Arsenal 4-0 Aston Villa: Gunners retain FA Cup in emphatic style at Wembley

first_imgArsenal retained the FA Cup and became the most successful club in the competition’s history with a four-goal demolition of Aston Villa at Wembley.The Gunners deservedly went ahead against an insipid Villa side through Theo Walcott’s fine volley, before Alexis Sanchez’s sumptuous effort doubled the lead just after half time.Per Mertesacker was awarded the freedom of the Villa penalty area to add a third halfway through the second half, before substitute Olivier Giroud flicked in a fourth in stoppage time. Arsenal’s rampant display ensured Arsene Wenger moved level with George Ramsay as the most proficient manager in FA Cup history with six titles, while the Gunners’ 12th success elevated them ahead of Manchester United in the record books.In their first FA Cup final for 15 years, the Villa players looked out of their depth and daunted by the magnitude of the task at hand, with Arsenal quick to assert their superiority.Shay Given, in his first FA Cup final appearance for 17 years, brilliantly denied Laurent Koscielny’s header before Aaron Ramsey uncharacteristically lashed over after a mistake by Ron Vlaar.Kieran Richardson was then on hand to keep the Gunners at bay with a desperate block from Walcott’s close range effort, but the England international, chosen ahead of Giroud, wasn’t to be denied for long.Five minutes before the break, the Gunners and Walcott deservedly broke the deadlock; capitalising on some hesitant Villa defending to confidently volley home left footed from Sanchez’s knock down.It took the same time difference the other side of half time for Arsenal to double their lead, with Sanchez’s dipping effort beating Given all ends up from the best part of 30 yards.Arsenal could smell blood, and Given got down smartly to palm away Santi Cazorla’s low strike before Jores Okore intervened after Walcott had initially skipped past the labouring centre back.The Gunners moved even further ahead just after the hour mark, as Mertesacker escaped Christian Benteke’s attentions to nod home a third from Cazorla’s corner.On another day Walcott could have notched a hat-trick, and Giroud soon replaced the 26-year-old with the Gunners coasting – Jack Wilshere also introduced for the impressive Mesut Ozil.Giroud was to get his goal, too, cleverly flicking in fellow substitute Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s low cross in the final minute of added time to add gloss to the scoreline.Tim Sherwood’s Villa side, in truth, looked completely overawed by the occasion and failed to register a shot on target in the entire 90 minutes, but the result was more a reflection of Arsenal’s brilliance than the Villans’ negligence. 1 Arsenal players last_img

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