Tigers take Gunners to replay at KC Stadium
Arsenal will have to play another game in an already packed schedule after drawing 0-0 at home to Hull City in the FA Cup.
The Gunners have a hectic month coming up with games in the Champions League and the Premier League coming thick and fast, so another game is just what Arsene Wenger would have wanted to avoid.
The schedule doesn’t look much better for promotion-chasers Hull either, as their fixture list is also starting to cramp up.
However, the two will have to do battle in the FA Cup once again after playing out a goalless draw at the Emirates Stadium.
The game was dominated by the hosts, as expected, but they failed to get past an in-form goalkeeper, Eldin Jakupovic. The ‘keeper made 11 saves in total, with the pick of the bunch coming from a Joel Campbell free-kick and a Danny Welbeck curler.
Arsenal had plenty of opportunities to break the deadlock, but the likes of Theo Walcott, Welbeck, Alex Iwobi, Campbell, Olivier Giroud and Alexis Sanchez all failed to convert.
The duo will now compete in a fourth FA Cup tie in the past three seasons, having met in the final back in 2014 and the third round in 2015.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger: “No not especially good news [having replay] but Hull defended very well. We were not incisive or accurate enough in our passing in the final third. As long as they did not concede, they maintained with how they played. We had 20 shots, 70% possession but no goals.
“I cannot influence the referee’s decisions, only the technical quality of my team. If we have no injuries, we can cope with the fixtures.
“I think FA Cup replays is a particularity of the English rules and you have to respect that.
“The Hull goalkeeper was outstanding and kept them in the game. It would have been decided with them or us scoring a goal.”
Hull goalkeeper Eldin Jakupovic on the save from Joel Campbell: “It was a great free-kick but I made a save to my left. I touched it with my fingers onto the post and was happy the ball didn’t go in.
“My little daughter, my father, everybody is here. We knew it would be a difficult game and would be defend all game. We got a 0-0 I hope the replay will be the same.”
Hull manager Steve Bruce: “I don’t know when we’re going to play [the replay]. That’s added to the fixture pile-up we’ve got. We made 10 changes and we rode our luck a bit, but the team deserved it for the spirit and the 100% effort they gave. It bodes well when I see the strength in depth we’ve got, because we’re going to need it.
“Eldin [Jakupovic] has come in and he’s produced some great saves and we’re delighted for him because there have been some dark moments over the past couple of years.
“Josh Tymon didn’t look out of his depth and it’s great to see someone from the academy, from Hull, come in and wear the shirt. Let’s hope we can have the rub of the green up at our place.”
Written by Alex Batt – @AlexBatt