Prediction and odds for the game: Arsenal (15/2) v Manchester City (3/10)
We are taking a punt on over 3.5 goals at odds of 11/10
When: Saturday, 18th July 2020, Kick-off 19:45
Where: Wembley Stadium
On Saturday night, Arsenal and Manchester City go head-to-head at Wembley in the first of the FA Cup semi-finals. This game pits the holders in City, against the most successful team in the competition, Arsenal. The Gunners have won the trophy on 13 occasions.
The Gunners rollercoaster season continued last time out as Mikel Arteta’s team recorded a 2-1 win over new English champions Liverpool. The win keeps Arsenal in the picture for qualification for the Europa League for next season.
Another route into Europe would be to win the FA Cup this season. However, this semi-final encounter looks a tough one for Arteta’s inconsistent team. The Gunners have had a mixed bag of opponents in this season’s competition.
They kicked off the campaign with a win over Leeds, before defeating Bournemouth Portsmouth and last time out Sheffield United. The team from north London have been prolific in their recent cup encounters, scoring at least three goals in each of the last three rounds.
Arsenal head into this game with a terrible head-to-head record against Manchester City, as they have failed to beat Pep Guardiola’s team in 11 attempts. In fact, they have suffered eight defeats in that run too.
This competition is the Gunners last hope of winning silverware this season after their pre-break elimination from the Europa League by Olympiakos.
This trophy was never Manchester City’s priority this season. With the title now gone, the Champions League remains their big target for the remainder of the campaign. However, winning the FA Cup, the Champions League and the League Cup this season would not be a terrible campaign for Guardiola’s men, even if they did lose their top-flight crown.
City left a few players on the substitutes bench for their midweek home game against Bournemouth, with Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling benched in preparation for this clash, which shows how seriously the Citizens are taking this semi-final.
City have rather coasted to the last four of the competition, dispatching Port Vale, Fulham, Sheffield Wednesday and Newcastle along the way. Unsurprisingly, considering City’s prolific performances under Guardiola, the Citizens have scored at least twice in three of the last four rounds of the competition.
We talked about City’s good recent record against Arsenal earlier. The men from Manchester have usually tormented the Gunners backline in those recent meetings, scoring at least twice in their last seven matches.
Arsenal have been inconsistent of late but could cause City problems. City should have enough energy and quality to book their place in the final. This game should also have goals and we are taking a punt on over 3.5 goals scored.
Verdict: We are backing 3.5 goals scored at odds of 11/10 and/or Manchester City to win at odds of 3/10. (All odds are taken from Bet365).[geosnippet id=3620]
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Who will book their place in the FA Cup final?