Report: Arsenal 2-1 Hull City
By Randy Osae
Lightening certainly does not strike twice.
No matter how much of an obstacle Hull proved to stand in their way, the Gunners are heading to the new Wembley for once, and an all-London semi-final with Chelsea on April 18 now beckons.
Comeback fires from Van Persie and then Gallas erased Barmby’s early cause of anxiety and ensured revenge over the Tigers and Arsenal’s best return in the competition since their last triumph in 2005.
Maybe, just maybe, this could be another vintage run.
With his mind on-song after his announcement in English football on Saturday, Arshavin kept his body able to withstand the hype.
The Russian had stitches in his foot, but managed to start today along with a host of changes which saw Almunia, Denilson, Clichy, Bendtner, Nasri and Toure all relaxed for the favors of Fabianski, Gallas, Vela, Van Persie, Diaby and Gibbs.
The route to Wembley had already been foretold before the ball was kicked. But Hull had their own dreams and made it crystal-clear during the opening stages tonight. Let alone, they had fond memories of Arsenal’s ground under their belt, and you sensed if a ‘cupset’ was on the cards, Phil Brown’s men would be first to let a peek of what they had up their sleeve.
It was ping-pong time in Arsenal’s territory with 12 minutes gone, as Sagna booted a clearance onto Andy Dawson’s lashing, and it ended up with Barmby’s volley on the edge of the area which deflected off Djourou and looped over an off-balance Fabianski.
The Tigers were off to the quest indeed.
Hull were at it again, with Geovanni attempting to repeat his thunder-bolt back in September from 30 yards-out after being let off by Manucho. Then the Brazilian alerted Fabianski with a goal-bound free-kick tipped over. The visitors guided the ball home from the resulting corner, but this time, Barmby was just offside as he re-directed a long range effort past Fabianski.
Wenger’s men were still striving to pick up the pieces at this point. And Arshavin was first to pose questions – unleashing a poised shot from the left which was nearly deflected home but for a corner. Then moments before the interval, the Russian volleyed Gibbs’ blocked shot a whisker away from curling into the corner of the net.
Wenger breathed urgency into his side at break as they came knocking hard in the second-half. First Diaby headed a corner just wide off the post, Van Persie had a similar effort blocked off the line before Song’s follow-up traveled agonizingly wide.
Nothing but brilliance was asked for to break the duck. And Van Persie nearly provided that with a lowly drilled free-kick which looked net-bound until Myhill met it. At this point, Wenger had literally lost his composure on the sidelines as the visitors made every second go by with intent. The Frenchman had also lost his patience too for Vela and Song, who were sacrificed for Nasri and Bendtner.
Then came salt in the wound of superstition that it just was not Arsenal’s night. Van Persie did everything right to meet Nasri’s corner, but the ball refused to land home – smacking the face of the crossbar and out.
The writings of another Hull stunner were becoming apparent on the Emirates Stadium’s walls.
With head in hands, the Dutchman pondered as he trotted off for another chance. It did arrive when Bendtner managed to whip the ball across the pressure of Hull’s defenders and their stopper onto the feet of Arshavin who cleverly and unselfishly laid it off to a better positioned Van Persie right at the center of danger zone. And the Dutchman who had starred quite a frustrating night as stand-in captain, thumped home with his weaker foot.
It was rally time now.
But the Tigers nearly hit back like their tails had been stepped on. Geovanni raced past Djourou and shot right onto the side of the goal’s roof.
Momentum still belonged to the Gunners and they should have made it count when Bendtner latched onto Myhill’s fumbled catch. The Dane shot towards the free net, but it was blocked by a nearby defender.
Arsenal now hunted for the winner, and Walcott was replaced by Eboue. Two minutes later, they earned a free-kick from about 45-yards out. Nasri urged on and waited for a few of his gangly colleagues to go gamble in the box.
