Arsenal roll Man City to book FA Cup final

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored twice as Arsenal beat Manchester City in their FA Cup semi-final

Seven months after leaving Pep Guardiola's side, Mikel Arteta outwitted his mentor to ensure his first season as Arsenal manager will end with an FA Cup final.

In only his 25th match as a manager, Arteta masterminded a 2-0 victory - secured by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's double - that ended Manchester City's title defence on Saturday.

It was a cup won as part of a treble last season when Arteta was assistant to Guardiola at City and fans were still allowed to pack into the national stadium.

Just a few hundred key personnel were allowed into Wembley for Saturday's semi-final as the 90,000-capacity was largely empty for the first time for a top-level game due to ongoing pandemic restrictions.

"It's very sad we cannot enjoy this moment with our fans and enjoy watching the team and achieving the final," said Arteta, who replaced Unai Emery as Arsenal manager in December.

"We have great chemistry. They really believe in what we are trying to do and you can sense that."

Manchester United play Chelsea in the other semi-final on Sunday.

Just a month ago, when the Premier League resumed from its 100-day shutdown, Arsenal were beaten 3-0 by City in the Premier League.

This game was as one-sided as that night with City enjoying more than two-thirds of the ball.

But Arsenal soaked up the pressure and hit City on the counter attack to end a run of seven successive losses when it had been outscored 20-2 by City.

City managed only one shot on target - the fewest in a game since April 2018.

Arsenal's opening goal was the culmination of an 18-pass move involving 10 players - straight from the Guardiola playbook.

Aubameyang slid in ahead of Kyle Walker at the far post to poke in Nicolas Pepe's cross in the 19th minute.

Gabon star Aubameyang secured Arsenal's passage into the final in the 71st when he cut in from the left flank and poked the ball between Ederson's legs for his 25th goal of the season.

Guardiola's men remain in the pandemic-delayed Champions League, resuming next month with a 2-1 lead in the round of 16 against Real Madrid.

"We wanted to play the (FA Cup) final one week before the Madrid game to be in rhythm but we missed this chance," Guardiola said.

Winning a record-extending 14th FA Cup in their record 21st final could be Arsenal's only route into the Europa League with the north Londoners 10th in the Premier League with two games remaining.