King of the FA Cup v Blades Preview/ Line-up: 3-4-3 with Big Sok, Nelson, Joe & Laca

Arsenal v Sheffield United –  June 28th.


Will the FA Cup, once again, be the salvation of a poor League campaign for Arsenal?

 We have a glorious history in the FA starting in 1927 when we lost to Cardiff- 0-1 when the ball slipped under our Welsh goalkeeper Dan Lewis’ body with only 15 minutes left in the game. Community singing was first introduced in the 1927 final, there was doubt about what the response would be – but it was so enthusiastically received that it created one of the biggest organised choirs of all time as the crowd of 91,206 joined in – it has since become an annual FA Cup Final ritual.

Our first win came in 1930 (a 2-0 victory over Huddersfield) it was known as “Chapman’s Final” as it was a meeting of the two clubs that he had fashioned and inspired to greatness. He had won the League championship three years in a row with Huddersfield in the 1920’s and went on to achieve the same extraordinary feat with Arsenal in the 1930’s. 

The final was interrupted by the roaring engines of Germany’s pride – the giant silver airship the Graf Zeppelin when it flew over Wembley and dipped its nose in a salute to King George V – this was immediately greeted by loud boo’s from the crowd.

We played in two more Finals in the 1930’s – losing 2-1 to Newcastle in 1932 and beating Sunday’s opponents, Sheffield United, 1-0 in 1936, the winning goal was scored through the left foot of Ted Drake who had recently returned to the team after a cartilage operation.

FA Cup Final 2 001

It was Arsenal’s sixth success in League or Cup in seven seasons, but their triumphs did not get the coverage they deserved due to a dispute between Wembley and the newsreel companies – which led to a ban on film cameramen inside the stadium. The companies therefore took to the air in air-gyros but they were scrupulous in remaining on the outside of the stadium.

I will stop right there but I will continue with our FA Cup History if we progress to the semi final.


And so the Story Goes….

Preston North End confidently asked to be photographed with the Cup before the 1888 final but Major Francis Marindin, the president of the FA, replied, “Hadn’t you better win it first?”  Preston lost 2-1.

Aston Villa and Everton each booked into a “secret” hotel for the 1897 final, only to discover they were staying in the same place – Villa won 3.2.

With the score tied 0-0 at half time Derby County began the second round tie at Lincoln in 1902 by surrounding the ball. They prevented their opponents getting near it, steered the ball into Lincoln’s area, scored and went on to win 3-1.

Portsmouth received 20 pounds a man and shared a bonus of 550 pounds for beating Wolverhampton 4-1 in the 1939 final. They then discovered that the massed bands at Wembley were paid more, Ted (later Lord) Carter wrote in an article in the Tribune entitled “They would have been better off playing the cornet”.

Referee E.D.Smith of Sunderland said on BBC radio before the 1946 final (Derby County beat Charlton Athletic won 4-1) that the odds of the ball bursting were a million to one. The ball burst then and again the following year when Charlton beat Burnley 1-0.

Derby County had not won the Cup before 1946 because, it was said, gypsies had put a curse on then long before for training on their encampment. A Fleet Street reporter, however, had a bright idea. He persuaded the Derby captain to visit a gypsy camp near London, during the week before the final. The curse was lifted in return for silver and Derby duly won the Cup for the first time.

Manchester United had a flap before leaving their dressing room to face Leicester City in the 1963 final. Pat Crerand, their Scottish international wing-half, was missing. He was discovered in the tunnel, wearing only a jock-strap, Singing “abide with me”.

Our current team have a lot of history to live up to – we own the record of most FA Cup wins with thirteen, closely followed my Manchester United with twelve. Three wins and we could increase our record – is it possible with our current squad?

Arsenal FA Cup Final History
# Year Opponent GF GA W L
1 1927 Cardiff City 0 1   1
2 1930 Huddersfield 2 0 1  
3 1932 Newcastle 1 2   1
4 1936 Sheffield United 1 0 1  
5 1950 Liverpool 2 0 1  
6 1952 Newcastle 0 1   1
7 1971 Liverpool 2 1 1  
8 1972 Leeds United 0 1   1
9 1978 Ipswich 0 1   1
10 1979 Manchester United 3 2 1  
11 1980 West Ham 0 1   1
12 1993 Sheffield Wednesday 2 1 1  
13 1998 Newcastle 2 0 1  
14 2001 Liverpool 1 2   1
15 2002 Chelsea 2 0 1  
16 2003 Southampton 1 0 1  
17 2005 Manchester United 0 0 1  
18 2014 Hull 3 2 1  
19 2015 Aston Villa 4 0 1  
20 2017 Chelsea 2 1 1  
    Totals: 28 16 13 7


