Rugby fanatic - but so much more
Rugby fanatic - but so much more
It’s the FA Cup final on Saturday, but not as we know it. Arsenal and Chelsea will go head-to-head for the famous old trophy at Wembley, but there will be no spectators in the stadium. While that may alter the sense of occasion for English football’s showpiece day, there is still plenty of betting action to be found in the game. We’ll take a closer look here at what value punters can find in the FA Cup final!
Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal team head into this final on the back of a 3-2 home win over Watford in their final Premier League game of the season. Recent league form has been mixed, however, and the Gunners ended up finishing in eighth place in the league table. They need to win this final to secure European football next season.The Gunners will have to make do without defender Shkodran Mustafi, who has been ruled out of the final after suffering a hamstring injury. The German international limped out of the semi-final against Manchester City and has not recovered in time for the final.
Chelsea boss Frank Lampard will have been delighted that his team secured a fourth-placed finish with their 2-0 home win over Wolverhampton Wanderers in the final Premier League game of the season. The Blues reached the final with a fine win over Manchester United in the semi-final, and will now want to add some silverware to what has turned out to be a satisfying league season. They followed that 3-1 semi-final victory with a 5-3 defeat at home to champions Liverpool, though, so consistency can still be an issue for the west London outfit.
Recent results between these sides suggest that this might be a close game. The sides have paired off twice in the Premier League in 2019/20, with Chelsea having a slight edge. In January, the two sides clashed in the league at Stamford Bridge. That game ended all square at 2-2. Jorginho opened the scoring in the first half that day from the penalty spot, before a second-half strike from Gabriel Martinelli levelled matters up. Cesar Azpilicueta put Chelsea back into the lead in the 84th minute, before Hector Bellerin struck an equaliser for the Gunners in the 87th minute. Arsenal’s David Luiz was sent off halfway through the first half. If you think that there will be plenty of goals in Saturday’s game, then Betway are offering odds of 10/11 on there being more than 2.5 in the game.
The other league clash between the sides was back in December at the Emirates Stadium, and Chelsea came away with a 2-1 win. That game was a story of late goals, with Jorginho and Tammy Abraham scoring in the last 10 minutes to seal three points for the Blues. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang had opened the scoring for Arsenal in the 13th minute. Jorginho has a god record against the Gunners this season. If you think he will score at Wembley, then Betway have him priced at 11/2 to be an anytime goalscorer.
If Arsenal manage to win on Saturday then it will be their 14th win on the FA Cup final, a record. Their most recent capture of the cup came in 2017, when they beat Chelsea in the final. Chelsea have won the Cup eight times previously, with their last victory in the final coming in 2018. Blues striker Olivier Giroud could be a man to watch. The Frenchman has previously declared that Wembley is his “garden”, and he has four prior FA Cup wins to his name since moving to England to join Arsenal in 2012. He has also won three times in the Community Shield at Wembley. He also scored at the stadium in the semi-final victory over Manchester United.
The bookies have made Chelsea slight favourites for this game, and we would agree with that assessment. The Gunners have more to play for, with the incentive of Europa League entry spurring them on. But we suspect that Lampard’s Blues will edge a close game in which there will be plenty of goals. Our prediction is that Chelsea will win either 2-1 or 3-1, with the key goals coming late in the game. We therefore recommend backing the Blues to win with both teams to score. You can find odds of 16/5 on that market at Betway, which looks tempting to us.