A product of Liverpool's academy, Michael Owen is widely regarded as one of England's best strikers of all time.
In 1997, a 17-year-old Owen made his Premier League debut for the Reds and scored a goal against AFC Wimbledon. A moment which birthed one of England's greatest prodigies. By his 20th birthday, Owen had already won the Premier League Golden Boot for two consecutive seasons and was ranked fourth for FIFA World Player of the Year.
Over a lustrous career spanning 16 years, Owen played for European powerhouses, Liverpool, Real Madrid, Newcastle, and Manchester United. Sadly, his later years were riddled with unfortunate injuries causing an early retirement in 2013. Since then, he has worked as a commentator and pundit for BT Sport and BBC, as well as founding a horse racing club in his hometown of Cheshire.
In 2001, Michael Owen became one of the few Englishmen to win the heavily-decorated Ballon D'or. This came after a landmark year for Owen and Liverpool, winning the continental treble (UEFA Cup, English League Cup, and FA Cup), as well as the 2001 UEFA Super Cup after a historic win against Bayern Munich where the Reds striker was named Man of the Match. Later in his career, Owen also won the 2010-2011 Premier League with Manchester United.
Now, after all the glitz, the glamour, and the silverware, Michael Owen recounts one moment in his career to be "the best day of [his] life". That day being, the 2001 FA Cup Final against Arsenal. In the FA Cup Reload interview, Owen confidently states, "if you said to me, you can live one day again, I would definitely say FA Cup Final Day".
The FA Cup is the world's oldest national football competition. It holds massive importance in English culture and has been played for over 150 years. Michael Owen remembers "FA Cup was everything as a kid."
In one of the Cup's greatest games of all time, Gerard Houllier's Liverpool faced off against Arsene Wenger's Arsenal to become 2001 FA Cup champions. By May 2001, Arsenal were flying high. They just finished 2nd in the Premier League and beat their North London rivals, Tottenham Hotspur, 2-1 in the FA Cup semi-final to secure a place at Millennium Stadium. Owen describes the 2001 Arsenal side as "absolutely incredible." Footballing icons, such as Thierry Henry, Patrick Viera, Steven Gerrard, and of course, Michael Owen all took part in the final. The game was nothing short of a football melodrama with referee blunders, missed chances, and late turnarounds. But in the end, it was Michael Owen who took all the headlines.
Don't miss Owen commentate over his finest performance in a Liverpool shirt as they create history against one of the strongest Arsenal sides of all time. The interview also dives into the magic of the FA Cup and what it means for a young prodigy to become a world star on English football's biggest stage.