Arsenal 0 Blackburn 1 - The team plumb new depths
Report of match 16th February 2013
This was rubbish, I mean real rubbish.
It's all very well for Wenger to say "we started with eleven internationals on the pitch" - they were still shit, which means the coaching is at fault or the motivation and desire to play for the manager has gone.
Without wishing to do them a disservice, Blackburn are a team we should beat every week.
I don't know the answer to the problems, but it looks increasingly like Arsene Wenger is the cause. My devotion is seriously on the wane.
Here's the report:
Rovers rock Gunners
Arsenal crashed out of the FA Cup as Blackburn pulled off a shock 1-0 fifth-round win at Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners face Bayern Munich in the Champions League on Tuesday night and manager Arsene Wenger had made several changes, with Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott and Santi Cazorla all starting on the bench.
Even so there should still have been enough quality to see off the npower Championship side.
But Gervinho missed a great chance at the end of the first half which proved so costly as Colin Kazim-Richards' scrappy effort after 72 minutes proved enough to inflict Arsenal's first home FA Cup defeat since their move to the Emirates Stadium and hand Rovers a memorable win.
Blackburn, who still have not conceded a goal in this season's FA Cup, fashioned an early chance when a free-kick from the left was flashed through the Arsenal six-yard box and Markus Olsson knocked the loose ball wide at the far post.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain had been given a chance to impress in midfield for Arsenal and the England international was soon on the ball, releasing Tomas Rosicky down the right only for the Czech winger to clip his attempted cross behind.
Oxlade-Chamberlain then decided to do it himself, charging into the Blackburn penalty area and cutting a pass back across the six-yard box where Bradley Orr hacked clear.
The Rovers full-back was shown a yellow card by referee Mike Dean in the 12th minute after scything down Gervinho as the Ivory Coast forward, back from the African Nations Cup, looked to break down the left.
Arsenal fans behind the goal at the Clock End called for a penalty when Rosicky's cross hit Scott Dann on the arm as he blocked it behind for a corner but the referee was not interested.
The home side continued to press, forcing a succession of corners.
In the 25th minute, Arsenal finally got the delivery right from Rosicky and Abou Diaby rose to power a bullet header goalwards, which Rovers goalkeeper Jake Kean beat away at full stretch with a magnificent reaction save.
Kean was on hand to palm away a looping header from captain Thomas Vermaelen, fit again following an ankle problem, as the Rovers goal was under siege again.
The best opening came just before half-time when Rosicky slipped Gervinho into the penalty area but, despite holding off the defender, the Ivory Coast forward dragged his shot wide of the post - before dropping to his knees and looking to the heavens.
Blackburn started the second half brightly.
Vermaelen had to be alert as he touched a cross behind with Jordan Rhodes waiting to knock the ball in at the far post.
Slowly Arsenal regained momentum and Diaby flashed a 25-yard effort wide.
Blackburn made a change after 63 minutes when Markus Olsson was replaced by former Arsenal man David Bentley, who rejoined his old club Rovers on loan from Tottenham - and received a less-than-warm welcome from the home support.
Rosicky crashed a 20-yard effort off the crossbar and Rovers defender Grant Hanley made an important block as Gervinho cut in from the right.
With 20 minutes left, Wenger had seen enough and made a triple substitution as Walcott, Wilshere and Cazorla replaced Gervinho, Rosicky and Oxlade-Chamberlain.
However, out of nothing, Blackburn snatched the lead.
Martin Olsson burst into the left side of the penalty area and drilled the ball goalwards, which Wojciech Szczesny parried.
Kazim-Richards' scuffed follow-up effort bounced onto the post and in.
Arsenal immediately went on the offensive, with Walcott surging down the right, but was faced with a wall of blue shirts.
Diaby's effort was charged down and Kean somehow saved a close-range header from Walcott before Olivier Giroud's effort in stoppage-time was blocked as Rovers clung on for a famous win.
|Competition: F.A. Cup with Budweiser Kick Off: 15:00 Venue: Ashburton Grove Attendance: 60,070|
||0 - 1||Blackburn R.
