By Antony Jordan
Saturday evening sees the longest and most well-known club football competition in the world come to a close for another season as two of the biggest names from the English capital in Arsenal and Chelsea clash at Wembley. Chelsea come into the match looking to complete the double having lifted the Premier League trophy this season, while Arsenal will be desperate to end the season on a high having missed out on Champions League football for the first time in more than two decades.
Who will secure the FA Cup trophy this weekend? We preview this deciding match with online sportsbook Bet365.com to bring you our best FA Cup Final picks.
The North London side have some issues with players coming into this vital match for their season as defenders Gabriel and Laurent Koscielny are both certainly out of the game after picking up a knee ligament injury and a red card respectively in the final game of the EPL season against Everton. Adding to these defensive issues, Arsene Wenger has confirmed that centre back Shkodran Mustafi is also a doubt after suffering from suspected concussion from a blow to the head against Sunderland recently. On top of this, Wenger surprised many people by announcing that goalkeeper David Ospina will start the final ahead of the first choice Petr Cech too.
Odds on favourites to win the cup final in normal time, Chelsea, have no worries with regards to players and they will start this match at full strength.
The Gunners have had an easy passage to the FA Cup Final this season as two of their last three matches have seen them dispose of non-league sides in Sutton United and Lincoln City, but after this they were the outsiders going into the Semi Final clash with Man City. However, after 120 minutes of football they edge out Pep Guardiola’s side thanks to Alexis Sanchez’s extra time winner to make it 2-1 and with them ending the EPL season with five successive wins they will have confidence about putting it up to Chelsea as they aim to claim a title for themselves this season.
Chelsea have had a more difficult time of things in this competition recently as their last two opponents were Europa League winners Manchester United and the side who finished second in the EPL Tottenham. Both of these teams were disposed of in tight matches, but on both occasions Chelsea showed their dominance to progress. They too ended the Premier League season on a high note with seven successive wins, including the triumph at Wembley over Tottenham in the final four stage of this competition, so they too will believe that they can see off Arsenal and claim the double.
Chelsea hold the majority of the cards in this section of the battle between themselves and Arsenal as they have triumphed in three of the last four matches between the teams. Both sides shared a victory apiece this season with The Gunners triumphing 3-0 on home soil in September and this saw a second successive defeat for Antonio Conte and Chelsea. These losses saw the Italian change his style and turn Chelsea into the title winning side that they currently are and this helped them to secure a 3-1 home win over their fellow Londoners in February.
With Chelsea having a fully fit squad compared to Arsenal’s weakened team for this final and defeated their opposition this weekend comprehensively in their last meeting, we feel that the Bet365 FA Cup Final odds are correct and that we’re likely to see the team in blue lift the title. We feel that they’re likely to do so in 90 minutes as well, so this is our top FA Cup Final pick from this weekend’s action.