Emirates FA Cup
Wembley Stadium, London, England
Arsenal set-up an all-London Emirates FA Cup Final against Chelsea after coming from behind to defeat Manchester City 2-1 at Wembley Stadium.
Substitute Raheem Sterling had a goal wrongly disallowed in the first-half for Manchester City after the linesman adjudged the initial cross from Leroy Sané to have gone out of play, before Sergio Agüero put the Sky Blues ahead after the hour-mark. Nacho Monreal then levelled the scores to send the game into Extra-Time where Alexis Sánchez scored the winner to send the Gunners into their 20th Final in the competition.
In the 14th minute the Gunners went close when Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain sent a teasing delivery into the path of Olivier Giroud, but his header was tame and straight at Claudio Bravo, who made a straightforward save.
Seconds later City went close themselves when David Silva met an Agüero cross with a header that Petr Čech was forced to tip over the bar.
In the 21st minute Arsenal had the ball in the back of the net when skipper Laurent Koscielny latched onto Giroud’s header to volley home, following a freekick. However the flag was already up for offside against the defender and the goal was chalked-off.
In the 28th minute the Sky Blues thought they should have had a penalty when Oxlade-Chamberlain clumsily caught Agüero from behind with the Argentine going to ground, but referee Craig Pawson was unmoved.
Five minutes before the break Manchester City thought they had taken the lead when Sterling fired the loose ball home after Agüero was brilliantly denied by Čech following a fine cross from Leroy Sané. However it wasn’t to be, as the linesman wrongly adjudged Sané’s cross to have gone out of play, although it hadn’t.
A minute before the interval, the London-side thought they should have had a penalty when Sánchez was hauled down by Jesús Navas, who had a hold of the Chilean’s shirt in the penalty area, but the referee was once again unmoved.
In the 62nd minute City went ahead following a swift counter attack from an Arsenal corner. Aaron Ramsey initially lost possession to Yaya Touré, who wonderfully found Agüero with a fantastic cross-field pass with the striker surging forward before chipping Čech.
Arsenal responded well and went close to a leveller a minute later when Mesut Özil received the ball inside the penalty area to fire an effort that drifted just wide of the far-post.
In the 71st minute the Gunner drew level when Monreal arrived onto a dangerous cross from Oxlade-Chamberlain to fire home on the volley at the back-post.
Seven minutes later City very nearly took the lead again when Touré’s fine volley from-range was terrifically tipped onto the post by Čech.
Three minutes later the Gunners survived again as City struck the woodwork for the second time in quick-succession following a Kevin De Bruyne corner that was met by Fernandinho with a thumping header, before Navas fired the loose ball wide.
Four minutes later Arsenal had a great chance to find the winner when substitute Danny Welbeck got the better of Nicolás Otamendi, the striker had Ramsey and Sánchez in support but opted to go himself and curled an effort inches wide of the top-corner as the game eventually went to Extra-Time.
In the 96th minute Arsenal should have taken the lead when Özil’s delivery was met by Rob Holding with a header, but he headed the ball inches over the bar.
Five minutes later Arsenal took the lead. City failed to deal with an Arsenal freekick, which eventually fell to Sánchez, who made no mistake, firing the loose ball home from close-range.
Seconds before the interval the North-London side should have extended their lead when an Özil cross found Welbeck, but the striker somehow headed wide from close-range.
Five minutes into the second period of Extra-Time, Manchester City went close to an equaliser when a City counter-attack allowed De Bruyne to find substitute Fabian Delph, who looked set to find the bottom-corner, but his effort was brilliantly blocked by Arsenal substitute Héctor Bellerín into the side-netting.
The result meant that Arsenal progressed into their 20th FA Cup Final and will face Chelsea, while Manchester City bowed out of the competition.