The 140th edition of the FA Cup final will feature Chelsea and Leicester City come Saturday. Who’s your money on for this one?
FA Cup 2020/2021 season
Kick-off: 17:15 pm
Venue: Wembley Stadium
For the first time since 1969, Leicester have made it this far in England’s flagship cup tourney, but will be looking to win it for the first time after losing all four of their last previous showpiece appearances.
The Foxes have had quite a ride getting to this stage of the competition, breezing past the likes of Stoke City, Brentford and Brighton & Hove Albion, then thanks to the competition’s top scorer Kelechi Iheanacho, they somewhat made light work of Manchester United in the quarterfinals.
Coincidentally, they beat the Red Devils yet again leading up to this one, and will now find a way past Tuchel’s steely Chelsea defence which has yet to concede in this tourney under his reign.
Chelsea, in search of their ninth FA Cup title make their 15th appearance here, with manager Thomas Tuchel becoming the first German coach to lead out a team in the tournament’s final.
He will quickly bid his side banish the memories of a preparatory defeat to Arsenal in midweek, as their charge to seal a domestic top-four finish took a hit.
Chelsea might have lost the last time this game was played, but not since Newcastle United did in 1999 has a team lost back-to-back FA Cup finals.
Jonny Evans will be hoping to shake off his niggling foot injury in time to feature here, but the trio of James Justin, Harvey Barnes and Wes Morgan will not be passed fit in time.
For the Blues, Mateo Kovacic’s thigh problem could keep him out of this game.
Meanwhile, Christian Pulisic was seen limping around against Arsenal last time and so will best make the bench here.
Leicester City’s last five FA Cup games: W W W W W
Chelsea’s last five FA Cup games: W W W W W
Only against Hull City (11) have Chelsea played more FA Cup games without losing than against Leicester City’s nine (W7, D2).
Brendan Rodgers is aiming to become the second manager to win both the English and Scottish FA Cups since Sir Alex Ferguson.
This should make for a really intriguing FA Cup final between two of the best sides in the English top-flight this season. Chelsea are understandably favourites, but Rodgers expertise alongside the performances of his war dog Jamie Vardy has been known to work wonders.
All the same, it is unlikely City beat Chelsea in this game, though you might want to back the Blues who are very short at odds of 10/11.
Both of Vardy and Iheanacho are 13/5 to score anytime, but I’d be backing the former given his record against top sides in a game such like this.