FA Cup Round-Up: Arsenal To Face Chelsea At Wembley As Gunners Overcome City

Reuters / Toby Melville

Wembley will be host to the third edition of the North London Derby this season, as Arsenal overcame Manchester City 2-1 in a grueling semi-final encounter.

It wasn’t easy though, and the game was filled with dubious decisions. Manchester City dominated the first half of the clash and should have been 1-0 up when Sergio Aguero put the ball in the net in the 39th minute, but assistant referee Steve Child chalked the goal off because he felt Leroy Sane’s cross had gone out of play. Replays showed that the entire ball had not crossed the line and the goal should have stood.

Aguero also had a legitimate penalty claim turned down just 10 minutes earlier, when Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain tripped him from the back, but Craig Pawson turned it down and Arsenal got away with one.

The goal did come eventually though. A chaotic end to end second half saw City take the lead in the 61st minute through none other than Kun Aguero. Arsenal were on the attack when Ramsey lost the ball to Yaya Toure, who played an inch perfect pass into Aguero. The Argentinian burst through and had the beating of Nacho Monreal before exquisitely chipping the on-rushing Petr Cech for his 30th goal of the season.

The Gunners refused to sit back and showed incredible character and determination – something that has been missing from their side for most of this season – and were rewarded for their efforts just ten minutes later. Oxlade-Chamberlain had by far been Arsenal’s best player, and delivered a magnificent cross into the box which was terrifically finished by left wing-back Monreal.

Toure could have put City ahead just minutes later with a sumptuous volley, but Petr Cech made a fingertip save and the ball hit the post. City came close yet again when Fernandinho headed onto the crossbar from a corner.

The game went to extra-time and ten minutes in, Alexis Sanchez, as ever, was in the right place at the right time for Arsenal and scored the winner. A delicious ball in from Ozil was met by the head of Laurent Koscielny. The ball fell to Danny Welbeck who missed his kick but Sanchez was there to finish.

Welbeck had another chance to wrap up the result, but put his header wide of the post. It didn’t matter though, and Arsenal now have the chance to lift their third FA Cup in four years. They are in for another tough contest though, as they face Premier League table-toppers Chelsea – who beat Tottenham Hotspur 4-2 in another breath-taking encounter.

Will a win for Arsenal be enough to save Arsene Wenger’s job? Only time will tell.

Reuters / Carl Recine

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