Today is the day that Arsenal need an iconic Overmars-type historic moment in Manchester

It’s been two decades since we were Champions. I’m old enough to remember all three of our Premiership’s vividly. Any club who win the title have that moment, one you look back on at the end of the season and say that was the turning point …. the injection of self-belief, the point where the outside world took you seriously, a wave of momentum to ride for the rest of the campaign.

In 1998, Marc Overmars scored Arsenal’s first ever Prem goal at Old Trafford. It’s an iconic image in our history.

One of our Gunners has a chance to replicate that this weekend. That’s not being dramatic or over hyping the occasion. It’s not as clear cut as whoever wins on Sunday lifts the trophy in May and it’s not as black and white as the loser should be written off. It’s more the mental impact it will have if either us or Man City get the 3 points.

Mathematically, if the worse were to happen by Easter Monday we could be as much as 3 points from top. With 9 games to go, not an impossible total to catch. That though is the standards that have been set where you are chasing down a machine who are capable of putting together a winning sequence.

That’s why the Fulham performance still haunts me. I said it at the time, in this division you can’t afford afternoons where you don’t show up.

Yet it’s what happens to the Gunners mentally based on the result at the Etihad.

I always stress that talent only gets you so far in Sport. Mentally separates the great from the good. Out of the three contenders that’s the question mark against our young squad. Perhaps the only question mark?

We no longer concede soft goals, don’t get bullied, are in-form, have scored so many goals in 2024 we have turned the goal difference in our favour (could be vital). The last part is’are we ready to get over the line’?

Can we perform with the lights on bright?

Or does it remain too big a step?

City and Liverpool have individuals used to winning silverware, we don’t have that.

It’s fascinating how many of our players this week in training, in the canteen, travelling to Manchester actually believe we can triumph?

Do we have enough leaders?

What can Mikel Arteta do to make his team have that confidence?

Because you know Man City players are not having the same issue in the build-up. For the Treble Winners, this is just another big game that they are used too. 12 months ago, I talked about Pep Guardiola’s men not just dealing with must-win conditions every few days but doing it with smiles on their faces. At the same time, we looked terrified, crippled by the fear of failure.

A lot of Gooners are confident and I can understand why you look at us and see a lot of positives. There exists though like we are a fanbase trying to convince themselves. Talk of City not being at their best, looking vulnerable; Haaland not being a great finisher; it’s wishful thinking. Everyone said the same about them this time last year and look what happened.

Yet Man City haven’t lost a game since December, don’t lose at home and haven’t lost this fixture in nearly a decade, mostly scoring 3-5 goals.

In our dressing room, who has the personality andcharacter to create their own Overmars scene?

The parallels to what the Dutchman did in our first Prem win has parallels to the current version of the Gunners. Like now, we headed to Manchester to face the Champions with a poor record at their ground. We were aware that Man United delivered at the business end of the season, their mindset stronger than the rest of the country.

In that double winning year, we still had work to do, with us having games in hand on the League leaders. Yet that one win made the outside take us seriously, made ourselves accept our dreams were now a reality and was one of the few times Sir Alex Ferguson watched his team throw away a big lead.

Let me stress, there is zero disgrace to lose at the Etihad, most do. It’s how you lose though. Not just have we not won at that ground in 9 years, we mostly get humiliated, conceding in the opening 20 mins. Our manager has failed to find a solution to that.

It could just be that this is too big a hurdle.

Or do we have the characters to seize the opportunity?

A personality who embraces the chance to be famous?

Who wants to write their name in our history and last forever?

Bravery to become immortal.

Who dares to catch their dreams while others chase illusions?

Or does that player not exist?

Who will be our Overmars?



So here are some simple rules which I must insist commenters follow….

You agree not to give any personal abuse to other Arsenal fans. Everyone is allowed to hold their own opinions even if you disagree with them. It COSTS NOTHING TO BE POLITE TO OTHER ARSENAL FANS.

Tags Man City v Arsenal Marc Overmars


  1. That Fulham game really leaves a bad taste because as you said we just didn’t show up. Losing after taking the lead makes it even worse as even on a bad day we had the chance to get away with it.
    Newcastle loss was a battle of attrition, West ham and Aston villa were games we dominated but lost to terrible finishing so these i can understand, it happens in a season.

    What even more annoying is that we have been the best team by far in the big 6 matches. Arsenal 12 pts in 6 matches, City 11 in 8 and Liverpool 8 in 8. Same goes if you compare the results with the current top 6 teams.

    Those 5 pts dropped vs Fulham look like the 4 pts dropped vs Southampton last season.

  2. A lot of player in our dressing room can produce magic moments in games like this, all that is needed is the gaffer’s approval. 😎

  3. Concerning turning pts i can give you 3 from last season run-in that most of us remember that if just 1 of them gone in our favor would have shifted the momentum to us.

    Martinelli bad pass to saka last sec vs Liverpool to steal that win at the death

    Saka penalty miss vs West ham at 2-1

    Trossard hitting the woodwork in injury time at 3-3 after we came back from 0-2 and 1-3.

    Just 1 goes in and we come to the Etihad not needing to win and shaken up but needing only to avoid defeat and with more confidence. The players reaction at the end of southampton shown they knew they had blew it n City would win their 2 games in hand and take 1st place.

  4. So sad for these such wierd remembrance were we conceeded badly n unexpected for that matter…….we “must” learn frm mistakes occured thier before so as to anable us to conquor our blocks ahead of us…..currently everyone is convinced that as arsenal yes we can as we av alresd done to big games……its a matter of being smart in approaching big matches.lik man city n the rest but we cant afford to loose currently so as to be sure n couragers enough to prosper till the end both loally n abroard…….champions league together……

  5. a tight low scoring game would suit Arsenal and offers our best chance

    whereas an end-to-end shoot-out does not

    1 – nil to the Arsenal is my dream result, and whoever scores that 1 and has an ‘Overmars’ moment will be interesting to see…redemption for Jesus!

  6. The main question marks against Arsenal are to do with youth, experience and squad depth. MC have a great manager, one of the greatest we have ever seen. MC are one of the greatest teams the PL has ever seen and are the best in Europe. This is a near peak MC, quite different from the MU that Arsenal faced so many years ago.
    To suggest that whether or not we can go to the Etihad and defeat team is largely down to “mentality” is overly simplistic. The author is obviously trying to focus on his favoured narrative in case we lose.
    We can quite rightly expect to be able to compete with MC on equal terms given our improvements over time.
    It will inevitably be tough and MC will be favourites as they at home. However, this is the strongest we have been when going up against MC in a long time which gives us good chances.

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