Arsenal beat Chelsea 2-1 in a thrilling contest at Wembley stadium to win the FA Cup for record 13th time. Arsenal, who finished fifth in the league, ended an otherwise disappointing season on a high note by winning against the league winners. Amid all the drama regarding future of Wenger at the club, the manager and his team delivered another great performance for its fans to cheer.
Arsenal become the most successful club in the competition leaving behind Man United
Arsenal continued their outstanding league form into the FA Cup final and dominated Chelsea for most parts of the game. The Gunners were rewarded early for their attacking play as Alexis Sanchez scored in the 5th minute under controversial circumstances. The Chilean’s goal was initially ruled out as off-side by the linesman but was allowed to stand by the referee after a brief discussion between the two. Chelsea seemed listless in the beginning but managed to not concede heavily owing to some last-gasp defending and luck. Gary Cahill cleared off the ball from the goal line twice in the space of 15 minutes in the first-half. Danny Welbeck hit the crossbar in the 20th minute while Ramsey failed to score on the rebound. Granit Xhaka’s long-range effort also hit the outside of the bar in the first half.
Chelsea came back strongly in the second half
Chelsea began the second-half positively and kept Arsenal at the edge for the first quarter hour. The league winners were reduced to 10 men in the 68th minute after Victor Moses was booked for diving, his second yellow card of the day, and was sent off. It seemed like an uphill task for Chelsea from there onwards but surprisingly the Blues equalised in the 77th minute via Diego Costa. Arsenal responded immediately and took the lead from their first move when the play resumed. Olivier Giroud set up Aaron Ramsey and the Welshman scored from a diving header to send Arsenal fans at the Wembley back into jubilation.
Arsenal did not stop at that point and kept pressing for another goal. Mesut Ozil hit the woodwork while Bellerin’s several attempts on the goal went begging. In the end, it was Arsene Wenger’s boys who came out on the top against Antonio Conte’s.
Wenger’s future at the club still undecided
With Arsene Wenger’s future at Arsenal still to be decided in the board meeting next week, last couple of performances from the team have certainly strengthened Wenger’s position as the manager of the club. And the FA Cup victory, 7th for Arsenal under Wenger, might just mean that Arsene keeps his job at the club.