Emirates FA Cup: Arsenal Bow Out For the Season's Edition

Emirates FA Cup: Arsenal Bow Out For the Season's Edition

Arsenal's participation in this season's Emirates FA Cup competition came to a halt on Friday night as they suffered a heavy 3-1 defeat from Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium. Despite enjoying much of the possession, Unai Emery's men could not go beyond the fourth round.

Aside the loss, injuries to two key men in the starting lineup played a part in making it a night of massive pain for the Gunners. The removal of the two centre-backs no doubt had a somewhat negative effect on the squad's game plan.

Beginning on top level, Arsenal had more of the ball even though they were hardly able to craft out chances that could lead to goals. The way they pressed would make anyone feel they'll have the last laugh at the end but it wasn't as it looked and before any side could make a statement, disaster struck on the part of the home side. It was an injury to Sokratis in the 20th minute. Shkodran Mustafi came in for him as he limped off with disgust clearly written all over him.

In the aftermath of the aforementioned occurrence, the two teams were being careful as none wanted to be caught wanting. Nevertheless, Arsenal fell victim by conceding a brace in the space of ninety seconds. Alexis Sanchez on his debut return to his former club since leaving last January found the back of the net through a well-laid pass from Romelu Lukaku. The Chilean international rounded Petr Cech before tossing the ball in.

Next was another seconds later and it was our porous defence that got utilized by United on a counter attack. Jesse Lingard wasted not time in sending the ball into the bottom corner to give his side a two-goal lead.

Hopes got revived for Arsenal before the break but that would be the first and only goal for them on the night. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang made a tap in from an Aaron Ramsey low cross which Alexandre Lacazette could not fully reach.

The North-Londoners started the second half in a similar style to the first. They posed a threat through Ramsey's header then got hit by another unfortunate and forceful substitution. This time, it was Laurent Koscielny who had to be attended to. The game was paused for eight minutes to enable the physios stop a facial bleeding which resulted from an accidental stamp from Lukaku. It was over for him, so Granit Xhaka switched to the back while Mesut Ozil got introduced.

The home side's massive attack got them two consecutive chances, one from Ramsey which went wide and another from Lacazette that got parried by Sergio Romero. They attacked on with numbers upfront but paid dearly for that. United launched another counter attack and after racing forward through the middle, Paul Pogba fired one that Cech saved but not beyond the reach of Anthony Martial and he did well to finish clinically.

The ten minutes of added time as a result of the lengthy delay caused by Koscielny's injury did no good to us and it was goodbye to the Emirates FA Cup for the 2018/19 season. The chances to extend our tally to a 14th title has been put on hold.

We will continue our season with a home game against Cardiff on Tuesday before heading to the Etihad Stadium to play Manchester City five days later. Will there be a repeat of last week's Chelsea result?

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