Arsenal FC is one of the most followed clubs in the world, mainly due to their rich history. Even before Arsene Wenger arrived in North London, the club had achieved a level of success that ensured them a place among England’s footballing elite. In this article, we will take a look at five of Arsenal’s most successful seasons.
2004/05 was one of Arsenal’s most successful seasons, but in hindsight, it is remembered as the end of their golden era. Arsenal began the season by winning the Community Shield against Manchester United. In the Premier League, they were quite competitive, with their lethal attack scoring 87 goals. But their defense was leaky and that ended up costing them the title.
Arsenal bowed out of the League Cup after a 1-0 defeat to Manchester United. They avenged this defeat by beating Manchester United on penalties in the FA Cup final. Arsenal enjoyed an unbeaten run in the Champions League group stage, but Bayern Munich eliminated them in the Round of 16.
2003/04 PL season will forever be remembered for Arsenal’s remarkable feat of going undefeated throughout the season. Thierry Henry was the main reason for their success as he scored 39 goals across competitions. Arsenal were firm contenders for a historic quadruple until minnows Middlesbrough knocked them out of the League Cup in February.
In the Champions League, a 5-1 thumping of Inter Milan at San Siro ensured progress as group winners. In the space of three days in April, Arsenal were knocked out of the FA Cup and Champions League, thus ending their dreams of a continental treble.
Before winning the domestic double in 1970/71, Arsenal had spent 17 seasons without a major trophy. 1969/70 was a disappointing season for Arsenal as they finished 12th in the League. But a remarkable turnaround followed next season, which culminated in Arsenal clinching the title in their final league game. It was local rivals Spurs who stood between them and the first division title and Arsenal won 1-0.
In the League Cup, Arsenal were eliminated by Crystal Palace, but their fortunes were better in the FA Cup. They reached the final by defeating Stoke City in the semi-final replay and faced Liverpool at Wembley. The final went goalless until full time, but Arsenal came back from a goal down in added time to clinch victory.
In Arsene Wenger’s first full season at Arsenal, the team finished third in the Premier League. He had employed a new working style off the pitch, including strict fitness protocols and these measures bore fruit in the 97/98 campaign. On 3 May 1998, Arsenal clinched the Premier League title after a 4-0 victory against Everton.
Arsenal were poised to reach the League Cup final but Chelsea‘s comeback in the semi-final second leg ended their run. In the FA Cup final at Wembley, Overmars and Anelka scored as Arsenal won their second domestic double.
2001/02 tops the list of Arsenal’s most successful seasons. After their success in 1998, Arsenal had endured three years of pain as they went trophyless and Manchester United secured a hat-trick of PL titles. 2001/02 saw a different Arsenal defense as Kolo Toure and Sol Campbell made their debuts. On 4 May 2002, Arsenal won the FA Cup final against Chelsea by a two-goal margin.
Four days later, they won the Premier League after beating arch-rivals Manchester United at Old Trafford despite Thierry Henry’s absence. In the Champions League, they were eliminated in the second group stage but that does not take away their domestic success in 2001/02.