TA’s Team to smash the Blades

arsenal v SU fa cup

A rest for Mustafi and Bellerin, Ceballos and Pepe would make sense. Big Sok and AMN, Willock and Nelson to start instead. Maybe Kola could start instead of Tierney but the sturdy Scot is the better defender and he is enjoying this run of games. Oh and Eddie to come off the bench this time and score the winner. 🙂 Also happy for Luiz to return but Holding deserves another game after THAT performance against the Saints. Maybe Luiz will start instead of Tierney… But the above would be my preferred team.

76 thoughts on “King of the FA Cup v Blades Preview/ Line-up: 3-4-3 with Big Sok, Nelson, Joe & Laca

  • I can tell you had fun putting this one together, GN5. Great selection of pictures and a refreshing take on the preview with the FA Cup titbits. Arteta may just have found the right formation and team to go on some sort of a run but we know this is going to be a hard game. No doubt they will kick us and we need to show we can do that too whilst remaining professional. The centre of midfield is key of course and let’s see who Arteta will go for.

    C O M E O N Y O U R I P R O A R I N G G U N N E R S

  • Time to hear from you all again BKers! Admir, LeProf, PE, JNYC, Erismus, Retsub, etc etc

    Dont wait for the team to do well. Support the team so I will start to do well! We Need You On This Blog Potdammed! 😀

    L E T S B E H A V I N G Y O U ! ! !

  • Good morning Total,

    I most certainly enjoy delving into my files to write about the “early” Arsenal achievements. I was always disappointed in not seeing the teams of the 30’s, although I was fortunate in seeing many of the players and family discussions also brought them to light.

    There are a couple of my favourite pictures in the post. The FA Cup being wheeled around Highbury on what appears to be a baby’s pram and the air- gyro flying outside of Wembley during the newsreel dispute.

  • Afternoon All, thanks for the post GunnerN5, I just love the picture of the Arsenal team and staff on the Wembley pitch after the final and in an empty stadium. There is a very evocative feel about all those fine young men in their very fashionable civvies looking very satisfied with themselves, as well they should, after finally winning the clubs first major trophy.

    I’d imagine that Chapman was already planning for the next season and quite a season that was!

  • allezkev,

    I’ve got a few thousand Arsenal pictures dating back to the 1800’s and I really like the older pictures. The problem I have is that over the years I’ve “filed” them in various ways date, player, venue, competition etc: and also on various data bases, I’m in the midst (well my daughter was) of bringing them all together by date – then covid struck and we’ve only seen her once in three months.
    My images have come from all sorts of places, books, newspapers, on line, etc:

    I’ve also got hundreds of posts that I’ve cobbled together over the years but fortunately they are all in one well organized data base.

    I wish we had a greater participation on BK as, other than being quite, it’s one of the most well run and well managed blogs I’ve had the pleasure of posting/commenting on. Many blogs are full of bad tempered admins or bloggers who know little or nothing about the club or our history, wheres BK is blessed with a small but harmonious and knowledgeable group.

  • 19.05; norwich 1 utd 1
    cantwell – nice clean strike, but romero was taking a nap tbh
    he’s a very good player, that young norwich lad – i think reiss could deliver that kind of stylish performance, but … he’d have to be given some playing time
    someting else … GN5, in your ali baba’s cave, full of arsenal treasures, if you had something about the two 1969-1970 fairs cup legs arsenal-rouen; i’d be very interested in that
    cheers all; as for the XI mikel will pick tomorrow: i just don’t have the slightest clue

  • you smelled a rat under the luiz-soares deals; well …
    … there might have been a reason for that
    make no mistake; i positively hate the media bias against us, especially the guardian’s, and i realize how they must have relished bringing that one into light – there was not a snowball chance in hell that they’d have done the same with any other club than arsenal, surely not with ‘pool/chavs/city/manure/spuds
    but … they might be doing us a favour, actually, something wrong’s going on in the club we love so much; it has to get out in the open, out of the closet; the luiz/soares/mari deals look so fishy we just can’t stay quiet about them, imo
    what do you think?

