Emirates FA Cup

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Team news

Team news: Updates on Koscielny and Sokratis

Koscielny

Here's the latest team news update from our medical team ahead of Tuesday night’s Premier League clash against Cardiff City:

Laurent Koscielny
Bruising and soft tissue swelling to face and jaw. Being reviewed on a daily basis.
 
Sokratis
Left ankle. Expected to return to full training by the end of February.
 
Hector Bellerin
Left knee. Being fully assessed prior to surgery.
 
Henrikh Mkhitaryan
Right foot. Being integrated back into full training.
  
Rob Holding
Left knee. Recovering after surgery.
 
Danny Welbeck
Right ankle. Recovering after surgery.
 

Post-Match Report

Arsenal 1-3 Manchester United: As it happened

WHAT HAPPENED

Our FA Cup dream is over for another year after a disappointing home defeat.

We were always up against it after conceding twice in the space of two first-half minutes, but it looked like we would mount a comeback once Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang tapped in just before half-time.

But injuries to both of our starting centre backs disrupted our rhythm and United sealed the win late on with another goal on the counter attack.

There was little between the sides in the opening half hour. We started well enough, enjoying plenty of possession if not able to create any clear-cut chances.

Unai Emery was forced into his first change inside 20 minutes when Sokratis limped off. Shkodran Mustafi came on to replace him in a like-for-like change in the back four.

Both sides were still feeling each other out, though neither were holding back in the challenge.

Then two goals in the space of two and a half minutes changed the whole complexion of the match.

First Alexis – on his first return to Emirates Stadium since joining United 12 months ago –  ran onto a Romelu Lukaka pass, rounded Petr Cech, then converted from a narrow angle.

It got worse a matter of seconds later. Shortly after conceding, we were far too open at the back, United outnumbered us on the break and Jesse Lingard stroked home into the bottom corner.

It certainly knocked the stuffing out of us. We needed a quick response. Crucially we got it before the interval. 

A flowing move finished with Aaron Ramsey putting in a low ball across the face of goal. Lacazette could only get a toe to it, but Aubameyang was on hand to tap in at the far post. Game on.

New life was breathed into the team. We ended the half on a high – Mustafi headed a decent chance just wide – and continued the momentum after the break. Ramsey had a header clawed just over the bar with the game opening up.

Both sides were looking dangerous going forward, the game developing nicely into a pulsating cup tie.

A lengthy stoppage to treat a facial injury to Laurent Koscielny threatened to halt the flow of the game.

Koscielny's withdrawal led to another change at the back - Xhaka dropped back while Mesut Ozil was also introduced into the action.

Ramsey had a shot wide, while Lacazette saw a fierce effort parried. We were committing men forward, and paid the price when United scored the third.

Paul Pogba strode through the midfield, fired in a shot which Cech could only turn into Anthony Martial's path, for a simple finish.

Despite a hefty chunk of time added on for Koscielny's injury, we were unable to claw our way back into the game, and exited the competition.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Click here for a play by play summary of our FA Cup fourth round defeat.

WHAT IT MEANS

Our FA Cup hopes are over for another year, and we won't be extending our record-breaking haul of 13 cups this season. It's now full focus on the Premier League until the Europa League resumes in February.

WHAT'S NEXT

We return to Premier League action this Tuesday night with a home game against Cardiff City. The match kicks off at 7.45pm as we look to put pressure on Chelsea in fourth place, who play the following night.

Interview

‘We played much better than the result shows’

Our Emirates FA Cup journey came to an end at the hands of Manchester United on Friday night.

Alexis and Jesse Lingard scored in quick succession and despite Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang pulling one back, Anthony Martial struck late on to condemn us to defeat.
 
Petr Cech spoke to us after the game. Here’s what he said:
 
on the result…
Well it’s a disappointment, because we played much better than the result shows. Obviously they created some counter-attacking situations and they punished us from that. You can see they are full of confidence, and that’s why when they arrive in the last third, they choose the right options to finish their actions. At 2-1 I thought we were back in the game. In the second half we had some chances early on but unfortunately we couldn’t get the equaliser. Then it was the same story - they had a counter-attack and a goal.
 
on what the difference between the teams was…
They took their chances and we didn’t. That was the difference in the game. We are disappointed with that because we wanted to win again after a big win against Chelsea. It wasn’t to be.
 
on if Man United look a different side under Solskjaer…
When you win games, you get a lot of confidence. They had their own problems - their fortune has changed and they’ve started to win games. They play with freedom, confidence and they are winning games.
 
on if he knows what happened to Papa and Laurent…
No, I didn’t have a chance. We hope they can recover quickly because we need them. We play Tuesday and we need everyone back fit. Hopefully they won’t be injured for long.

Press conference

Unai Emery’s press conference: every word

Unai Emery was in reflective mood after our Emirates FA Cup campaign came to an end with a 3-1 defeat against Manchester United.

Our head coach discussed our injury situation, where it went wrong on Friday and the balance of our team in his post-match press conference - and you can read every word below.

on where it went wrong…
Good evening. I’m happy because I think our work is good, but the result is bad. Today it’s the result and the injuries. They don’t help us to be in the match, maybe when the result’s 1-2. In this moment we had the possibility to grow and to win, but these injuries - especially the one to Koscielny - didn’t help us because our rhythm went down. Also, we needed to change different players to play at centre back. They were very clinical today and in the moments when we attacked, we got into the box but couldn’t produce the last action to score. We deserved more but we played against Manchester United who are in their best moment of the season, and they have a lot of players to make the difference. Rashford and Martial came on as well.
 
on how bad the injury situation is now…
I think they weren’t big injuries for Sokratis [his ankle]. Maybe Laurent Koscielny is going to hospital to [analyse] what injury he has. Maybe he’s broken [his cheek or jaw] but I hope not.
 
on if team balance needs remedying…
Yes, but today for example we worked to stop their counter-attack. They have very big players to do the transitions and they gave us problems with that. We worked well, the second goal was in the transition, but the first was [due to] our positioning. In the second half, we took some risks and that’s what we needed to do. They scored [a third]. We need to keep improving. I think the matches against West Ham United and Chelsea we played and worked well defensively. Today was more difficult to stop their transition. We need to work on attacking [too] because we wanted to win. Our idea was to go in with a good balance. I think we have a good balance in a lot of moments but they have big players with big qualities who can make the difference.
 
on how he can fix it…
Working. I know the way is working. Also today, we had two injuries that changed ur possibility to take more balance.
 
on why Ozil didn’t start…
He played. I can play other players [too].