Arsenal v Liverpool: Five classic encounters

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From four-goal hauls to 102nd-minute equalisers, Arsenal and Liverpool have thrown up some classic encounters in the Premier League.

In recent seasons, the fixture has seen a number of high-scoring affairs, with eight of their last 10 games producing four or more goals.

Consequently, anticipation is high ahead of their December 22 meeting at the Emirates Stadium, with both sides hoping to keep in touching distance in the title race during a busy festive period.

In a match-up which has become synonymous with drama, here's a look at a handful of their greatest matches in recent memory.

Everton v Arsenal - Premier League

August 2016: Arsenal 3-4 Liverpool

The past 10 league meetings have brought about 42 goals, and seven of those came during this cracker on the opening weekend of the 2016-17 season.

Theo Walcott had put Arsenal ahead, but two goals from Philippe Coutinho and another from Adam Lallana turned the game on its head.

It was then time for Sadio Mane to announce himself on his Liverpool debut. The forward has quickly become a familiar foe for Arsenal, scoring in all three league games against them since moving to Anfield, and the first of those strikes came in this match as he added a fourth to seemingly put the game beyond the Gunners.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Calum Chambers did pull Arsenal back into contention, but the comeback stopped there as Jurgen Klopp claimed a first league win over Arsene Wenger at the third time of asking.

Arsenal v Liverpool - Premier League

April 2009: Liverpool 4-4 Arsenal

A fresh-faced and bemused Andrey Arshavin holding up four fingers at Anfield is one of the Premier League’s lasting images, but the Russian’s four-goal feat only tells half the story from this memorable encounter.

For despite giving Arsenal the lead on three occasions – including his fourth from just Arsenal's fourth shot on target in the 90th minute – two goals apiece from Fernando Torres and Yossi Benayoun ensured Liverpool escaped with a point, with the latter scoring an 93rd-minute equaliser.

The draw dealt a severe blow to Liverpool’s title hopes, as though they moved ahead of Manchester United on goal difference, Sir Alex Ferguson's side never looked back after taking full advantage of their two games in hand.

Liverpool v Arsenal - Premier League

February 2014: Liverpool 5-1 Arsenal

Liverpool have scored a league-high 11 goals in the first 30 minutes of matches so far this season, and their objective to attack from the off has been likened to Brendan Rodgers' 2013-14 side, who scored 37 of their 101 goals in the opening half-hour that campaign.

In no game was that speed out the blocks more evident than against Arsenal. Four goals in 20 breath-taking minutes put the result beyond doubt before it had really begun, as Martin Skrtel turned home from two set-pieces before Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge got in on the act.

Sterling went on to add a fifth before Mikel Arteta scored a consolation from the spot, as Arsenal's eight-match unbeaten run ended in emphatic style. The Gunners were top heading into this fixture, but they went on to lose three and draw three of their next eight matches to ultimately finish fourth.

Liverpool meanwhile saw this victory kick-start an 11-game winning run, though they famously fell short to hand Manchester City a second Premier League title.

Liverpool v Arsenal - Premier League

April 2011: Arsenal 1-1 Liverpool

Very rarely does a 1-1 draw make a list of classic encounters, but this one was 0-0 after 97 minutes of football…

After clashing with team-mate Jon Flanagan, Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher suffered a concussion and required lengthy treatment – including oxygen – before being stretchered off.

Cue eight minutes of added time, and after Jay Spearing hauled down Cesc Fabregas, Robin van Persie must have thought his 98th-minute spot-kick was enough to hand Arsenal all three points.

However, after Emmanuel Eboue collided with Lucas in the box, Dirk Kuyt stepped up to slot home a penalty with 101 minutes and 48 seconds on the clock, making it comfortably the latest goal scored in the Premier League era.

Liverpool's Dutch striker Dirk Kuyt (3rd

April 2004: Arsenal 4-2 Liverpool

One meeting that does have a happy ending for Arsenal fans is this classic from the 2003-04 season.

Smarting from FA Cup and Champions League exits, Arsenal then found themselves 2-1 down at half-time as Michael Owen's strike put Liverpool in front after Thierry Henry cancelled out Sami Hyypia's opener.

A scintillating second-half display followed from Arsenal. Robert Pires levelled four minutes after the break before an Henry wondergoal put the Gunners ahead one minute later.

Henry then completed his hat-trick with 12 minutes to go, while Arsenal went on to earn their 'Invincibles' tag after claiming their last of three Premier League titles without losing a game.

Raheem Sterling
Thierry Henry
Fernando Torres
Andrey Arshavin

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