The FA Cup, Amex Stadium
Saturday, January 26, 2013, 15:00
We’ve had some classic cup ties this year, good for us, good for the crowd, and some great for neutral. Today was no different. If I could have had picked the draw it would have been this one. Brighton didn’t disappoint.
Both teams were here to win and it was Chesney who made the first save of not tipping the ball round the corner to the Arsenal fans behind the goal. Soon after though Rosicky drove forward, Podolski popped it back and, Giroud curled it into the top corner from 20 yards. It was a peach.
A mistake from Santos let Brighton in on the half hour but the goal was ruled out for offside. Still though Brighton equalised. A corner and a header. Shock? Koscielny and Mertesacker all at sea but it’s so hard to mark people when you’re marking space. I’d love to see us get back to normal defending. Last season we tried and failed at zonal marking, now we’re trying and failing but sticking with it!
One-One at half time, Arsenal weren’t particularly playing badly but they didn’t look like they we’re a Champions League side playing a Championship side either. The second half opened with a Jenkinson drive and a Podolski cracker but it was Giroud who got the goal. It was Diaby who played the ball in, a peach, Giroud took it down and poked it home.
Arsenal were dominant but still let another goal up. You guess it a cross and a header. Kosicelny and Mertesacker both losing the centre forward. Why can’t we defend? It’s so poor from these two International defenders.
Walcott, Wilshere, and Gibbs came on and it made the difference. The extra class told. Gibbs was probing down the left and nearly set Giroud up for his hat-trick. The winner was the come though, a corner, punched out to Theo and a lashing shot hit and defender and flew in. It was enough to see us into the hat.
If I’m hand picking this draw it’s Luton away.
Arsenal: Chesney, Jenkinson, Santos (Gibbs 78), Kosicelny, Mertesacker, Diaby, Rosicky (Wilshere 68), Rambo, Chambo (Walcott 68), Podolski, Giroud. Subs not used: Mannone, Sagna, Cazorla, and Arshavin.
Goals: Giroud 15, 56, Walcott 85