As the Arsenal Manager turns 65 today, now is as good an excuse as any to post the 10 times that luck has played the biggest part in the Frenchman’s Arsenal career.
1) FA Cup Semi-Final Replay 1999 – Bergkamp’s Penalty Miss
1999 will forever be “United’s year”. Their treble immortalised, the luck forgotten. The narrative, however, could have been so very different. Arsene Wenger had won the double in his the previous season, and had the opportunity to repeat the feat for a second consecutive year. The title proved to be in Arsenal’s hands, and a 1-0 loss away at Leeds ensured Wenger retained neither trophy, and would have to wait another agonising three seasons before his next double.
14th April - the FA cup semi-final replay. A deflected shot from Bergkamp finds the back of the net, cancelling out David Beckham’s spectacular first half effort. The momentum of the game certainly looks to be moving back towards the holders. Within 3 minutes, Arsenal score again. The players and crowd merge into one ecstatic entity as 20 year old wonderkid, Nicolas Anelka, rounds Schmeichel and puts the Gunners in the lead for the first time. The linesman, however, was having none of it. Offside. No Goal.