Arsenal draw Sutton United in FA Cup fifth round


Arsenal’s reward for hammering Southampton on Saturday evening is a fifth round FA Cup tie away at non-league Sutton United.

Sutton, who beat Championship side Leeds in the last round, are currently 16th in the Vanarama National League…and we’ll be honest, we have know idea how many divisions below the Premier League that is. A fair few!

What else do we know? They play on one of those artificial 3G pitch things. Hmm, could be interesting. And Gander Green Lane, their stadium not too far from Croydon in south London, has a capacity of 5,000.

The tie will take place at some point over the weekend 17-19 February a few days after we get back from our annual Champions League trip to Bayern Munich.

On the plus side, we’ll get at least 12 days off after the FA Cup match to prepare for our match with Liverpool at Anfield. Our league game with Southampton, initially scheduled for 25 February, has been postponed due to the Saints’ participation in the League Cup final.

Full draw

Burnley vs Lincoln
Fulham vs Sp*rs
Blackburn Rovers vs Man United
Sutton United vs Arsenal
Middlesbrough vs Oxford
Wolves vs Chelsea
Huddersfield vs Man City
Millwall vs Derby / Leicester


  1. Bring on the kids!
    By kids I mean Lucas, Welbeck, Walcott, and Sanchez who will disguise himself as someone from the academy

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  2. Its a great draw–it looks like its the first time that Arsenal and Arsene have ever played Sutton, and while its away, its a London game so that simplifies travel as well.

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    • I was there to watch a pre-season game a few years ago. A 15 year old Dan Crowley ran the show. By no means was it a first team fixture but at least some people associated with the first team will have been there.

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  3. Let’s just be humble and prepare for this game as any other big game, and get a positive result. Underestimation has often been our downfall in the past !

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    • Let’s have a sense of proportion. Underestimating a Championship side, or a champion from a smaller European league can be dangerous. This is very different; we should show respect, but a sense of humor is not out of place.

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    • Like any non-league team, Sutton’s style is hard and physical. Against Wimbledon and Leeds, they played long ball after long ball, and smashed into tackles. If we play our patient passing game and don’t give them the chance to make a tackle, we’ll pull through easily. If we try to run at them, we could get ourselves in trouble, and possibly see some injuries. Their artificial pitch runs very fast, so the key is to zip the ball around faster than they can run.

      Damn, I wish I could get to this match! Fifty years ago, I used to go to school two blocks from Gander Green Lane. Sutton are still my non-league team to this day.

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      • Sutton fan here, Not true, We were that way against AFCW as this is how they play so we had to match them. No, we are a passing side which is why we are not confident, as our strength is quick passing and decent football, which the National league does have, and the 3G pitch we are very used to, but you guys could quite like how quick the ball moves on it and we are not going to out pass you. We only have a couple fairly tall players, our two centre backs.

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  4. Might it not be in Sutton United’s interest to move the game to the Emirates? If they’re allowed to, of course.

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    • Some years back we had Farnborough away in the Cup and they choose to play at Highbury. Should be possible then ..

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    • would they share in more money if the game was moved to the Emirates? Apologies, am ignorant on the matter.

      not many interesting matches in the draw sadly. Man U will probably muck it up away at Blackburn.

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      • In FA Cup games ticket receipts and programme sales are split 50/50 (in the league you keep your home revenue). So basically in a draw like this Sutton would have LOVED to have drawn Arsenal at the Emirates. I’m sure it’d bring them more money than the rest of the income for the year combined.

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        • If the match was played at Emirates, Sutton’d be looking at £1.5M to £2M easily, just in gate receipts. However, this match will be the first choice to be televised, so they’ll get around £500K for that. Plus, Arsenal will probably return their share of the gate receipts – we’ve done that before.

          Sutton’s FA Cup money so far this year, even before counting the fifth round match, outweighs all of their other income for the past two seasons put together – and that includes sponsorships.

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          • Their manager is also the owner of the club and is bankrolling them to the tune of £10k a week i understand. This cup run is invaluable.

            I grew up in Sutton and have lots of die hard Sutton fans for friends. This is going to be absolutely massive for them, obviously.

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    • Football is not all about money. There’s a great game in the offing and Sutton fans get to remember great players in their pitch. If it’s at the Emirates what a dull 3-0 defeat for them that would be. I’d love to see Sanchez or Ozil on my local teams pitch… That’s what memories are made of

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  5. Wow … all the big teams avoided each other!! I was hoping for a few collateral damage kinda scenario .. hehe. Especially fun would have been Sp*rs vs Manure & Chelsh*t vs Sh*tty. Anyways, I am glad we got a decent draw just hoping for our player’s safety on those artificial turf.

