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January 24, 2014
• 2:45 PM
• Emirates Stadium, London
Referee: R. Madley
• Attendance: 59451
L. Podolski 15', 27'
O. Giroud 84'
Shots on Target
Well, that's all from our LIVE coverage of events at the Emirates Stadium tonight. Arsenal make the fifth round, avoiding any potential upset. Thanks for joining us, and goodbye for now!
For the visitors, their midfielders Baker and Fleck were excellent, working very hard. Christie on the flank, meanwhile, looks a real prospect, but Clarke will be disappointed not to have made the scoresheet after spurning some good chances.
Arsenal's passing was of the highest order tonight. They struggled for some periods as Coventry pressed harder but there was some real class in the danger area.
That's FULL TIME at the Emirates Stadium and Arsenal are in the fifth round of the FA Cup with a 4-0 win over Coventry City. It doesn't tell the whole story, that scoreline, as the visitors were superb in the second half.
90' + 3'
OZIL NEARLY MAKES IT FIVE!! Wilshere looks for Giroud with a flicked pass but it hits a defender. Ozil picks the ball up, though, and has acres of space to pick his spot before trying to slot it inside the near post with his left, but it clips the upright and goes behind.
90' + 2'
WHAT A CHANCE FOR CLARKE!! The impressive Christie once again orchestrates an attack and plays the ball across the box for Clarke, who is in space but tries a first-time shot, drilling it straight at Fabianski when he could have taken a touch.
90' + 1'
Arsenal are keeping the ball comfortably now, and only have to see out four minutes of stoppage time before enjoying a weekend off.
Goal Santi Cazorla
CAZORLA ADDS ANOTHER!! That's definitely harsh on Coventry, but it's another lovely Arsenal goal as Wilshere and Cazorla combine bfore it's spread wide to Jenkinson. His low cross-shot deflects back to the penalty spot, and Cazorla shows good technique to volley the ball down into the net.
CAZORLA BLASTS OVER!! It's a lovely chance for the Spaniard, but a very difficult one as the ball lands in front of him and he tries a half-volley which flies over.
There's a slight pause in play as one of the Coventry fans decides to keep the ball as it goes into the stand from Fleck's wayward shot. Fabianski gets another ball, though, and is able to resume proceedings.
That's a bit harsh on Coventry, who have been excellent since the break, showing real heart and desire, but there was real quality in that goal.
Goal Olivier Giroud
GIROUD MAKES IT THREE!! That's game over as the substitute puts the hosts out of sight. Cazorla plays in Gibbs with a lovely slotted pass, and the full-back looks up before pulling back for Giroud, who drills a low finish past Murphy to end this tie.
Seaborne goes up to challenge Mertesacker for the set piece, but the Coventry defender does so illegally, says the referee, and the Gunners have a free kick.
Brilliant from Christie!! The young defender has been superb tonight. He skips past Ozil with ease and gets to the by-line before looking for Clarke with a low cross, but Koscielny is there to clear behind for a corner.
Jenkinson gets forward for one of the first times in this half, and sees his cross deflect off Adams into the area. Giroud is looking for it but Webster does well to clear.
Koscielny looks for Gnabry on the right flank with a high looping ball, but it's not well placed and goes straight out for a throw to the visitors, who give the ball straight back to the Gunners.
Time for Arsenal's final change of the night as Podolski comes off for Olivier Giroud. The Germany striker's double looks to have done the job tonight.
Baker will be disappointed with that as he tries to fire an early ball into the path of Clarke, but it goes straight through to Fabianski.
Moussa works hard to recover after a loose touch almost gives Zelalem the ball, but his slide is perfectly timed and he gets it back to Murphy.
Into the final 15 minutes, and Coventry have made this much more of a contest. They've wasted a couple of glorious chances, though. Will they get any more?
Coventry are in behind through Christie after a wonderful ball by Fleck out to the right. The full-back can't match it, though, as his pass for Clarke is poor and Koscielny cuts it out.
Cazorla gets his first touch but is pressed hard by Baker. Too hard, according to the referee and the Gunners have afree kick on halfway.
Zelalem is on for Arsenal, and becomes the first player to make his debut for the Gunners who was born after Arsene Wenger took over. What a stat! Santi Cazorla is also on, by the way...
Gnabry so nearly through as Wilshere plays a pass beyond the defence, but Murphy and Seaborne do well to stop any danger.
Arsenal have the ball at the back and the Coventry high line is much more visible as Oxlade-Chamberlain concedes possession. A slightly scrappy moment ensues in midfield before the Gunners come forward and Bendtner produces another air shot as the ball is stolen from him.
