Thursday, January 21, 2010

21 January 2007 - A Celebration Coach Might Not Be A Bad Idea

On 21 January 2007, Arsenal staged a dramatic comeback win against Manchester United at the Emirates, but the Gunners paid a steep price for the three points (and in ridiculous fashion).

United entered the match at the top of table, 15 points clear of fourth-place Arsenal, and were looking to avenge their 0-1 loss to the Gunners from September. United had their chances in the first half, but were repeatedly denied by Arsenal keeper Jens Lehmann. They took a deserved lead in the second half, however, when forward Wayne Rooney scored with an unmarked header in the 59th minute.

The Gunners continued to attack and received an 83rd-minute equalizer from striker Robin van Persie, who had come on in the 67th minute. Ten minutes later, with United visibly tired and frustrated, Thierry Henry headed in the gamewinner.

Arsenal's joy at the win was dampened when it was later revealed that van Persie broke a bone in his foot while celebrating his goal. The season-ending injury was a crushing blow, as the Dutchman was the Gunners' leading scorer at the time. Arsenal won only 8 of their next 23 matches in all competitions and finished the season without any silverware.

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