Tag Archives: Robin van Persie

Memorable Matches: Chelsea 3-5 Arsenal (October 2011)

Goalscorers: Frank Lampard 14, Robin van Persie 36, 85, 90, John Terry 45, Andre Santos 49, Theo Walcott 55, Juan Mata 80

Teams:

Chelsea: Petr Cech, Branislav Ivanovic, Jose Bosingwa, Ashley Cole, John Terry, John Obi Mikel (Raul Meireles 76), Ramires (Romelu Lukaku 72), Frank Lampard, Juan Mata, Daniel Sturridge (Florent Malouda 62), Fernando Torres

Arsenal: Wojciech Szczesny, Per Mertesacker, Andre Santos, Laurent Koscielny, Johan Djourou (Carl Jenkinson 76), Mikel Arteta, Alex Song, Aaron Ramsey, Theo Walcott (Tomas Rosicky 79), Gervinho (Thomas Vermaelen 88), Robin van Persie

Referee: Andre Marriner, Attendance: 41,801

Chelsea and Arsenal have played out some brilliant encounters during the Premier League era and this meeting at Stamford Bridge in October 2011 must definitely rank among the best. It was a crazy match where attacking instincts were rewarded and defensive frailties for both teams were exposed.

Andre Villas-Boas’ side were coming off the back of a damaging 1-0 defeat a week earlier to Queens Park Rangers which saw Jose Bosingwa and Didier Drogba sent off, whilst John Terry had been accused of racially abusing Anton Ferdinand. Despite the off-field distractions, it was the Blues who struck first on 14 minutes. From Juan Mata’s great cross, Frank Lampard made one of his trademark runs into the box and he placed a header past Wojciech Szczesny.

Lampard nearly grabbed an assist soon afterwards when his tremendous ball picked out Daniel Sturridge. Unfortunately for Lampard, Sturridge horribly sliced his effort wide of the post. Arsenal had already missed a couple of great opportunities but finally took one of their chances nine minutes before the interval. Aaron Ramsey’s defence-splitting pass opened up the hosts’ backline and Gervinho squared the ball for his skipper, Robin van Persie to tap home.

Sturridge had a goal disallowed for offside before Chelsea regained their lead before half-time. Arsenal’s weakness all season had been defending from set-pieces and they conceded yet again from this situation. Lampard’s corner was bundled into the back of the net by Terry who escaped some suspect marking from the Gunners. After his testing week, it was a nice way for him to end it in a positive manner.

The fast-paced nature of this match continued after the break as Arsenal turned the game around in the opening 10 minutes of the second half. First, left-back Andre Santos scored before the brilliant Theo Walcott escaped the attentions of Lampard and Branislav Ivanovic and recovering from a slight stumble, he drilled a shot inside Petr Cech’s defences at his near post.

In-between this, Arsenal goalkeeper Szczesny charged out of his goal and hacked down Ashley Cole. The covering defenders meant referee Andre Marriner opted to take the yellow card option after advice from his assistants. A grandstand finish was set-up when Mata levelled the scores at 3-3 with 10 minutes to go with a brilliant strike from distance although Arsene Wenger was furious, feeling Santos had been fouled in the build-up by substitute Romelu Lukaku.

Then, the crucial moment came with five minutes left. Terry slipped, allowing Van Persie to race clear. The Dutchman rounded Cech and put the ball into a gaping goal to score his second of the afternoon. In the 89th minute, he completed a marvellous hat-trick, flashing a shot past Cech after being played in by Mikel Arteta.

This was Arsenal’s first away victory of the season and a memorable victory for the Gunners. Van Persie took his tally to 28 goals in 27 Premier League games in 2011 and he finished as the league’s top goalscorer in what proved to be his last season in an Arsenal jersey.

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Premier League Rewind: 12th-14th February 2011

Results: Manchester United 2-1 Manchester City, Arsenal 2-0 Wolverhampton Wanderers, Birmingham City 1-0 Stoke City, Blackburn Rovers 0-0 Newcastle United, Blackpool 1-1 Aston Villa, Liverpool FC 1-1 Wigan Athletic, West Bromwich Albion 3-3 West Ham United, Sunderland 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur, Bolton Wanderers 2-0 Everton, Fulham 0-0 Chelsea

Having seen their 29-match unbeaten run in the Premier League stretching back to the end of the previous campaign end at Molineux a week earlier, Manchester United were keen to return to winning ways on the 12th-14th February 2011 weekend. Their motivation was bound to be huge though as they were about to do battle with local rivals, Manchester City.

City had recently flexed their financial power again in the January transfer window, acquiring Bosnian forward Edin Dzeko from 2009 Bundesliga champions VfL Wolfsburg. Roberto Mancini’s side were keen to record their first away victory since Boxing Day at Newcastle United. They fell behind though four minutes before the interval when Ryan Giggs’ superb pass allowed Nani to race clear and put the league leaders ahead infront of the Stretford End. The Citizens equalised on 65 minutes when Dzeko’s shot fortunately deflected off teammate David Silva. The game needed a special moment of quality to separate the sides and it was provided 12 minutes from time.

Nani’s cross took a slight deflection but this allowed Wayne Rooney to spin in mid-air and produce the most wonderful overhead kick into the back of Joe Hart’s net. It remains one of those iconic moments and one of the finest goals The Manchester Derby has ever seen. United held on to win 2-1 and move eight points clear of Mancini’s men, also with a game in-hand. Rooney’s goal ended up winning Greatest Goal accolades at the 20 Seasons Awards.

Arsenal kept up the pressure as the Gunners ensured Wolves wouldn’t be able to produce anymore giant-killing stories. Mick McCarthy’s side had already beaten Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea in the season but couldn’t repeat the feat against the Gunners. Robin van Persie scored both goals for Arsenal in a straightforward 2-0 victory and ensured they maintained just a four-point deficit to the Red Devils in the table.

