Chelsea vs Man Utd FA Cup final preview

Manchester United are set to take on Chelsea in the 2018 FA Cup final at Wembley Stadium on Saturday.

Jose Mourinho will be looking to add a fourth piece of silverware to his collection in two seasons at Old Trafford having won the Community Shield, EFL Cup and UEFA Europa League last season.

Meanwhile many are expecting this to be Antonio Conte’s final game in charge of Chelsea having finished in a disappointing fifth position and missing out on next season’s Champions League.

We were able to rest our key players in Sunday’s 1-0 win over Watford as second place was already wrapped up, whilst the Blues fielded a strong squad in a desperate but failed attempt to finish in the top four.

Head-to-head is one win a piece this season with Chelsea 1-0 winners at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League back in November, and us winning 2-1 in the most recent fixture, at Old Trafford, back in February.

The football betting odds are slightly leaning towards us but neither team is odds on to win the FA Cup in 90 minutes. Many are expecting a close game whilst I think one goal could decide it all given both teams defensive attitude.

Romelu Lukaku should be fit to face his former club after missing the final two Premier League games with an ankle injury. The Belgian striker is a good target man up against the likes of Gary Cahill and Antonio Rudiger. The alternative option is the pace of Marcus Rashford.

Hopefully Alexis Sanchez has a good game up against Victor Moses down the left wing. The latter was sent off in last season’s final in which Sanchez scored in an Arsenal win. Perhaps the Chilean superstar can hand Chelsea a second successive defeat and become the first player in FA Cup history to score in back-to-back finals with different clubs.

Defensively we’re in pretty good shape too. Eric Bailly should be ready to go after starting against Watford and Phil Jones is fit again. Either of these could partner Chris Smalling or the boss may go with a back three instead.

Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia are likely to start at full-back or wingback, depending on the formation, though Luke Shaw cannot be overlooked.

Nemanja Matic is set to face his former club and I can see Ander Herrera being given the responsibility to sit on Eden Hazard for 90 minutes as he has done previously, and successfully, in the Premier League.

This should give freedom for Paul Pogba to attack. The French star enjoys the spotlight so fingers cross he shines at Wembley instead of putting in another frustrating performance.

Olivier Giroud is competing with Alvaro Morata to start up top for Chelsea. The former-Arsenal striker has been in better form of late than the Spaniard who has not made a big impact in his debut season in England. However, Morata did score the winner against us at Stamford Bridge earlier in the season.

Eden Hazard is without doubt the biggest threat to us. This could be the Belgian star’s final game for Chelsea too as he has been strongly linked with moves to both Real Madrid and Manchester City over the summer. On his day he can be unplayable.

The midfield battle should be a good one with Pogba up against N’Golo Kante, Matic defending Cesc Fabregas and likely to be Herrera on Hazard.

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