The substitute floated in a deep delivery with Hull’s stopper lurking off his line to come punch out. In the thick of the action, Myhill, Bendtner, and Djourou all collided with the ball which was parried on to vital Gallas with the empty net at stake.
And one of the controversial figures of the campaign nodded in a controversial goal, which sealed the road to Wembley.
have you seen the crap brown is talking hope he takes his hull team f/o back to the lower leagues
TIME WASTNING IS A BOOKABLE OFFENCE COACH BROWN. AW WAS SIMPLY REMINDING THE REF TO DO HIS JOB. AND IF YU TRUST YOUR TEAM TO DELIVER WHY WASTE TIME, PARK THE BUS?
what an utter chav phil brown is. every time the camera panned to him in the 2nd half he was effing and blinding. he needs to have a good look at himself and his squad before he goes accusing fabregas of anything. if he acts the way he did tonight a spit on the ground is the least he deserves. he should get a bangkok and a bash on the hooter!
what phil brown dint see was the assistant manager insulting wenger in the first half…..cmon Wenger is biggger in stature than that houghton…you dont go about insulting a manager just cuz ur team is leading 1-0……and yeah the goal keeper should have been booked in the first half itself….u are here to play football if not might as well ask the keeper to have the ball for all 90 minutes……and just accusing fabregas of spitting won’t change the result…he’s just trying to get people to talk about something other than his team being outplayed after 35 minutes…….grow up BROWN….that is not how u survive in the league…
what the hell did I miss? What was Brown doing? Trying to waste time? What did AW do?
Fuck yeah, hopefully that lights a fire in the belly of AW and the lads!
Told you they would come back Randy!
Trying to waste time and parking the bus, and once it doesn’t work out give us invented sh*t stories about spitting and no handshake. If you ain’t around to shake hands how AW is going to do so – what a prat this Brown is. Hope he follows big fat Sam down to the Champions League.
Ok Aziz…I have no idea what you mean by you hope Brown “follows big fat Sam down to the Champions League”.
I guess they’re really capable of pulling off that marvel even starring at relegation currently.
i think he means the Championship…. i hope he is implying that he expects them to be relegated….i think champions league is a bit too much to ask for…..
Phil Brown is a small man to argue about petty issues. Mr Brown,”Be a man to accept defeat.”
I said it before…give Bendtner some time. Vela, deserved a chance and got it. He didn’t meet expectations but he still needs time. Bendtner seems closer to it than anything else. He is a hard worker eventhough he has a hard time scoring he creates!
Phil Brown, is clasless! He is a sore loser and hates it that Arsenal a far superior than his lil Hull team. had we started our starters it would’ve been a blow out from the bat!
Their deflected goal from D was simply pure luck! It happens. That goal rainbowed in and Fab had no chance. We did a great job penetrating Hull when they finally parked the bus!
I can’t wait to play Chelsea. We pick up our game against the big 4 so this is going to be a mouth watering match!
CREDIT: Huge game for Gibbs. I like this kid and his spirit for the team! He fights hard and has sooo much potential! I love Clichy but Gibbs will give him a run for his money in the next year or 2
Things are finally falling into place! Go Gunners!
Without a doubt Bendtner needs time to grow and established himself as a striker but i fear he may not the luxury of time. Rvp , Eduardo , Walcott (playing well) Vela(improving) and Ade (returning)will push him down the pecking order. Bendtner must work hard on his game be it on match day or training especially at finding the net otherwise his days at The Arsenal will be numbered.
Umm where’s KArlos on his mach review and your player ratings. Oh and I see you have returned to Fox, Randy!
THANK GOD WE ARE GETTIN OURSELVES BACK ON TRACK.IT IS A GOOD THING FOR US TO WIN AGAIN AND PUT SMILLING ON GUNNERS FACE.ALL MATCHES ARE IMPORTANT FOR US TO WIN.LETS KEEP PRAYING FOR OUR TEAM TO CONTINUE FLY AS FLY EMIRATE FLY.UP GUNNERS TO YOU ALL AND RANDY HIMSELF