After beating Liverpool in an FA Cup semi-final and Juventus in a Cup Winners’ Cup semi-final, Arsenal failed at the last

By Steven Pye for That 1980s Sports Blog

The date is 12 May 1979, Arsenal are playing their 59th game of the season and Graham Rix is preparing to strike the ball. It is the 89th minute of the FA Cup final at Wembley and the club’s whole season is in danger of falling at the last, leaving them with nothing to show for all their efforts. Rix swings his left foot, sends a cross to the far post and Alan Sunderland heads the ball into the Manchester United net to score the winner.

Fast forward 368 days to 14 May 1980 and Arsenal are playing their 68th match of the season and Rix is again preparing to strike the ball. Arsenal have already played 90 minutes in the FA Cup final and 120 minutes in a Cup Winners’ Cup final. Again they are in danger of winning nothing. Rix swings his left foot.

Related: When Arsenal won the FA Cup ... after playing four replays in the same round

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