Football: Double Dutch of class

Southampton 1 Maddison 25 Arsenal 3 Overmars 20, Bergkamp 57,79 Attendance: 15,246

Dennis Bergkamp was saying that the wonderful thing about Ian Wright is that he seems to score goals as if to order. Not yesterday at the Dell. In the match in which Wright was expected to equal or beat the 50-year-old Arsenal club goalscoring record of 178 by Cliff Bastin, Bergkamp himself took the glory and Wright collected nothing more than a yellow card.

Everything bar the feeling that possibly Wright would want to beat the record on his home patch at Highbury had pointed to his succeeding, including the fact that in 1991 he scored three goals against Southampton on his league debut for Arsenal and later added two more hat-tricks against them. Curiously, he will now have another opportunity for record-breaking on Wednesday at Leicester, the club against which he scored his first goal for Arsenal.

Arsene Wenger, the Arsenal manager, admitted: "It would be impossible for Ian not to have the record on his mind but he was not at his best today." Yet for natural scoring in the mould of Jimmy Greaves, Wright has few peers. His disciplinary record grates against standards Arsenal once insisted upon, but times and standards have changed while the distance between the goalposts remains the same. And scoring goals remains as difficult as it was in Bastin's day. Perhaps more so in view of today's more athletic defences. But Wright has that timeless, mystifying knack of making scoring look effortless - the craft of the artful striker and an art he shares with Bergkamp.

The responsibility for restraining Wright yesterday fell mainly to Ken Monkou whose problem was that with Bergkamp teasing him with ball-hugging runs and Marc Overmars virtually irresistible on the left side, danger came from all angles. Cutting in typically and quickly after 19 minutes, Overmars slipped two challenges before shooting inside the far post for the first of Arsenal's Dutch-crafted goals.

Overmars himself skied a much easier chance and as a result Southampton rallied and counter-attacked. Monkou sent an inviting pass down the right for Matthew Oakley whose centre was deflected high by Steve Bould. When the ball dropped, Neil Maddison headed in.

If Wright was going to be up-staged, Bergkamp was always the most likely colleague to do it. Sure enough, after 58 minutes he weaved on a 50-yard run, defenders backed away and finally he curled the ball in almost casually. Wright simply stood aside and applauded.

Amid such high standards, it was unfortunate that Arsenal's increasing reputation for ill-temper was increased when Wright was booked for standing too close to a free-kick and Bergkamp himself was yellow-carded for elbowing. The Dutchman was far from subdued. Francis Benali attempted to block him some 30 yards out. The referee, David Elleray, turned a blind eye to some shirt pulling and Bergkamp drew away to blast in a shot that was as powerful as anyone in Arsenal colours can have conjured in this era or Bastin's.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
people
Arts and Entertainment
Original Netflix series such as Orange Is The New Black are to benefit from a 'substantial' increase in investment
TVHoax announcement had caused outrage
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

News
One Direction star Harry Styles who says he has no plans to follow his pal Cara Delevingne down the catwalk.
peopleManagement confirms rumours singer is going it alone are false
Voices
Mrs Brown's Boy: D'Movie has been a huge commercial success
voicesWhen it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Arts and Entertainment
Curtain calls: Madani Younis
theatreMadani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Arts and Entertainment
'Deep Breath' is Peter Capaldi's first full-length adventure as the twelfth Doctor
TVFirst episode of new series has ended up on the internet
Life and Style
Douglas McMaster says the food industry is ‘traumatised’
food + drinkSilo in Brighton will have just six staple dishes on the menu every day, including one meat option, one fish, one vegan, and one 'wild card'
Sport
Mario Balotelli, Divock Origi, Loic Remy, Wilfried Bony and Karim Benzema
transfersBony, Benzema and the other transfer targets
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

C# R&D .NET Developer-Algorithms, WCF, WPF, Agile, ASP.NET,MVC

£50000 - £67000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# R&D .NE...

C# Developer (Web, HTML5, CSS3, ASP.NET, JS, Visual Studios)

£40000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...

C# Developer (ASP.NET, F#, SQL, MVC, Bootstrap, JavaScript)

£55000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...

C# Payment Developer (Swift, FOX, Vigil, .NET, SQL)

£55000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Payment Dev...

Day In a Page

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?