With the Europa League game very soon, and the prospect of winning a third European trophy, I wanted to lighten our negative mood. And not just after losing to the scum. But in our inconsistent displays and weak mentality.
Opinions will naturally differ, but these are my favourite European games*:
Arsenal 7-0 Sparta Prague 1993/94 Cup Winners Cup
In our successful 1994 Cup-winners-cup campaign, we managed to demolish Sparta Prague, on the way of course to eventually defeating Parma in Denmark.
PSG 1-1 Arsenal 1993/94 Cup Winners Cup (2-1 agg.)
Wrighty again managed to get a crucial away goal, to ensure we beat them to reach the final in 1994.
Auxerre 0-1 Arsenal – 1994/95 Cup Winners Cup (2-1 agg.)
Ian Wright (Wright, Wright) came to the fore to get both an away goal and the win in France.
Arsenal 5-5 Sampdoria (agg.) (we won on penalties) 1994/95 Cup Winners Cup
This tie overall was epic, from the game at Highbury, to seeing Lombardo, and Steve Bould get a brace. The game in Genoa was also grand, with us getting the tie level with a Schwarz free-kick. David Seaman was the hero, by making some telling penalty saves to get us to the final.
Arsenal 1-2 Real Zaragoza 1994/95 Cup Winners-Cup
Yes, we lost. And ironically to a former Spurs player. However, despite a very bad season on and off the pitch, we were able to hold our own in the game and lose to what still is one of the most extraordinary goals in European history.
Real Madrid 0-1 Arsenal 2005/06 Champions League (1-0 agg)
Henry was the driving light here, since we became the first English team to win in the Bernabeu. We had suffered a bad domestic defeat in the weekend prior, and with Beckham, Zidane, Roberto Carlos, and Raul no less (arguably the best Spanish player ever), we smashed them at their place.
Arsenal 2-0 Juventus 2005/06 Champions League (2-0 agg)
An old hero came back and lost, as Vieira got schooled by Cesc and Gilberto. Cesc also scored, as did Henry, and we totally dominated this game and the tie overall.
These are some snippets, for me, of our most prominent European games in PL history at least. I’m not old enough to remember the CWC run in the late 70s, or the Fairs Cup run. Though I’d have loved to see Brady or Charlie George in the flesh.
*Yes, our wins vs. Barca 2011, Bayern 2015, and Inter 2003, were immense in themselves. But they didn’t lead to much in the end. This listing relates to win or great games that in turn lead to deep progression in a tournament. In short, games that actually meant something, which the 2nd leg of the Barca 2011 game naturally didn’t.