February 2008, Eduardo lay on the ground at Birmingham with an injury which would require an emergency operation.
The surgeon has admitted there was a moment when he feared the striker would lose his leg. A year later he returned to score twice in the FA Cup against Cardiff City, but it wasn’t until the fifth round when he scored one of his finest ever goals.
Burnley were the visitors, an opponent Eduardo had netted against at Turf Moor in the previous season. The Brazilian-born striker was given the captain’s armband as a ‘tribute’ for the game against Burnley in 2009, and he didn’t disappoint.
After a goal from Carlos Vela and before the win was sealed by Emmanuel Eboue, the main event happened in front of the North Bank.
A flick of the heel on the volley, and one of the finest goals our new stadium has ever seen. Eduardo didn’t return to his best after his injury, but this was a brief promise that he could and a lasting reminder of just how talented the striker was.
He could have been so much more for Arsenal, but the Croatian international left us with some great memories, including this goal. The mythical romance of the FA Cup is often belittled, whether or not it still exists is questioned each and every year, but this was undoubtedly a magical moment, one which transcended football.A fantastic human story about a fantastic human.