‘Que sera sera’ sang the Arsenal fans gleefully under the glorious sunshine at the Emirates as Arsenal thumped a very good Everton 4-1 to reach the semifinals of the FA cup. It is a step closer to hold the trophy aloft and as long as we avoid Mancity we will be the favorites to reach the final.
Arsenal made six changes to the starting line up and in came Sanogo, Flamini, Ozil, Fabianski, Chamberlain and Vermaelen. Everton put out a strong side and they made a quick start. Baines put in a teasing cross and Distin nearly scrambled into the net. Arsenal then took a lead when Santi Cazorla played in Ozil with a perfectly weighted pass and the German slotted it home brilliantly despite the best efforts of Coleman and Stones. 1-0 to the Gunners. Sanogo and Chamberlain tested the goalkeeper with shots from distance.
It was a bit ironic that Everton scored from an Arsenal attack. Arteta’s shot was blocked and Ross Barkley sped down the inside right channel and found Mirallas at the far post with his cross. The Belgian contrived to miss and the ball fell to Lukaku who made no mistake from close range. Everton deserved the goal and both teams went into half-time with the scores level.
Arsenal started the second half better than Everton putting in crosses and testing the nervy Everton keeoer. Thomas Vermaelen miskicked the ball, his compatriot Lukaku pounced on it and slid in a ball in the box to Barkey who lashed it wide. Arsenal let off the hook.
On came Giroud for Sanogo, who tried but nothing really came on for him. Oxlade Chamberlain was felled in the box by Barry and Clattenburg awarded Arsenal a penalty. Mikel Arteta stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way. However he would have to take the penalty again as Clattenburg booked Giroud for encroachment and in Arteta slammed into the top corner and wheeled away in delight. The relief was immense, tension around the stadium lifted.
Everton had to take the game to Arsenal to stay in the competition and Arsene introduced Rosicky for Chamberlain, who had an excellent game. The substitution proved to be an inspired one as Rosicky had a hand in Arsenal’s third and fourth. Giroud nodded it home from close range after Sagna squeezed it from the right. The fourth was a thing of beauty. Cazorla won the ball in his own half and sprayed it to Rosicky who found Ozil with a weighted pass, the German cut it beautifully for Giroud to make it 4-1.
It was hard on Everton who were blown away in the last quarter. Arsenal were simply fantastic and it sets up nicely for the upcoming fixtures against Bayern and Spurs. I really hate to mention Bayern and Spurs in the same line but the Spurs game is really important for us now. Next up is a trip to Munich and we will thrash the Bavarians 5-0. Wembley here we come. COYG
FT SCORE:Arsenal 4- Everton 1