At The Hawthorns, Roy Hodgson was watching in the directors’ box as he was poised to succeed Roberto Di Matteo as boss. West Brom had the leakiest defence in the division and this was in evidence again against fellow strugglers West Ham United. West Brom raced into a 3-0 lead after just 32 minutes but they caved in after the break. Demba Ba scored twice for the Hammers as they showed some battling resilience to claim a 3-3 draw and edge themselves off the bottom of the table on goal difference at Wolves’ expense.

Wigan Athletic remained in the bottom three but picked up a valuable point away at Anfield against in-form Liverpool FC. Raul Meireles continued his rich vein of goalscoring form, scoring for the fifth time in six matches but Steve Gohouri rescued a point to end the home side’s run of four successive victories.

Birmingham City picked up a vital victory to ease their relegation concerns, as Nikola Zigic’s goal three minutes into injury-time was enough to win the game against Stoke City 1-0. That result took Birmingham above Second City rivals Aston Villa, who were performing well below expectations in 16th position. Villa’s latest disappointment was a 1-1 draw away at Blackpool, leaving them just three points above the drop zone.

What else happened in February 2011?

  • The military take control of Egypt following the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak after widespread protests.
  • Critically-acclaimed movie The King’s Speech wins four Oscars at the 83rd Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
  • Christchurch in New Zealand is rocked by a 6.3 magnitude earthquake. Over 180 people are killed, including a large number of foreign citizens.
  • The House of Commons votes overwhelmingly against prisoners receiving the right to vote, winning 234-22.
  • The ban on product placement in television programmes is lifted in the UK, allowing advertisers to pay for their goods to be seen in TV shows, dramas and soap operas.
  • Craig Oliver, a BBC executive replaces Andy Coulson as David Cameron’s Director of Communications.
  • Online publisher The Huffington Post is bought by AOL in a staggering $315 million deal.

Premier League Rewind: 29th-31st October 2011

Results: Chelsea 3-5 Arsenal, Everton 0-1 Manchester United, Manchester City 3-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers, Norwich City 3-3 Blackburn Rovers, Sunderland 2-2 Aston Villa, Swansea City 3-1 Bolton Wanderers, Wigan Athletic 0-2 Fulham, West Bromwich Albion 0-2 Liverpool FC, Tottenham Hotspur 3-1 Queens Park Rangers, Stoke City 1-3 Newcastle United

The Premier League world was still reeling from Manchester City’s exhilarating display at Old Trafford a weekend earlier, where they’d humiliated Manchester United 6-1 on their own backyard. Also, football was dealing with some damaging allegations of claims of racism against Chelsea and England captain John Terry and Liverpool FC forward Luis Suarez.

So, Terry had a point to prove and so did Chelsea against Arsenal in the opening game of the weekend. It turned out to be one of the greatest-ever London Derbies in Premier League history. The Blues led 2-1 at half-time through headers from Frank Lampard and inevitably, Terry. Arsenal turned the game around in the second half with goals in quick succession by Andre Santos and Theo Walcott. Juan Mata levelled the match up with an equaliser and with five minutes to go, it looked like the points would be shared. Then, Terry slipped over and his error allowed Robin van Persie a clear run on-goal. The Dutchman made no mistake to score his second of the afternoon and put Arsenal 4-3 ahead. There was still time for Van Persie to complete a magnificent hat-trick in stoppage-time and hand Andre Villas-Boas a first home defeat as Chelsea boss.

The Blues slipped nine points off the pace that was red-hot and being set by Manchester City. Roberto Mancini’s side had conceded just eight goals in 10 matches and relinquished only two points so far this season. There was a routine win on this weekend, beating Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-1 at The Etihad Stadium. City kept a five-point cushion over Manchester United who bounced back from the derby disaster to edge past Everton 1-0 at Goodison Park. As with most recent seasons, Everton had made a very slow start. They’d now lost four out of their last five matches and dropped to 16th in the table, only four points clear of the relegation zone.

Chelsea’s terrible 10 days was compounded by the final game of the weekend which saw Newcastle United overtake them and move into third place. Alan Pardew’s side were the only side other than league leaders Manchester City to remain unbeaten at the end of October. Demba Ba scored his second hat-trick of the season as the Magpies claimed an impressive 3-1 victory away at Stoke City on the Monday Night Football.

Tottenham Hotspur consolidated their position just outside the top four as they beat Queens Park Rangers 3-1 in a London Derby. Gareth Bale scored twice for the home side, who were now unbeaten in seven games and still had a game in-hand on their rivals in the table. Bottom of the table were Wigan Athletic. Roberto Martinez’s side looked set for a long winter after losing 2-0 at home to Fulham through goals from Clint Dempsey and Mousa Dembele. Bolton Wanderers lost 3-1 to Swansea City to suffer an eighth loss in 10 outings and Blackburn Rovers remained in the bottom three after throwing away a 3-1 lead to draw 3-3 with Norwich City. Grant Holt rescued a point for the hosts with an equaliser in the fourth minute of stoppage-time.

What else happened in October 2011?

  • The war in Libya ends as Colonel Gaddafi is killed in Sirte and the city is taken under control by the National Transitional Council.
  • After 43 years of political violence, the Basque separatist militant organisation ETA declares an end to its campaign, which has killed over 800 people since 1968.
  • American entrepreneur and co-founder of Apple, Steve Jobs, dies in California aged 56 from a pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor.
  • New Zealand beat France to win the 2011 Rugby World Cup final, their first victory in the competition since 1987.
  • Liam Fox resigns as Defence Secretary after allegations are made over his working relationship with self-styled adviser Adam Werritty.
  • Motorsport is rocked by tragic accidents on successive Sundays that claim the life of British IndyCar driver Dan Wheldon in Las Vegas and the popular Italian motorcyclist Marco Simoncelli in Malaysia.
  • In a ceremony in London, former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney marries American heiress Nancy Shevell.

