Football review 2012: The match of the year

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A look back at the year in football

With the year drawing to a close, our series looks back at the highs, lows, absurd and brilliant from the world of football in 2012.

The Independent's football writers have been asked to come up with their moments of the year - and here they look back on their favourite game of the last 12 months...

 

Manchester City 3 QPR 2, May, selected by Sam Wallace

I was in the press box watching City fans walk out when QPR took the lead. When Sergio Aguero's winner went in there was a joy among the fans you rarely see. It was the joy of those who have known what it is to be starved of success, and have had to endure the success of others for longer than most of them can recall.

 

Manchester City 3 QPR 2, May, selected by Ian Herbert

The banner which one of the Manchester City fans held aloft said: "Some might say we will find a better day." There'll simply never be a better football day than that. A more enervating title finale we will never see.

 

Celtic 2 Barcelona 1, November, selected by Martin Hardy

As soon as 125 was adorned in huge figures amongst the Celtic Park crowd, something magical felt possible. It happened. Celtic, comparative minnows playing in a league with no money, defeated the greatest team in the world on a night to make you believe anything was possible. Messi scored late, Wanyama and Watt had put Neil Lennon's side into an unimagined two-nil lead. Celtic held on, Celtic Park held strong as the ground shook. Nights like these are to be savoured.

 

Manchester City 3 QPR 2, May, selected by Steve Tongue

Reading against Arsenal in the League Cup was more startling right from the start. But once Queen's Park Rangers scored just after half-time at Manchester City on the last day of the season, the significance of the occasion for both clubs, the extraordinary climax, the fact that it was the two Manchester clubs going for the title all combined to make this the one. 

 

Reading 5 Arsenal 7, October, selected by Jack Pitt-Brooke

In a week dominated by yet another race row, this was a reminder of the glorious madness this is possible on a football pitch. Arsenal started shamefully, going 4-0 down before fighting back and scoring twice in added time to make it 4-4.

That would have been remarkable enough but they added another three in extra time, two of them from Marouane Chamakh, of all people, the last a 20-yard lofted volley. 120 minutes, 12 goals and no acrimony or controversy in sight.

 

Manchester City 3 QPR 2, May, selected by Glenn Moore

The Premier League is not the best league in the world, La Liga has the best two teams and players, the Bundesliga is a better place to be a spectator, but nowhere matches it for drama. There were so may subplots at Eastlands - the Manchester rivalry, old money versus new, Mark Hughes at his old club trying to keep his new team up  - and then the game started. The afternoon was a rollercoaster with Joey Barton reverting to type and Manchester United and Bolton also embroiled before City finally gained last-gasp revenge for all the years of mockery.

 

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