Danny Welbeck returned to haunt Old Trafford as Arsenal booked a place in the FA Cup semi-finals at the expense of Manchester United, who had Angel Di Maria sent off.
Wayne Rooney quickly cancelled out Nacho Monreal’s opener in the first half, but Welbeck latched onto a loose Antonio Valencia backpass to restore the Gunners’ lead, before Di Maria was dismissed for two bookable offences – simulation and then dissent.
United were fully involved in an absorbing clash at Old Trafford but fell short and the wait to lift the cup will be extended beyond 11 years, although the Reds’ fans continued to sing loudly after the final whistle.
There was a terrific atmosphere at kick-off but the home fans’ noise was almost silenced inside three minutes by Alexis Sanchez, who cut in from the left and fired a shot that was partially blocked and then scrambled away.
Just before the quarter-hour mark, Marouane Fellaini received the ball in a good position inside the box but Laurent Koscielny put in a boot to prevent him shooting and the Reds midfielder then fouled Per Mertesacker. Fellaini was involved again soon after when he controlled a Di Maria cross on his chest and laid the ball off to Ashley Young, who was off-balance as he skewed his shot wide.