Gunners legend stunned by Toon fightback

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Former Arsenal captain Patrick Vieira believes the Gunners let Newcastle off the hook in the eight-goal thriller at St James' Park.

Vieira was shocked to hear Arsenal had blown a 4-0 lead to draw 4-4 against Alan Pardew's team on Saturday, a result which would have seriously hindered their title challenge had Manchester United not suffered a shock defeat to Wolves.

The Frenchman, now a member of Manchester City's squad, told BBC Radio Five Live: "Like everybody else I was quite surprised."

He continued: "It does show that in football if you don't work hard until the last minute, if you don't have 100% commitment, anything can happen. Newcastle is still a difficult place to go to."

"I think Arsenal is still a great side, a fantastic team to watch.

"The fans have been a bit disappointed in the last few years but they have to keep believing in themselves because they're still a good side."


City's win over West Brom on Saturday kept them in title contention, now a point behind second-placed Arsenal and five behind leaders United.

Vieira was an unused substitute at Eastlands, and acknowledged the quality of the players in City's squad means they must aim to remain in the battle for Premier League end-of-season honours.

"I think when you play at a big club like City and when you look in our dressing room at the players involved in the team, the target has to be really high," Vieira said.

"But from what happened at the weekend, you can see that anybody can beat anybody. We still believe in ourselves and we just have to keep believing in ourselves and try to win games."

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