Alexis Sánchez lit up the Wembley stage once again with a stunning long-range strike to give Arsenal a 2-0 lead over Aston Villa in Saturday’s FA Cup final at Wembley. Sánchez, who scored both of Arsenal’s goals in their FA Cup semifinal victory over Reading and also scored twice for Chile against England in 2013, accepted the ball more than 30 yards out and unleashed a ferocious swerving shot that flew past the despairing attempt of Shay Given to keep it out.
Perhaps the Aston Villa goalkeeper will feel he could have done better, but the movement on Sánchez’s shot was such that it would have been difficult for any keeper to get a glove on it, never mind prevent it from finding the net. The effort came five minutes into the second half, with Arsenal having taken a deserved first-half lead through Theo Walcott.
In their attempt to win a record 12th FA Cup, Arsenal began full of purpose and overwhelmed an Aston Villa team that lost their last two matches of the Premier League season and finished just as place above the relegation zone. A victory for Arsenal would also make Arsene Wenger the joint most successful manager in the history of the world’s oldest domestic cup competition, with six trophies.