Welcome to Golden Goals - a FREE video series on USA.Arsenal.com which showcases some of the finest goals in Arsenal's history.
Each of our weekly clips will feature footage of a classic goal plus expert analysis from former Gunner Stewart Robson and Arsenal.com editor Richard Clarke.
Our series continues with a brilliant goal by Robert Pires against Aston Villa in 2002.
Read on for the story of his goal and click the PLAY button above to watch our FREE video clip.
Pires v Aston Villa (A) 03-17-2002
Simply put, Robert Pires was untouchable in the 2001/02 season.
Even though a serious knee injury ended his season in March, the French midfielder was named Footballer of the Year for his contribution to Arsenal’s Double. Just six days before his cruciate ligament snapped against Newcastle, Pires produced a truly Golden Goal.
With the title race in full swing, Arsenal faced a tricky match away to Aston Villa. And, as it happened so many times that season, a moment of Pires’ brilliance gave Arsenal the edge.
The Gunners led through an early strike by Edu gave Arsenal the lead, but they would need more than a one-goal cushion to overcome Villa. The opportunity would arise on the hour mark when Freddie Ljungberg picked up possession. The Swede looked up and launched a diagonal pass from inside his own half into the path of a rushing Pires.
The Frenchman was in a footrace with George Boateng but beat him to the ball. He then deftly flicked it over his marker's head leaving him flailing. But with Peter Schmeichel rushing out to narrow the angle, it was no simple shot. Pires patiently waited for the ball to drop and nonchalantly lifted it over the Villa keeper and into the net.