Christie asks a bit too much of Baker as he plays it down the right, and Koscielny comes across well to slide in and put it out of play. Coventry have been so much better though.
Lovely move forward from the visitors after the originally lose possession then win it back. Baker bursts forward and finds Moussa, who squares to Clarke. It eventually comes wide to Adams, who cuts inside and curls a shot well wide with his right foot.
Baker looks to spread the ball wide to Christie, but his pass is cut out by Gibbs. The visitors retain possession, though, and will try to push forward once again.
And we're finally back to normality as Arsenal get the ball back to resume proceedings. 25 minutes to go, and this has been a much more even half so far.
It would appear there is a fan on the pitch at the moment. The protests have spread from the stands, sadly, which is quite a shame as it has all been very good-natured.
ARSENAL ALMOST IN AGAIN!! It's really opened up in the last couple of minutes and Podolski gets beyond the defence once more. Murphy rushes out to close down the angle and the Arsenal man tries to pull a pass back, but there's no team-mate there and Coventry clear.
GLORIOUS CHANCE FOR DANIELS!! As the fans' prortest resumes, Baker fires in a beautiful cross looking for Clarke. It comes off Mertesacker and lands for Daniels in acres of space, but he rushes his shot and blasts over the bar.
WIDE FROM BENDTNER!! It's a classic Arsenal move as Wilshere sets Ozil away along the left before receiving it back off the German inside the box. He squares it to Bendtner, who takes an age to work it on to his left before firing wide of the post.
Real danger for the visitors as Gibbs again gets into an advanced position and moves to the by-line before pulling the ball back. Podolski looks to get to the ball to poke it towards goal but Webster hammers it clear.
The visitors have really upped their game and Arsenal haven't got going since the break yet. Pressley is animated on the touchline, urging his players to press hard.
CLARKE SMASHES THE POST!! This is much, much better from Coventry!! Moussa presses Oxlade-Chamberlain and poaches the ball before advancing towards the box. He lays it square to Clarke, who lets it roll across his body and side-foots a superb effort from 20 yards which clatters the post and goes behind.
Appeals for a penalty as Oxlade-Chamberlain brilliantly exchanges passes with Podolski before charging into the area and going down under Christie's challenge. There's possibly a slight extension of the full-back's arm but it would be harsh and the referee waves play on.
That injury to Clarke came at a bad time for the visitors. They were starting to grow into the game and press Arsenal harder. The striker is back in the action now, but Arsenal have possession.
We're back underway as Baker then stops play immediately with a clip on Wilshere before Podolski concedes a throw on the near side.
The striker is back on his feet and slowly trudges to the sideline. If he wants a move away from Coventry he won't want to pick up a knock now.
Clarke is down receiving treatment now. He limped away after that chance as Koscielny slid in to try and block his effort.
WHAT A CHANCE FOR CLARKE!! Coventry could, and possibly should, be level as Clarke gets beyond the defence and is through one-on-one. He tightens his own angle, though, and sees his low shot diverted away by the legs of Fabianski. Should have done better.
Bit of a lucky escape for Coventry as Seaborne tries to head away across but hits Webster on the back. Thankfully it loops up and Murphy gets to the ball.
This is almost a cabron copy of the opening minutes of the first half, with Coventry trying to get forward early. Fleck advances and tries to play in towards Clarke but can't find his man and Arsenal get the ball back.
Slightly nervy start to the half from Arsenal as they are pinned back into their own half, and Jenkinson fires a pass back to Fabianski, who miscontrols and ends up conceding a corner, but he redeems himself by claiming it well from the delivery.
We're back underway at the Emirates Stadium as Arsenal kick off the second half.
Just a couple of minutes to go until we resume the action at the Emirates Stadium. Can Coventry get back in this or are we simply asking how many will Arsenal score?
Fair play to the Coventry fans. They've been in fine voice tonight and even enjoyed some humour over the floodlight fiasco. It should be noted, too, that the Gunners supporters applauded their protest earlier in the half.
It's all been very comfortable for Arsenal tonight, then. The visitors aren't troubling them at all. What can the visitors do, though? Is it a case of damage limitation or will they try and chase the game?
That's HALF TIME at a slightly darker Emirates Stadium, and two goals from Podolski have given the hosts a comfortable 2-0 lead at the break.
45' + 2'
Excellent work from Christie! The defender is beaten by Gibbs, who advances into the area, but he recovers superbly to get a toe on the ball to knock it off the Arsenal man and behind for a goal kick.
45' + 1'
We're into two minuts of added time, and Murphy fires a goal kick out to Daniels, but the midfielder can only head it straight to Mertesacker. Apart from the Baker shot they've had no joy going forward.
