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BBC Sport's Alan Green
"you couldn't see Arsenal failing, but they nearly did."
 real 14k

Thierry Henry
"I wasn't happy with my performance"
 real 56k

Freddie Ljungberg
"It was fustrating"
 real 56k

Dennis Bergkamp
"We kept the pressure on and finally broke them"
 real 56k

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger
"I personally thought that my team deserved to win tonight."
 real 14k

banner Tuesday, 6 March, 2001, 21:52 GMT
Henry keeps Gunners on course
Thierry Henry
Thierry Henry rises highest to score the winner
Arsenal 1-0 Spartak Moscow

Thierry Henry's header eight minutes from time handed Arsenal a Champions League lifeline and kept the Gunners on course for a quarter-final place.

Henry rose majestically to meet an Ashley Cole corner and power a header past Tchuisse's attempts to clear on the Spartak line.

It was a goal that Arsenal's possession deserved but it had not looked likely and the tension around Highbury highlighted that.

With Lyon helping themselves to three points against Bayern Munich the pressure was on Arsene Wenger's men to get a victory that keeps their destiny within their own hands.


Before I scored I was upset about my performance
  Thierry Henry
And Henry's strike did just that to relieve the Arsenal fans who had seen their side draw their two previous phase two group games.

Arsenal dominated the opening period without creating the clear cut chances needed to break through the Spartak defence.

Wenger's side gained plenty of width through Cole and Ljungberg on the left and Pires down the right, but too often they either lacked sufficient numbers in the penalty area or the final ball was not good enough.

Pires dragged an early chance across the face of Filimonov's goal, but he then turned provider to lay on an excellent opportunity for Henry.

But placed just ten yards from goal Arsenal's top scorer failed to make meaningful contact with the ball.

Patrick Vieira came as close as anyone to making the home side's domination count.

From the Gunners' seventh corner inside the opening half hour the influential midfielder saw his sidefooted volley turned away at the far post.

Vieira then headed another Pires corner wide before Bergkamp twice went close in the space of a minute.

Ashley Cole
Ashley Cole provided the service for Henry
First Filimonov tipped the Dutchman's 20-yard effort over the bar, then he looked on as a curled effort from the left side of the penalty area flashed wide.

Arsenal's frustration only grew in the second half as Spartak continued to get plenty of men behind the ball.

Ljungberg's poorly struck shot fell invitingly for Henry but with just Filimonov to beat the Frenchman could not find the target.

Kanu and Sylvain Wiltord replaced Bergkamp and Pires for the last 20 minutes as Wenger sought to find that all-important goal and Wiltord almost provided it ten minutes from time.

He turned on a Henry cross and whipped a shot inches past the far post.

But after Baranov had offered Spartak's only real threat of the game with a shot well saved by Seaman, Cole and Henry combined to lift the Highbury spirits.


Arsenal: Seaman, Dixon, Adams, Grimandi, Cole, Ljungberg, Vieira, Lauren, Pires, Bergkamp, Henry. Subs: Manninger, Wiltord, Edu, Malz, Luzhny, Vivas, Kanu.

Spartak Moscow: Filimonov, Kovtun, Tchuisse, Baranov, Bulatov, Irismetov, Kalynychenko, Parfenov, Mitreski, Robson, Titov. Subs: Levytsky, Khizaneishvili, Marcao, Pisarev, Bougakov.

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See also:

21 Feb 01 |  Champions League
Bayern freeze out Spartak
21 Feb 01 |  Champions League
Lyon late show stuns Arsenal
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