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Sunday, March 8, 1998 Published at 17:25 GMT

Sport: Football

Honours even for Arsenal and West Ham

Arsenal and West Ham must replay for an FA Cup semi-final tie against Wolves after a pulsating 1-1 draw at Highbury.

Ian Pearce fired the visitors ahead in the 11th minute following a corner. But the defender turned from hero to villain when he tripped Martin Keown in the box to concede a penalty which Dennis Bergkamp scored for the 26th minute equaliser.

West Ham were out for revenge after Arsenal dumped them out of the Coca-Cola Cup at the same stage, but they were without strikers John Hartson and Paul Kitson, while Arsenal welcomed back Bergkamp and Ray Parlour.

Six days after a dour goalless draw in the league at Upton Park, both sides set off at a canter, and Arsenal could have scored twice in the first five minutes.

With seconds gone, West Ham's Steve Potts hauled Parlour down just outside the area.

[ image: Bergkamp scored a 26th minute penalty]
Bergkamp scored a 26th minute penalty
The free kick was perfectly placed for Bergkamp, but the Hammers' French international goalkeeper Bernard Lama tipped his shot over the bar.

Four minutes later the Arsenal captain Tony Adams could only sidefoot over the bar after Lama punched weakly from Bergkamp's floated free kick on the right.

West Ham went ahead against the run of play. A sliced corner eluded everyone in the box except Pearce who shot powerfully past the Arsenal goalkeeper Alex Manninger.

Both sides were guilty of glaring misses as play flowed from end to end. Patrick Viera took too long when a floated free kick found him unmarked in the area leaving Rio Ferdinand time to intercept.

West Ham broke and their Israeli playmaker Eyal Berkovic stood on the ball instead of shooting when a cross from Stan Lazirides found him unmarked in the box.

Arsenal made them pay. Seconds after fouling Nicolas Anelka to give away a central free kick which Bergkamp wasted, Pearce gave away the penalty after Keown burst through.

With half-time approaching both keepers made important saves from stinging shots - Lama from Emmanuel Petit and Manninger from John Moncur.

After a vibrant first period, the second was less exciting as Arsenal dominated possession and West Ham opted to get players behind the ball and try to hit Arsenal on the break.

[ image: Bernard Lama made important saves]
Bernard Lama made important saves
Petit missed a great chance to put Arsenal ahead early in the second half after Overmars and Winterburn cut open the Hammers' defence. But the Frenchman opted for position not power and Lama saved easily.

Anelka who had been largely ineffective was relaced by Christopher Wreh halfway through the second period, and the Arsenal substitute twice went close to scoring soon after joining the game.

For all Arsenal's possession they could not break down a stubborn West Ham defence, and as the half wore on their goal attempts became increasingly desperate.

As the final whistle went Viera and Moncur squared up to each other in the centre circle, and the Arsenal midfielder had to be dragged away by his countryman, Abou.

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