Arsenal fans want Kanu comeback
Arsenal supporters have joked that they’d prefer to see Nwankwo Kanu up front for them instead of Olivier Giroud.
The Nigerian scored a hat-trick in Saturday’s 4-2 friendly win over AC Milan Glorie and Gunners fans would be all too pleased to have him back.
What are they up to now?
Arsenal fans were treated to a trip down memory lane with today’s friendly match.
Here, Mirror Football has taken a closer look at what the Gunners legends are up to now.
Not bad a bunch of middle-aged men, eh?
You can relive all of the goals from Arsenal Legends’ 4-2 win over Milan Glorie with ITV’s highlights.
Maybe some of these chaps would get into the current Gunners XI…
All over at the Emirates
All over at the Emirates then, where Kanu rolled back the years with a hat-trick as Arsenal Legends beat Milan Glorie 4-2 after an entertaining afternoon at Emirates.
A sell-out crowd saw the two star-studded sides show that, although they may have put on a few additional pounds, they still had the skills to get the job done.
Kanu’s hat-trick was the high-point, with Robert Pires and Freddie Ljungberg still combining well, with the Frenchman’s late goal bringing about the loudest cheers of the day.
Christian Vieri netted twice for the visitors, but it was Arsene Wenger’s men who came out on top.
90 mins – It’s all over and Arsenal run out deserved winners against Milan. Plenty of goals, plenty of talking points and a lovely afternoon in aid of a great cause in The Arsenal Foundation.
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GOAL! Arsenal Legends 4-2 Milan Glorie (Vieri, pen)
88 mins – Massaro wins a penalty for Milan. He goes down theatrically after minimal pressure from Cygan but buys a spot kick. Vieiri’s penalty is saved by Lehmann but he scores with his rebound. Milan have clawed it to 4-2.
GOAL! Arsenal Legends 4-1 Milan Glorie (Pires)
84 mins – Superb. We’ve travelled back in time. Ljungberg rolls back the years, dinks a ball through a crowd of three Milan defenders and beats them for pace. The Swede squares for an unmarked Pires who duly converts from close-range. It’s 4-1 to the Arsenal and we might yet see a fifth…
82 mins – Desailly re-enters the fray and replaces Costacurta. Simone misses his attempted volley on the edge of the box. It bounces kindly for a second try and that effort blazes well over the crossbar. Clutching at straws.
GOAL! Arsenal Legends 3-1 Milan Glorie (Kanu, pen)
79 mins – Boa Morte and Ljungberg’s lovely one-two is cut short by a foul from Massaro in the box. Penalty given. Penalty scored. Kanu completes his hat-trick from the sport. He strokes it into the right hand side of the net and Dida dives the wrong way. It’s 3-1 to the Arsenal and they’re good value for it.
76 mins – Ljungberg whips a low cross into the Milan box after an eye-pleasing, even if unnecessary step-over. It whizzes past the last man and Dida was rooted to the spot again but the on-rushing Boa Morte couldn’t poke home. Arsenal lead 2-1 and look very capable of scoring another.
Giuseppe Pancaro comes on in place of Di Canio for Milan.
72 mins – Ljungberg goes down clutching his knee after a late challenge from Dario Simic but looks ok to carry on. Grimandi concedes a foul for Arsenal about 40 yards out and Milan waste a free-kick by playing it quickly.
GOAL! Arsenal Legends 2-1 Milan Glorie (Kanu)
69 mins – It’s that man again. Pires draws a foul from Eranio on the edge of the box. Boa Morte’s cross is headed in off the crossbar by Kanu. No need for goal-line technology. It’s well over the line. Dida barely moved and Arsenal lead 2-1.
67 mins – Overmars shows his age. He’s going shoulder to shoulder with Eranio and pulls up awkwardly. The Road Runner clutches his thigh and he’s taken off to a standing ovation. Nice try, but at 43 you’re not going to be as quick as you used to be.
65 mins – Boa Morte bursts into the box and tricks his way past Costacurta’s slide. Dida is drawn out and the ball is cleared but only as far as Kanu. Kanu turns Cabone and quickly hits the deck with his momentum. Was there contact? The referee isn’t convinced. No penalty given!