Great Goals: Robin van Persie – MANCHESTER UNITED vs. Aston Villa (April 2013)

In the summer of 2012, Robin van Persie was the finished article in terms of goalscoring ability. After several years of promise which had been stopped by injury, he’d sparkled as captain of Arsenal. The Dutchman struck 30 times in 2011-2012 to win the Golden Boot and sweep the main player awards for the season, despite the Gunners finishing 18 points behind champions Manchester City.

Van Persie elected not to sign a new contract that summer and with 12 months left only to run on his current deal, Arsenal had to cash in on their prized asset. Both Manchester clubs courted his services. Van Persie ultimately chose Manchester United.

In what turned out to be Sir Alex Ferguson’s swansong, he won the Golden Boot again, his one and only Premier League title and the Goal of the Season award for this spectacular volley on the night the Red Devils were crowned Premier League champions for a 13th time.

Wayne Rooney was provider with a delicious long ball over the top of the high defensive line Aston Villa were playing. Van Persie watched the ball all the way and connected first time as it dropped out of the night sky, thumping a beautiful volley beyond Brad Guzan. It was a picturesque goal and a fitting way to earn the Premier League prize back for Manchester United. For the record, RVP scored a hat-trick on the night in United’s 3-0 victory.

Seasonal Records: 2012-2013

For all the statistical fans out there, here are some of the season’s records from the 2012-2013 Premier League campaign. It would turn out to be Sir Alex Ferguson’s final season as manager of Manchester United and he bowed out in style, as the Red Devils reclaimed the Premier League title.

FINAL TABLE

Position Team P W D L F A GD PTS
1 Manchester United 38 29 4 5 86 43 +43 91
2 Manchester City 38 23 9 6 66 34 +32 78
3 Chelsea 38 22 9 7 75 39 +36 75
4 Arsenal 38 21 10 7 72 37 +35 73
5 Tottenham Hotspur 38 21 9 8 66 46 +20 72
6 Everton 38 16 15 7 55 40 +15 63
7 Liverpool FC 38 16 13 9 71 43 +28 61
8 West Bromwich Albion 38 14 7 17 53 57 -4 49
9 Swansea City 38 11 13 14 47 51 -4 46
10 West Ham United 38 12 10 16 45 53 -8 46
11 Norwich City 38 10 14 14 41 58 -17 44
12 Fulham 38 11 10 17 50 60 -10 43
13 Stoke City 38 9 15 14 34 45 -11 42
14 Southampton 38 9 14 15 49 60 -11 41
15 Aston Villa 38 10 11 17 47 69 -22 41
16 Newcastle United 38 11 8 19 45 68 -23 41
17 Sunderland 38 9 12 17 41 54 -13 39
18 Wigan Athletic 38 9 9 20 47 73 -26 36
19 Reading 38 6 10 22 43 73 -30 28
20 Queens Park Rangers 38 4 13 21 30 60 -30 25

 

THE BASIC STATS

Goals Scored 1063
European qualifiers Manchester United (UEFA Champions League)

Manchester City (UEFA Champions League)

Chelsea (UEFA Champions League)

Arsenal (UEFA Champions League)

Tottenham Hotspur (UEFA Europa League)

Swansea City (UEFA Europa League)

Wigan Athletic (UEFA Europa League)

Longest winning run 7 games (Manchester United)
Longest unbeaten run 18 games (Manchester United)
Longest winless run 16 games (Queens Park Rangers)
Longest losing run 7 games (Reading)
Highest attendance 75,605 (Manchester United vs. Reading)
Lowest attendance 15,436 (Wigan Athletic vs. Reading)

 

AWARDS

PFA Players’ Player of the Year Gareth Bale (Tottenham Hotspur)
PFA Young Player of the Year Gareth Bale (Tottenham Hotspur)
Football Writers’ Award Gareth Bale (Tottenham Hotspur)
PFA Team of the Year David de Gea, Leighton Baines, Pablo Zabaleta, Rio Ferdinand, Jan Vertonghen, Michael Carrick, Gareth Bale, Eden Hazard, Juan Mata, Luis Suarez, Robin van Persie
Manager of the Year Sir Alex Ferguson (Manchester United
Premier League Goal of the Season Robin van Persie (MANCHESTER UNITED vs. Aston Villa)

 

HAT-TRICK HEROES

Player Teams Score Date
Robin van Persie Southampton vs. Manchester United 2-3 2nd September 2012
Luis Suarez Norwich City vs. Liverpool FC 2-5 29th September 2012
Jordi Gomez Wigan Athletic vs. Reading 3-2 24th November 2012
Santi Cazorla Reading vs. Arsenal 2-5 17th December 2012
Gareth Bale Aston Villa vs. Tottenham Hotspur 0-4 26th December 2012
Theo Walcott Arsenal vs. Newcastle United 7-3 29th December 2012
Shinji Kagawa Manchester United vs. Norwich City 4-0 2nd March 2013
Luis Suarez Wigan Athletic vs. Liverpool FC 0-4 2nd March 2013
Robin van Persie Manchester United vs. Aston Villa 3-0 22nd April 2013
Christian Benteke Aston Villa vs. Sunderland 6-1 29th April 2013
Daniel Sturridge Fulham vs. Liverpool FC 1-3 12th May 2013
Romelu Lukaku West Bromwich Albion vs. Manchester United 5-5 19th May 2013
Kevin Nolan West Ham United vs. Reading 4-2 19th May 2013

 

