arsenal 5 - 4 Tottencum; the definition of Total football, this was what Cruyff, Neeskens, Van Gaal and the generation of stars that followed had in meant when they invented the style: You score 4 goals, we'll score 5, although you have to gibe a bit of credit the pondscum on that day for making it a great contest rather than a demolition.
Ozi Gooner
3) Real Madrid 0 - 1 Arsenal; 1-0 in the Bernebau was good enough, but that goal was just unbelievable.
Ozi Gooner
The reason the Graham years don't feature is, despite his success, Wenger has brought (not bought) us unprecedented success. Only the Parma game would trouble the top 5 for me, that's not a criticism of GG, that's a measure of Wenger's greatness.
Little Dutch
4) Arsenal 2 - 0 Juventus; I know winning in the Bernebau is something special and this was at home but i was honestly always more scared of Juve than Real Madrid. This game was another Master Class, where seasoned internationals were beaten well and truely by a bunch of youngins but what i thought made it so special was how young Cesc, the apprentice, took our old hero and captain Patty, the teacher, to the cleaners. Cesc showed his true grit and character when in the first 2 or 3 minutes he cut Vieira down in the middle of the park when Juve were on the counter, a Patty tackle if ever i'd seen one, and made all the better by home scoring the first goal and creating the second for Titi. This was as symbolic a vistory as it was important and showed the world Cesc was the new generation.
Ozi Gooner
5) Man United 0-1 Arsenal; 2 Premier League titles in a row - 300,000,000 pounds; European Treble; 100,000,000 pounds; Winning the double at Old Trafford - Priceless!
Ozi Gooner
 

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