It started at around 4.25pm on Sunday, May 8, 2016, and it ended at about 10 past seven on Saturday night.
Danny Welbeck’s long wait for first-team football lasted a shade under eight months and his return was greeted warmly from all four corners of the ground at Deepdale.
Danny’s popularity among the away fans was clear but his loan spell at Preston as a teenager earned him applause from home supporters too.
A brilliant save from goalkeeper Chris Maxwell denied Danny a dream return. But at 26 he still has time for a “dream career”, according to his manager.
“The patience you need when you have an injury at that age… it’s terrible [to go through],” said Arsene Wenger.
“To miss the European Championship and on top of he missed the start of the season, but he worked hard and certainly victory [in his comeback match] will make him stronger. But you have to go through it and that was a very difficult moment for him. I think he suffered a lot, but I hope, touch wood, he will now have a dream career.
“When the players are injured they are a little bit out of my sight because I sent him away as well. When a player has a long-term injury, sometimes it’s better you get him out and away, that he lives without the players and people who are injured as well.
“Because when he comes in he sees everybody go out there and you have to stay inside… the football club is built for people who are competitive. So sometimes mentally it’s difficult, so we let him go outside and miss this time.
“Of course we spoke with him a lot, but at the end of the day, when something like that happens to you, you deal with it on your own. But we try to support him, of course.”
Copyright 2021 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source.