WILSHERE SHOULD DO BETTER!! The midfielder comes forward and tries to send a pass through for Bendtner, but the ball is cut out. It comes back to the Arsenal midfielder, who drags a shot well wide of the post.
The supporters are doing their bit by holding up the lights from their mobile phones! Play goes on, though, with Arsenal still in control.
The floodlights have gone out!! Well, some of them, anyway. A big cheer goes up from the fans but we're OK to continue as there are still plenty of lights working.
We're back underway as the visitors give the ball back to Fabianski. Just a few minutes until the break and Pressley will take 2-0 right now.
Wilshere is back on his feet and should be fine to continue. It was a strong impact - in a fair challenge, I should add - but shouldn't have caused lasting damage.
Wilshere is now down in a heap after going in for a 50-50 with Christie. The Coventry full-back comes out with the ball and the Gunners midfielder ends up in pain.
Yellow Card Jack Wilshere
Arsenal have had 65 per cent possession so far, which is surprisingly lower than you would think. Meanwhile, Wilshere goes into the book for a poor, unnecessary slide on Moussa in midfield.
PODOLSKI MISSES THE HAT-TRICK!! Jenkinson enjoys more space on the right-hand side before playing it low back towards the edge of the box, and Podolski is on to it but fires way over the bar.
The Coventry protest resumes on 35 minutes to mark the 35 miles the fans have to travel to Northampton for home games. On the pitch, it's still all Arsenal.
GNABRY SHOULD DO BETTER!! Arsenal are in behind yet again as Bendtner finds Gibbs, who drills in a low cross and Gnabry is there at the far post but completely shanks his volleyed effort. Jenkinson was coming in, too, so he may have been put off slightly.
Oxlade-Chamberlain spreads a delightful ball out to Gibbs on the left, and the full-back exchanges passes with Podolski before almost getting on to the end of a ball beyond the defence, but Murphy is out quickly to gather.
If things carry on like this it could be a similar scoreline to the 6-1 League Cup win in 2012. Arsenal have almost exclusive rights to the ball.
There is suddenly a mass protest from the Coventry fans as they all hold up banners saying "Why?" as they question the fact they are having to play their home games at Northampton Town's stadium.
Oh dear, Nicklas Bendtner! The striker completely fluffs his lines, letting the ball run across him on the edge of the box before swinging and missing, kicking the air instead and rather embarrassing himself.
This could be a very, very long night for Steven Pressley's men...
Goal Lukas Podolski
PODOLSKI DOUBLES THE LEAD!! It's a classic near-post flick-on routine as Gnabry fires in the corner, and Mertesacker helps the ball on for Podolski to meet it at the far post and nod into the net. Very simple, very effective.
Coventry have 11 men behind the ball as the relentless Arsenal pressure continues. Gibbs advances down the left-hand side but his cross is deflected behind for a corner.
Coventry have a chance to move forward after good work by Moussa to keep possession, but Baker ends up losing out and the hosts come forward before Gnabry collects the ball and blasts an effort high and wide from 20 yards out.
More danger for the Sky Blues as Bendtner picks it up 25 yards out and tries to get a shot away, but sees it deflected behind for a corner. The visitors head the delivery away but again Arsenal have possession.
We may as well make this pitch a bit shorter. Most of the play is inside the Coventry half. Podolski is penalised for a tug on Webster and the visitors have a free kick.
Gnabry is looking impressive for the hosts tonight. Gibbs swings in a ball from the left and the midfielder heads towards goal, but it's an easy one for Murphy to gather. He has looked very assured on the ball once again this evening, though, the Arsenal man.
Fleck spreads the ball wide to Christie, who charges down the flank but is forced to check back. Webster eventually tries a long ball forward which is easily cut out by the Arsenal defence.
GREAT EFFORT FROM BAKER!! That came out of nowhere! The Sky Blues captain picks the ball up in the centre circle and drives into the Arsenal half. He has two men in support but keeps going and cuts on to his left before firing a dangerous 25-yard effort, forcing a fine stop from Fabianski, who turns it over the bar.
I'm afraid this could all get rather uncomfortable for Coventry and underdog fans. Arsenal are working the ball around with a real swagger and the visitors are doing a lot of chasing.
That goal was coming, really. The possession had almost exclusively become Arsenal's. The hosts look in the mood for goals tonight.
Goal Lukas Podolski
PODOLSKI OPENS THE SCORING!! The respite didn't last long as the hosts steal it in midfield and Wislhere flicks the ball forward to Ozil, who plays a through-ball into the path of Podolski, and the Germany international skips past Murphy before firing it into the net from a tight angle.
