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Thursday 08 May 2014

On this day in 2002: Title winners Arsenal at the Double

Looking back at Premier League history, we recall Arsenal sealing the title after their FA Cup win

On 8 May 2002, Sylvain Wiltord scored the decisive goal as the Gunners beat Man Utd to seal the Barclays Premier League rifles through the annals of the Barclays Premier League to find significant events.

8 May 2002 - Manchester United 0-1 Arsenal

Sylvain Wiltord scored the only goal against Manchester United at Old Trafford as Arsenal won the Double by adding the Barclays Premier League title to their FA Cup triumph.

The Gunners, who had beaten Chelsea in the FA Cup final at the Millennium Stadium four days earlier, moved seven points clear of second-placed Liverpool and eight ahead of Man Utd in third with only one match remaining.

"We wanted tonight to be a shift of power and to take the trophy back to Highbury," said a delighted Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger. "It’s just fantastic to win it here as they are the team we want to beat and they have dominated English football for the past three years.

"This is a victory for the entire squad. Everyone has contributed and we’ve had a great team spirit.

"I've been waiting three years for this and it's a sweet moment"
Freddie Ljungberg

"I think they will come back stronger next year but we want to be stronger as well."

The first half produced few chances but did contain some robust challenges.

The match improved after the break and after Wiltord almost set up Edu, the Frenchman struck for the 55th minute winner.

Mikael Silvestre lost possession to Wiltord, who set Freddie Ljungberg away. His shot was parried by Fabien Barthez but Wiltord was on hand to tuck home the rebound for his 17th goal of the season and 10th in the Premier League.

Despite the swift introduction of United substitute Ruud van Nistelrooy, the hosts could not find a way back into the match as Arsenal completed the third Double in their history.

"Arsenal have displayed championship form recently and they are worthy champions," Man Utd manager Sir Alex Ferguson. "Some people react to adversity - I have always done that and we will be ready for next season."

The result was Arsenal's 10th consecutive victory in all competitions, seventh in the Premier League, and Man Utd’s first defeat in nine fixtures. It also left the Gunners with an unbeaten away record for the season.

"I've been waiting three years for this and it's a sweet moment," said Arsenal winger Ljungberg.

Full-back Lee Dixon, who helped the Gunners win their first Barclays Premier League title in 1998, hailed his team-mates: "It's been an outstanding season. It's brilliant to be a part of this squad - it's the best I've played with and has depth in every position."

  • The Arsenal players celebrate sealing the Barclays Premier League title at Old Trafford

  • Sylvain Wiltord, right, scored the only goal as the Gunners beat Manchester United 1-0

  • The result left Arsenal seven points above second-placed Liverpool with one game left

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Key Points

  • looks back through the annals of history of the competition
  • A memorable event or match from each day of the year will be selected
  • We remember when Arsenal sealed the League title at Old Trafford, days after their FA Cup triumph