  • That is an article full of fluff, Legallos. Let’s see how these players will be used by Arteta and how they will work out first. Too early to judge imho.

  • i hope you’re right, ta, i really do
    but luiz when you have mavropanos/chambers/holding/saliba/ballard/medley/clarke in store?; soares when you have osei-tutu/swanson??
    having said that, i am aware that it is very … convenient that the guardian/the independent should publish that kind of pieces right before one of the games that might save an otherwise gloomy season for us …
    by the way, i’m counting on you BKers’ reports – family post-lockdown reunion tomorrow

  • LG/Total, isn’t it interesting that Wolverhampton Wanderers, a fine old club, are very much in the pocket of an agent in Jorge Mendes, but there is hardly a peep from the Guardian a newspaper that’s sliding gracefully into the morass of sensationalism like so many other ex Fleet Street publications.

    Newspaper sales haven’t just fallen off of the edge of a cliff simply because on the Internet, it’s been a self inflicted wound of a thousand cuts thanks to the utter garbage they dish up…

    LG I was at the home leg vs Rouen, it finished narrowly 1-0 to the Anglais, but I don’t remember much about the game, football was very much, or it seemed that way, a much simpler event.

    LG do you think that Arteta will go with a similar defensive set up at Bramhall Lane as he used at St Mary’s? I tend to think that he will, in fact it wouldn’t surprise me if he didn’t make too many changes as he needs to keep the winning run going and he can make plenty of changes later in game when we’ve hopefully got control of the tie…

  • GunnerN5, I agree, I love to see the old pictures of Arsenal players and matches, there’s a whole host of pictures, many I think taken and used on postcards in the Edwardian era, of games and scenes from the old Manor Ground, when we were Woolwich Arsenal, like that famous picture of the original Spion Kop and a cloth cap on every head in the crowd.

    I’ve actually had a few tours around Plumstead and Woolwich, especially when I was doing the Knowledge of London, trying to find some old Woolwich Arsenal haunts.
    There’s a small Street in Plumstead called Hector Street (or Road, I can’t rightly recall) and I parked my bike on the pavement and peered over this garden wall and at the end of all the gardens there are still some of the old terraces from the Invicta Ground, our home prior to the Manor Ground.

  • allezkev,

    Some years back i wrote a post on Arsenal’s grounds, unlike your good self I’ve never been to any of the original locations (other than Highbury). Somewhere I’ve also gt images of all of the grounds.

    So here is a post within a post.


    An Arsenal Blast from The Past
    Arsenal’s Ground’s
    (From 1887 to present))

    I thought it would interesting to go back to our roots and take a look at the various grounds that we have played on from our inception in 1887 to the present day.
    Let’s start with our very first games which were played on Plumstead Common –

    Plumbstead Common
    From January 8th, 1887 to June 30th, 1887
    (No League games were played)

    The Royal Artillery exercised their horses on the common which left the playing surface badly rutted and almost unplayable. The changing rooms were located in several local Pubs and the teams goal posts were stored in a neighbouring back garden and had to be erected for every game. They only played 5 games on the common before looking for another location.

    Sportman’s Ground
    From September 30th, 1887 to February 12th, 1888
    (No League games were played)

    The Sportman’s ground was located close to Manor Field and was previously a pig farm. The ground was also located on the edges of Plumstead Marshes and was constantly water logged. Arsenal was beginning to attract hundred if not thousands of fans and that created a problem due to the soggy grounds and inadequate facilities.

    Manor Field
    From August 1st, 1888 to June 30th, 1889
    (No League games were played)

    This was another ground that did not fit the team’s needs, they used the Railway Tavern as a dressing room and they borrowed wagons, to create elevation, for the fans to stand on. It became obvious that they had to move when an estimated 10,000 fans turned up for the London Charity Cup final.

    Invicta Ground
    From September 1st, 1890 to May 31st, 1893
    (No League games were played)

    This ground was perhaps the best in Southern England as it had a grandstand and a half decent pitch. Although they were shunned by other Southern clubs they went ahead and applied for membership in the league and their application proved to be successful.
    In 1991 Arsenal became the first Southern club to turn professional. When the landlord of the Invicta Ground decided to increase the rent Arsenal took the opportunity to move on and they made the decision to purchase Manor Field. Their final game at Invicta was a 0-1 loss to Stoke City on April 29th, 1893.

