Challenging for trophies is what a club with state-of-the art infrastructure and a top quality team like Arsenal should be striving for every season. It is certainly not a given right for them, or any other football, to achieve success – it has to be earned through hard work on the pitch, and allowing the individual and collective qualities of the team shine through.
However, Arsene Wenger and his players stand on the edge of becoming only the third team in FA Cup history, after Wanderers and Blackburn Rovers, to lift the prestigious trophy three years in a row.
Whether the Arsenal fans would settle for more domestic cup glory remains to be seen, particularly as they have not won the Premier League title since 2004 and should be coming much closer with the calibre of players at their disposal.
Their 2-0 victory against Bayern Munich at the Emirates could turn out to be priceless in their hopes of resurrecting their fading Champions League aspirations, but although fans may believe that the league and Europe carry much more importance to them, making history in the most prestigious domestic cup competition at Wembley would perhaps make amends for shortcomings elsewhere.
Arsenal, along with other Premier League and Championship teams will have to wait until December to find out who they will face in the eagerly anticipated 3rd Round draw when the minnows potentially gain a shot at knocking out one of the big guns.
The Gunners represents excellent value for a team that have more than enough quality at their disposal to make it three in a row. Arsenal are unlikely to have it their own way though, particularly as their recent success has made them an even bigger scalp for other teams, such as FA Cup favourites Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United, who will see an opportunity to knock a rival off their ever-increasing perch and back down to ground.
Putting in the performances when it matters and receiving a certain element of luck in the draw are crucial components for any team with aspirations of winning the FA Cup this season, and indeed in any year. Arsenal certainly found a match winner in Alexis Sanchez when they needed him most, with their star man producing the goods in the Semi-Final and Final to ensure his team enjoyed more FA Cup glory at Wembley.
The Chilean star will be pivotal to how Arsenal fare in this year’s competition, but although Wenger continuously comes under huge scrutiny for his stubbornness to add more strength in depth to a squad that could do with more numbers, his strongest team is certainly good enough to be there or thereabouts again. Keeping them injury and suspension-free will be the acid test for Wenger, but although domestic cup glory may be behind the Premier League and Champions League on their list of agendas, creating FA Cup history would an achievement in itself for Arsenal.