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The BBC's Alan Green
"They continued their marvellous recent record against Arsenal"
 real 28k

Arsene Wenger
"Qualification for the Champions League is still possible"
 real 28k

Monday, 14 February, 2000, 09:59 GMT
Highbury win puts Liverpool in hunt

Liverpool secured the points through dogged defence


Arsenal 0-1 Liverpool

Top of the table
1: Man Utd P24 53Pts
2: Leeds P24 50Pts
3: L'pool P25 47Pts
4: Arsenal P25 44Pts
The race for the Premiership took another tantalising twist as Liverpool claimed a stunning victory at title rivals Arsenal to leapfrog their rivals into third place.

Titi Camara claimed the win in a crucial top of the table clash with a fine first half goal - but the visitors had their defence to thank for the three points.


Camara clinched the win with a cool strike
Where Arsenal's renowned back line was caught flat-footed by Camara, the Liverpool defence - marshalled by the excellent Sami Hyypia and Stefan Henchoz - held firm in the face of a desperate late onslaught by the home side.

Gerard Houllier's men have now beaten two of their three title rivals in successive weeks, after their 3-1 triumph over Leeds.

And next up for the Reds in a vital stage in their season are the Premiership leaders, their arch rivals Manchester United - albeit not for three weeks.


Victory gives Liverpool a genuine chance of the title
Arsenal, though, now face a monumental effort to win the title as they followed the embarrassing defeat by Bradford with a rare home reverse.

Arsene Wenger's side had lost only one of their previous 41 games at Highbury - and that was against Premiership leaders Manchester United earlier this season.

But the Gunners had not beaten Liverpool in the last 13 meetings between the teams - and the hoodoo was to continue in this crunch match.

Camara clicks in

Thierry Henry nearly put Arsenal in front in stunning style after 13 minutes, but Sander Westerveld thrust out an arm to keep out his swerving long-range strike.


It was a tremendous team performance and I'm very proud of the team. You can't do anything without a solid defence and we offered them few chances today.
Gerard Houllier
It proved a crucial save, because within five minutes Liverpool were in front.

Steven Gerrard beat Arsenal's famed offside trap with a superb through-ball that left Camara clear on goal - and the striker took his time, before beating a helpless David Seaman with a neat, caressed finish.

Gerrard also proved influential at the other end of the field, with an excellent tackle in his own area to deny Frederik Ljungberg, just as the Swede was poised to shoot.

Pop star Robbie Williams was among the Highbury crowd
But as a result of that last-gasp challenge Gerrard aggravated a groin injury and had to be replaced by Veggard Heggem.

Arsenal offered little in attack in the first half, but the quicksilver Henry did break through the Liverpool ranks after 36 minutes, only to be denied again by Westerveld.

Liverpool played the waiting game, content to threaten on the break - and Erik Meijer could have made it 2-0 just before half-time, but this time Seaman kept out the shot.

All-out attack

Wenger threw fit-again winger Marc Overmars into the action in the second half - but only because key midfielder Emmanuel Petit had been forced off with a dead leg - while Liverpool lost Meijer, stretchered off with a knee injury.



In terms of possession we dominated, but they came here to do a job and got men behind the ball. It was a sloppy goal to give away - I played him on-side.
Arsenal defender Lee Dixon
Still the visitors were dangerous breaking from defence and Seaman - in his third one-on-one of the match - produced a superb save from Danny Murphy after a Martin Keown slip-up.

Arsenal substitute Oleg Luzhny almost scored with his first touch of the ball - but his shot was deflected behind and from the subsequent corner Henry headed over the bar.

Midfield tussle: Vieira challenges Berger
Then with eight minutes to go Overmars nearly levelled - but he dragged his effort just wide.

But there was even more agony for Arsenal two minutes later when Patrick Vieira struck a wonderful volley, only to see the ball thump against the bar.

Liverpool were under seige in the dying minutes and Westerveld had to be at full stretch to deny Henry and wrap up the win.

Teams:

Arsenal: Seaman, Dixon, Keown, Grimandi, Silvinho, Parlour, Vieira, Petit, Ljungberg, Bergkamp, Henry.
Subs: Winterburn, Suker, Overmars, Manninger, Luzhny.

Liverpool: Westerveld, Smicer, Henchoz, Hyypia, Carragher, Gerrard, Hamann, Matteo, Berger, Meijer, Camara.
Subs: Staunton, Heggem, Murphy, Nielsen, Traore.

Referee: S Dunn (Bristol)
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See also:
12 Feb 00 |  FA Carling Premiership
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Collymore impresses on debut
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Links to other FA Carling Premiership stories are at the foot of the page.