TOP SCORERS

Position Player Teams No of Goals
1 Robin van Persie Manchester United 26
2 Luis Suarez Liverpool FC 23
3 Gareth Bale Tottenham Hotspur 21
4 Christian Benteke Aston Villa 19
5 Michu Swansea City 18
6 Romelu Lukaku West Bromwich Albion 17
7= Frank Lampard Chelsea 15
7= Dimitar Berbatov Fulham 15
7= Rickie Lambert Southampton 15
7= Demba Ba Newcastle United & Chelsea 15
11= Edin Dzeko Manchester City 14
11= Theo Walcott Arsenal 14
13= Wayne Rooney Manchester United 12
13= Sergio Aguero Manchester City 12
13= Santi Cazorla Arsenal 12
13= Adam Le Fondre Reading 12
17= Lukas Podolski Arsenal 11
17= Carlos Tevez Manchester City 11
17= Juan Mata Chelsea 11
17= Jermain Defoe Tottenham Hotspur 11
17= Marouane Fellaini Everton 11
17= Daniel Sturridge Chelsea & Liverpool FC 11
17= Steven Fletcher Sunderland 11
17= Arouna Kone Wigan Athletic 11
25 Javier Hernandez Manchester United 10

 

BIGGEST VICTORIES

Chelsea 8-0 Aston Villa 23rd December 2012
Newcastle United 0-6 Liverpool FC 27th April 2013
Arsenal 6-1 Southampton 15th September 2012
Aston Villa 6-1 Sunderland 29th April 2013
Manchester City 5-0 Aston Villa 17th November 2012
Liverpool FC 5-0 Norwich City 19th January 2013
Liverpool FC 5-0 Swansea City 17th February 2013
Queens Park Rangers 0-5 Swansea City 18th August 2012
Fulham 5-0 Norwich City 18th August 2012
Arsenal 7-3 Newcastle United 29th December 2012

 

HIGHEST SCORING GAMES

No of Goals Teams Date
10 West Bromwich Albion 5-5 Manchester United 19th May 2013
10 Arsenal 5-5 Newcastle United 29th December 2012
8 Chelsea 8-0 Aston Villa 23rd December 2012
7 Arsenal 6-1 Southampton 15th September 2012
7 Aston Villa 6-1 Sunderland 29th April 2013
7 Arsenal 5-2 Tottenham Hotspur 17th November 2012
7 Reading 2-5 Arsenal 17th December 2012
7 Norwich City 2-5 Liverpool FC 29th September 2012
7 Reading 3-4 Manchester United 1st December 2012
7 Manchester United 4-3 Newcastle United 26th December 2012
7 Norwich City 3-4 Manchester City 29th December 2012
7 Swansea City 3-4 Norwich City 8th December 2012
6 Newcastle United 0-6 Liverpool FC 27th April 2013
6 Arsenal 5-1 West Ham United 23rd January 2013
6 Manchester United 4-2 Stoke City 20th October 2012
6 Chelsea 4-2 Reading 22nd August 2012
6 Tottenham Hotspur 2-4 Chelsea 20th October 2012
6 Sunderland 2-4 West Bromwich Albion 24th November 2012
6 West Ham United 4-2 Reading 19th May 2013
6 Newcastle United 4-2 Southampton 24th February 2013

 

YOUNGEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Izzy Brown West Bromwich Albion 2-3 Wigan Athletic 16 years, 3 months, 27 days 4th May 2013
Serge Gnabry Norwich City 1-0 Arsenal 17 years, 3 months, 6 days 20th October 2012
Luke Shaw West Bromwich Albion 2-0 Southampton 17 years, 3 months, 24 days 5th November 2012
Jordon Ibe Liverpool FC 1-0 Queens Park Rangers 17 years, 5 months, 11 days 19th May 2013
Raheem Sterling Liverpool FC 2-2 Manchester City 17 years, 8 months, 18 days 26th August 2012
James Ward-Prowse Manchester City 3-2 Southampton 17 years, 9 months, 18 days 19th August 2012
Nathan Ake Norwich City 0-1 Chelsea 17 years, 10 months, 8 days 26th December 2012
Karim Rekik Manchester City 1-0 Reading 18 years, 20 days 22nd December 2012
Adam Campbell Newcastle United 2-1 Stoke City 18 years, 2 months, 6 days 10th March 2013
Adam Mitchell Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 Sunderland 18 years, 5 months, 17 days 19th May 2013

 

OLDEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Brad Friedel Swansea City 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur 41 years, 10 months, 12 days 30th March 2013
Mark Schwarzer Swansea City 0-3 Fulham 40 years, 7 months, 13 days 19th May 2013
Ryan Giggs West Bromwich Albion 5-5 Manchester United 39 years, 5 months, 20 days 19th May 2013
Paul Scholes West Bromwich Albion 5-5 Manchester United 38 years, 6 months, 3 days 19th May 2013
Steve Harper Newcastle United 0-1 Arsenal 38 years, 2 months, 5 days 19th May 2013
Jussi Jaaskelainen West Ham United 4-2 Reading 38 years, 1 month 19th May 2013
Kelvin Davis Southampton 1-1 Stoke City 36 years, 7 months, 20 days 19th May 2013
Shay Given Aston Villa 1-3 Everton 36 years, 4 months, 5 days 25th August 2012
Georgios Karagounis Swansea City 0-3 Fulham 36 years, 2 months, 13 days 19th May 2013
Rory Delap Reading 1-1 Stoke City 36 years, 1 month, 12 days 18th August 2012

 

CLEAN SHEETS

Position Player Teams No of Clean Sheets
1 Joe Hart Manchester City 18
2= Petr Cech Chelsea 14
2= Pepe Reina Liverpool FC 14
4 Asmir Begovic Stoke City 12
5= David de Gea Manchester United 11
5= Jussi Jaaskelainen West Ham United 11
5= Simon Mignolet Sunderland 11
8= Wojciech Szczesny Arsenal 10
8= Tim Howard Everton 10
10 Hugo Lloris Tottenham Hotspur 9

Seasonal Records: 2011-2012

For all the statistical fans out there, here are some of the season’s records from the 2011-2012 Premier League campaign. This was the most dramatic finale to any Premier League season as in its 20th campaign; Manchester City snatched the title away in stoppage-time from Manchester United in the most unbelievable fashion.

