FA Cup: Arsenal Crush Newcastle in Period of Grace to Progress to Next Round

Arsenal began the defence of the Emirates FA Cup trophy when they welcomed Newcastle United to the Emirates Stadium for the third round encounter on Saturday evening. 

The tie which went all dry on the goalscoring front all through regular time had a twist in the second half of extra time which was when we hit the Magpies twice to send them packing from the season's edition of the tournament.

Mikel Arteta retained only four of the eleven that featured in the 4-0 demolition of West Bromwich Albion a week ago while introducing the likes of Nicolas Pepe, Reiss Nelson and Willian.

We started on top thereby getting an early chance through Reiss Nelson in just a matter of seconds after kickoff. The youngster's hit was well saved by Martin Dubravka. The man who had stepped in the place of Gabriel Martinelli that had to pull out during pre-match warmup due to an injury was pulled down on the counter moments later.

Our best chance of the opening half came from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The Arsenal captain latched on to a Cedric Soares freekick before forcing a save from the visiting goalkeeper. It fell to Willian for the rebound but the Brazilian fired it over.

Newcastle posed an issue for us as they sat deep behind and we could not break through for so long. They also got a good opportunity which was fired past the face of goal by Andy Carol.

The encounter could not be settled regular time so we headed out for extra time and it was in the second half of that phase that we were able to score twice.

Smith Rowe controlled the ball so well then thumped in with class into the net shortly after he escaped being sent off. A foul on Longstaff made the referee flash a straight red but after a VAR review, it was reversed for a yellow card.

Aubameyang converted Tierney's cross from close range to make it a double goal lead for us. It ended that way to give us a place in the fourth round of the FA Cup.

We will find out who we will lock horns with on Monday when the draw for the next round takes place. 

Our next game will be in the English Premier League on Thursday night. We will host Crystal Palace at the Emirates Stadium.

UPDATE: In the next round of the FA Cup, Arsenal will travel to play the winner of the Southampton vs Shrewsbury fixture.

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