Finally, a bit of respite for the visitors as they keep the ball from the goal kick and pass it around well. It's all in their own half, but they'll be happy to alleviate some of the pressure for the time being.
OVER THE BAR!! The Arsenal attacks are relentless now, and the hosts set up camp in the Coventry half once again. Oxlade-Chamberlain receives the ball in space and looks to fire away a shot, but his 30-yard effort flies way over the bar.
Yet more pressure from Arsenal as Gnabry and Jenkinson link up on the flank again before the latter tries to play in another ball, but Adams slides in to put it behind for a corner which is headed clear.
The Gunners are right on top in possession terms, and Jenkinson gets more space on the right-hand side before playing it low across the box once more. Webster makes a vital challenge before Gibbs sees his follow-up effort blocked.
Oxlade-Chamberlain clearly needs a bit more time to sort his radar out in his first start since August. He lofts a ball over the top but it's nowhere near a team-mate and goes straight through to Murphy in the Coventry goal.
CHANCE FOR PODOLSKI!! There's some poor control from Clarke, though, and Koscielny steals the ball before setting the ball away. Gnabry spreads the ball wide to Jenkinson, who fires in a low cross and Podolski is there to meet it inside the six-yard box, but he can only scoop it over the bar.
It's a pretty miserable night in London - the rain is teeming down. Christie hacks the ball up in the air but the visitors do well to keep possession and come forward through Moussa and Clarke.
The hosts are starting to look very threatening already, getting men forward in numbers. Podolski plays it forward to Gibbs on the overlap, and the full-back flashes a dangerous ball across the area but it's turned behind for a corner.
It's a pretty end-to-end start, here, and Arsnela come forward this time as Gnabry works his way into the box, but his attempted ball across the area is blocked and cleared by the visitors.
Moussa does well to muscle Mertesacker and Jenkinson off the ball before firing a ball into the box, and Clarke gets to it first but can't get a meaningful touch and the Gunners win possession.
The slick Arsenal passing begins as Ozil, Jenkinson and Gnabry all get involved on the right-hand side before the hosts win a corner. It's taken short and comes out to Wilshere, who drills a shot well wide from 25 yards.
Christie wins a free kick almost immediately as he is brought down by Podolski, and the visitors have a good spell of possession in the opening stages before Clarke loses out when trying to nod down a high ball forward.
We're underway at the Emirates Stadium as Coventry get the ball rolling.
The players march out of the tunnel to be confronted by a rainy night in north London. The 5,000-strong travelling Coventry contingent is making plenty of noise. Will we see an historic upset tonight? Kick-off is moments away.
This is, however, a meeting between two previous FA Cup winners. Arsenal have won the competition 10 times, while the Sky Blues famously registered their only triumph with a 3-2 win over Tottenham in the 1987 final.
The last meeting between these two sides was in the League Cup in 2012, when the Gunners ran out 6-1 winners at the Emirates, and they have also won the only two meetings between these sides in the FA Cup.
Striker Leon Clarke starts for the visitors despite showing his desire to leave by handing in a transfer request earlier this month. The 28-year-old has 18 goals for the Sky Blues this season and clearly fancies a crack at a higher level - tonight could be the perfect opportunity to showcase his skills.
There's some young talent on the Arsenal bench, too. 16-year-old midfielder Gedion Zelalem has impressed at youth level for Germany and could be given his first Gunners appearance this evening.
That's a strong-looking Arsenal line-up. Wenger has given a start to Lukasz Fabianski in goal, while Carl Jenkinson is in at full-back. Mesut Ozil is in the side and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also earns a place in the XI.
COVENTRY: Murphy; Christie, Webster, Seaborne, Adams; Baker, Thomas, Fleck, Daniels; Moussa, L Clarke. // Subs: Burge, Willis, J Clarke, Haynes, Phillips, Barton, Slager.
ARSENAL: Fabianski; Jenkinson, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Gibbs; Wilshere, Oxlade-Chamberlain; Ozil, Gnabry, Podolski; Bendtner. // Subs: Viviano, Sagna, Monreal, Zelalem, Flamini, Cazorla, Giroud.
The teams have been announced, so let's get straight to business and bring you the line-ups, starting with Arsene Wenger's men...
In the not-too-distant past this was a Premier League fixture, but the visitors have been marred by relegations and financial difficulties in recent years, and are currently 11th in League One. although that position is partially due to the Sky Blues starting the season with a 10-point deduction.
Hello and welcome to LIVE coverage of the FA Cup fourth round clash between Arsenal and Coventry at the Emirates Stadium.
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