|90+4||Effort from inside the area by Mikel Arteta misses to the right of the target.|
|90+3||Francis Coquelin takes a shot. Blocked by Scott Dann.|
|88||David Goodwillie challenges Francis Coquelin unfairly and gives away a free kick. David Goodwillie goes into the book. Thomas Vermaelen takes the free kick.|
|87||Theo Walcott takes a shot. Comfortable save by Jake Kean.|
|87||Long range effort by Scott Dann goes harmlessly over the bar.|
|86||Santi Cazorla takes a shot. Scott Dann gets a block in.|
|86||Vassiriki Diaby takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Save by Jake Kean.|
|85||Olivier Giroud takes a shot. Comfortable save by Jake Kean.|
|83||Morten Gamst Pedersen gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Francis Coquelin. Thomas Vermaelen takes the direct free kick.|
|83||Nacho Monreal produces a left-footed shot from the edge of the box and misses to the right of the goal.|
|81||The official flags Theo Walcott offside. Jordan Rhodes goes off and David Goodwillie comes on. Indirect free kick taken by Jake Kean.|
|79||Foul by Francis Coquelin on Morten Gamst Pedersen, free kick awarded. Francis Coquelin is booked. Morten Gamst Pedersen takes the direct free kick.|
|78||Shot by Nacho Monreal from deep inside the penalty area misses to the left of the target.|
|74||Olivier Giroud is penalised for a handball. Jake Kean restarts play with the free kick.|
|73||Morten Gamst Pedersen concedes a free kick for a foul on Theo Walcott. Jack Wilshere restarts play with the free kick.|
|73||Inswinging corner taken by Santi Cazorla, Header on goal by Olivier Giroud from inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.|
|71||Martin Olsson takes a shot. Save by Wojciech Szczesny. Colin Kazim-Richards scores a goal from inside the area low into the middle of the goal. Arsenal 0-1 Blackburn.Assist by Martin Olsson.|
|69||Jack Wilshere is brought on as a substitute for Tomas Rosicky. Theo Walcott replaces Yao Gervinho. (Arsenal) makes a substitution, with Santi Cazorla coming on for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.|
|68||Vassiriki Diaby takes a shot. Jake Kean makes a comfortable save.|
|67||Yao Gervinho takes a shot. Blocked by Bradley Orr. Mikel Arteta takes a outswinging corner to the near post, clearance made by Morten Gamst Pedersen.|
|66||Tomas Rosicky takes a shot from 25 yards.|
|64||Effort from outside the penalty box by Tomas Rosicky goes wide left of the goal.|
|62||Markus Olsson goes off and David Bentley comes on.|
|59||Shot from inside the area by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain clears the bar.|
|58||Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Tomas Rosicky played to the near post, clearance by Morten Gamst Pedersen. Vassiriki Diaby produces a header from inside the area that goes over the crossbar.|
|55||Shot from long distance by Vassiriki Diaby goes wide of the left-hand upright.|
|54||Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Jordan Rhodes by Mikel Arteta. Free kick taken by Scott Dann.|
|52||Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain takes a shot. Blocked by Bradley Orr.|
|50||Thomas Vermaelen gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Martin Olsson. Jake Kean takes the direct free kick.|
|49||Morten Gamst Pedersen takes the outswinging corner, Thomas Vermaelen makes a clearance.|
|48||Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Thomas Vermaelen by Jordan Rhodes. Thomas Vermaelen takes the free kick.|
|47||Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Olivier Giroud takes a shot. Jake Kean makes a comfortable save.|
|46||Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen, Jason Lowe takes a shot. Clearance by Mikel Arteta.|
|44||Unfair challenge on Olivier Giroud by Jason Lowe results in a free kick. Mikel Arteta has an effort direct from the free kick, save made by Jake Kean.|
|42||Yao Gervinho has an effort at goal from just inside the box that misses to the left of the goal.|
|40||Yao Gervinho has a shot on goal from outside the box which misses left.|
|36||Shot by Nacho Monreal. Blocked by Bradley Orr. Corner taken by Tomas Rosicky from the left by-line played to the near post, clearance made by Lee Williamson.|
|32||Lee Williamson is penalised for a handball. Mikel Arteta takes the free kick.|
|28||Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Tomas Rosicky, Bradley Orr makes a clearance. Inswinging corner taken by Tomas Rosicky, clearance made by Bradley Orr. Thomas Vermaelen challenges Bradley Orr unfairly and gives away a free kick.|
|26||Jordan Rhodes fouled by Mikel Arteta, the ref awards a free kick. Morten Gamst Pedersen produces a cross, Headed effort from inside the area by Scott Dann misses to the left of the target.|
|25||Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has an effort at goal from outside the area which goes wide left of the target.|
|23||Corner taken by Tomas Rosicky from the left by-line, Vassiriki Diaby takes a shot. Save made by Jake Kean. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Martin Olsson makes a clearance.|
|22||Corner taken by Tomas Rosicky from the left by-line, Jake Kean makes a save.|
|21||Effort from 20 yards by Vassiriki Diaby. Bradley Orr gets a block in.|
|21||Unfair challenge on Francis Coquelin by Colin Kazim-Richards results in a free kick. Francis Coquelin restarts play with the free kick.|
|20||Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Tomas Rosicky, Jake Kean makes a comfortable save.|
|17||Handball decision goes against Mikel Arteta. Jake Kean takes the direct free kick.|
|16||Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Tomas Rosicky, Bradley Orr manages to make a clearance.|
|15||Corner taken right-footed by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain from the right by-line to the near post, Morten Gamst Pedersen makes a clearance.|
|13||Lee Williamson challenges Vassiriki Diaby unfairly and gives away a free kick. Mikel Arteta restarts play with the free kick.|
|13||Outswinging corner taken by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Laurent Koscielny has a headed effort at goal from close in which goes wide left of the target.|
|11||Inswinging corner taken by Tomas Rosicky from the left by-line played to the near post, Scott Dann makes a clearance.|
|10||Foul by Bradley Orr on Yao Gervinho, free kick awarded. The referee cautions Bradley Orr for unsporting behaviour. Thomas Vermaelen takes the free kick.|
|8||The referee penalises Bradley Orr for handball. Free kick crossed right-footed by Mikel Arteta from left wing.|
|1||Shot by Markus Olsson from deep inside the penalty area misses to the right of the target.|
|1||Francis Coquelin concedes a free kick for a foul on Martin Olsson. Morten Gamst Pedersen takes the direct free kick.|
|-||The offside flag is raised against Markus Olsson. Wojciech Szczesny takes the free kick.|