‘He said we’d win the title. We didn’t believe it'


‘He said we’d win the title. We didn’t believe it'

When we travelled to Anfield on the final day of the 1988/89 season needing to win by two goals if we were to lift the title, not many people gave us a chance.

But one former Gunner, Bob Wilson, was always convinced we could pull it off.

Alan Smith – who scored the opener and then assisted Michael Thomas’ winner – will never forget the role our former goalkeeper played in the build-up to the game on Merseyside.

“I’ll never forget, I was sat at London Colney a few days before the Friday and we were looking a bit glum after Liverpool had beaten West Ham and it was obvious we would have to win by two goals.” Smith told Arsenal Player.

“We were sat there at training and Bob Wilson comes round the corner and goes ‘Cheer up lads, what’s the matter with you? This is the week we’re going to win the league’ and we all looked at him like ‘Oh thanks Bob, all the best’, so we didn’t really believe him when he said that.

“I remember travelling up on the coach and we were all in good spirits, it was a feeling of ‘what have we got to lose?’.

“We went and stopped at the Atlantic Towers on the quayside there in Liverpool and had some lunch and we went to bed as you did for a night game and I was sharing with David O’Leary.

“We slept like babies that afternoon for a good two or three hours, which is unusual because sometimes you shut the curtains and you’re tossing and turning in your bed thinking about the match, but we came down for tea and toast at half four and everybody had said they slept really well, so it was quite unusual from that perspective.”

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