FINAL TABLE

Position Team P W D L F A GD PTS
1 Manchester City 38 28 5 5 93 29 +64 89
2 Manchester United 38 28 5 5 89 33 +56 89
3 Arsenal 38 21 7 10 74 49 +25 70
4 Tottenham Hotspur 38 20 9 9 66 41 +25 69
5 Newcastle United 38 19 8 11 56 51 +5 65
6 Chelsea 38 18 10 10 65 46 +19 64
7 Everton 38 15 11 12 50 40 +10 56
8 Liverpool FC 38 14 10 14 47 40 +7 52
9 Fulham 38 14 10 14 48 51 -3 52
10 West Bromwich Albion 38 13 8 17 45 52 -7 47
11 Swansea City 38 12 11 15 44 51 -7 47
12 Norwich City 38 12 11 15 52 66 -14 47
13 Sunderland 38 11 12 15 45 46 -1 45
14 Stoke City 38 11 12 15 36 53 -17 45
15 Wigan Athletic 38 11 10 17 42 62 -20 43
16 Aston Villa 38 7 17 14 37 53 -16 38
17 Queens Park Rangers 38 10 7 21 43 66 -23 37
18 Bolton Wanderers 38 10 6 22 46 77 -31 36
19 Blackburn Rovers 38 8 7 23 48 78 -30 31
20 Wolverhampton Wanderers 38 5 10 23 40 82 -42 25

 

THE BASIC STATS

Goals Scored 1066
European qualifiers Manchester City (UEFA Champions League)

Manchester United (UEFA Champions League)

Arsenal (UEFA Champions League)

Chelsea (UEFA Champions League)

Tottenham Hotspur (UEFA Europa League)

Newcastle United (UEFA Europa League)

Liverpool FC (UEFA Europa League)

Longest winning run 8 games (Manchester United)
Longest unbeaten run 14 games (Manchester City)
Longest winless run 12 games (Wolverhampton Wanderers)
Longest losing run 8 games (Wigan Athletic)
Highest attendance 75,627 (Manchester United vs. Wolverhampton Wanderers)
Lowest attendance 15,195 (Queens Park Rangers vs. Bolton Wanderers)

 

AWARDS

PFA Players’ Player of the Year Robin van Persie (Arsenal)
PFA Young Player of the Year Kyle Walker (Tottenham Hotspur)
Football Writers’ Award Robin van Persie (Arsenal)
PFA Team of the Year Joe Hart, Leighton Baines, Kyle Walker, Fabricio Coloccini, Vincent Kompany, Scott Parker, Yaya Toure, David Silva, Gareth Bale, Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie
Manager of the Year Alan Pardew (Newcastle United)
Premier League Goal of the Season Papiss Cisse (Chelsea vs. NEWCASTLE UNITED)

 

HAT-TRICK HEROES

Player Teams Score Date
Edin Dzeko (4) Tottenham Hotspur vs. Manchester City 1-5 28th August 2011
Wayne Rooney Manchester United vs. Arsenal 8-2 28th August 2011
Sergio Aguero Manchester City vs. Wigan Athletic 3-0 10th September 2011
Wayne Rooney Bolton Wanderers vs. Manchester United 0-5 10th September 2011
Demba Ba Newcastle United vs. Blackburn Rovers 3-1 24th September 2011
Frank Lampard Bolton Wanderers vs. Chelsea 1-5 2nd October 2011
Andy Johnson Fulham vs. Queens Park Rangers 6-0 2nd October 2011
Robin van Persie Chelsea vs. Arsenal 3-5 29th October 2011
Demba Ba Stoke City vs. Newcastle United 1-3 31st October 2011
Yakubu (4) Blackburn Rovers vs. Swansea City 4-2 3rd December 2011
Dimitar Berbatov Manchester United vs. Wigan Athletic 5-0 26th December 2011
Clint Dempsey Fulham vs. Newcastle United 5-2 21st January 2012
Robin van Persie Arsenal vs. Blackburn Rovers 7-1 4th February 2012
Peter Odemwingie Wolverhampton Wanderers vs. West Bromwich Albion 1-5 12th February 2012
Pavel Pogrebnyak Fulham vs. Wolverhampton Wanderers 5-0 4th March 2012
Steven Gerrard Liverpool FC vs. Everton 3-0 13th March 2012
Carlos Tevez Norwich City vs. Manchester City 1-6 14th April 2012
Luis Suarez Norwich City vs. Liverpool FC 0-3 28th April 2012
Fernando Torres Chelsea vs. Queens Park Rangers 6-1 29th April 2012

 

TOP SCORERS

Position Player Teams No of Goals
1 Robin van Persie Arsenal 30
2 Wayne Rooney Manchester United 27
3 Sergio Aguero Manchester City 23
4= Emmanuel Adebayor Tottenham Hotspur 17
4= Clint Dempsey Fulham 17
4= Yakubu Blackburn Rovers 17
7 Demba Ba Newcastle United 16
8 Grant Holt Norwich City 15
9 Edin Dzeko Manchester City 14
10= Mario Balotelli Manchester City 13
10= Papiss Cisse Newcastle United 13
12= Danny Graham Swansea City 12
12= Steven Fletcher Wolverhampton Wanderers 12
14= Frank Lampard Chelsea 11
14= Jermain Defoe Tottenham Hotspur 11
14= Luis Suarez Liverpool FC 11
14= Rafael van der Vaart Tottenham Hotspur 11
14= Daniel Sturridge Chelsea 11
19= Javier Hernandez Manchester United 10
19= Gareth Bale Tottenham Hotspur 10
19= Peter Odemwingie West Bromwich Albion 10
19= Peter Crouch Stoke City 10
19= Danny Welbeck Manchester United 9
19= Nikica Jelavic Everton 9
19= Steve Morison Norwich City 9

