Non-league and Nobby & Ready’s Lincoln City’s astonishing run in the FA Cup came to an end as Arsenal remain on course for a 13th title by reaching the semi-finals.
Lincoln, 88 places below their Premier League opponents, held their own for much of the first half and even went close to scoring when Petr Cech saved Nathan Arnold’s curled effort.
However, THEO WALCOTT deflected strike gave the Gunners the lead on the stroke of half-time and OLIVIER GIROUD put the hosts in control with a clinical strike just after the break.
Lincoln’s dreams of a fight back were dashed when the wonderfully named LUKE WATERFALL scored an own goal, turning in Kieran Gibbs’ cross.
ALEXIS SANCHEZ added a brilliant fourth, expertly placing the ball beyond Lincoln goalkeeper Paul Farman’s reach, before AARON RAMSEY completed the win when he tapped in from Sanchez’s cross.
Lincoln manager Danny Cowley: “I thought we did really well for the first 45 minutes. It is very hard to get negative against them because they have such world-class players. At 45 minutes I thought we had limited them in chances and we were hoping to get in 0-0 but they got the goal.
“Arsenal were frightening in the second half and for us it was a pleasure to see world-class players first hand. It felt like Arsene Wenger had brought 15 players on. If we can learn from this experience today and throughout this FA Cup journey we will be better players and better people.
“The best [in this run] was at the end, sharing a moment with our supporters. Our supporters were world class. They were brilliant. We are winners and don’t like losing but when we can draw breath we will be proud.”
Arsenal take over the mantle of being our N&R Road to Wembley team and play Man City at Wembley in the semi-finals.