The young gunners dominated the first half and Blackburn simply couldn't get close to them, 2-0 up thanks to a great volley from Diaby and a lovely neat finish from Eduardo when one on one with Friedel. The game was changed when Blackburn undeservedly scored just before half time, Derbyshire was well offside when played through on the right before crossing for Santa Cruz to finish well past Fabianski.
Weaker men would have crumbled in the second half, but the young gunners battled very hard. Blackburn did get an equaliser when Santa Cruz firmly headed home from a Bentley free kick. Denilson was sent off for a two footed challenge and Arsenal were down to ten men with half an hour of injury time looming, not many people would have backed them to win it from there.
However the youngsters are made of stern stuff, they crafted a fantastic winner in the first period of extra time, Song burst through with the ball from deep to release Eduardo; Eduardo took the ball out of his feet and buried it past Friedel before the keeper was even able to move. Blackburn huffed and puffed with many long balls into the box, but they couldn't prevent Arsenal walking away with a place in the semis.
All the youngsters did themselves proud, Fabianski made some good saves, the defence did well with Song shining in particular, the midfield were outstanding while Bendtner and Eduardo worked well in tandem. It really gave me such pleasure to see the malignant Savage getting nowhere near the ball for 120 minutes, David Dunne also deserves a special mention for being a particularly unpleasant individual.
On an unrelated matter Sol Campbell has been speaking of footballer's human rights:
"I think it is out of hand now," he said in a BBC interview. "We all can
take the booing and light banter but when it gets to the realms of verbal abuse
it's a bridge too far. "I think the FA, PFA and even the Government should get
involved because these situations are happening at sporting arenas. If this
happened in the street you'd be arrested.""This is the 21st century. This is a
human rights situation where professional sportsmen - managers as well - people
are abusing them verbally. I think it's just gone too far."
It has gone too far, people as stupid as Campbell are earning thousands of thousands of pounds a week for kicking a ball around a rectangle and then complaining that people who attend should not be able to get involved in supporting their team. Sol Campbell needs to get a grip on reality, the trouble with footballers these days is that many of them are detached from the reality that most people have to live in. I certainly do think there are limits to what should be chanted, however where does one draw the line between light banter and moderate banter? There are big differences between shouting racist bile and judging someone as a tosser, then telling them about it.
The likes of Cole and Campbell should expect and take the abuse that they get at grounds around the country. There are limits as far as certain types of abuse including racism, however I get the feeling that Campbell's light banter would not extend to 'f*ck off Campbell, you big c*nt". Stop being so bloody precious and whinging on about your human rights, a bit of abuse is part and parcel of football, and if it wasn't going to football matches would be about as much fun as watching 'Strictly Come Dancing' on the beeb. So shut it Campbell and concentrate on letting a few goals in when Arsenal travel to Pompey later this month.