Liverpool and Arsenal have put on some great matches in their history. Some have stood the test of time as being incredibly memorable, especially in the last 20 years.
Since the turn of the Millennium, the two famous English clubs have played 48 times in all competitions. Of those 48 times, these five fixtures stand out for their brilliance.
5. Arsenal 3-4 Liverpool, Premier League (2016-17)
If you want goals, then Arsenal-Liverpool matches rarely disappoint. The two sides opened the Premier League season against each other in 2016-17 with a thrilling game.
Arsenal’s Theo Walcott opened the scoring for the Gunners before Philippe Coutinho responded on the stroke of halftime. The Brazilian’s free-kick was a thing of beauty and took the teams into the break level.
Adam Lallana struck just after halftime and his goal was followed by Coutinho’s second. Sadio Mane dazzled with a fourth to put Liverpool up by three goals. However, it was almost not enough.
Liverpool’s counter-attack was stellar but their defence nearly gave up the lead allowing Arsenal back into the fixture.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain scored on 64 minutes and Calum Chambers added another 11 minutes later. Liverpool held on from there as the two clubs produced the match of the round.
4. Liverpool 5-1 Arsenal, Premier League (2018-19)
Liverpool just missed out on the Premier League title in 2018-19 by one point to Manchester City. The title went down to the final day of the season.
Just after Christmas, Liverpool had a major test against the Gunners at Anfield. The Reds went into the match in first place and needed to continue winning before visiting Manchester City five days later.
Things didn’t start well for Liverpool, however, as unlikely Arsenal goalscorer, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, put the visitors ahead.
It took Liverpool just three minutes to equalise as Roberto Firmino struck the first of his three goals. From there, the floodgates opened and Liverpool were rampant. Firmino struck again two minutes after is first. Then, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah tallied goals before halftime. Once a goal down, Liverpool were up 4-1 at the half.
Arsenal were stunned but the goal letting wasn’t over yet. Firmino finished off his hat-trick with a penalty in the 65th minute.
3. Arsenal 1-2 Liverpool, FA Cup Final (2001)
The Michael Owen Final. One of Owen’s finest moments as a Liverpool player came against Arsenal in the 2001 FA Cup Final. After going down a goal to Arsenal courtesy of a Freddie Ljungberg 73rd-minute strike, Liverpool rebounded through the English striker.
Gerard Houllier’s Liverpool were lifeless for 84 minutes of the match, yet somehow Owen spearheaded a sudden rival that saw him score twice in the final six minutes of regular time.
Liverpool’s FA Cup success was their second trophy win of the season and propelled them onto UEFA Cup glory days later against Alaves.
2. Liverpool 4-2 Arsenal, Champions League (2007-08)
Liverpool and Arsenal faced off in the 2007-08 Champions League quarterfinals just one season after they reached the final against AC Milan. The first leg finished 1-1 after goals from Emmanuel Adebayor and Dirk Kuyt left things all square at the Emirates.
The Reds had the away goal advantage in the second leg, but Arsenal came out swinging. Abou Diaby scored in the 13th minute to give the Gunners the lead. Sammi Hyppia levelled the game and aggregate score on 30 minutes. Then, Fernando Torres struck with 21 minutes remaining to put the Reds ahead.
More twists and turns were coming, however. Adebayor scored with six minutes left to play putting Arsenal back on top on aggregate. Liverpool marched right down the pitch and won a penalty that Steven Gerrard cooly put away. Ryan Babel’s 90th-minute goal sealed the deal and Liverpool advanced to a second straight Champions League semifinal.
1. Liverpool 4-4 Arsenal, Premier League (2008-09)
Rafael Benitez’s 2008-09 Liverpool team was the best squad of players Liverpool had this century until 2018-19. This was an amazing squad that featured Steven Gerrard, Fernando Torres, and one of Liverpool’s most underrated stars Xabi Alonso.
The Reds finished second in the league but should have won the title. Liverpool’s 11 draws killed their chances of winning the Premier League and Benitez’s tactics against the lower half of the table teams were infuriating. Five of Liverpool’s draws were by nil-nil scorelines.
Liverpool’s 4-4 draw against Arsenal was one of the most thrilling, yet maddening matches under Benitez’s reign. It was a back and forth game that saw the lead change hands twice.
Andrey Arshavin enjoyed his best moment as an Arsenal player scoring all four goals for the Gunners. Despite his four goals, which is all people remember now, Torres and Yossi Benayoun both scored braces. Benayoun’s second came at the death to give Liverpool the 4-4 draw. Played in late April, the draw was Liverpool’s only blemish over the course of 11 matches to end the season.
This match will hold a place in my heart as I watched it at 2 am while living in Seoul, South Korea. I woke up in the middle of the night to watch the midweek game before heading off to work. It wasn’t the result I’d hoped for when I woke up.