Hopefully you’ve all eased back into a state of soberness following your all day and night Community Shield trophy celebrations. Me personally, it’s been a challenge today to do rudimentary tasks such as getting dressed, peeing completely into the toilet, and talking to people. But fear not, I’ll be back to normal soon.
In the meantime I wanted to figure out how yesterday’s iconic victory stood up to the rest of Arsene Wenger’s biggest and best wins at Arsenal. A tough order with a lingering hangover and the specter of Monday continuing to bash me across the face, for sure. But this list is important and needed, so I’ll give it my best and hope the confetti dropped and champagne spilled from yesterday doesn’t cloud my judgement.
Here is the list, presented in ascending order:
7. 1998 FA Charity Shield (Arsenal 3-0 Manchester United)
Goals by Marc Overmars, Christopher Wreh, and Nicolas Anelka helped Wenger collect his first-ever Charity Shield, laying the foundation for what would later become an epic, storied managerial career in Islington.
6. 1999 FA Charity Shield (Arsenal 2-1 Manchester United)
The eagerly-anticipated rematch from the previous year’s Charity Shield saw Arsenal bravely overcome an early deficit with two second-half goals by Kanu and The Romford Pele himself, Ray Parlour.
5. 2002 FA Community Shield (Arsenal 1-0 Liverpool)
In its first iteration as the Community Shield thanks to the FA essentially admitting that proceeds were not, in fact, going to charities as laid out within the framework of the competition itself, Arsenal paid homage to former manager George Graham by squeaking out a 1-0 victory over the Reds thanks to a very nice goal scored in the 69th minute by then-new signing Gilberto.
4. 2004 FA Community Shield (Arsenal 3-1 Manchester United)
Arsenal scored three second-half goals to overcome the real life, actual inclusions of Gael Glichy, Justin Hoyte, Sebastian Svärd, and Jérémie Aliadière. One of Wenger’s finest matches, given the obvious roadblocks that he purposely placed himself in front of.
3. 2014 FA Community Shield (Arsenal 3-0 Manchester City)
Much like their 2004 Community Shield conquest, Arsenal won in spite of Yaya Sanogo and Mathieu Debuchy gaining admittance to the dressing room, getting kits with their names on the back, and being allowed to start the match.
2. 2015 FA Community Shield (Arsenal 1-0 Chelsea)
Memorable for many reasons, but mostly due to the simple fact that this defeat was the slippery slope Jose Mourinho could not climb back from, eventually getting tossed out to the curb later that December.
1. FA Community Shield (Arsenal 2-1 Chelsea)
New signing Sead Kolašinac took his shirt off and got millions of people around the world wondering if he was an MMA fighter or a fullback. Turns out, he was/is both, and his second-half goal pushed Arsenal into a penalty shootout. In the end Thiboult Courtois’s launch of an intercontinental missile into the heavens above and Olivier Giroud PK attempt won the match, and gaudy silver dinner plate, for Arsenal.