On This Day In 2013: Arsenal seal UCL qualification

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On This Day In 2013: Arsenal seal UCL qualification

Posted on May 19, 2018 by Harry Kettle

We’re back for yet another trip down memory lane, and once again, it’s time to look back on another edition of St Totteringham’s Day! Yes, that’s right, five years ago today, Arsenal fans all around the world were celebrating the fact that they’d pipped bitter rivals Tottenham Hotspur to fourth spot which ensured they would be playing in the UEFA Champions League for another year.

As sound as that may sound, by 2013, any realistic hopes of Arsenal crashing the title race picture had pretty much been and gone. Because of that, qualifying for the UCL was considered to be the bare minimum that Arsene Wenger should’ve been achieving, and he did so after masterminding a narrow 1-0 victory over Newcastle United.

Arsenal fans around St James’ Park were constantly checking their phones to see whether or not Spurs were winning against Sunderland, knowing that if they were able to better Arsenal’s result, then they’d leapfrog them in the table. Thankfully, it didn’t come to that, as Laurent Koscielny struck a rare goal after Podolski headed on Walcott’s free-kick to cause pandemonium in the away end.

Walcott hit the post late in the day as Arsenal attempted to ice the game and the result, but 1-0 wound up being the final scoreline. It’s odd, in a way, that this only happened five years ago, because now, the climate in North London has changed so drastically that it’s almost unrecognisable.

Alas, it’s still something to savour for the Gunners, who were seven points behind their rivals at the beginning of March before surging back ahead of them to increase their streak of finishing above them to 18 seasons.

But in the present day, as we all know, it’s Tottenham who hold all the cards as they were recently able to finish above Arsenal for the second straight year. Still, that won’t be enough for them, given that the Gunners have many more trophies to their name over the course of the last few decades.

With the Premier League looking stronger than it ever has before, it’ll be fascinating to see how these two sides evolve in the next few months as we prepare for the 2018/19 campaign.

What was your favourite memory from the 2012/13 season?

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