    Manor Field
    From August 1st, 1893 to April 27th, 1913
    (343 League games were played)

    10, 000 fans were in attendance at the first game played here; it was against Newcastle United on September 2nd, 1893 and ended in a 2-2 draw. Their highest attendance was 32,850 against Aston Villa on October 8th, 1904. Their biggest win at Manor Field (which was also their highest all time league victory) was 12-0 against Loughborough on March 12th, 1900; it was also proved to be their lowest crowd when only 600 fans showed up.

    In 1893 the club now known as Woolwich Arsenal FC was elected into the Football League Division 2. Due to a crowd disturbance against Burton Wanderers the ground at Manor Field was closed for 5 games; during this period Arsenal played 1 game at Priestfield Stadium and 1 game at Lyttleton Ground.

    Sir Henry Norris purchased a plot of land 10 miles away in Islington and Arsenal started to build Highbury Stadium.

    From September 6th, 1913 to May 7th, 2006
    (1,691 League games were played)

    The first match at Highbury was 2-1 victory against Leicester Fosse and was watched by a crowd of 20,000. The final match against Wigan Athletic resulted in a 4-2 win and 38,359 people were in attendance.

    The highest attendance at Highbury was when 73,295 watched a 0-0 draw against Sunderland on March 9th, 1935. The lowest attendance was when only 4,554 watched Arsenal lose 0-3 to Leeds United on May 5th, 1966.

    The biggest home win was a 9-1 victory against Grimsby Town before 15,751 people on January 28th, 1931. The biggest defeat was a 2-6 loss watched by 30,000 against Sheffield United on March 26th, 1921.

    Emirates Stadium
    From August 19th, 2006 to –
    ( League games played TBD )

    The move from Highbury to the Emirates Stadium enabled the club to increase the capacity from 38,419 attendees at Highbury to 60,432 at the Emirates. The increased revenue was needed to allow Arsenal to become more competitive in the transfer market.
    The first league goal at the Emirates Stadium was scored by Olof Mellburg of Aston Villa the game ended in a 1-1 draw.

    The Emirates story is in progress and will not be completed for many more seasons.

    Compliments of here are some famous home and away Firsts…
    First competitive match (as Woolwich Arsenal):
    v Newcastle Utd (h) – Manor Ground Plumstead 2 Sept 1893 – League (Second Divison) Drew 2-2 (W Shaw, A Elliott)
    First competitive match at Highbury (as Woolwich Arsenal):
    v Leicester Fosse 6 Sept 1913 – League (Second Division) Won 2-1 (Jobey, Devine pen)
    First competitive match as Arsenal:
    v Bristol City (h) 4 April 1914 – League drew 1-1 (Winship)
    First league match at ‘home’:
    v Newcastle Utd (h) – Manor Ground Plumstead 2 Sept 1893 – League (Second Divison) Drew 2-2 (W Shaw, A Elliott)
    First league match away:
    v Notts County (a) 9 Sept 1893 Lost 2-3 (A Elliott, W Shaw)
    First Premier League match:
    v Norwich City (h)15 Aug 1992 Lost 2-4 (Bould, Campbell)
    First FA Cup match (Played at Manor Ground, Plumstead):
    v Ashford United (h) 14 Oct 1893 – FA Cup (1)) Won 12-0 (Elliott 3, Henderson 3, Booth 2, Heath 2, Crawford, Powell)
    First League Cup match:
    v Gillingham (h) 13 Sept 1966 (Round 2) drew 1-1 (Baldwin)
    First home match in European competition:
    v Staevnet (Denmark) 22 Oct 1963 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup Lost 2-3 (Skirton, Barnwell)
    First away match in European competition:
    v Staevnet (Denmark) 25 Sept 1963 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup Won 7-1 (Strong 3, Baker 3, MacLeod)
    First match in UEFA Champions League:
    v RC Lens (a) 16 Sept 1998 Drew 1-1 (Overmars)
    First match in Charity/Community Shield:
    v Sheff Wed at Stamford Bridge. Oct 8 1931, Won 2-1 (Joe Hulme, David Jack)
    First match at Emirates Stadium:
    v Ajax (Dennis Bergkamp Testimonial) 22 July 2006. Arsenal 2 (Henry 55, Kanu 80) Ajax 1 (Huntelaar 37)
    First competitive match at Emirates Stadium:
    v Aston Villa 19 August 2006. Arsenal 1 (Gilberto 83) Aston Villa (Mellberg 54)
    First player to be sent off at Emirates Stadium:
    Ivan Campo (Bolton) (2 yellows) 14 April 2007 (Lge) (won 2-1)
    First Arsenal player to be sent off at Emirates Stadium:
    Philippe Senderos (v Portsmouth (Lge) 2 Sept 2007 won 3-1)

    (Copyright 2015 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source 8 Jul 2008)


  • LG, maybe it is about mixing the young talent with experienced players. One more year of Luiz does seem to make sense. He makes mistakes and like you I don’t like that, but he also has a lot of experience to share with the promising kids. Soares I just don’t know so I cannot judge that signing at all.

