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Thursday, 9 May, 2002, 10:45 GMT 11:45 UK
Double top Gunners
Which is the best Arsenal Double-winning side?




4211 Votes Cast

Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

  Sports Talk: Your reaction to Arsenal's title

Arsenal's 1-0 victory over Manchester United secured the club's third Double following Saturday's FA Cup final 2-0 win over Chelsea.

But how does the current crop compare to Arsenal's two other Double line-ups?


Bertie Mee did not live to see Wenger's side complete Arsenal's third Double - the former Arsenal manager died just before Christmas.

But Mee took his place in the pantheon of Highbury greats by becoming the club's first manager to guide his team to this historic achievement.

Arsenal's Charlie George scores the winning goal in the 1971 FA Cup Final
Charlie George brought flair to the 1971 team

Mee's side also set the trend for winning the league championship on rival's grounds.

Before beating Liverpool 2-1 in the 1971 FA Cup Final, Arsenal took the title at White Hart Lane by stealing a 1-0 win against Spurs thanks to a powerful Ray Kennedy header.

Talk about arriving at the home of your bitterest rivals accompanied by buckets of salt and then applying liberally into the wound.

Spurs, of course, had won the Double 10 years earlier.

As with this season's history makers, Mee's team relied on a mean defence and a potent attack.

And that 1971 Arsenal side was an efficient unit capable of grinding out results when not at their best.

Bob Wilson, apart from his misjudgment for Steve Heighway's goal in the FA Cup, provided an unflappable presence in goal.

Frank McClintock organised the back four, while George Graham provided plenty of flair in midfield.

In attack Charlie George was the creative influence alongside goalscorers Ray Kennedy and John Radford.

1971 team: Bob Wilson, Pat Rice, Bob McNab, Frank McLintock, Peter Simpson, Peter Storey, George Graham, George Armstrong, Charlie George, Ray Kennedy, John Radford.


Wenger became the first overseas manager to win the Double in his second season at Highbury.

It was a team that spoke volumes about Wenger's management style, allying indomitable English spirit with some exciting overseas talent that were also prepared to work hard.

The foundations of Wenger's first double line-up was built on the veteran defensive quartet of Tony Adams, Martin Keown, Lee Dixon and Nigel Winterburn.

In midfield Wenger deployed two of his compatriots, the French internationals Patrick Vieira and Emmanuel Petit.

Arsenal's Tony Adams holds aloft the Premiership trophy in 1998
Adams celebrates his first Double

If Vieira has bestrode the Arsenal midfield and struck terror into opponents this season, then four years ago that was the case with Petit.

Up front the youthful Nicolas Anelka was so quick that he simply ran away from defenders, while Marc Overmars also provided plenty of speed on the left wing.

1998 team: David Seaman, Lee Dixon, Nigel Winterburn, Martin Keown, Tony Adams, Ray Parlour, Patrick Vieira, Emmanuel Petit, Nicolas Anelka, Dennis Bergkamp, Marc Overmars.


It would be hard to select just 11 names from the team that has just completed the Double - you would have to take your pick from a minimum of 23 players.

But that squad strength explains why Wenger's teams have been unbeaten away from Highbury and have also scored in every game.

Sol Campbell arrived to bring some youthfulness to a defence that last season had leaked goals with alarmingly regularity.

Lauren and Ashley Cole have also made the full-back roles their own.

  How Arsenal won the title

In midfield before his knee injury Robert Pires - the Footballer Writers' Association Player of the Year - was the team's creative inspiration.

And since the Frenchman has been sidelined, Freddie Ljungberg has come into his own.

Arsenal's Patrick Vieira
Vieira is symbolic of the 2002 Arsenal vintage

In attack Thierry Henry has solidified his reputation as one of the world's great strikers.

What is even more impressive about Henry is that not only does he score goals, but he also provides plenty of danger when he moves out into the wide positions.

In the second half of the season Bergkamp has also enjoyed a remarkable renaissance, bringing with him goals as well as his ability to create chances for the rest of the team.

2002 team: David Seaman, Lauren, Sol Campbell, Martin Keown, Ashley Cole, Fredrik Ljungberg, Patrick Vieira, Edu, Robert Pires, Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp.

Links to more Arsenal stories are at the foot of the page.


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