Larsson targets cup revenge

Black Cats midfielder ready for second shot at Gunners

Sebastian Larsson: Believes Sunderland are capable of dashing Arsenal's cup dreams

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Sebastian Larsson hopes Sunderland's second shot at Arsenal sees them find the winning formula, allowing them to prolong their FA Cup adventure.

The Black Cats are readying themselves for the second instalment of a league and cup double-header against the Gunners.

The first outing between the pair went the way of the Londoners, with loan star Thierry Henry snatching a stoppage-time winner in his last Premier League appearance for the club before returning to MLS side the New York Red Bulls.

Larsson, though, believes Sunderland offered enough during the contest to suggest that they are capable of holding their own, and he is looking for them to dash Arsenal's cup dreams when they welcome Arsene Wenger's men back to the Stadium of Light for a fifth round clash next Saturday.

He said: "We said before the game, we know it's Arsenal, but we are trying to reach that level where we shouldn't worry about who it is coming here.

Tired

"It was a game we shouldn't have lost, but we did, so we need to pick ourselves up and make sure we beat them next week in the FA Cup.

"Hopefully they will be a bit more tired next week than we are.

"We have got a week to prepare now, but at the moment, it is just very disappointing.

"We haven't tasted defeat that many times since the new manager came in, and that makes it even harder to take when it comes around.

"I know it's a team like Arsenal, but we shouldn't have lost that game."

Larsson played alongside Henry during his time on Arsenal's books and the Sweden international admits that if anyone was going to grab the headlines on Saturday, it was going to the Gunners' all-time leading goalscorer.

Fate

He said: "We would have liked no-one to have won the game for them, but I suppose if anyone was going to do it, it was going to be him.

"It was his last league game, so it was probably written in the stars.

"From their point of view, fair play to him for getting the goal, but it's obviously a sickener conceding that late.

"You could see in the last 15 minutes that we were really tired and we couldn't really get forward as much as we did earlier.

"But then again, for all the possession they had, I don't think they caused us any problems whatsoever, and they were two really bad goals for us to concede, unfortunately."