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2001 FA Cup Final
Millennium Stadium North
EventFA Cup 2000–01
Date12 May 2001
VenueMillennium Stadium, Cardiff
Man of the MatchMichael Owen (Liverpool)
RefereeSteve Dunn (Gloucestershire)
Attendance72,500
2000
2002

The 2001 FA Cup Final was the 120th final of the FA Cup. It took place on Saturday 12 May 2001 at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales, and was contested between Arsenal and Liverpool.

Liverpool came from behind to win 2–1, thus winning the FA Cup for the sixth time. It was the second trophy of their treble-winning season of 2000–01: they had won the Football League Cup in late February and would win the UEFA Cup four days later.

As well as being the first FA Cup Final to be staged outside of England, it was also the first in which the managers of both teams were from outside the British Isles – Liverpool's Gérard Houllier and Arsenal's Arsène Wenger both coming from France.

The match had an attendance of 72,500, while live coverage on ITV was watched by an average of around five million viewers.

Road to Cardiff

Arsenal

Third Round: Carlisle United 0–1 Arsenal

Fourth Round: Queens Park Rangers 0–6 Arsenal

Fifth Round: Arsenal 3–1 Chelsea

Sixth Round: Arsenal 3–0 Blackburn Rovers

Semi-final: Tottenham Hotspur 1–2 Arsenal

Liverpool

Third Round: Liverpool 3–0 Rotherham United

Fourth Round: Leeds United 0–2 Liverpool

Fifth Round: Liverpool 4–2 Manchester City

Sixth Round: Tranmere Rovers 2–4 Liverpool

Semi-final: Liverpool 2–1 Wycombe Wanderers

First half

Liverpool were intent on adopting a counter-attacking approach, allowing Arsenal space and possession until they reached the danger area. Arsenal dominated the opening exchanges, but first half ended as a stalemate despite Arsenal's dominance. Liverpool's Emile Heskey was involved in the first contentious moment after six minutes, when he tumbled under a challenge from Gilles Grimandi, but referee Steve Dunn correctly waved away Liverpool's penalty appeals.

Ten minutes later, Arsenal had a much stronger claim for a penalty kick. Fredrik Ljungberg released Thierry Henry, who broke free of Liverpool's offside trap, skipped around goalkeeper Sander Westerveld and fired a shot which was blocked on the line by the arm of Liverpool defender Stéphane Henchoz. The officials failed to spot the offence, despite Henry's appeals.

Despite a couple of half-chances for Liverpool (a Michael Owen shot that was closed down by Martin Keown, and a Steven Gerrard effort from long range that went well wide) there were no other major goalmouth incidents of the first half.

Second half

Liverpool finally troubled Arsenal goalkeeper David Seaman two minutes after the interval; Danny Murphy's free kick was met by Heskey's head, but he was only able to direct his effort straight at Seaman, who pushed it to safety with his left hand.

Arsenal had another serious scoring chance after 56 minutes. Thierry Henry juggled the ball and switched passes with compatriot Robert Pirès, but was denied by Westerveld; Ashley Cole got to the rebound first and fired goalwards, but Liverpool captain Sami Hyypiä cleared off the line. Hyypiä rescued Liverpool again after 67 minutes, when he headed a Ljungberg lob off the line.

With 19 minutes left, Arsenal finally scored. Arsenal latched onto a poor clearance by Westerveld, and Robert Pirès played Ljungberg clean through; the Swede rounded the Dutch goalkeeper and fired home to make it 1–0. Moments later Henry was given a chance to make it 2–0, but was denied by an excellent point-blank save by Westerveld.

Liverpool survived the Arsenal onslaught, and finally, having made some key attacking substitutions, these including their highest goalscorer Robbie Fowler, found a foothold in the game when Owen equalised with eight minutes left. Arsenal failed to clear substitute Gary McAllister's free kick, and Owen pounced with a right foot finish past Seaman from eight yards. Liverpool's comeback was completed five minutes later in the 88th minute with extra time looming; Owen was released down the left by a terrifically weighted long ball pass from substitute Patrik Berger, with the type of vision which had been earlier missing from their play, and he outpaced both Tony Adams and Lee Dixon before shooting low and accurately past Seaman, beating him at the far post. Liverpool held onto their lead for the few minutes remaining, and won the Cup.

Match details

12 May 2001
15:00 BST
Arsenal 1–2 Liverpool Millennium Stadium, Cardiff
Attendance: 72,500
Referee: Steve Dunn (Gloucestershire)
Ljungberg Soccerball 72' Report Owen Soccerball 83'88'
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Arsenal
Kit left arm liverpool0001a.png
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Liverpool
GK 1 England David Seaman
RB 2 England Lee Dixon Sub off 90'
CB 5 England Martin Keown
CB 6 England Tony Adams (c)
LB 29England Ashley Cole
RM 7 Flag of France Robert Pirès
CM 18Flag of France Gilles Grimandi
CM 4 Flag of France Patrick Vieira
LM 8 Flag of Sweden Good one Fredrik Ljungberg Yellow card 62' Sub off 85'
CF 11Flag of France Sylvain Wiltord Sub off 76'
CF 14Flag of France Thierry Henry
Substitutes:
GK 13Flag of Austria Alexander Manninger
DF 12Flag of Cameroon Lauren
MF 15England Ray Parlour Sub on 76'
FW 10Netherlands Dennis Bergkamp Sub on 90'
FW 25Flag of Nigeria 001 Nwankwo Kanu Sub on 85'
Manager:
Flag of France Arsène Wenger
Arsenal vs Liverpool 2001-05-12
GK 1 Netherlands Sander Westerveld
RB 6 Germany Markus Babbel
CB 2 Switzerland Stéphane Henchoz
CB 12Flag of Finland Sami Hyypiä (c)
LB 23England Jamie Carragher
RM 13England Danny Murphy Sub off 77'
CM 17England Steven Gerrard
CM 16Germany Dietmar Hamann Yellow card 57' Sub off 60'
LM 7 Flag of Czech Vladimír Šmicer Sub off 77'
CF 8 England Emile Heskey
CF 10England Michael Owen
Substitutes:
GK 19Flag of France Pegguy Arphexad
DF 27Flag of France Grégory Vignal
MF 15Flag of Czech Patrik Berger Sub on 77'
MF 21Scotland Gary McAllister Sub on 60'
FW 9 England Robbie Fowler Sub on 77'
Manager:
Flag of France Gérard Houllier

Match rules

  • 90 minutes.
  • 30 minutes of extra-time if necessary.
  • Penalty shootout if scores still level.
  • Five named substitutes
  • Maximum of 3 substitutions.

See also

Footnotes

External links

FA Cup
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