Newcastle United vs Arsenal: Classic Encounters
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In their final home game of the 2021/22 Premier League season, Newcastle United look to end the campaign on a high when they welcome Champions-League chasing Arsenal to the North East under the lights on Monday night. 

Eddie Howe’s Magpies have achieved their main objective this season - securing their top-flight status with two games to spare - making history in the process as they are the only side in the Premier League era to survive after failing to win any of their opening 14 matches.

Newcastle’s incredible turnaround has seen the head coach nominated in a five-man shortlist for the Manager of the Season award, but as preparations are now well underway for the summer and beyond, Howe will be desperate to finish this season strongly and climb as high as possible in the table. 

Standing in their way is Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal, who have been in tremendous form in the league in recent weeks with four successive victories, but the crucial North London derby defeat to arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur saw them miss the chance to confirm their place in Europe’s elite competition next season.

But wins in their final two matches against Newcastle and Everton would see The Gunners secure a top-four finish, so there can be no room for error and they will be relieved that their fate is in their own hands.

So while all the pressure is on Arsenal, will the carnival atmosphere on Tyneside be too hot to handle?

VAVEL take a look at some of Newcastle’s most riveting meetings with Arsenal at St James’ Park.

In the legendary Sir Bobby Robson’s first season as Newcastle manager who replaced Ruud Gullit following his resignation after an horrendous start to the 1999/00 season which saw The Magpies lose four of their opening five matches.

Robson guided Newcastle to an 11th place finish and remarkably they were the top-flight’s third-highest scoring side with 63 goals. 

On the final day of the season, Newcastle produced a thrilling 4-2 victory over the Premier League runners-up Arsenal, who appeared to have one eye on their UEFA Cup final against Galatasaray, though the Turkish outfit would later go on to win the competition 4-1 on penalties. 

Gary Speed volleyed The Magpies ahead with a close-range finish after six minutes only for Nwankwo Kanu to level the scores just 50 seconds later as the Nigerian lobbed Shay Given

Newcastle regained their lead in superb fashion on 23 minutes as Alan Shearer hit a rip-roaring free-kick past Alexander Manninger into the top corner for his 300th goal of his career and the hosts held on to their slender advantage until eight minutes after the restart. 

Arsene Wenger’s side were back on level terms through Stefan Malz, but impressively it only took just four second half minutes for Robson’s black-and-whites to strike twice in quick succession as Speed grabbed his second of the afternoon and 13th of the season with a downward header from Nolberto Solano’s corner and Andy Griffin’s first goal for Newcastle rounded off an entertaining six-goal thriller on Tyneside.

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Widely regarded as the greatest comeback in Premier League history, Newcastle’s epic eight-goal thriller with Arsenal is perhaps the most classic of all encounters between the two sides. 

It was simply a pulsating game of two halves as Wenger’s team raced into a 3-0 lead inside the opening 10 minutes as Theo Walcott scored after just 44 seconds, Johan Djourou headed home Andrey Arshavin’s free-kick and Robin Van Persie was left unmarked to put Arsenal in complete control. 

The Dutchman added his second before the half-hour mark with a thumping free header past Steve Harper as The Gunners produced a rampant first half display.

But the pivotal moment which suddenly swung the match in Newcastle’s favour was when Abou Diaby received a straight red card on 50 minutes for violent conduct towards Joey Barton and following the dismissal of Diaby, Arsenal capitulated. 

In extraordinary circumstances, Newcastle scored four goals in just 19 second half minutes. Barton converted the first from the penalty spot after Laurent Koscielny fouled Leon Best before the striker made it 4-2 after having a goal moments earlier wrongly ruled out for offside. 

With seven minutes remaining, Alan Pardew’s Magpies pulled another one back as Barton dispatched his second spot-kick past Wojciech Szczesny as referee Phil Dowd deemed Koscielny had brought down Mike Williamson and suddenly the Toon Army believed the comeback could be completed. 

And we all know what happened next. 

On 87 minutes, Barton’s right-footed free-kick was cleared to the edge of the box and Cheick Tiote smashed an outstanding 20-yard strike into the bottom left corner to send St James’ Park into absolute bedlam. 

It may have been Tiote’s only goal for Newcastle in nearly seven years in the North East, but the Ivorian, who tragically died in 2017, aged just 30, will forever be etched into The Magpies’ 129-year history having scored one of the greatest goals of all-time. 

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Four years ago, Newcastle fought back from 1-0 down to beat The Gunners courtesy of Matt Ritchie’s 68th-minute winner, which ended a torrid run of 10 successive top-flight defeats against Arsenal. 

Alexandre Lacazette broke the deadlock for the visitors inside 14 minutes when the Frenchman got on the end of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s left-sided cross and slid in at the far post. 

But the lead only lasted 15 minutes as Ayoze Perez, who was in fine form, met DeAndre Yedlin’s low cross and struck his third goal in a row with a delightful first-time strike past Petr Cech

It looked like the contest was petering out for a draw as neither side created many clear-cut chances in the second half until The Magpies punished static Arsenal defending and found the match winner with just over 20 minutes remaining. 

Substitute Islam Slimani’s header was flicked on by Perez into the feet of Ritchie and the Scotland international, with his weaker foot, delivered a calm and composed finish over Cech which took Newcastle past the 40-point mark as they would go on to achieve a top-ten finish in their first season back in the Premier League under then manager Rafael Benitez

Yet, ever since Newcastle recorded their 10th Premier League victory over Arsenal, they have endured another difficult and disappointing run of form in recent years with eight consecutive defeats in all competitions as The Gunners have kept clean sheets in seven of those meetings. 

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