Winning 2-0 on 2 March, Arsenal was the first team to reach the quarter-finals of the FA Cup.
A few days after being eliminated from the Europa League by Olympiakos, Arsenal needed a push to revive the spirit for the rest of the season. Only against the Second Division Portsmouth, Mikel Arteta’s teachers do not miss the opportunity to become the first team to enroll in the quarterfinals of the FA Cup this season.
Portsmouth had one of the biggest surprises in FA Cup history when winning the 2007-2008 season. But within the next six years, they dropped three grades and nearly went bankrupt. When he revived again, Portsmouth had hope to climb up to the First Division next season when they were unbeaten in 17 matches in the Second Division. They are the only runner-up team to make it to the FA Cup 2019-2020 round.
Portsmouth 0-2 Arsenal
Before the determination of the home team, Arsenal could not dominate the number of opportunities in the first half despite holding the ball to 71%. Each team had eight shots in the first 45 minutes, most of which were blocked by defenders. Arsenal suffered losses in the 16th minute, when Lucas Torreira had to leave the pitch due to a stretcher injury.
Midfield pair Sokratis and David Luiz are the leaders in the squad composed of most young Arteta players. One of these two players created the most remarkable ball in the half. From Reiss Nelson’s ball in the fourth minute of injury time, Sokratis took a shot to open the score.
Portsmouth have not won Arsenal since 1958. Hoping to end that sad confrontation almost no longer with the home team, when Eddie Nketiah increased the score to 2-0 for Arsenal in the 51st minute. England U21 players quickly finishing off the roof of Portsmouth net at close range, after a clear situation of the defending ball from the home defender.
While Arsenal did not sprung all out, Portsmouth did not have enough strength to rise in the rest of the second half. Arsenal have maintained an unbeaten run against the Second and Lower teams in the FA Cup for the past 28 years. Arteta’s teachers and students will return to the English Premier this weekend to welcome West Ham. In the domestic league, Arsenal ranked 10th after 28 rounds, five points behind the top five but playing less than one match.