Arsenal 0-2 Liverpool: Jota nets a brace to send the Reds to Wembley
They will face Chelsea at Wembley, after a dominant showing in the semi-final second leg which saw the Gunners end with 10 men after a late Thomas Partey red card.
Diogo Jota raced infield to strike home the game’s first goal from the edge of the box midway through the first half, and the Portuguese forward was the star of the show, lobbing in a second to send the Reds clear.
Partey had been on the pitch fewer than 20 minutes when he picked up two yellows and a subsequent red and the visitors were deserved victors on the night.
Here are the player ratings from the semi-final second leg.
Aaron Ramsdale, 4. Wrong-footed and couldn’t adjust for the opening goal. Saved by his post off a set-piece too and then beaten once more for Jota’s second – two goals from two shots on target against him.
Takehiro Tomiyasu, 5. Beaten easily for the opener, ending on the ground. Looked short of sharpness after a recent absence.
Ben White, 5. A few very agricultural clearances. Should have done better for Jota’s goal and was left for dead by the same player down the wing for another big chance.
Gabriel Magalhaes, 6. Wayward with a few too many passes out from the back but had a tough night trying to keep an under-pressure defence afloat at times.
Kieran Tierney, 6. Defensively sound but not too many chances to break forward. Got clattered by his own goalkeeper, ook.
Martin Odegaard, 7. A deeper role than usual but did very well, dominant in the early stages. Good on the ball but less able to keep pace with the Reds’ constant switches of possession.
Albert Sambi Lokonga, 7. Some good ball-winning and a few bursts past opponents, but also loose in possession at times.
Bukayo Saka, 6. A few moments of danger but marginalised by the visitors’ dominance in midfield. Looked frustrated in the second half when he lost possession several times.
Emile Smith Rowe, 4. Very quiet throughout and played a really poor pass when a through-ball would have set a big two-on-one chance up. Clearly not fit.
Gabriel Martinelli, 7. Bright and direct in the early stages, Arsenal’s best outlet. Denied with a fierce, hoog, near-post shot.
Alexandre Lacazette, 5. Hit the bar from an early free-kick but not involved much in the rest of the first half. Smashed over soon after the break.
Subs: Eddie Nketiah (5), Thomas Partey (4)
Caoimhin Kelleher, 8. A surprise starter, but the Reds’ cup keeper after all. Great tip onto the crossbar early on and did well on set-piece aerials too.
Trent Alexander-Arnold, 8. Another game, another assist or two. Fired a few more beautiful balls into the Arsenal area which were begging to be finished off by team-mates.
Joel Matip, 5. Very sloppy on the ball in the first half, particularly outside his own box. Subbed at the break.
Virgil van Dijk, 8. Good defensive headers against Arsenal’s early set-piece deliveries. Kept Lacazette quiet and read the balls over the top well.
Andy Robertson, 7. The usual performance: recovery runs, overlaps, a few decent crosses and some top tackles.
Fabinho, 8. Fantastic last-ditch tackle to deny Martinelli. Actually missed one or two tackles in midfield but more than made up for those with his usual ability to regularly break up play and shift possession upfield.
Jordan Henderson, 5. Not the captain’s finest night as he struggled to keep pace with Arsenal’s counters down their left. Got into a few good positions early on but the final pass was lacking.
Curtis Jones, 7. Carried the ball superbly from deep, turning away from danger and helping the Reds move upfield.
Kaide Gordon, 6. Shown a real vote of confidence by Jurgen Klopp in starting right wing, but not much went his way until a shot soon after the break – which he skied.
Roberto Firmino, 7. Dropped deep to good effect but no real goalmouth involvement in the first half. Was involved in the Jota goal, with a neat flick on the halfway line.
Diogo Jota, 9. Raced infield to roll home the opening goal, then skinned White to tee up a great chance for Gordon. Showed fantastic pace and movement again to burst in bury a lovely lobbed second.
Subs: Ibrahima Konate (7), Takumi Minamino (5), James Milner (6), Neco Williams (n/a)