Premier League's 10,000th game: Agüero, Fergie and Tiote among five of the best
From Sergio Agüero's last-gasp heroics to Kevin Keegan slumped over the hoardings, we look back at the Premier League's greatest games.
The Premier League has countless memorable matches to look back upon over the course of almost 10,000 games. Saturday's top-flight fixtures will take the competition into five figures in terms of matches. If any of them are half as entertaining as our favourites below then we're in for a treat.
Collymore leaves Keegan slumped
Stan Collymore largely failed to deliver on Merseyside but an image of the former Nottingham Forest striker celebrating wildly in the red of Liverpool after thrashing home at the back post is etched on the consciousness of every football fan of a certain age, unhappily so for those of a Newcastle United persuasion.
The striker scored Liverpool's second equaliser and a 92nd-minute winner in the glorious, haphazard 4-3 win at home to Kevin Keegan's title-chasing team, who had cancelled out Robbie Fowler's early opener through Les Ferdinand and then led twice thanks to goals from David Ginola and Faustino Asprilla either side of Fowler's second.
While the contest at Anfield delivered thrills and spills aplenty, the campaign ended in disappointment for both teams, as Liverpool lost the FA Cup final to Eric Cantona's late winner and Newcastle infamously failed to recover from surrendering their 12-point advantage over eventual double winners Manchester United.
"Collymore closing in!" pic.twitter.com/sKyQrlHa0R— Liverpool FC (@LFC) January 22, 2017
"Lads, it's Tottenham"
Roy Keane claimed the archly dismissive phrase above was once the sum of a pre-match team talk given by Alex Ferguson ahead of a game against Tottenham. Irrespective of the regard in which Manchester United held their north London opponents around the turn of the century, Spurs had them in serious trouble at White Hart Lane back in September 2001.
Debutant Dean Richards headed the hosts in front and further goals from Les Ferdinand and Christian Ziege had them cruising at half-time.
After 15 minutes spent, in all probability, on the other end of Ferguson's "hairdryer", United scored within a minute of the restart when Andy Cole headed home David Beckham's cross. The then-England captain supplied the ammunition for Laurent Blanc to make it 3-2, from which point Tottenham's capitulation felt inevitable.
Ruud van Nistelrooy levelled before Juan Sebastian Veron put United in front 14 minutes from time and Beckham thrashed home a brilliant fifth.
"Boom, boom, Cheick, Cheick the room!"
Those were the famous words of Real Radio commentator Justin Lockwood as the late Cheick Tiote completed one of the most memorable comebacks in Premier League history.
The Magpies faithful could perhaps be forgiven for making a hasty exit as, after 26 miserable minutes in February 2011, Arsenal ran roughshod – Theo Walcott and Johan Djourou scoring inside four minutes before Robin van Persie's double made it 4-0.
But those who stayed were rewarded with a classic of the comeback genre. Abou Diaby's red card set in motion an incredible chain of events, as two Joey Barton penalties sandwiched Leon Best's strike.
And with just three minutes remaining Tiote sent the home fans into raptures with a splendid left-foot volley to make it 4-4.
Gr-8 humiliation for Arsenal at Old Trafford
With fans already on Arsene Wenger's back due to a lack of transfer activity, Arsenal suffered their worst defeat since 1896 to a merciless United side in August 2011.
Wayne Rooney's hat-trick was complimented by an Ashley Young brace and further goals from Danny Welbeck, Nani and Park Ji-Sung, as Alex Ferguson's men destroyed a side supposed to be challenging them for the title in one of the Premier League's most remarkable fixtures.
The 8-2 result led to a late Arsenal transfer splurge, though Andre Santos, Park Chu-Young, Per Mertesacker and Mikel Arteta proved something of a mixed batch.
An unforgettable moment replayed countless times, both era-defining for the league and career-defining for its central figure.
Pablo Zabaleta's first-half opener for Manchester City had been cancelled out by Djibril Cisse and Jamie Mackie put relegation-threatened QPR on the cusp of a remarkable victory on the final day of the 2011-12 season. It placed the title in Manchester United's hands, something Edin Dzeko's stoppage-time equaliser did not directly change.
Enter Sergio Agüero, who dropped into midfield to take possession from Nigel de Jong and picked out Mario Balotelli with his back to goal. The enigmatic Italian managed to complete a return pass while on his backside and Agüero touched the ball into space beyond Taye Taiwo's lunging challenge, keeping his balance as the QPR defender clipped him. "I hit the ball as hard as I could and hoped for the best," Agüero recalled. Cue bedlam.
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