Ryan Babel was a Wenger transfer target in the summer of 2007. The press were reporting that it was a done deal, that Ryan would be joining Arsenal in a matter of weeks. However, the deal fell through, and it looked like the Ajax player would remain in Amsterdam, that was until Rafa Benitez came in with an £11.5 million bid which took Ryan to Liverpool.
A scorcher of a game at Anfield produced eight goals, and four came from none other than Andrey Arshavin.The game was nearly ours when Arshavin scored his 4th in the 89th minute. Anfield must have been thinking it was 1989 all over again, but Benayoun grabbed a point for Liverpool in injury time.
Arsenal defended abysmally, and because of that we conceded easily – the left side got mauled – Liverpool were pounding away at us and we found it hard to pass the ball. Gibbs and Silvestre looked weak at times and that is to be expected, and Sagna was at fault for Liverpool’s first equaliser.
On the other hand we were clinical in attack – 4 shots on target and 4 goals.
Arshavin took his first goal, slotting in a Fabregas cross in the first half, after Nasri played him through. Benayoun then equalised early in the second half after Sagna cleared the ball across his own penalty area to Kuyt.
Torres made it 2 – 1 and it seemed that the game was lost! However, Arshavin then capitalised on slack Liverpool defending to make it 2-2, and then made it 3-2!
Torres made it three all after fooling Silvestre to gain more space. But in the 89th minute Walcott countered from a corner as Liverpool committed men forward. He took the ball forward and played Arshavin through on goal and he coolly took his 4th, making it 4-3.
When Arshavin made it 4-3 on the 89th minute I thought the game was ours, 1989 style. Up for Grabs now moment, Kenny Dalglish vacant stare moment. It wasn’t to be. I don’t know how the 4th assistant found 5 minutes added time, but it was inevitable the way Liverpool were pressing our shaky defence that they would get another goal.
Benayoun headed home after shambolic clearing from Arsenal allowed Liverpool to get a cross in injury time.
In any case it was a great game, highly entertaining, although I was disappointed that we never really got going. Arshavin more than made up for it with his performance – he really is a very, very special player.
This keeps the unbeaten run going. Wenger said that 3 points would have been better than one but in all fairness we were very lucky to come away with a point. It was the induvidual brilliance of Arshavin that got us the point.
The first time that 4 goals have been scored at Anfield in the league since the 1940s and who else could do it? What a rollercoaster of a game! How I’m wishing that Arshavin could play in the Champions League.
“We did have a dip recently. But football is strange. Defeat is not unthinkable; you have to accept you might lose. But what is important is that you believe you can win. We have the belief that we can win anywhere in the world. And if I didn’t believe we could win the Champions League, I wouldn’t be here.”
It’s good to hear that Wenger has that belief and I think we all do. We have the ability to go through to the Semis but we need to actually make it happen on the pitch and at Anfield that is easier said than done.