Match Report 2002-03 - Arsenal (a)
24 mins Thierry Henry slipped
a ball through to Oleg Luzhny on the right of the area adjacent to the
toon fans. A slow Dabizas
played everyone onside and when Luzhny squared it to Sylvain Wiltord
he just needed to tap in from inside the six yard box. Any suspicion of
offside was dispelled by the TV replays - Luzhny was well onside and
Wiltord was behind the ball before receiving it. 0-1
Full time: Arsenal 1 Newcastle 0
Sir Bobby said:
"We just didn't conjure up enough chances to deserve a point. I'm disappointed but we came up against a high quality side with a point to prove because they've lost some games recently that they didn't expect to lose.
"But at the end today they wanted the final whistle and we didn't. We fought like tigers and were magnificent at the back but Arsenal have this power and pace which makes you feel glad to get out of it without being massacred.
"We certainly weren't and I'm proud of the players and thought young JJ was outstanding, but Arsenal always had the edge. I know we won here last season but this was one of our better performances against them today.
"I would think they are just about the best in England at the moment. They've certainly had a wonderful day with Liverpool and Man United losing. That's why they were jumping up and down at the end."
"Sometimes when you can't take your chances, you have to make sure you will 1-0, but I thought we had a very solid performance.
"There were 11 good performances out there and we always looked solid."
We were the last side to stop Arsenal scoring in a league game, when the two sides played out a tepid 0-0 draw on Tyneside in May 2001. Since then they've scored in 52 consecutive Premiership matches including this one.
This was our 150th game against
the Gunners in all competitions, making them our most frequent opponents
(Man City were next most frequent on 148). We've beaten Arsenal more often
than any other club with 64 successes, apart from Manchester City with 66.
Quite simply we were running on empty when we got to Highbury - we put
our foot on the gas but there was nowt in the tank.
The stark facts are: no shots on target, no
corners won. No points, no chance.
This time we didn't even have the corner
never mind the goal.
The belated appearance of Shola at least gave him a semblance of
support in the latter stages, but the inability of the rest of the side to
get anything remotely resembling a cross over made it all a total waste of
Certainly nothing else we did caused him any bother, unless he hurt himself laughing at us.
We can only hope that this forgettable misadventure was as a result of
keeping our powder dry for the trip to Rotterdam. If we had any fortune
though, it's that we didn't exit down the Holloway Road with our tails
well and truly between our legs, having been buried by an avalanche of