History

GGG39: Bergkamp v Bolton Wanderers, 1996

It's time to reveal the Gunners' Greatest 50 Goals - as voted for by Arsenal's fans.

While Dennis Bergkamp’s previous entries in our Top 50 countdown have encapsulated his craft and guile, his fourth on the list ticks an altogether different box.

On the final day of season 1995/96, Arsenal hosted Bolton Wanderers knowing that only a victory would guarantee fifth place and subsequent Uefa Cup qualification.

Rock-bottom Bolton wouldn’t pose much of a threat, right?

Wrong. Defender Andy Todd stunned Highbury by opening the scoring with a cool finish 14 minutes from time. Arsenal’s European aspirations looked dead and buried.

But David Platt kept the dreams alive with a swiveling effort eight minutes from time before the ‘Iceman’ completed the comeback moments later.

Bergkamp received Platt’s pass 25 yards out, crucially with time to turn. Bolton’s centre-backs were still yards away from him when he set his sights on Keith Branagan’s goal and they were made to pay as the stunning, laser-like effort  flashed into the Irishman’s top left-hand corner. Cue utter pandemonium in the Clock End.

Scorer of beautiful goals? Of course. But this strike proved that he was your man for the most important ones too.

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