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Arsenal face replay headache as West Brom crash out

Everton and Watford were Premier League winners as Reading pulled off the shock of the day eliminating West Brom. Arsenal and Hull to play again.

  Arsene Wenger, Manager of Arsenal reacts on the touchline during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Leicester City at Emirates Stadium on February 14, 2016 in London, England.
Ross KinnairdGetty Images

FA Cup holders Arsenal were left with an unwanted replay after a goalless draw against Hull City in their fifth-round clash at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.
Arsenal, bidding to become the first side since the 19th Century to win the FA Cup three years in a row, dominated the game but could not beat Hull goalkeeper Eldin Jakupovic, who made several fine saves.

With Arsenal pushing for the Premier League title and at home to Spanish giants Barcelona in the last 16 of the Champions League on Tuesday, the prospect of another game was far from ideal.

"No not especially good news but Hull defended very well," Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, who earlier this week refused to back calls for FA Cup replays to be scrapped, told BT Sport when asked about a trip to Hull's KC Stadium.

Wenger, whose side beat Hull in the 2014 FA Cup final and knocked them out in the third round last season, compared his support for replays to the political discussions that have left Britain with a June 23 referendum on its membership of the European Union.

"I like the idea that in England you don't do things like anywhere else. That's why you negotiate in Brussels at the moment as well," the 66-year-old Frenchman added.

Meanwhile Hull manager Steve Bruce praised Jakupovic, one of 10 changes he made to his starting side, by saying: "He's come in and made some great saves."

In Saturday's other fifth-round ties, Premier League Watford beat Championship side Leeds United 1-0 thanks to Scott Wooton's 53rd-minute own-goal.

But top-flight West Bromwich Albion were knocked out after second-tier Reading, beaten FA Cup semi-finalists last season, came from behind to win 3-1.

Darren Fletcher put visitors West Brom ahead in the 54th minute but Reading's Paul McShane ensured their lead at the Madejski Stadium lasted just five minutes.

Michael Hector headed in a free-kick to make it 2-1 before substitute Lucas Piazon added a third goal in stoppage time.

But the result was overshadowed by the sight of Albion defender Chris Brunt being hit with a coin thrown by one of his own club's supporters when he went to applaud the travelling fans after the full-time whistle.

"I was absolutely disgusted and ashamed."

Chris Brunt (West Brom)

"I was walking towards our supporters at the end, and they thought it was okay to throw a coin at their own players," Brunt told BBC Sport. "I was absolutely disgusted and ashamed."

Chris Brunt of West Bromwich Albion reacts after being hit by an object during the Emirates FA Cup fifth round match between Reading and West Bromwich Albion at the Madejski Stadium on February 20, 2016 in Reading, England.
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Chris Brunt of West Bromwich Albion reacts after being hit by an object during the Emirates FA Cup fifth round match between Reading and West Bromwich Albion at the Madejski Stadium on February 20, 2016 in Reading, England.Michael ReganGetty Images

Everton, whose last major trophy came when they won the 1995 FA Cup, went into the quarter-finals after a 2-0 win away to fellow Premier League side Bournemouth in Saturday's late kick-off.

Everton goalkeeper Joel Robles saved Charlie Daniels's first-half penalty after James McCarthy handled inside his own box.

Lukaku (Everton)
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Lukaku (Everton)Matthew ChildsREUTERS

The visitors compounded Bournemouth's agony when England midfielder Ross Barkley, with national manager Roy Hodgson in the stands at Dean Court, saw his deflected shot loop over Reading's Australian goalkeeper Adam Federici in the 55th minute.

Romelu Lukaku made it 2-0 when the Belgium striker scored his 21st goal of the season 14 minutes from time.

Sunday sees Chelsea, without injured captain John Terry, at home to fellow Premier League giants Manchester City.

Manuel Pellegrini, the City manager, has threatened to field a weakened team in response to what he sees as unfair fixture congestion after the FA bowed to demands from broadcasters to move the game from Saturday.

City are away to Dynamo Kiev in the Champions League on Wednesday and then take on Liverpool in the League Cup final a week on Sunday.

High-flyers Tottenham Hotspur face Crystal Palace in an all-Premier League clash on Sunday, when West Ham United are away to second-tier Blackburn Rovers.

Meanwhile Manchester United will look to ease the pressure on manager Louis van Gaal after their 2-1 Europa League defeat by Danish side FC Midtjylland when they face third-tier Shrewsbury Town on Monday.


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