That’s how you end a season. Arsenal best Chelsea 2-1 to win their 14th FA Cup on the back of two goals from #14, the club captain, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
It’s an absolutely massive result for the club. It’s a morale boost at the end of the worst season in 25 years. It’s a desperately needed financial windfall from the Europa League money. It’s a clear marker for ownership that Mikel Arteta has the club headed in the right direction. It’s so many things.
And it’s really, really fun to watch your team win a trophy.
Some people will try to tell you that the FA Cup has lost it’s luster, that it isn’t as important as it used to be. I’d direct them to the joy bursting out of every Arsenal player after the match. It definitely meant something to them. Emi Martinez, who has patiently waited his turn at the club for more than a decade, was in tears. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Nicolas Pepe, Alexandre Lacazette, and others were dancing. David Luiz lifted Mikel Arteta off the ground with a gigantic hug. And Arteta was running and jumping around the field, smiling ear to ear like a kid who just got a puppy on his birthday.
The key players since the restart were cornerstones once again today. Emi Martinez made the saves he needed to and commanded his area. Dani Ceballos was a monster, especially defensively; his intervention started the break for the second goal. Kieran Tierney was a rock and chipped in some great long balls to boot. David Luiz put in a solid performance and avoided that killer mistake. Ainsley Maitland-Niles was a problem for Chelsea going forward and provided strong defensive support. Nicolas Pepe had his best performance in an Arsenal shirt. And Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, as he has done since joining the club, banged in the goals.
Arsenal won the FA Cup for the 14th time. They are headed to the Europa League. Mikel Arteta has things moving the right direction. Let’s enjoy this one today, y’all.