On loan Arsenal goalkeeper makes two huge errors as Wrexham exit FA Cup | Football

Arthur Okonkwo had a game to forget… (Photo: Getty)

Two major errors from Arsenal goalkeeper Arthur Okonkwo cost his loan side Wrexham dear as they were knocked out of the FA Cup by Blackburn Rovers.

The Welsh side – famously owned by Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney – were aiming to reach the fifth-round of the competition where they would have faced Premier League Newcastle.

But despite taking an early lead at Ewood Park, Rovers rallied to win 4-1, and Okonkwo will have to take responsibility for two of the goals.

The 22-year-old bizarrely rushed out of his box after Sam Gallagher broke free of the Wrexham back-line, easily allowing the Blackburn star to find the back of the net and make the score 2-1.

Blackburn icon Kevin Gallacher was critical of Okonkwo’s decision making, saying on Radio 5 Live: ‘Blackburn have really hit Wrexham with a sucker punch there. Only a matter of minutes and Blackburn have found themselves in front.

‘The goalkeeper has sold himself short for Wrexham and Sam Gallagher has pounced.’

Then, in first-half injury time, Okonkwo opted to stay on his line when Sammie Szmodics arrived in the box, latched onto a long ball and faired the ball past the hapless keeper to give the home side a comfortable cushion.

‘He’s been a bit ropey you have to say in the first-half, sliced a few kicks, not come for the ball and then you’re looking at him and you think he has to come off his line in that situation,’ former Wales international Nathan Blake told Match of the Day.

‘Read that a bit earlier and make better case than that. He should make a challenge, shut down the space, but he doesn’t, maybe because of that first goal.

‘Maybe because of the Gallagher goal he’s feeling, “I can’t come off my line, I’ve made that mistake”. But on this occasion, it’s cost them.’

While a bad night for Okonkwo, it is a blip in what has been a brilliant season on loan at Wrexham who are vying to win promotion to League One having only just returned to the football league last year.

Prior to this game, the keeper had conceded just 16 goals in 20 games, keeping 10 clean sheets.

The Red Dragons are second in League Two, just five points off leaders Stockport with a game in hand, with a strip to Salford City on Saturday next on the agenda.

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