Saturday evening sees the two most successful Premier League sides clash at the Emirates Stadium, with heavyweights Arsenal and Manchester United providing the next instalment of their long running history which, over the years, has provided so many exciting and incident packed games.
Here, FantasySports.co.uk takes a look at five of the most memorable Premier League clashes over recent times :
Manchester United 0-0 Arsenal (21/9/2003)
Possibly the match which provides one of the most unforgettable moments and scenes in Premier League history. The match itself was relatively mundane, until Patrick Vieira was sent off for taking a swing a United forward Ruud Van Nistelrooy, whose reaction was, to Arsenal players, key in getting Vieira the red card. United were then awarded a last minute penalty which Van Nistelrooy missed, prompting the Arsenal players to celebrate in a rather over zealous fashion, resulting in the Dutchman getting shoved and verbally abused. A mass brawl ensued and both clubs were hauled before the FA for a range of charges, with Arsenal receiving a £175,000 fine, with four of their offending players getting match bans and individual fines.
Manchester United 8-2 Arsenal (28/8/2011)
A staggering scoreline. An already weakened Arsenal team, suffering from injuries and suspensions, were torn apart by a rampant United – who apparently showed no mercy until manager Sir Alex Ferguson quipped after the game “We could have scored more but you don’t want to score more against a weakened team like that.” Wayne Rooney (3), Ashley Young (2) and one each from Ji-Sung Park, Nani and Danny Welbeck did the damage, with Theo Walcott and a late consolation from soon to be United player Robin Van Persie giving the scoreline the merest modicum of respectability.
Arsenal 3-1 Manchester United (25/11/2001)
A final 10 minutes of madness from flamboyant French goalkeeper Fabian Barthez cost United a point at least, as he gifted United tormentor in chief Thierry Henry two goals to hand Arsenal a win. Firstly, Barthez inexplicably drove an attempted goal kick straight to one of the Premier League’s most deadly finishers who rolled the ball into an empty net. Not content with that, Barthez then managed to let loose a ball he collected on the edge of the area which again fell to the joyous Henry, who again made no mistake. The image of Barthez gathering his shorts and howling into the Highbury night air will live long in the memories of both United and Arsenal fans.
Arsenal 2-4 Manchester United (01/02/2005)
First half goals from Patrick Vieira and Dennis Bergkamp sandwiched a Ryan Giggs strike to give Arsenal a 2-1 half time lead, despite United thudding the Arsenal bar through Wayne Rooney. But Cristiano Ronaldo scored two early goals in the second period to put United 2-3 up. With Vieira and Keane having their usual breathless battle and both teams going at it hammer and tong, anything seemed possible. But with about 20 minutes to go, United defender Mikael Silvestre lost his cool, shoving Dennis Bergkamp and then headbutting Freddie Ljungberg, getting himself crazily sent off. Arsenal pressed for the equalizer but, rather than getting it, saw United defender John O’Shea calmly chip Arsenal keeper Manuel Almunia to give United a 2-4 win in a game that had virtually everything.
Manchester United 0-1 Arsenal (08/05/2002)
“We won the title in Manchester” is a chant still sung to this day by Arsenal fans, who saw their team famously take the Premier League title from Manchester United at Old Trafford, when keeper Fabian Barthez could only parry a Freddie Ljungberg shot into the path of Arsenal’s enigmatic French winger Sylvain Wiltord, who put the ball away, cuing scenes of delirium amongst the travelling Arsenal faithful. Arsenal only really needed a point to seal United’s fate, who were poor on the day and offered little threat to a team who had been unbeaten all season away from Highbury. The win completed a double for Arsenal in what was a memorable season for them – not least for this victory.