Search

Arsenal star warns against Wembley complacency after FA Cup win against Everton

07:28 10 March 2014

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (left)

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (left)

Archant

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is vowing not to be overawed when he makes his first Wembley appearance for Arsenal in next month’s FA Cup semi-final.

The 20-year-old midfielder was in outstanding form as the Gunners beat Everton 4-1 to reach the last four of the competition, where they will face holders Wigan.

Although Oxlade-Chamberlain has represented his country at Wembley several times – most recently in last week’s friendly against Denmark – he admits the prospect of playing for Arsenal at the famous stadium is an exciting one.

It will be only the second time the Gunners have featured in an FA Cup tie at the new Wembley – the first came five years ago, when they lost their semi-final against Chelsea, 2-1.

“Every round you go through, you get that little bit closer and you get hungrier and hungrier for the end result,” said Oxlade-Chamberlain.

“You watch games in the FA Cup at Wembley when you’re growing up and that’s where you want to get to – that’s the stage and it’s what the Cup’s all about.

“It’s the first time I’ve managed to get there since I’ve been at Arsenal and it is definitely a big thing for us.

“But we can’t get too carried away and let that occasion overcome us, we’ve got to approach it in the same way we do every other game.

“We’ve got to be up for it, but approach it very professionally and as coolly and calmly as we can, and hopefully we can get through to where we want to be, which is the final.

“As professionals, we all want to win things and I can say that for every one of our team.

“It is an opportunity for us and we’re one step closer, but we still need to get through a tough semi-final.”

Saturday’s last eight tie against Everton presented the Gunners with a far sterner examination than the eventual scoreline might have indicated as they triumphed 4-1.

Oxlade-Chamberlain played a key role in his side’s victory, winning the penalty that gave Mikel Arteta the opportunity to restore Arsenal’s lead midway through the second half.

The England international, who made way for Tomas Rosicky 10 minutes later, acknowledges that fatigue has been a problem as he continues the process of regaining full match fitness after his five-month lay-off with a cruciate ligament injury.

“We knew that if we weren’t at it we’d get punished by a good Everton side and right from the start we tried to set the tempo high and stamp our authority on the game,” added Oxlade-Chamberlain.

“I felt both teams tried to play good football and I felt like I did a lot of running, especially in the first half. At half-time I was a bit tired.

“But you’ve got to be able to keep up that sort of momentum and stamina – and that’s what the boss said to us, we had to keep up the same intensity as in the first half and take it into the second half.

“I haven’t had a run of games like some of the boys have had and maybe that’s because of my long injury. So until that happens you can never be sure you’re 100 per cent fit.

“But I feel good when I’m on the pitch, I feel sharp and I feel that I’m there or thereabouts. After five months out and four weeks back, you feel like you’ve played a whole season!

“It does take it out of you, coming back into the environment and the level the Premier League’s played at. It’s tough, but then you get over that peak and start to blend into it and feel good and that’s the stage I’m at now.”

The Wigan clash will be Arsenal’s ninth FA Cup semi-final since Arsene Wenger became their manager, with a record of five successes from the previous eight.

The Gunners have won the competition 10 times in all. Of the other semi-finalists, Sheffield United have won the Cup four times, while Hull have never done so and Wigan’s solitary success came in last season’s final against Manchester City.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate Sports News

Arsenal's Santi Cazorla (Adam Davy/PA Wire)

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere will remain sidelined for at least the next two or three weeks.

Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino

Mauricio Pochettino says he is enjoying the best time of his managerial career as he prepares to take Tottenham to Manchester City for a title showdown on Sunday.

Peter Crouch celebrates his decisive goal for Tottenham at Manchester City in May 2010

Sunday promises to be a big day in the title fight as the Premier League’s top four teams go head to head – Leicester City visit Arsenal while Tottenham travel to face Manchester City.

Kevin Wimmer:

Tottenham defender Kevin Wimmer is yet to concede a goal in the Premier League since replacing Jan Vertonghen – and he is aiming to keep it that way as he prepares to face Sergio Aguero in Sunday’s title showdown at Manchester City.

Yesterday, 09:00
Left to right: Gareth Davies, Max Hanson, Joe Northover, head coach Paul Doyle, Renat Samur, Alex Vonckx, Max Green

Haringey Aquatics teenager Renat Samur recorded a double as the club collected a total of five gold medals at the ASA Middlesex Age Group Championships.

Yesterday, 08:30
Back row (left to right): John Beckett, Joe Bruce, Wyn Bliss, George Everitt, Nick Corbett, Joe Beckett. Front row: Joel Robb, Ben Miller, Alfie Buxton

Haringey’s Under-13 indoor cricket side narrowly missed out on qualifying for the finals of the London Youth Games at Harrow Leisure Centre on Saturday.

Yesterday, 08:00
Charlie Hodgson kicked three penalties in Saracens' victory over Exeter on Sunday. Pic: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Saracens’ director of rugby Mark McCall is confident his current squad can maintain the club’s momentum at the top of the table, despite the absence of key international stars due to the Six Nations.

Yesterday, 05:28
Junior Gunners

Arsenal head up to Manchester United later this month for what is always one of the most eagerly awaited clashes of any season.

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Champagne experience

This Valentine’s Day, the Coca-Cola London Eye is the perfect destination for lovebirds, offering a range of romantic experiences from Friday 12th February - Sunday 14th February 2016.

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe