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Southampton 1-0 Arsenal: Gabriel Own Goal Knocks Out FA Champions

A first half own goal from Gabriel helped Southampton knockout FA Cup champions Arsenal on Saturday.

The Brazil centre back deflected Kyle Walker-Peters’s low drive past Bernd Leno midway through the first half at St Mary’s – the first goal the visitors had conceded in over eight and a half hours stretching back to Boxing Day – as Southampton got the better of Arsenal for the first time in the competition.

Southampton have now beaten Arsenal in the FA Cup for the very first time, having drawn one and lost four of their previous five matches against the Gunners in the competition!

Saints dominated proceedings before the break, almost opening the scoring in fortuitous circumstances when captain James Ward-Prowse’s corner from the right floated over Leno’s head, only to crash against the bar.

The Arsenal No 1 was called into action again after Che Adams left Gabriel for dead, but the German goalkeeper did well to keep out the striker’s goalbound effort before Southampton took a deserved 24th-minute lead.

The hosts worked the ball across the box between Ings and Ward-Prowse before the skipper fed the overlapping Walker-Peters down the right. The full back’s low centre was then touched past his own ‘keeper by the unfortunate Gabriel, trying to clear his lines.

The visitors were flat in the first period, only threatening once when Eddie Nketiah’s clever free-kick caught the Southampton defence napping, but Gabriel Martinelli fluffed his lines when faced with just Fraser Forster to beat.

As the sun came out on the south coast after the break, Arsenal’s attacking intentions grew as the visitors stirred into life, especially after Mikel Arteta introduced Bukayo Saka and Thomas Partey just before the hour-mark.

Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side will now take on Wolves at Molineux in February’s fifth round after they edged past non-league Chorley Town 1-0 on Friday night.

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