    Kev, maybe clubs now need a strategic partnership with an agent to be successful. I am convinced the Kroenkes would not entertain this if they did not believe it to be beneficial.

  • “a much simpler event” … to say the least, kev
    in the 1970’s, me and my pals would rummage into our pockets, to pick out the change that would allow us to pay for the bus to the stadium and the match ticket, and that was it
    i (fondly) remember my old man (as well as other fans) after games, having a beer – or two – and/or a pastis – or two – in one of the three huge “cafés” around the stadium (“stade robert diochon”), with first team players.
    i loved these moments, the players were happy-go-lucky guys, they knew they had a talent for football, but didn’t want anyone to make a fuss about it, and surely would have hated any kind of bewildered awe behavior in their presence
    my ‘pa always told me that the 1969-1970 fc rouen keeper, pierre rigoni, had the game of his life in higbury. a few years later, i happened to play a whole season with one of his deputies, gilles marguillier, after he had retired from professional football. he had found another job, just made a few bucks on sundays in the fourth tier of french football, and if you didn’t push him, never said a word about his years in professional football, to him it just seemed … unimportant
    believe it or not, here is a pre-season picture of the 1977-1978 fc rouen first team – i swear to you, these guys were pros, and this is the pitch they actually trained on:

    having said that, and as far as footballing skills go, i’m not sure things have changed that much
    i spent five years in the fc rouen youth teams, and after our training sessions were over, we always stayed to watch the pros go on with their own
    i clearly remember the sound, the clarity of the sound every time they hit the ball – the surest sign of gesture perfection, something like the perfect golf swing
    being an “absentee fan”, having to watch my team on tv, i had almost forgotten that sound until i watched the highlights of our friendly against charlton at the (empty) emirates, when it was brought to my mind by the venom in laca’s and joe’s strikes when they scored their goals: it was the very same whipping sound, after all these years – you just can’t make it up, and it made me tip my hat in hindsight to this “motley crew” of the 1970’s fc rouen
    as for tomorrow, kev, I don’t see why mikel would change the system – he might rest kieran, I think it would be sensible to do so, and since we will have to be creative, because the “blades” will sit back, he might usher mesut in, something like:
    so, not many changes, as you said …
    and BKers: I’ll be reading your reports tomorrow night!!

  • I agree with you totally Total 😉
    My issue is the Guardian making such a big issue out of it as if Arsenal are the only club in bed with agents. Does anybody think that Liverpool aren’t close to certain agents? But who are they and why isn’t it in the newspapers, ditto Man City, ditto Leicester, plus any club managed by Mourinho will be by association having close ties with Mendes, so Chelsea, Man U and Spuds, but that isn’t worth an expose by the Manchester Guardian…

    Brilliant work GN5, I will study it better tomorrow as I am a bit cream crackered.

  • Well, I don’t know much about Kia Joorabchian, but we owe him big time for orchestrating Iwobi’s transfer.
    Regarding Soares I haven’t seen him playing either, but he has 33 international caps + 72 (!) for the junior national teams, which is quite impressive. Of course it wouldn’t be fair to compare full career stats with our young boys, but neither Osei-Tutu (21) nor Zak Swanson (19) has a single international call-up under the belt.

    Anyway, I can’t wait to see the lads progress in the FA Cup.

  • Agreed Kev. We just need to grow some hairy arsed balls again: the players, the manager, the BOD, the rest of the staff. We are the Arsenal, Invincibles, Kings of the FA Cup and multiple League Winners and we take no shit from anyone. Currently, we are being treated as a soft touch but let’s start today and smash those Bladies with rip roaring gunfire.