62 mins – Cafu makes a burst down the right flank and is body-checked by Overmars. The free-kick is delivered by Di Canio but cleared by Boa Morte.
58 mins – Arsenal are knocking it about nicely and after a patient build-up, Ljungberg wrong-foots Ambrosini to send a cross into the box. Kanu can’t make contact.
Overmars is reintroduced from the substitutes bench and replaces Limpar for the hosts.
55 mins – Di Canio wins, loses, wins, loses and wins possession again on the wing for Milan. Eventually a long ball from Serginho finds its way to Vieiri but his first touch is poor.
53 mins – Arsenal break through Gilberto, who plays a one-two with Kanu. The Brazilian drags his shot just wide before Petit is substituted for Luis Boa Morte.
50 mins – We’ve descended into a bit of a trotting pace here. Both sides have walked to the other’s edge of the box and both have forced important blocks – Costacurta for Milan and Toure for Arsenal. It’s end-to-end, I suppose, but not at breakneck speed…
48 mins – Eranio’s long ball over the top finds Di Canio in the Arsenal box. The Italian has an angled effort at goal which is saved by the palms of Lehmann but the ball flies awkwardly over the crossbar. Arsenal deal with the corner.
46 mins – The second-half is underway in north London. Milan have replaced their goalkeeper with Dida. Jens Lehmann has replaced Seaman in the Gunners’ net. Today’s game has yielded £1million for The Arsenal Foundation.
45 mins – The final five minutes of the half passes with little incident. The pace has slowed right down with the scores level at 1-1.
Arsenal led courtesy of a header from Kanu but Vieri equalised from close-range for the visitors.
Stick with us for the second-half live soon!
40 mins – Desailly is replaced by Stefano Eranio. The change is made right after Hoyte made another lung-busting run down the flank. He’s without a club at the moment. Perhaps he’s playing for a move?
GOAL! Arsenal Legends 1-1 Milan Glorie (Vieri)
37 mins – Milan win a corner from Di Canio’s shot. Ambrosini sends a sharp header at goal from the delivery and forces a superb save from Seaman but the tip falls kindly to Vieiri, who scrambles it home from close-range. It’s 1-1 at the Emirates Stadium.
34 mins – Overmars shoots wide of the target but that’s the end of his afternoon. He is replaced by Anders Limpar. Milan have swapped Boban for Marco Simone.
32 mins – That was brilliant. Nigel Winterburn slides in on Di Canio and the pair recreate their clash during their playing days with a theatrical fall. They hug afterwards. Nice touch.
30 mins – Kanu narrowly misses a chance to add to his and Arsenal’s tally. He collects a short pass on the edge of the box from Pires and in a flowing movement turns Albertini, leaving him for dead. The striker sends a shot just over the crossbar and it wasn’t far off 2-0.
Albertini is quickly replaced by Angelo Cabone. Bit harsh.
GOAL! Arsenal Legends 1-0 Milan Glorie (Kanu)
27 mins – Kanu rises highest to meet Petit’s inch-perfect cross into the box. The gangly forward just tip-toes to head into the top corner and it’s 1-0 to the Arsenal! Pretty sure that was his first touch of the ball!
25 mins – Kanu replaces Gilberto for Arsenal. There’s a huge cheer from around the Emirates Stadium. The Nigerian slots neatly beside Ljungberg in attack.
22 mins – Ljungberg tricks his way past Albertini and whips a cross into the Milan box. Pires loses his marker and makes connection with a header but his effort is sent wide of the goal. Arsenal on top again.
20 mins- Overmars jogs down the flank, cuts inside and fires a looping shot at Abbiati. These shots from distance are becoming a recurring theme…
18 mins – Serginho floats a cross into the Arsenal box and it’s Petit who’s tracking back to head clear. The corner is cleared too and Arsenal reshape.
Parlour has gone off with an ice pack on his leg.
Ljungberg play a smart exchange in the Milan box but Costacurta manages to get an important tackle in.
12 mins – Ambrosini barges Pires off the ball but referee Howard Webb isn’t convinced. He passes to Di Canio. The West Ham legend passes to Serginho with a cheeky backheel. Milan’s movement yields their first real chance of the game. Vieiri shoots at 52-year-old Seaman in the Arsenal goal. It’s saved.
