I highly doubt I’ll go to a better game of football than this one.
The date was February 5th 2011. Newcastle, still hurting from the departure of Andy Carroll, welcomed Arsenal to St James’ Park.
By half time, the Gunners were 4-0 up. Arsenal were ruthless, while Newcastle were all over the place. Some fans probably left. I remember the lad I was sat with considering it until I convinced him otherwise.
What Newcastle did in the second half was truly out of this world. Arsenal went down to 10 men, then a Joey Barton penalty got Newcastle a consolation.
That consolation turned into hope when Leon Best made it 4-2. In the 83rd minute, Barton scored his second from the spot. St James’ Park was alive. The fans believed. Arsenal were there for the taking despite leading 4-0 after 26 minutes.
In the 87th minute, the roof came off. A Barton free-kick was cleared, falling to the one player you probably didn’t want it to fall to. But the tough-tackling Cheick Tiote rifled a volley back towards goal and past Wojciech Szczesny. It was 4-4.
The Ivorian scored a goal from the heavens, a strike that gives me goosebumps every time I see it. The celebrations were crazy. Steve Harper dropped the People’s Elbow as if he was the Rock.
And the game wasn’t over there, with Newcastle nearly going on to win it 5-4. Instead they settled for a point, completing one of the greatest comebacks in Premier League history.
It’s the best game I’ve ever been to, and has to go down as Newcastle’s greatest moment of the decade.
Every day until Christmas, Geordie Boot Boys will bring you another incredible Newcastle moment as we countdown the 25 most iconic Toon moments of the decade.