A couple of typos in this script were corrected on 11 August 2014.
So all encompassing has the “49” unbeaten run and the unbeaten season itself become, and so overwhelming the baying of the journalists who insist that nothing is right because Arsenal have not won a trophy for a number of years, that we can forget other terrific runs that Arsenal have had.
The 2007 run was one such that needs to be remembered. Here is the list of matches in the 2007/8 season (I have omitted the League Cup).
12 August: Arsenal 2 Fulham 1
15 August: Sparta Prague 0 Arsenal 2
19 August: Blackburn 1 Arsenal 1
25 August: Arsenal 1 Manchester City 0
29 August: Arsenal 3 Sparta Prague 0
2 September: Arsenal 3 Portsmouth 1
15 September: Tottenham 1 Arsenal 3
19 September Arsenal 3 Sevilla 0
22 September Arsenal 5 Derby 0
29 September West Ham 0 Arsenal 1
12 October Steaua București 0 Arsenal 1
17 October Arsenal 3 Sunderland 2
20 October Arsenal 2 Bolton 0
23 October Arsenal 7 Steaua București 0
28 October Liverpool 1 Arsenal 1
13 November Arsenal 2 Man U 2
27 November Slavia Prague 0 Arsenal 0
12 November Reading 1 Arsenal 3
24 November Arsenal 2 Wigan 0
27 November Sevilla 3 Arsenal 1
So what happened on 27 November?
Well basically, Arsenal lost, and with that defeat lost the chance to be top of Group H.
At the start it looked ok asEduardo gave us the lead following a pass from Nicklas Bendtner, but it didn’t last long and by half time Sevilla were 2-1 up. Their third came from a penalty.
But this was a game where Arsenal gave the kiddies a run out, as a look at the team (see below) shows and although it might seem strange to read in 2013, the opener involved an Emmanuel Eboue seemingly impossible backheel to Bendtner before his pass to Eduardo
But Senderos was having a poor game, and Gilberto was nearing the end of his time at Arsenal and he really wasn’t the player he used to be.
Hoyte got a yellow carded for treading on Adriano Correia after he had been fouled without action from the ref, and Denilson joined in the rough stuff with a two-footed tackle.
No one was helped much by the ref – particularly when Sevilla claimed a penalty for a Senderous handball, which Eric Braamhaar gave, and then changed his mind – but when Toure and Sagna combined to bring down Kanoute the penalty was given. Wenger was then sent off, officially for remonstrating with the fourth official. In a subsequent interview Wenger said,
“I had no exchanges with the referee. I don’t know why I was sent off, I was really surprised. The fourth official was really difficult for the whole game, I said to the referee ‘will you explain to me why I have been sent off?’.” The refs reply was not recorded.
Justin Hoyte (Sagna 66), Toure, Senderos, Traore,
Eboue, Fabregas (Rosicky 56), Silva, Denilson,
Eduardo (Walcott 81), Bendtner.
Subs Not Used: Lehmann, Diarra, Flamini, Song
Booked: Justin Hoyte, Denilson.