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  6. Dad used to work in Sutton (and hated it there) so let’s go there and stuff them! Fast start important as every other football fan out there will be backing them for an upset.

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  7. No matter the result, the biggest winner is Sutton from a financial point of view. This one match against us, one the most prestigious team in the PL, will pay their wages and infrastructure for years.

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    • Think it’s only worth that crazy amount if they play away and get a share of the gate from our much larger and more profitable stadium? This game now will no doubt be chosen for TV though, so they’ll get some money for that.

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      • I like to look at it as 107 places if you discount the three Football League teams Sutton have already eliminated from the Cup.

        It’s all very well assuming we should beat them, but we should really be looking at the humiliation that we’d have by losing to them. We must take them as seriously as any other team because the consequences of losing would be extremely damaging to both our reputation and our confidence.

        Lose this game and we will never regain the mental strength needed to win the League.

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  8. We can just never get a break, can we!?
    First off to Munich, then straight here!

    Anyway, must be time of the century to be a Sutton fan!

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  9. This draw reminds me of the Champions League draw a few years ago when we ended up with Monaco. Guess what happened when we got complacent? Saying that, I know this squad is hungrier and more experienced. And the 12 day rest before playing Liverpool is the cherry on top! COYG

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    • there is a big bloody difference between Monaco and Sutton united lol. Monaco probably spends the same amount on money on shirt designing as Sutton united on there entire squad

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  10. Some really good home draws for some lower tiered teams which is always good for the sport. My only complaint is the stadium is so small that the camera angle is bad on TV but that’s just minor stuff isn’t it? COYG!

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  11. Obviously we will use this to give the squad members game time. Having said that we won’t have a game for 2 weeks after this game. So, from a Sutton point of view, will they want to play against the (don’t like this term but it serves a point) ‘2nd team’ or go up against Ozil, Sanchez and the full force of Arsenal?

    Also, should we go 2nd team or go even further and play the kids, so giving game time to the likes of Willock and Bielik as well as the likes of The Jeff and Maitland-Niles?

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    • Which team should we play, A, B or C?

      Bellerin Mustafi Koscielny Monreal
      Xhaka Ramsey
      Walcott Ozil Welbeck

      Debuchy Mertesacker Gabriel Gibbs
      Coquelin Elneny
      Lucas Oxlade-Chamberlain Iwobi

      Jenkinson Holding Bielik Bramall
      Maitland-Niles Dragomir
      The Jeff Willock Nelson

      (I’m assuming Bennacer and Akpom will go on loan)

      This was fun to do! Just saying.

      Anyway, A, B or C?!

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  12. On paper, it looks like an easy draw, but something tells me it won’t be as easy as some people assumes…..they won’t be in the 5th round of the FA Cup if they are easy pushovers, furthermore, the home draw will suit their game plan to a T, they are used to playing on their pitch and our players won’t be, but it is definitely a winnable match if we approach this with the seriousness it deserves. Strong squad please!

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  13. You have to feel good for sutton and their fans. What must they be thinking?

    Thst said, leTs stuff the cunts by double digits.

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    • Yeah I want to be all humble and say let’s not get too optimistic, but fuck it, let’s hammer the wannabe arseholes into the ground and send them back to that shit hole Sutton on the shitty southern network whilst their ugly kids bawl all the way home with their bullshit dreams shattered.

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  14. Need to watch out for their midfield dynamo a certain Craig eastmond, some may of heard of him apparently he’s played champions league – on to watch

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  15. Having lived in Sutton for years, it’s a dream come true. But as a Gunner, my loyalties will be severely tested. For Sutton’s sake, let’s hope they can take Arsenal to a replay. Not THAT really WILL be payola for Sutton. About the only time I’ll ever advocate an extra game for the Wenger’s Red Army. And all in a good cause. What’s not to like. C’mon Sutton! C’mon Arsenal!

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  16. This is why we love the FA-CUP.

    I wouldn’t mind a replay. Give the kids more playing time and extra money for Sutton.

    Or Arsenal offer to give all profits to Sutton and switch the game to The Emirates?


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  17. Our luck has run out, tough opponents and away from home.
    Jokes aside, I wish they could play this at the Emirates so that Sutton could make some money. Maybe a draw and a replay?

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  18. They will work day and night from now until match day on how to beat us. They will analyse everything about us, and will come to the game strong and ready to break our legs if neccesary. Beating us will be the best thing to happen to them.


