It's Reserves Week on Arsenal.com. To mark the occasion we've compiled our top five games from the 2006/07 campaign. Subscribers to Arsenal TV Online can now see the highlights from all of these matches.
1. Arsenal Under-18s 1-0
FA Youth Cup Semi-Final 1st leg, Emirates Stadium, March 14
A record FA Youth Cup crowd of 38,187 spurred Arsenal Under-18s to this Semi-Final first-leg victory over Manchester United. An instinctive strike from midfielder Kieran Gibbs on 59 minutes was enough to secure a memorable win. The success of the young Gunners was built largely on a remarkable defensive performance and was all the more impressive considering the enormity of the occasion and the hefty and expectant home support. It was a performance of true class from a side containing eight first year scholars and one of the highlights of the Club's first season at their new home. Unfortunately for Steve Bould's side the tie was to end in disappointment as United won the second leg 4-2 after extra time.
2. Arsenal Reserves 2-2
Reserve League South, Underhill, April 25
This performance underlined just how far Neil Banfield's young Gunners had come over the season. After some hit-and-miss performances early in the campaign the Reserves went to Reading's Madejski Stadium in October and were rolled over. They lost 6-0, albeit to a side boasting seven players with Premiership experience. Yet by the time the Royals visited Underhill in April needing three points to secure the Reserve League South title, Arsenal had grit and determination and battled for a deserved point. They even had to come from two goals down, Jay Simpson equalising with a fine goal on 68 minutes before a thunderous strike from Jay Thomas, with the final kick of the game, pulled Arsenal level and put Reading's title celebrations back on ice.
3. Manchester United 4-2 Arsenal
FA Youth Cup Semi-Final 2nd leg, Old Trafford, April 2
Sixty seconds. That's how close Arsenal Under-18s were to reaching the Final of the FA Youth Cup for the first time since winning the trophy in 2001. One goal up from the first leg, the young Gunners looked within touching distance of the Final when they took the lead with a goal made and scored by the exceptional Kieran Gibbs four minutes after half time. But Manchester United rallied and restored parity on the night before levelling the tie in the third minute of added time. Striker Rhys Murphy looked to have salvaged Arsenal's hopes when he lobbed home in extra time but United again pulled level before Danny Welbeck broke Arsenal's hearts with a header four minutes from the end.
4. Tottenham Hotspur 2-2 Arsenal
Reserve League South, Broadhall Way, September 11
Debutant Fran Merida inspired a two-goal comeback in the first second-string North London derby of the season. The 16-year-old made one goal for fellow debutant Nacer Barazite and then scored a wonderful free-kick as Neil Banfield's side stormed back after trailing 2-0 at the interval. A revival seemed highly unlikely in the first half as Jamie O'Hara's penalty and Simon Dawkins' opportunistic strike gave Tottenham a fully-merited 2-0 advantage. However Banfield switched tactics at the interval and his youthful side produced an impressive response. Striker Jay Simpson even had a chance to snatch a late winner but it wasn't to be.
5. Arsenal Reserves 4-0 Charlton
Reserve League South, Underhill, August 28
Jeremie Aliadiere and Emmanuel Adebayor scored two goals each as a strong Arsenal side thumped Charlton 4-0 in the season's opening fixture. The Gunners took the lead on 14 minutes and, from then on, never looked in any danger. An experienced defence including Ashley Cole and Pascal Cygan soaked up any rare danger from Charlton while Theo Walcott and Mathieu Flamini were influential in midfield. This was the ideal start to the 2006/07 campaign and a rare chance for the Underhill crowd to witness first-team players in action for the second string. It also turned out to be both Cole and Cygan's last appearance for the Club.
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