  • That’s some interesting info GunnerN5 I really enjoyed that, do you have any pics of the Invicta Ground? During one of my trips out to Woolwich and after I dropped off the passenger I had a little scout around the site of the old Woolwich munitions factory site and I stumbled upon Dial Square itself, the building was in the process of being renovated and turned into a restaurant, bar, social area, but there were many mentions of Arsenal in and around. It was quite surreal thinking that I was standing next to where it all began for all of us…

  • LG that was a really interesting story from a bygone age everything seemed less managed and I kinda miss that somewhat, I’ve never been to that part of France, I’d love to visit the cathedral and soak up all the shared history.

    Yes le foot in France has changed immeasurably since the 1970’s, the raw talent was always there all it needed was direction and now it’s the source of so many young technical players for all the wealthy leagues of europa.

  • It looks like 3-4-3 again and I will get my favourite midfield duo: Xhaka-Willock (and PB’s too I reckon):

    Martinez, Mustafi, Luiz, Tierney, Kola, Xhaka, Willock, AMN, Laca, Pepe, Saka

  • PB, I’ve got a feeling that Soares might turn out to be a shrewd piece of business, as it is we have him for four years and if he doesn’t cut the mustard we could sell him?

    Total I’ve just seen that Lacazette is set to captain the team, so no Aubameyang today…

  • Kola and AMN as wingbacks then?

    That looks an interesting team…


  • Not sure how else all these left sided players would fit in, Kev. Or maybe it is willock in the hole and Kola as partner for Xhaka. That would also be a no-shit centre of midfield!

  • Second coffee poured, Santi red and white Arsenal shirt donned, and liking the line-up a lot. Great thrust on the left and Pepe and AMN may well work better than Hector-Pepe. If Willock is the B2B midfielder it will be great to see how he will fare today. COYRRGs!

  • American Gooners probably still asleep but Nigerian Gooners have no excuse. Give us a sign you are well and supporting the Arsenal today…

  • According to the Guardian (Kev’s favourite scribes):

    Sheffield United (3-5-2) Henderson; Basham, Egan, Robinson; Baldock, Lundstram, Norwood, Fleck, Stevens; McGoldrick, McBurnie.
    Substitutes: Jagielka, Zivkovic, Mousset, Moore, K Freeman, L Freeman, Sharp, Osborn, Berge.

    Arsenal (3-4-3) Martinez; Mustafi, David Luiz, Kolasinac; Maitland-Niles, Xhaka, Willock, Tierney; Pepe, Lacazette, Saka.
    Substitutes: Macey, Bellerin, Sokratis, Holding, Smith, Ceballos, Nelson, Nketiah, Aubameyang.

  • Yes, TA, I’m watching the game stream.
    I generally like the line-up.
    I think it is good to give Auba some rest, and it is funny to field all 3 of our left back into the team.
    However on the right I would have preferred Papa and Nelson, to let Mustafi and Pepe rest a little.
    Let’s hope for the best, guys.

  • Arsenal passing the ball round well and SU letting us do it. All good to get into the game. Laca though is a bit sloppy with his passing.

  • Arsenal under a bit of pressure but first Xhaka and then Luiz defend well…. and then we concede from another corner… but was there an offside…? Pfffff

  • Freekick to the Blades but central and far out. AMN looking strong until now – good on the one to ones

    Ohhhhh Pepe and Laca link up well and Pepe smashed one in with the left hammer. Good safe by Henderson.. Corner is defended well.

    We are up for this one alright.

  • And now he may pay the price for this now our JW.. a collision with a McBurney has knocked him down. Back on his feet now and looking okay. Warrior!

  • Commentators complaining about the quality of the game hahahaha. Suck it up suckers. We are not here to entertain but to win. Role play is over.

  • But there is a sumptuous attack involving Martinez, Willock, Tierney and Pepe, whose left foot lacked the required sting in the tail and misses the target. 7 additional minutes in first half.

  • So 3-4-3 is working well. Both Tierney and AMN giving us width and defensive cover. Both have aided the support too and are amngt our best players. Xhaka sits a bit deeper in midfield and Joe is working the space well. Laca is working hard to create space and nuisance in the SU defence and Pepe especially is profiting from this. The one below par until now is Saka, but we know what he is capable of! Second half should be good.

  • Martinez’s goal kicks were terrible against Southampton, but today he is really impressive (in that department as well).
    Overall the lads started to bring some quality to the table, but I still find the chances created too few. We had a few real chances against the Saints mid-week, but we scored from attempts ‘found’ not really created. Same applies today.
    I miss Ozil. I hope he’s being prepared for our home game against Norwich.