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  19. Watched them against Wimbledon and thought they knocked the ball around well for a non-league team. I then noticed that Craig Eastmond was pulling the strings for them so it all made a bit more sense. Arsenal DNA.

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  20. Whaaaaaat!! I’m so shocked! We drew Sutton omg! Wait did I spell their teams name correctly?
    Am I dreaming? Pinch me!

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  21. If we don’t play for 12 days after this one let’s smash the almighty fuck out of these south London wankers and bring our full team and win 14-0 ending their FA cup dreams making old men cry. Great for them though but let’s teach them a fucking lesson anyway. Bet it won’t be on the box as the BBC are right up those Man U cunts arse but still. Would be a great game to go to but let’s be realistic, we’re playing a bunch of part time postmen so there’s no excuse for not destroying them. COYG

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  22. Im sure their team was smiling from ear to ear when they drew Arsenal. Not often a team that far down the pecking order gets to test their mettle against world class opposition.

    But we will probably field very few of our first 11 players. Which is fine by me, Dont need Sanchez doing a Falcao when Falcao was cut down by a player way to late into the tackle against 4th division opposition in the cup. It’s fair to say Falcao has not been the same since.

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  23. I remember us drawing Non league Farnborough all those years ago, couldn’t believe my ears when I heard it on the radio, being from Farnborough myself. Sutton’s fans must be buzzing with the news!

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  24. I grew up a gooner cos my Dad was but living in south Surrey our local team was Aldershot who were a 4th Division (league 2) team for almost all of that time. The second game I ever saw was a 1v1 vs Graham Taylor’s Watford the season they got promoted on their run to Div 1. It was 1977. In ’79 Aldershot had their own amazing cup run only losing in the 5th round replay to Shrewsbury when they should have held on to a lead in the first tie. Would have played Arsenal in the semi’s had they got past wolves in the quarters. Arsenal of course went on to win the cup that year in incredible style (a game that condemned me to a life of nail biting and angst) sandwiched as it was between the horrendous losses to Ipswich and West Ham in 78 and 80 (Willie Young triggers the invention of the cynical foul red). Anyway. Back to Aldershot. In ’87 we drew Sutton and I was by now 17 and able to travel away on my own so went with a school friend up to watch what we were sure would be a comfortable win against the non-leaguers. We lost. They did go on to beat Coventry the following season which made me feel better. What’s my point. I feel I’m channeling my inner rambling pete here. Take nothing for granted. It’s the cup. I thought I’d lost interest a bit. Don’t get me wrong I loved beating Hull in that nerve jangling style, and annihilating Villa in that swaggering style. But I think I feel like we need more this season. An fa cup win would be nice but only if it’s part of a double. But writing this I’m remembering the magic. One last Fa cup memory at Aldershot. I was at the 3rd round game vs Oxford (in Div 1 that year) with John Aldridge playing his last game before joining the mugsmashers. Aldershot won 3v0. Giant killing. The shame of it was there were only a couple of thousand there because the powers that be had decided to charge a tenner for tickets which was 3 or 4 times the usual price.

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  25. We definitely don’t want to underestimate them. There would be nothing more morale sapping than starting an underpowered side and losing.

    On the other hand, I can see pretty much the entire starting 11 rested.

    Assuming they’re all fit, how about a lineup of:



    I can imagine Arsene doing something strange like playing Sanogo mind you!

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    • Ah, forgot the Jeff. He’ll definitely feature if fit, probably for Willock. In my imaginary Football Manager side to face Sutton…

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  26. As a long-standing Arsenal and Sutton fan (first Arsenal game 1969, first Sutton game around 1966, was at both Leeds games), I am ecstatic. Perfect draw – should be comfortable win for Arsenal and another great occasion and payday for Sutton (although not quite as much as quoted above, live TV fee is £250k per club). Never thought I’d see the day when my two teams met each other in a competitive match. Don’t worry about the artificial pitch – it’s not one of those where you get burns if you go over. It’s as close to grass as makes no odds, but without the inevitable mud and unevenness that a non-league grass pitch would have at this time of year. In fact, a perfect pitch for a team like Arsenal.

    Ex-Arsenal academy players Rory Deacon and Craig Eastmond have probably been the two stand-out performers for Sutton this season. Deacon in particular has been a match-winner a number of times in the cup. Monakana only signed a couple of weeks ago and is not match fit, so not a starter.

    Finally, to the morons like Mark and Mesoot Ozil with their obnoxious put-downs of Sutton, a family, community-oriented club if there ever was one one – get a life and join the rest of the human race. You are frankly an embarrassment to Arsenal and I for one disown you.

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