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Arsenal and Chelsea – Their Common Foe (Part Four)

This is the series which looks at the common hostility that Arsenal and Chelsea have towards their London rivals Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) and some of the reasons for it.

For Part One please click here; for Part Two click here; and Part Three click here.

The Arsenal rivalry concludes here.

The Cup Semi-Finals

Although Arsenal and Spurs have never met in a senior Cup final, there have been a number of semi-finals long the way to stir the enmity between the two sets of supporters.

In thee FA Cup, the most memorable, at least for those of the white shirt persuasion, came in 1911, when Arsenal, who would go on to win the league that year, would go on to win the double.

But a Paul Gascoigne inspired Tottenham, who scored with a long range free-kick, and helped set up Gary Lineker for two more, helped them to a 3 -1 win.

It took Arsenal just two years to get their revenge at Wembley. The Gunners had right-back Lee Dixon sent off, but the ten men still won thanks to a goal from the man the Spurs’ fan called “Donkey,” Arsenal skipper Tony Adams. It gave birth to a  new song “Donkey won the Derby.

Their most recent meeting in the competition came in 2001 in a match played, bizarrely, at Old Trafford, Manchester, Tottenham took an early leads but goas from Patrick Vieira and Sylvain Wiltord took Arsenal through to the final which was played at Cardiff that year.

They have also met several times in the semi-finals of the League Cup in its various guises over the years.

Their first meeting was in 1968 when Arsenal took a narrow lead from the first leg at Highbury into the second match, conceding an equaliser in the tie to Jimmy Greaves, only to progress through to the final courtesy of a late John Radford header.

Arguably, the most famous clash though came in 1987, with Tottenham winning the first leg at Highbury, and then Clive Allen putting them one-up in the second leg.

The Spurs stadium announcer then told Tottenham supporters at half-time how they could apply for final tickets, something heard by the Arsenal players sitting in the away dressing room. Furious, they stormed back and scored two second-half goals to force the match to a replay.

A coin toss decided that the match would be played at White Hart Lane again and once more Spurs took the lead. Substitute Ian Allinson produced an equaliser though and then David Rocastle came up with the winner in injury-time.

The pair most recently met at this stage of the competition in 2007. Spurs were home in the first-leg and took a two-goal lead, only to be pegged back by two goals form Julio Baptista.

In the return fixture, Emmanuel Adebayor put Arsenal ahead, and. although Spurs levelled against the run of play, two more goals sent the home side through to the Cardiff final.

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