More FA Cup final memories for Arsenal
- Credit: PA
Having won the FA Cup more times (13) than any club in history, the merry month of May marks many anniversaries for Arsenal.
And four of their successes over the years came on various days this past week.
The 1993 final against Sheffield Wednesday ended in a 1-1 draw on May 15, after Ian Wright’s header was cancelled out by David Hirst, with the replay five days later.
After a delayed kick-off on a wet Thursday night, Wright put the Gunners ahead once more, only for Chris Waddle to see a shot deflect in off Lee Dixon.
That led to extra time and, with a first penalty shoot-out in FA Cup final history looming, Andy Lineghan headed in Paul Merson’s corner to give David O’Leary a winning send-off after 722 competitive appearances over 18 years at Highbury.
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The 1998 final against Newcastle took place on May 16 with Arsenal having won the Premier League title a fortnight earlier.
The Gunners needed three replay wins – including two penalty shoot-outs – en route to Wembley but took the lead through Marc Overmars in the first half.
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And after Alan Shearer hit a post the Magpies, young French striker Nicolas Anelka went through to seal a 2-0 victory and complete Arsenal’s second Double.
The 2003 final against Southampton on May 17 was Arsenal’s third successive appearance in Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium, with Wembley being rebuilt, and came just nine days after a 6-1 win over the Saints in the league.
Having lost to Liverpool, then beaten Chelsea to complete a third Double in the preceding years, they netted the only goal of the game late in the first half when Freddie Ljungberg’s shot rebounded to Robert Pires to tuck home.
The 2014 final was also played on May 17 and saw Arsenal end a nine-year wait for silverware.
They fell 2-0 behind inside 10 minutes against unfancied Hull City and only a goalline clearance by Kieran Gibbs prevented a third.
Santi Cazorla hit back with a free-kick on 16 minutes and Laurent Koscielny bundled home a second-half equaliser, before Aaron Ramsey’s 109th-minute winner.