In another regular feature during this season’s FA Cup run, Daily Cannon reminisces about how Arsenal got on this time last year.
Ahead of our 4th Round tie against Brighton & Hove Albion, we run the rule over our corresponding 2014 victory over Coventry City.
FA Cup 4th Round
Arsenal 4 Coventry City 0
Friday 24th January 2014, 7.45pm
Emirates Stadium (59,541)
Fabianksi, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Jenkinson, Gibbs, Wilshere, Gnabry, Oxlade-Chamberlain (71), Ozil, Bendtner (71), Podolski (79).
Subs: Viviano, Monreal, Sagna, Zelalem (71), Cazorla (71), Flamini, Giroud (79).
Murphy, Thomas, Christie, Webster (88), Adams, Moussa, Baker, Daniels, Seaborne, Fleck, Clarke.
Subs: Burge, Haynes, Slage, Clarke (88), Phillips, Barton, Willis.
Podolski (15, 27), Giroud (84), Cazorla (89)
Following an impressive and thrilling 2-0 victory over Tottnumb in the 3rd Round, Arsenal were overwhelming favourites against a League One Coventry City side languishing in mid-table.
The position was a little misleading, with the Sky Blues having suffered a 10 point deduction after the club entered administration, but nonetheless Arsene Wenger’s record against lower division sides is such that anything other than a win was unthinkable.
An interesting side show were the Coventry demonstrations planned against the fact that they were being forced to play home games 35 miles away from the Ricoh Arena. Arsenal fans duly joined in the minutes applause as the clock passed the 35 minute mark, and started rousing choruses of “They want to go home”.
A nice touch.
Imagine how bad it would be if Arsenal fans had to travel out to Milton Keynes for home games… (Oh hi there Tottnumb! Enjoy that!)
A mixed XI and a strong bench demonstrated respect towards Coventry, as Arsenal looked to wrap the tie up without reverting to a replay.
The game itself became a fairly comfortable procession towards a 5th Round tie with Liverpool following two early goals from Lukas Podolski, first burying a Mesut Ozil pass and then a Per Mertesacker flick on from a Serge Gnabry corner.
Even the floodlights thought the game was over at that point, cutting out and prompting thousands of spectators to whip out their mobile phones to light the stadium as if it was the closing song of a concert.
“Arsenal, Arsenal, pay the bills” sang the happy Gooner nation.
When the lights came back on, Podolski had a number of chances to complete his hat-trick, but in the end it was left to substitutes Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla to add a goal apiece late on.
It applied some deserved gloss, but in truth it was a tie that was over long before then.
There was even time for Gedion Zelalem to make his first senior appearance, becoming the first player to play for Arsene Wenger who was not even born when the Frenchman took charge in 1996, and a reminder to the rest of us that we age more with every passing season.
This time around it’s Brighton & Hove Albion. Let’s hope it’s a similarly good result.