Ranking the Top 10 Most Unforgettable Arsenal Wins
The best way to sum up the club- a sinking ship with an anchor holding them up.
However, Arsenal had never been in such a low position before, and their fall in recent years shocked the Gunners. Known formerly as Woolwich Arsenal, the Gunners operated from within Central London before they shifted bases to North London in 1913 and made the infamous Highbury their home.
They have become a legacy along with a few other teams in the Premier League. In their twenty-two years in the league, the Gunners have faced many opponents who have given them many challenging games. This list is reminiscent of the many teams who have fallen against the mighty gunners.
Without further ado…
The Top ten unforgettable wins for Arsenal are:
1. Blackburn Rovers vs Arsenal 1996 (0-2):
This game holds water for being memorable as it introduced a certain skinny Frenchman to the Gunners for the first time ever.
Yes, Arsene Wenger led the charge for the first time ever against Blackburn Rovers in the FA Premier League. The first games are always the hardest, but Wenger wished to prove his critics wrong. So, he instructed his men to trust him wholeheartedly, and for the entirety of the ninety minutes, Arsenal dominated on the ball.
By doing so, they scored two beautiful goals courtesy of Arsenal legend Ian Wright. Thus, the game silenced all the doubters who questioned a former J league manager’s effectiveness in the Premier League and became the foundation on which Wenger built his legacy at Arsenal.
9. Arsenal vs Chelsea 2020 (2-1):
If there is ever a manager who can do the impossible in a tough season for Arsenal, that person would be Mikel Arteta. For this, he owes credit to Arsene Wenger, who molded him into an effective leader. Therefore, it made sense for the Spaniard to take the Gunners to the finals of the 2020 FA Cup.
There they faced Chelsea, who were looking to avenge their previous FA Cup final loss (coincidentally a 2-1 win again) against Arsenal.
Their team had beat the gunners once before, and a repeat of that was what they were looking forward to. Alas! They did not know that Aubemeyang had prepared for this moment, and he destroyed their hopes by scoring two goals, thus taking away the one-goal lead given to the Blues by Christain Pulisic.
The win made the Gunners trust Arteta’s way and ‘the process.’
8. Arsenal vs Chelsea 2017 (2-1):
Arsenal fans have seen the best and worst sides of Arsene, but the fact that he won the Gunners a FA Cup after a brutal campaign (2015-16) cannot be denied. The Frenchman made many questionable calls while managing Arsenal, which cost them many Premier League games. However, he made up for it all as he took on a strong Chelsea side headed by Antonio Conte and beat them 2-1 in 2017 at Wembley.
This became a part of the last few games that Wenger managed. So, it became a matter of prestige for Wenger to leave the Emirates stadium on a high. For this, he utilized winger Alexis Sanchez as a false nine, and the Chilean scored a goal after a blistering run and smashed the ball towards the goal to give the Gunners the lead. Chelsea forward Diego Costa proved his ruthlessness, though, as he equalized soon enough, for Aaron Ramey to win the game for the North Londoners in the last few moments for the game and disappointed the Blues fans at Wembley.
7. Arsenal vs Manchester United 1997 (3-2)
The next game on the list belongs to the game that guaranteed Arsenal’s position right behind Sir Alex Ferguson’s United side.
The year 1997, in particular, became crucial for both these English sides as they fought against each other for a spot at the top of the table. In the end, Manchester United reached the top and kept a bit of a distance from the Gunners. But, that all changed when the North Londoners hosted their rivals at Highbury.
Both teams had their share of solid players, and the game commenced with both teams showing their dominance at the whistle’s blow. After a couple crucial misses, Arsenal got themselves on the scoresheet first through new (then) recruit Nicolas Anelka. The Gunners then scored another a few minutes later courtesy of midfield powerhouse Patrick Viera lobbed one over United keeper Peter Schmeichel.
The Red Devils were not one to sit quietly, and United striker Teddy Sherringham scored twice to equalize the game. Just when things seemed to be going well for the Manchester side, David Platt scored against his former side and gave Arsenal the win. Following the victory, the distance between the Gunners and Manchester United reduced tremendously.
6. Arsenal vs Everton 1998 (4-0):
The Gunners played the last game of the 1997-98 season against Everton. A win for them would mean that they would be crowned as the new Champions. The path for them to this stage had not been an easy one. Of the challenges they faced, United once again became the most formidable competitor for Arsenal. Then came the meet at Everton, who had lost twenty-one games before they clashed with the
Gunners, and reality set in for the Merseyside Blues on the difference in quality between them and the Arsenal.
