Newcastle 4-4 Arsenal: A look back at the craziest game of the 2010/11 season

(Photo by Sky Sports)

Arsenal take on Newcastle United in the Premier League this weekend and every time this fixture is upon us, many fans remember the famous 4-4 draw from the 2010/2011 season.

Newcastle haven’t had a lot of joy against us in the Premier League, especially over the last decade. The Magpies have beaten us just once since this famous fixture, but the 4-4 draw definitely felt like a victory for them that day.

Newcastle 4-4 Arsenal: Teams

Steve Harper started in goal for the hosts with a back four of Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini and Jose Enrique. Kevin Nolan and Cheikh Tiote played in central midfield with Joey Barton and Jonas Gutiérrez playing either side of them.

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Leon Best started in attack and played just behind Peter Lovenkrands.

Arsene Wenger named a strong Arsenal lineup. Wojciech Szczesny started in goal with a back four of Bacary Sagna, Laurent Koscielny, Johan Djourou and Gael Clichy.

Abou Diaby and Jack Wilshere played just behind Cesc Fabregas in midfield. Andrey Arshavin and Theo Walcott started on the flanks with Robin van Persie leading the line all on his own.

Dream start for the Gunners

Arsenal couldn’t have gotten off to a better start than they did on the day at St James’ Park.

Walcott opened the scoring after just 41 seconds after a brilliant through ball by Arshavin. The Russian set up another in the third minute, this time from a free-kick that was headed home by Djourou.

Just when Newcastle could digest what had happened to them, van Persie smashed home a third. The Gunners were cruising at 3-0 after just 10 minutes and the game looked done at that point.

To sure things up, van Persie scored another after 26 minutes. The game was wrapped up and in the bag for Arsenal, but what happened in the second half blew everybody’s mind.

The Magpies’ comeback

The second half seemed like a cakewalk for Arsenal but things started terribly. Diaby lost his cool and was sent off for violent conduct after lashing out at Barton’s terrible tackle. The Gunners were reduced to 10 men, but the game was still in our hands.

However, things went from bad to worse from the 68th minute.

Barton pulled one back for the hosts from the penalty spot before Best scored another just seven minutes later. Newcastle won another penalty and the same man who converted the first one made no mistake this time as well.

Arsenal were 4-3 up as the game entered the 87th minute. Every Gooner hoped that things wouldn’t get any worse, but Tiote scored one of the goals of the season to complete what really was a phenomenal comeback.

What did Wenger say?

Wenger was as shocked as we all were after the game. He was asked to sum up what he had just witnessed and he didn’t hold back when speaking about some of the refereeing decisions that went against us.

He told Sky Sports: “It was a good game with top intensity and overall I must say we played great football and we have to take a lot of positives out of this game.

“Some decisions went against us today. We were a bit nervous, I think Diaby was too nervous in his reaction. He shouldn’t have done. I think as well Barton should’ve been sent off for the same tackle.

“At the moment, we have to live with that. I don’t think he (referee) made the right decision, the first foul from Barton was quite bad.”

Photo by Stuart MacFarlane – Arsenal FC/Arsenal FC via Getty Images
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