Lucas Perez opened the score with a little luck in the first half, and Theo Walcott added a second goal after the break. The goal was the 100th of his Arsenal career.
National League leaders Lincoln City await the Gunners in the quarter-finals of the cup.
As expected, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger made plenty of changes to his usual starting XI, with David Ospina starting in goal:
Arsenal FC @Arsenal
📝 And here's our team in text: Ospina, Gabriel, Mustafi, Holding, Monreal, Elneny, Xhaka, Reine-Adelaide, Lucas, Iwobi, Walcott #SUFCvAFC https://t.co/uZdWaUKPkz2017-2-20 18:57:45
The club shared this image of the dressing room, a far cry from what the players are used to at the Emirates Stadium:
Arsenal FC @Arsenal
Not long to go now... #SUFCvAFC https://t.co/z8LocI0FN52017-2-20 19:33:12
The artificial surface didn't seem to bother Arsenal's passing game early on, as the Gunners predictably took control of the ball. Sutton were happy to sit back and absorb the pressure, although Walcott nearly beat the offside trap.
Simon Downer made a great block to deny Jeff Reine-Adelaide, and Craig Eastmond threatened with a dangerous cross before a supporter ran on to the pitch and play was halted.
With the fan removed, the match resumed and Sutton had the better of play for a stretch. Mohamed Elneny tried his luck with an ambitious shot that sailed high, and Eastmond wanted a penalty after a duel with Nacho Monreal, but the official correctly didn't budge.
Chances weren't easy to come by, but Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka entertained the fans in a different way―by getting his inevitable booking in the 24th minute.
Just three minutes later, Perez opened the scoring. The Spaniard cut inside from the wing and fired a cross into the box, which Walcott failed to direct into goal. The curve of the ball took it past goalkeeper Ross Worner, however.
As shared by The Times' Henry Winter, the former Deportivo La Coruna man remains effective when he gets his opportunity:
Henry Winter @henrywinter
Even though a cross-shot, Lucas Perez keeps scoring when used, seventh of the season. 1-0 #afc.2017-2-20 20:32:19
The goal saw Arsenal's level of play improve and chances started to follow. Worner only just managed to clear the ball after a mad scramble, and Walcott fired a shot narrowly over the bar.
Downer perfectly knocked down a high ball, but his team-mates failed to do anything with the chance, and Alex Iwobi had a smart shot blocked.
The final chance of the half fell to the hosts, as Ospina comically passed the ball right to Adam May. Fortunately for the Gunners, he inexplicably missed from close range. Paddy Power took a shot at the stopper:
Paddy Power @paddypower
Ospina was filmed in front of a live studio audience.2017-2-20 20:42:26
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was introduced to start the second half, as Elneny picked up a slight knock in the dying minutes of the first.
Bedsente Gomis created the first chance of the half all by himself, but his shot was blocked by Monreal. Shortly after, Walcott doubled the lead, taking advantage of an accidental flick by Iwobi.
As shared by Bleacher Report UK, the England international set quite the personal mark with the strike:
Bleacher Report UK @br_uk
💯 goals in an Arsenal shirt for Theo Walcott! https://t.co/fwrBVitqVQ2017-2-20 21:10:46
Maxime Biamou fired a shot straight at Ospina, as Sutton didn't give up on their dreams of making it to the quarter-finals. Monreal had to make a desperate clearance from a superb cross, with Gomis waiting to prod the ball home.
Ospina blundered again during the resulting corner, but Jamie Collins couldn't take advantage, heading wide.
Sutton's pressure continued, and Roarie Deacon went close, finding the crossbar with a great shot. Their momentum eventually died down, however, allowing the Gunners to comfortably control possession and play out the match.
Sutton's backup goalkeeper Wayne Shaw stole the show while the action on the pitch slowed down, via Bleacher Report UK:
Bleacher Report UK @br_uk
Wayne Shaw update: —Spotted in the bar at half-time ✔ —Eating a pie on the subs bench ✔ —National hero ✔ https://t.co/rmRp52XoYX2017-2-20 21:37:23
Alexis Sanchez made a late cameo and Oxlade-Chamberlain drew a save with a great shot, but there would be no more goals. Sutton fans invaded the pitch after the match, a fitting end to an entertaining night of FA Cup football.
As shared by Rob Harris of the Associated Press, Sutton manager Paul Doswell praised everyone involved in the fixture, while Wenger said it was far from an easy match:
Rob Harris @RobHarris
Wenger: "It was not an easy game at all. Every little mistake we made technically they (Sutton) took advantage of"2017-2-20 22:02:26
The Gunners will host another non-league side, Lincoln, in the next round.