Arsenal v Manchester City 1970/71

 arsenal away 1970 to 71 prog


League Division 1

6th February 1971

attendance 46,122

scorer Radford(86)

Ref W Gow

City Corrigan, Jeffries, Mann, Doyle, Booth, Oakes, Heslop, Bell, Lee, Hill, Bowyer – sub Young(unused)

Arsenal Wilson, Rice, McNab, Storey, McLintock, Simpson, Armstrong, Sammels, Radford, Kennedy, George


arsenal away 1970 to 71 Radford goal



Call it Corrigan’s confusion. Call it darn bad luck. Call it a hoodoo spell that has gone on and on. Call it what you will. The plain fact is that Manchester City still have not beaten Arsenal in ten League games since leaving Division Two.
And when they meet again in the FA Cup next week it could be the same story. Even at Maine Road.
“It will be different then, you wait and see,” said City manager Joe Mercer afterwards. I wonder. And Arsenal coach Don Howe said: “We expect the same game in reverse, but the same result.”
The battle centred so much on midfield that 20 players were sometimes concentrated in 15 yard patches each side of the halfway line, but Arsenal at least showed that they could break the deadlock.
Apart from shoot-on-sight Bell, City gave the impression that they would have been happy to stay in the state of stalemate for the rest of the season.
Yet it was not until five minutes from the end that Arsenal won, and then only by the solitary slip Corrigan made in an otherwise immaculate display.
He had kept out everything until Simpson made his move. Simpson began by dispossessing a generally depressed Lee, ran 30 yards with the ball, then shot from the same distance.
Corrigan dived, as he had dived so often. He grabbed the ball to his chest, and it looked as if Arsenal’s last fling had gone.
But somehow Corrigan let the ball drop. It ran a yard away from his grabbing arms. And Radford was left with the match-winning job, merely needing to lift the ball above the fallen keeper’s head.
Tragic for Manchester. Tragic for Corrigan in particular. But if either side deserved victory, Arsenal did.
Yet in totting up the day’s honours, which could yet turn into championship honours, they had to thank Wilson more than anyone.
For every 20 shots Corrigan had to save, Wilson had perhaps two.
But three of the few shots he faced were crackers, the most goal-worthy efforts of the match.
All three came from Bell. And Bell, like the rest of us, is still wondering how Arsenal’s india-rubber man managed to fingertip them away.

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