Ok, I’m going to start this review off strongly.
That was the greatest cup final I’ve ever been to, and I’ve been to a few over my lifetime. The day was perfect, start to finish. One to treasure forever.
The cup final is about so much more than the game. It was great to get my dad out, then meet up with the cousins and the extended football family. Considering the season we’ve had, it was pretty damn positive vibes.
I had zero expectations of the game yesterday. I was writing the obituary for the outcome in my head well before kick off. But then I started the walk up Wembley way, and the positivity started creeping in… if only we could start strong and play the way we know this team can… we might just grab something.
I’m way too hungover to give you a blow by blow, but man, what a game.
Arsenal didn’t just turn up, they came and they destroyed. Chelsea didn’t know what hit them. Every single player put in a shift out there. Welbeck led the press like an absolute man-beast. He gave Chelsea’s defenders zero time on the ball the whole game.
Ozil didn’t stand out to me, but everyone watching on TV assured me he destroyed Kante’s game with a very positive performance.
Aaron Ramsey was everywhere, he covered 14.4km, a record for final. He said before the game he wanted to get in the faces of Chelsea and he delivered. He put in one of his best performances of the last three years, freeing up the sublime Xhaka to dictate play. Wenger could have signed Kante this season, and some say he opted for the wrong player, but yesterday, you started to see what the Swiss can bring to the table in a big game. Kante looked very average.
Our defence was pretty mean as well. Per Mertesacker. I bow down. WHAT A FUCKING HERO. I don’t mean to overegg this, but I’d say that was THE greatest FA Cup performance of a centre back EVER. Given the context of him playing 36minutes this season, it made it even better. As for Rob Holding, I LOVE him. He’s not only excellent on the ball, he’s mean. Giving Costa a dig early on in the game. There’s just so much enjoy about his rapid ascension. It’s going to be very hard to keep him out the first team next year. Chamberlain needs a lot of credit too. A very disciplined game from him in an unusual position.
As for Alexis, give the man what he wants, he’s an absolute monster of a player and he always shows up when it counts.
Going 1 up early on really helped us, a great goal from Sanchez. He basically pushed assisted himself with his hands breaking the Chelsea backline, Ramsey was in and offside position but not interfering, Sanchez rolled on and finished it. We all thought it was offside, but the ref had other ideas and blew in our favour.
We went on to dominate Chelsea. We absolutely hammered them. We were first to every ball. We were more aggressive. We transitioned the ball so well. It was unbelievable to watch.
The second half saw a bit more of Chelsea, but we defended resolutely. Things did get interesting for us when Moses was sent off for diving. A massive, massive decision for the referee. Finally, someone brave enough to stand up to downright cheating in the game.
Chelsea still went for us, and they made headway. Diego Costa awkwardly hitting a shot in off Mertesacker. I kind of felt Ospina should have done better. That goal would usually signal crumble-time… or so we thought.
We went right up the other end, Giroud breaking the Chelsea defence with a galloping run, chipping a perfect cross for the onrushing Ramsey to kill the Chelsea resurgence.
WHAT A GOAL WE WENT WILD!
The last 10 minutes were some of the tensest I’ve ever born witness to… I could swear it took half an hour to finish. You could see ‘CHELSEA COME BACK KINGS’ headlines flashing before your eyes. We are incapable of shutting up shop… but it worked out, the whistle blew and we went completely nuts.
The FA Cup was ours.
Arsene Wenger, the King of the Cups. What a performance he extracted. He deserves all the plaudits he’s earning today.
He delivered another cracking day, and what a party we had after!
What a performance. What a day. What a memory.
One final point. We just shamed Spurs greatest ever season by winning a trophy in their new home. So damn sweet.
Right, see you tomorrow when this hangover dies down… xxx