 

BIGGEST VICTORIES

Manchester United 8-2 Arsenal 28th August 2011
Arsenal 7-1 Blackburn Rovers 4th February 2012
Fulham 6-0 Queens Park Rangers 2nd October 2011
Manchester United 1-6 Manchester City 23rd October 2011
Norwich City 1-6 Manchester City 14th April 2012
Chelsea 6-1 Queens Park Rangers 29th April 2012
Fulham 0-5 Manchester United 21st December 2011
Manchester United 5-0 Wigan Athletic 26th December 2011
Bolton Wanderers 0-5 Manchester United 10th September 2011
Wolverhampton Wanderers 0-5 Manchester United 18th March 2012

 

HIGHEST SCORING GAMES

No of Goals Teams Date
10 Manchester United 8-2 Arsenal 28th August 2011
8 Arsenal 7-1 Blackburn Rovers 4th February 2012
8 Chelsea 3-5 Arsenal 29th October 2011
8 Manchester United 4-4 Everton 22nd April 2012
8 Swansea City 4-4 Wolverhampton Wanderers 28th April 2012
7 Manchester United 1-6 Manchester City 23rd October 2011
7 Norwich City 1-6 Manchester City 14th April 2012
7 Chelsea 6-1 Queens Park Rangers 29th April 2012
7 Arsenal 5-2 Tottenham Hotspur 26th February 2012
7 Fulham 5-2 Newcastle United 21st January 2012
7 Blackburn Rovers 4-3 Arsenal 17th September 2011
6 Fulham 6-0 Queens Park Rangers 2nd October 2011
6 Tottenham Hotspur 1-5 Manchester City 28th August 2011
6 Manchester City 5-1 Norwich City 3rd December 2011
6 Bolton Wanderers 1-5 Chelsea 2nd October 2011
6 Wolverhampton Wanderers 1-5 West Bromwich Albion 12th February 2012
6 Aston Villa 2-4 Chelsea 31st March 2012
6 Norwich City 4-2 Newcastle United 10th December 2011
6 Blackburn Rovers 4-2 Swansea City 3rd December 2011
6 Manchester City 3-3 Sunderland 31st March 2012

 

YOUNGEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Raheem Sterling Liverpool FC 1-2 Wigan Athletic 17 years, 3 months, 16 days 24th March 2012
Adam Henley Wigan Athletic 3-3 Blackburn Rovers 17 years, 5 months, 5 days 19th November 2011
Ross Barkley Everton 0-1 Queens Park Rangers 17 years, 8 months 15 days 20th August 2011
Bruno Andrade Wigan Athletic 2-0 Queens Park Rangers 17 years, 10 months, 25 days 27th August 2011
Anthony Forde Chelsea 3-0 Wolverhampton Wanderers 18 years, 10 days 26th November 2011
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain Manchester United 8-2 Arsenal 18 years, 13 days 28th August 2011
Kerim Frei Swansea City 2-0 Fulham 18 years, 21 days 10th December 2011
Romelu Lukaku Chelsea 3-1 Norwich City 18 years, 3 months, 14 days 27th August 2011
Josh Vela Bolton Wanderers 1-1 Swansea City 18 years, 4 months, 7 days 21st April 2012
Connor Wickham Sunderland 0-1 Newcastle United 18 years, 4 months, 20 days 20th August 2011

 

OLDEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Brad Friedel Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Fulham 40 years, 11 months, 25 days 13th May 2012
Mark Schwarzer Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Fulham 39 years, 7 months, 7 days 13th May 2012
Ryan Giggs Sunderland 0-1 Manchester United 38 years, 5 months, 14 days 13th May 2012
Radek Cerny Arsenal 1-0 Queens Park Rangers 37 years, 10 months, 13 days 31st December 2011
Paul Scholes Sunderland 0-1 Manchester United 37 years, 5 months, 27 days 13th May 2012
Jussi Jaaskelainen Bolton Wanderers 1-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 36 years, 8 months, 12 days 31st December 2011
Jody Craddock Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-1 Sunderland 36 years, 4 months, 9 days 4th December 2011
Michel Salgado Sunderland 2-1 Blackburn Rovers 36 years, 1 month, 19 days 11th December 2011
Shay Given Norwich City 2-0 Aston Villa 36 years, 23 days 13th May 2012
Thomas Sorensen Stoke City 2-2 Bolton Wanderers 35 years, 11 months, 1 day 13th May 2012

 

CLEAN SHEETS

Position Player Teams No of Clean Sheets
1 Joe Hart Manchester City 17
2 Tim Krul Newcastle United 15
3= Brad Friedel Tottenham Hotspur 14
3= Michel Vorm Swansea City 14
5 David de Gea Manchester United 13
5= Wojciech Szczesny Arsenal 13
7= Tim Howard Everton 12
7= Pepe Reina Liverpool FC 12
9 Simon Mignolet Sunderland 11
10 Petr Cech Chelsea 10

Memorable Matches: Manchester City 4-2 Arsenal (September 2009)

Goalscorers: Micah Richards 20, Robin van Persie 62, Craig Bellamy 74, Emmanuel Adebayor 80, Shaun Wright-Phillips 84, Tomas Rosicky 88

Teams:

Manchester City: Shay Given, Wayne Bridge, Joleon Lescott, Kolo Toure, Micah Richards, Gareth Barry, Stephen Ireland (Martin Petrov 73), Nigel de Jong, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Emmanuel Adebayor, Craig Bellamy

Arsenal: Manuel Almunia, Gael Clichy, William Gallas, Bacary Sagna (Emmanuel Eboue 77), Thomas Vermaelen, Abou Diaby, Alex Song (Eduardo 77), Denilson (Tomas Rosicky 52), Cesc Fabregas, Niklas Bendtner, Robin van Persie

Referee: Mark Clattenburg, Attendance: 47,339

Big-spending Manchester City had made a 100% start to the 2009-2010 season, winning matches against Blackburn Rovers, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Portsmouth. This was their first genuine test though against an established member of the ‘big 4’ as Arsenal visited Eastlands in September 2009.