During the game, Arsenal asserted their dominance by scoring four goals, with all goals coming from the Gunners wings (Marc Overmars) and defense (Tony Adams) and an own goal courtesy of Slaven Bilic (future Everton boss-temporary).
The game helped Everton get some perspective, and they finished in the 14th position (previously 17th) in the next season.
Coincidentally their next game with Arsenal FC will be on 24th April 2021.
5. Manchester United vs Arsenal 2002 (0-1):
Arsenal and Manchester United clashed again, and by the 2001-02 season, Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson had proclaimed each other as rivals. Thus the clashes between became a point of prestige for both managers, and they would do anything to win. However, during the clash in the year 2002, Wenger claimed victory over the Englishman.
In order to achieve this, Arsene locked his defense down and did not allow the Manchester attack to penetrate. Thus by rendering United forwards Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Diego useless, Arsenal held to their clean sheet. Additionally, they scored a goal through Sylvian Wiltord (a true impact maker) when the Red Devils were caught sleeping on a counterattack.
Thus, the game marked the second trophy (PL title) for Wenger after his entry in the year 1996.
4. Valencia vs Arsenal 2019 (2-4):
The last time Arsenal reached the finals of the Europa League, the competition operated under the name UEFA Cup.
Fast Forward to the year 2019, and the doors to the finals had opened once again for the Gunners, but to do this, they had to beat Valencia in the Semi-Finals of the tournament. In the first leg of the S/F, Arsenal hosted Los Murcielagos at the Emirates stadium and scored 3 goals against them.
However, they scored a crucial away goal prior to the second leg at the Mestalla Stadium. There, the hosts scored the opening goal through Spanish striker Kevin Gamiero, only for the visitors to equalize soon enough through Aubameyang.
Although Gamiero struck again, Auba and Alexandre Lacazette had scored three more goals, winning the game for Arsenal and allowing them to play in their second Europa League.
3. Real Madrid vs Arsenal 2006 (0-1):
Can the words Arsenal beat Real Madrid ever be visioned today?
But, in the year 2006, it happened.
Madrid hosted the Gunners at the Santiago Bernabeu in the knockout stages of the Champions League. Over here, Arsenal did the impossible in the first leg courtesy of a goal by King Thierry Henry. Other than the Henry goal, no further chances could be registered, and the first leg concluded at 1-0. The Spanish giants traveled to the Emirates Stadium hoping for a goal-fest. Thus, they received the biggest disappointment of their life as their English opponents held them to a goalless draw and went on to the Quarter-Finals on account of the win.
2. Arsenal vs Hull City 2014 (3-2):
The year 2014 came with the fourth-round exit from the League cup and the round of 16 departure from the UCL for Arsenal. Arsene Wenger who witnessed this knew that the only chance for the Gunners to win a trophy would be to secure the FA Cup title. For that, they won all games outright in the round of 32, 16, Q/F. The only hurdle they faced was in the game against Wigan Athletic, as they drew 1-1.
However, Arsenal beat them on 2-4 on penalties and went on through to the finals.
Their opponents in the finals were Hull City, and both teams started out great in the beginning. Then calamity struck as the Tigers score a quick-fire double and had almost wrapped up the game, had not it been for a thunderous free-kick from Arsenal star Santi Cazorla that ended up as a goal just before half-time. In the second half, Laurent Koscielny risked injury to equalize for the Gunners, and then in the last few minutes of the game, Ramsey scored a goal from a distance and wrapped up the game in style.
1. Reading vs Arsenal 2012 (7-5)
A league cup win???
This would cause confusion to a lot of people, but true Arsenal fans would be happy with the selection.
The game started like any other, with the Gunners holding onto possession. Then, like the game mentioned above, the opponents (Reading) went on to the attack and scored four goals, with three of them coming from Roberts, Leigertwood, Hunt, and an own goal from Koscielny.
However, Theo Walcott sparked a beautiful solo run and scored a goal, making the scoreline 1-4 at the half-time whistle. Arsenal then started playing like the champs they are and scored three goals (Giroud, Koscielny, and Walcott) to take their team into extra time. In extra time, the Gunners went down to another destination by Reading’s Pogrebnyak and then scored two goals through Walcott and Maroune Chamakh in the last minutes of the game.
Thus they ended the game with the scoreline at 7-5 and the Gunners holding onto their wits.
Arsenal has always faced such difficult situations, and their ability to overcome them gives them loyal fans.
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