Arsenal have qualified for this season’s Emirates FA cup after defeating league one club Portsmouth in Monday’s fifth clash. Monday Nights defeat was Portsmouth’s defeat at Fratton Park since September 2019 against Southampton in the League cup (0-4), ending their 19 game unbeaten run on home soil in all competitions.
Mikel Arteta’s side desperately needed a morale-boosting success after Olympiakos snatched a late winner to knock them out of the Europa League at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday. Arteta said his players were still feeling “very down” several days after that kick in the teeth, but they survived an early barrage from third –tier Portsmouth to avoid more misery in the FA cup fifth round.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos put Arsenal ahead just before half-time and Nketiah bagged the second soon after the interval. Arsenal’s record 13 FA Cup triumphs featured two with Arteta in the team in 2014 and 2015
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mesut Ozil were absent while Alexandre Lacazette and Nicolas Pepe were on the bench. Pablo Mari made his debut at centre-back after joining on loan from flamengo in January and David Luiz, Matteo Guendouzi and Lucas Torreira were among the starters.
By Linda Amiani,