FA Cup Final: Manchester United V Chelsea Match Preview
It’s 137th edition of FA Cup the final of which hosts Chelsea and Manchester United facing off against each other on today. This will be an interesting contest to watch as the winner grabs a trophy to end the season and loser will return home without a single trophy in the entire season. Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte will be eyeing for the trophy as they both didn’t win any trophies this season with Manchester City winning the Premier League title. Going back to history, it’s Conte who is behind Jose who has 12 Cups bagged while Conte has never won a kockout stage Cup competition.
Likewise Antonio Conte has never finished a season empty-handed while Jose has had that period with Real Madrid and Chelsea once. So it will be a tough battle for the sides looking forward to grab the cup and finish the season on a high note. The late Ray Wilkins will be honored posthumously at the game and a program note about him and his widow will present the Cup to the winners. Additionally, since Ray played for both teams, banners bearing his name will be erected at both ends of Wembley ahead of kickoff.
●WHERE AND WHEN TO WATCH:
Wembley Stadium will host this FA Cup final game which will take place on Saturday, May 19, 2018 at 09:45 IST and 17:15 EDT.
Micheal Oliver will officiate this all important cup final game.
○VENUE: Wembley Stadium, London, England
○TIME: 09:45 IST / 17:15 EDT
○DATE: May 19, Saturday
○TV BROADCAST: Sony Ten HD 1, Sony Ten HD 3.
● TEAM NEWS:
Conte will miss Emerson, who is out with an injury and David Luiz, Ampadu also with long-term injuries. He will also expect Giroud to step up for his side with Hazard and Willian up front. With their last game against Liverpool, Conte would be sure to select a challenging side to grab the trophy. Coming to Manchester United, Romelu Lukaku is nominally doubtful with an ankle injury. Martial is fit and Jose might use his influence in the game to end the season with a trophy.
○PROBABLE STARTING XI:
Rüdiger, Cahill, Azpilicueta;
Alonso, Kanté, Bakayoko, Fàbregas, Moses;
Valencia, Smalling, Bailly, Young;
Herrera, Matic, Pogba;
Lingard, Lukaku, Sanchez.
Conte’s second season in West London has not gone quite to plan, finding himself under pressure ever since the first game when Burnley picked up a shock 3-2 win at Stamford Bridge, setting the tone for what was to come for both sides. Throwing away top spot in the Champions League and subsequently being knocked out by Barcelona in the first knockout round was difficult to take, particularly on the back of failing to turn up across two legs against Arsenal in the EFL Cup semis. Four of Chelsea’s seven previous triumphs in this competition have come in the last 11 years, beginning with an extra-time win against United in the first final to be held at the revamped national stadium, but they have not walked up the famous steps since 2012.
•Recent form in FA Cup: DWWWWW
•Recent form (all competitions): WWWWDL
Mourinho adding to the EFL Cup and Europa League crown gained last season, will take great delight in being the one to strike the killer blow in Conte’s Chelsea reign. Ending 19 points adrift of Manchester City is hardly cause for celebration, though, and Mourinho therefore needs the FA Cup to ensure that he has United supporters firmly behind him ahead of a big summer of transfer activity. The Red Devils’ most recent success in this competition, when edging out Crystal Palace 2-1 two years ago, famously brought down the curtain on Louis van Gaal’s underwhelming tenure. A similar outcome this weekend is unlikely, with Mourinho still very much the best available option for United. United have already beaten each of their top-six rivals since the turn of the year.
•Recent form in FA Cup: LWWWWW
•Recent form (all competitions): WWWLDW
●HEAD TO HEAD:
During 2007 FA Cup final, the game was played at the new, rebuilt Wembley Stadium. Chelsea topped United 1-0 in extra time. Didier Drogba, of course, scored the games’ only goal. So, it will be an interesting and thrilling contest today with both sides hunger for a trophy.
Looking at the condition of both sides this battle is going to be a treat for all the footballing fans across the world. There’s certainly the feeling that this season’s showpiece final has more significance than any other final we’ve seen in recent years and there’s the sense of an added importance to the competition, which has been lacking in recent times. Obviously it will be a battle between the managers where one will leave their respective club after this game.
CHELSEA FC 0-2 MANCHESTER UNITED