  • hey Pb, did Pepe not have two fine opportunities as in well worked by the team?

    I agree there is room for improvement but this is a good team performance until now. Who could tell we lost two games in a row just over a week ago?

  • Wow guys, thanks for not commenting (except for my Hungarian friend)… At least it will prove to 17HT that it was not him who kept people from commenting during the Brighton game! 😀

  • Another close call offsite for SU. Simple freekick behind the defence… just offsite. We need to regain command over this game again.

  • Basham headed just wide, but from the replay it seemed Martinez covered the side of the goal just fine.

  • Eddie for Laca
    Ceballos for Willock

    New energy is needed. Willock less influential in second half. Eddie to chase the Blades after good work by Laca. COYRRGs!

  • Willock is replaced by Ceballos.
    Joe played well today. I don’t think he is a good passer overall, but I think the best pass today so far was delivered by Joe Willock.

  • Xhaka unleased the armageddon from 21 yards, which was eventually blocked, but it worth mentioning because Granit generated a hell lot of power with his right foot.

  • Right we had the drinks break and Arteta had the chance to put a bit of order in our play again. We need to regain initiative and see this game out. A second goal would be bliss… but we don’t deserve as yet, although Xhaka was close.

  • My stream has frozen a few times, but it seems that both teams share equal possession, make attempts on goal, but they cannot outsmart the defenders. Or as the commentators say: both teams lack quality in the final third.

    I would really like to see Nelson on the pitch.

  • Sheffield United equalized in the 87th minute.
    There was some miscommunication among the Arsenal defenders, and McGoldrick scored a sitter from a couple yards.
    We are heading towards extra time.

  • Martinez made a decent save; Pepe scrambled behind the loose ball for a corner.

  • Apparently there will be no extra time after all.
    Pepe and Ceballos created a chance and the latter – instead of finding a cross from a steep angle – went for the goal and scored. Henderson who played well throughout the game didn’t cover the goal perfectly.
    Sokratis replaces Pepe for tactical purposes. Arsenal is heading to Wembley – if they survive the remaining 4-5 minutes.

  • The final whistle is blown.
    Arsenal won the quarter-final, was the undisputed better team, but didn’t seem dangerous enough.
    Nevertheless the away win is under our belt – the second in a row.
    We’ll host Norwich City on Wednesday afternoon.

  • Sorry for my absence Total, but I was really enjoying the game, dare I say I saw some Arsenal ‘over my dead body’ play by Arsenal players not usually associated with the more industrial side of the game, Xhaka was monumental, I was really impressed with him, my MotM.

    After keeping a clean sheet I wanted to see how mentality strong we were and how we’d respond to a set back during a game and to recover from a scruffy equaliser with another goal said a lot about these players and how they’re buying into the Arteta process. Saka never stopped, nor did Lacazette (not his game) Kolasinac, Tierney, Pepe and the rest, a big slap on the back from me…

    I can’t wait to read the match report in the Guardian…. 😄

  • Sheffield United are like Stoke in some regards, they try to bully you, but our lads stood up to it and gave a little back, thumbs up to the referee, I don’t know who he is but he was a major improvement on ‘old man Atkinson’, the ref in our last game was pretty good as well, it’s nice to see our players protected and the thugs kept in their place.

  • Good commentary from the NK team of Total & allezkev.

    I watch the game in another room away from my computer so as not to be distracted, so I’m unable to comment during the game. Our penchant for incessant back passing drives me crazy and it’s also more than a little scary but overall its pleasing to see the progression under Arteta – even if it is spotty at times. His methodology and overall view of where he wants the team to be will take a long while to sink in but so far so good.

    I also like the way he’s handling the players, he is obviously a “no nonsense” leader and he will stick to his philosophy and sit out players regardless of their name.

    Good win today and it was good to see them fight against a physically bigger team and then fight back after giving away another sloppy goal.

    The games are coming thick and fast, next up we have Norwich at home on July 1st – after four consecutive away games.

  • I watched Norwich play Man Utd yesterday GunnerN5 and was surprised as they seem quite a technical team with some promising young players, I thought they evenly matched United until they unluckily went down to 10 men, which I personally thought was an error by the ref as he should have blown up for the foul immediately before. It’s as if he couldn’t wait to give United an advantage…

    Cantwell looks really good Aaron, Godfrey and their left back, so it won’t be a pushover against them but it should be a good game of football, here’s hoping…

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