10 mins – Arsenal roll back the years and put together a lovely move which puts Pires one-on-one with the goalkeeper but his effort is saved. The corner is dealt with. Arsenal are very much in the ascendancy.
8 mins – Desailly’s clearance only goes as far as Petit. He passes to Pires who lays off to the on-rushing Hoyte. He tries an audacious chip but it’s caught calmly. Did he really expect anything else from that range? Still 0-0.
6 mins – Arsenal have found their feet and are controlling the tempo of the game. Probably just as well. Petit threads a ball to Ljunberg, who’s fouled. His free-kick doesn’t beat the first man and goes out for a throw-in.
4 mins – Vieri, who made eight appearances for Milan in all competitions, forces a corner after his shot is blocked by Toure. It’s dealt with and at reasonable speed for a bunch of middle aged men, Arsenal break. Overmars shoots and the goalkeeper saves.
2 mins – Parlour tries his luck form distance but his pop shot lacks power and veers wide of the target. Maybe those pre-match pints weren’t such a great idea?
1 mins – We’re underway at the Emirates Stadium after a slight delay in convincing Kanu to leave the pitch. Milan string a few passes together at the back.
The pace is starting slow and I think it’s fair to expect that may continue. Overmars pounces on a loose ball but his shot is well over the crossbar.
Ray Parlour has been preparing for today’s showdown with Milan in style!
Look what The Romford Pele has been up to…
Robert Pires produced pure genius at times when playing for Arsenal.
Here’s a look back at one of his best goals in a Gunners shirt during a 6-1 demolition of Southampton in 2003.
Oh my word.
Arsenal Legends team news
Arsenal Legends starting XI: Seaman, Hoyte, Toure, Keown, Winterburn, Parlour, Petit, Gilberto, Overmars, Pires, Ljungberg
Subs: Lehmann, Cygan, Limpar, Grimandi, Boa Morte, Kanu
Ramsey on The Romford Pele
Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey is looking forward to seeing Ray Parlour back on the pitch today. Parlour, who was part of the ‘Invincibles’ side which went unbeaten to win the Premier League title in 2004, was famed for his terrier-like tenacity.
Ramsey said of the Gunners legend:“He was a great player for Arsenal. He won many things, had great qualities, scored some important goals and his work-rate was up there with the best.”
The Welshman added: “He’s a great guy as well. He comes in and gives us advice – he’s just a good guy and one of those people that you like to be around.
“It’s important to have that sort of character in the squad, someone who gets everybody up and gets everybody laughing. You enjoy being in his company – he’s just a pleasure to be around.”
Cafu on Bellerin
Former Brazil captain Cafu, who made 130 appearances for Milan in all competitions, has spoken highly of Arsenal’s rising star right back Hector Bellerin.
“Bellerin is much like me at 21,” Cafu said, “He is very fast and very impressive. He has a big big future!”
Cafu won two World Cups with Brazil as well as six major honours with Milan, including the 2003-04 Serie A title.
Pires happy to be a Gunner again
Former Arsenal winger Robert Pires is thrilled to be pulling on the club’s shirt once again.
The Frenchman said: “We are all very excited to be taking part in this match. To play in front of the Arsenal fans once again will be amazing.
“Playing alongside some of my old-team mates against a team of Milan legends will be very emotional. I’m so proud we’re raising funds for the great work of The Arsenal Foundation.”
Arsenal Legends: Jens Lehmann, David Seaman, Martin Keown, Marc Overmars, Ray Parlour, Emmanuel Petit, Pascal Cygan, Gilberto, Nigel Winterburn, Kolo Toure, Robert Pires, Freddie Ljungberg, Sylvain Wiltord, Anders Limpar, Gilles Grimandi and Nwankwo Kanu.
AC Milan Glories: Christian Abbiati, Dida, Cafu, Paolo Maldini, Demetrio Albertini, Alessandro Costacurta, Paolo Di Canio, Edgar Davids, Marcel Desailly, Daniele Massaro, Marco Simone, Angelo Carbone, Dario Simic, Giuseppe Favalli, Kakhaber Kaladze, Zvonimir Boban, Massimo Ambrosini, Stefano Eranio, Giuseppe Pancaro, Ibrahim Ba, Serginho and Christian Vieri.