Arsenal had been beaten in Manchester just before the international break by United at Old Trafford and their goalscorer that day, Andrey Arshavin was out of this match with a groin injury. City had two former Arsenal players in their line-up in Kolo Toure and Emmanuel Adebayor. For the latter, it turned out to be a very dramatic afternoon against his former employers.

After William Gallas spurned a great early opportunity, City took the lead after 20 minutes. Gareth Barry guided in a free-kick which was met by a terrific leap from Micah Richards. His header came off the post and went into the net via an unfortunate deflection off Arsenal goalkeeper Manuel Almunia.

After a high-tempo first half, the frenetic pace continued in the second half. Arsenal stepped up their levels in the opening 15 minutes with Shay Given having to be at his best to deny a long-range effort by Thomas Vermaelen. Eventually, the pressure told in the 62nd minute. Robin van Persie escaped the attentions of Joleon Lescott on his home debut and placed a low shot away from Given’s reach. It levelled the scores deservedly and was the first goal Manchester City had conceded all season.

Arsenal should have built on this momentum but they would be breached worryingly three times in 10 minutes to put the game comprehensively out of reach. First, Richards did brilliantly to work his way past Alex Song. He squared the ball back for Craig Bellamy to lash the ball past Almunia and put Mark Hughes’ side back in the lead against the run of play. Moments earlier, Adebayor had been involved in an ugly confrontation with Van Persie which had seen the City striker stamp on the head of his former teammate. This was not spotted by Mark Clattenburg but the Togolese forward was later charged by the FA and banned for two matches for this act of violent conduct.

Adebayor had been jeered all afternoon by travelling supporters but he would have the last laugh. 10 minutes from time, Clattenburg played a brilliant advantage after Gael Clichy had fouled Shaun Wright-Phillips. Wright-Phillips played on, delivered the perfect cross and Adebayor got a free header which flew into the net. He then set off on a dash to the other end of the field to celebrate, deliberately at the Arsenal supporters who responded by throwing objects onto the pitch. He was booked and apologised afterwards as the emotions got the better of him.

There was still time for Wright-Phillips to make it 4-1, finishing off a free-flowing counter-attack which had been started by Bellamy. Tomas Rosicky did grab a late consolation on his comeback from injury but it was all in vain.

City won the battle but Arsenal had the last laugh. They’d finish in the top four, whilst their opponents missed out, finishing fifth and Hughes was sacked midway through the season to be replaced by Roberto Mancini.

Great Goals: Robin van Persie – Charlton Athletic vs. ARSENAL (September 2006)

Robin van Persie has scored some special goals in his career and many of them were in the Premier League. This was probably his best strike in the colours of Arsenal.

Arsenal had made the trip across London to face Charlton Athletic and the score was 1-1. It looked like it was going to take something special to settle the stalemate between the two sides and Van Persie most definitely produced it.

It was a nice build-up from the Gunners, involving Justin Hoyte, Gilberto and Emmanuel Eboue. Eboue produced the cross but there was still plenty for Van Persie to do. His volley was magnificent and it was fitting to win the match for Arsene Wenger’s side.

Memorable Matches: Southampton 2-3 Manchester United (September 2012)

Goalscorers: Rickie Lambert 15, Robin van Persie 22, 86, 90, Morgan Schneiderlin 54

Teams:

Southampton: Kelvin Davis, Nathaniel Clyne, Jos Hooiveld, Jose Fonte, Daniel Fox, Morgan Schneiderlin, Steven Davis, James Ward-Prowse, Adam Lallana (Jay Rodriguez 78), Jason Puncheon (Emmanuel Mayuka 74), Rickie Lambert (Guly do Prado 75)

Manchester United: Anders Lindegaard, Rafael, Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand, Patrice Evra, Antonio Valencia, Tom Cleverley (Paul Scholes 61), Michael Carrick, Shinji Kagawa (Nani 61), Danny Welbeck (Javier Hernandez 71), Robin van Persie

Referee: Mike Dean, Attendance: 31,609

In the summer of 2012, Robin van Persie elected not to sign a new contract at Arsenal. With just a year left on his current deal at the Emirates Stadium, the Gunners’ had little choice but to sell him or risk losing him a year later for absolutely nothing. Both Manchester clubs expressed an interest in signing the Dutchman but it was United who beat City to his signature. It was the kind of move that Sir Alex Ferguson made which brought about echoes of his purchase of Eric Cantona 20 years earlier.

Van Persie had scored on his home debut a week earlier against Fulham and was hungry for more in the Red Devils’ next match which was a trip to newly-promoted Southampton. Wayne Rooney was missing through injury whilst David de Gea was dropped after two indifferent performances for Anders Lindegaard.

Lindegaard couldn’t keep a clean sheet though. Southampton started brightly and took the lead on 15 minutes. Rickie Lambert outjumped Rafael at the back post to nod home his second goal of the season. A fortnight earlier, Lambert had scored against Manchester City in a narrow 3-2 defeat. This time, he was hoping to be on the scoresheet in a winning contribution against a Manchester side.

