Manchester United progressed to the fifth round of the FA Cup on Friday night after they secured a comfortable 3-1 triumph over Unai Emery’s Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium. Both teams had equal opportunities to find the scoresheet throughout the game but the visitors prevailed after getting the better of the Gunners’ defence on the counter-attack.
Three things we learned:
Arsenal’s defensive injury concerns extend:
Arsenal had come into the game without the services of Hector Bellerin and Rob Holding, who had been sidelined with season-ending injuries. This was, however, not aided against United with Sokratis going off with a minor ankle problem which was followed by Laurent Koscielny’s exit with a suspected jaw fracture. Both players had recently impressed during the successful derby triumph over Chelsea and Emery will be hoping that the central defensive duo can return to the field at the earliest possibility.
Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku redeem themselves:
Both Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku have received plenty of criticism through the current campaign but they managed to redeem themselves against the Gunners with impressive performances. Sanchez opened the scoring after outsmarting Petr Cech but it was Lukaku, who bagged the man of the match after propping up two delightful assists while playing in an unfamiliar right-wing position for the Old Trafford club.
Manchester United continue resurgence under Ole:
The Red Devils had gone through a five-match winning streak under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer earlier in the month but there were still doubts whether they can get the better of the elite teams in the current form. This has, however, been answered with triumphs over London giants Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal while stretching their winning run to eight since Ole took charge. Surely, the ongoing run should get the hierarchy pondering about the recruitment of Ole as the permanent head coach.