Arsenal Legends

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Interview

Hillier on THAT challenge on Rivera

It was quite an impact from David Hillier.

Moments after stepping off the bench, he went into a challenge with Alberto Rivera that left the Real Madrid player howling in pain.

We caught up with Hillier afterwards to get his take on it and this is what he said:

on his strong challenge against Rivera…
I had to knock a bit of steam out of him, he was running the game! But I thought his studs had come up, so I was a little bit late. I apologised to him several times after.

on how he felt...
It was good, I was quite comfortable at right-back. They had a lot of pressure and a lot of possession, but the lads played well and it was good.

on whether he fancied taking a penalty…
No, I’ve got a 2:2 miss ratio so if needed I’ll go to sudden death!

Interview

Jens - I thought I was meant to take the penalty!

It was a moment that was pure Jens Lehmann.

As Tomas Rosicky stepped forward to take the penalty that could win the game for Arsenal Legends against Real Madrid, our goalkeeper had other ideas.

Lehmann took the ball, put it on the spot and crashed it into the roof of the net to win the game. But what exactly happened?

This is what Jens told Arsenal Media:

on whether he was down to take a penalty…
I thought so, yes! I was one of the fitter guys so I was supposed to take one.

on whether he’s ever taken a penalty before…
Yes (and I scored), it was 27 years ago!

on whether he was down to start the game....
No, I was a little later and Seaman was down to play and then he hurt his calf so then I played.

on the team’s performance…
It’s a big effort from the guys to play 90 minutes because to play 90 minutes again when you don’t do it, it’s massive! I’m only a goalkeeper so I’m standing around a little bit and getting cold, so it was alright.

on the crowd…
Yes, I really enjoyed the crowd. I don’t know how many came to see the game and support the game, but it was fantastic. Even if we had lost, just people coming to watch us is fantastic.

Interview

'I'm not going off unless someone drags me!'

Nigel Winterburn was praised after playing the full 90 minutes against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu in June - and he wasn't going to come off early in Saturday's return leg either.

The legendary left-back picked up a knock in the first half but battled on as we claimed a penalty shootout victory.

We spoke to him after the game and this is what he told us:

on the game...
It was a tough 90 minutes and Real Madrid play regularly, and you can see that with the way they play with the ball. But it’s such an honour and a pleasure to play against them. It was competitive, but a little bit slower!

on going down injured…
Well, you know me by now, I’m not going to come off unless someone drags me off! At my age, what a chance it is to play again and play against some fantastic players, and with some fantastic players. You’ll have to drag me off to get me off the pitch.

on the touches still being there…
Yeah it is, but sometimes it’s just when you get control of it and you want to push away and use that power, but there’s no power there! It’s almost in slow motion. It’s almost as if someone’s slowed it down and put you in reserve, but it’s a fantastic occasion and it’s all for The Arsenal Foundation, which is the main thing.

Interview

Seaman - Why I had to pull out of the game

David Seaman was down on the teamsheet to start the game against Real Madrid Legends - so why didn't he take to the field?

We caught up with the legendary goalkeeper, and this is what he told us:

on why he had to pull out of the starting line up…
I was doing a warm up and I was halfway through it and I just felt my calf really twinge, and I tried to carry on a little bit more, but it was twinging even more. There was no way that i could carry on, so I came in and let the physio have a look at it and he said, 'You’re running a serious risk of really damaging it', so I’m sorry, but I can’t take that risk. I’d just like to say sorry to the fans because I was really looking forward to playing here, especially against Real Madrid, but it’s not to be. It’s so sad but it’s still a great event.

on the team proving that they’ve still got quality…
They’ve got lots of quality. Their head and their brains are still very sharp, but their body’s are not so, as I’ve just found out! I’m 55 in 10 days so I’ve just got to start having a real good think about whether I should play or not. I was happily retired at 40, so now it might be time to do it again.

on the younger players in the Legends side…
Hopefully they can stay fit and obviously they are fit, but hopefully they can keep running all game. People like Ray and Robert, they can still do it and with Davor up front we might be able switch him with Jeremie in the second half because he’s very mobile. You need that when you're playing against people like this because they have all the experience in the world, but physically they’re not quite there.