The lead didn’t last long though. Antonio Valencia’s cross found Van Persie and displaying his usual predatory instincts; the marksman beat Kelvin Davis on the half-volley. It was a cracking game with chances at both ends and the scores even at half-time.

Like the first half, it was Nigel Adkins’ side that started stronger following a break in play. They caused Ferguson’s team huge problems on the counter-attack. Lambert’s cross headed into the back of Lindegaard’s net by the efficient Morgan Schneiderlin. With Tom Cleverley struggling against James Ward-Prowse in midfield, Ferguson decided to bring on experience in Paul Scholes in the 61st minute. It was another inspired move. Scholes immediately started to spray passes across the pitch and completely took control of the central midfield battle.

In the 68th minute, Jos Hooiveld made a clumsy challenge on Van Persie and Mike Dean had little option but to give a spot-kick. However, the usual reliable Dutchman was too casual with his penalty on this occasion. Davis was able to stop his chipped effort. Van Persie though would not be denied. His late double cruelly denying the Saints’ at least a point from a gripping encounter. His first Manchester United hat-trick meant he had already started repaying the £24m transfer fee spent on him by Ferguson.

Any debt had been welly and truly repaid by the season’s end. RVP was top scorer for the second season running and spearheaded Manchester United to a 20th league title in what turned out to be Sir Alex Ferguson’s swansong season. Southampton controversially dismissed Adkins in mid-January but comfortably survived under the guidance of a certain Mauricio Pochettino.

Memorable Matches: Newcastle United 4-4 Arsenal (February 2011)

Goalscorers: Theo Walcott 1, Johan Djourou 3, Robin van Persie 10, 26, Joey Barton 68 PEN, 83 PEN, Leon Best 75, Cheick Tiote 87

Teams:

Newcastle United: Steve Harper, Jose Enrique, Fabricio Coloccini, Mike Williamson, Danny Simpson, Joey Barton, Cheick Tiote, Kevin Nolan, Jonas Gutierrez, Leon Best (Danny Guthrie 89), Peter Lovenkrands (Nile Ranger 73)

Arsenal: Wojciech Szczesny, Bacary Sagna, Johan Djourou (Sebastien Squillaci 48), Laurent Koscielny, Gael Clichy, Jack Wilshere, Abou Diaby (SENT OFF), Cesc Fabregas, Andrey Arshavin (Tomas Rosicky 69), Theo Walcott (Emmanuel Eboue 79), Robin van Persie

Referee: Phil Dowd, Attendance: 51,561

Title-chasing Arsenal arrived on Tyneside for a fixture in February 2011 in confident mood. The Gunners’ were unbeaten at the start of the year and this looked like the perfect time to play their opposition. Newcastle were reeling from the sudden departure of top scorer and star player Andy Carroll on a crazy transfer deadline day.

Whilst they’d received £35million from Liverpool FC for Carroll’s services, fans were upset that the star asset could be sold and no replacement come in. Carroll had scored the winning goal when the teams’ met in November 2010 so at least Arsene Wenger didn’t have to worry about his physical prowess in the air. By full-time, he had to worry about the fragility of his side which was brutally exposed in the second half.

It had started so well in the first 45 minutes for the visitors’. They had simply blitzed their opponents. In fact, it looked like it could end up a cricket scoreline, such was the one-sided dominance. Theo Walcott stormed through the middle, outpaced Fabricio Coloccini and beat Steve Harper inside 44 seconds.

Three minutes later, it was 2-0. Andrey Arshavin’s free-kick was connected by the head of Johan Djourou. It was Djourou’s first-ever goal for Arsenal. Robin van Persie then added a quick-fire brace and Arsenal were 4-0 ahead inside 26 minutes. A combination of stylish attacking football from the Gunners’ and woeful Newcastle defending meant this was a scoreline that didn’t flatter either side.

Alan Pardew had to rouse his troops at half-time but they did get an early boost in the second half. Midfielder Abou Diaby lost control of his temperament. He pushed Joey Barton to the floor and also shoved Kevin Nolan right infront of the referee Phil Dowd. Dowd had no option but to give Diaby a straight red card.

Newcastle were lifted by this and they got on the scoreboard shortly afterwards. Laurent Koscielny’s clumsy tackle on Leon Best saw the home side given a penalty. Barton held his nerve to send goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny the wrong way. The Pole’s refusal to give the ball back resulted in his own yellow card and suggested Arsenal nerves – despite still possessing a three-goal advantage.

Best had scored a hat-trick a month earlier against West Ham United and was giving Koscielny and Sebastien Squillaci who had replaced Djourou early in the second half some major problems. He had a goal incorrectly ruled out for offside, before beating Gael Clichy at the back post and squeezing a shot past Szczesny from eight yards out after fine work by Jose Enrique. Suddenly, Newcastle supporters really started to believe.

Hope turned to expectation when Barton scored his second penalty seven minutes from time. Koscielny was adjudged to have impeded Mike Williamson in an aerial contest. It looked a soft spot-kick but the home players and supporters were not complaining.

Arsenal had simply gone to pieces. They couldn’t cope with the barrage of attacks that the Magpies’ were throwing at them. Yet, it had to take something special to complete the comeback. Barton’s free-kick was cleared away but only to the path of Tiote who produced one of the most iconic moments in Premier League history.

His volley was sublime and it nestled into the bottom corner, giving Szczesny little chance of saving his shot. The whole place went berserk. Pardew’s passion clear to see; players chased Tiote down the field and started jumping on him. Meanwhile, Arsenal simply looked dazed and confused. How had they managed to let this advantage slip away?

We will see many great comebacks in years to come in the Premier League but they will do well to match Newcastle United’s incredible recovery in this match of February 2011.