18th May 2018
Manchester United and Chelsea ready to lock horns in FA Cup final
Manchester United and Chelsea will meet in this weekend’s FA Cup final looking to end very different seasons with silverware.
Despite winning the Premier League last year, a disappointing 5th place finish this time around has left much speculation surrounding the future of Chelsea manager Antonio Conte, with many speculating that not even an FA Cup win will save his job.
In the opposite dugout is Jose Mourinho, looking to win his third major trophy in only his second season at the Red Devils. While 2nd place in this year’s Premier League was a vast improvement on the 2016/17 season, their lacklustre defeat to Seville in the Champions League last 16 means United will be desperate to pick up the famous trophy on Saturday evening at Wembley Stadium.
We spoke to two UCFB students, and ardent United and Chelsea fans, to get their thoughts ahead of the game.
“Coming up against our old rivals and an old friend in Jose Mourinho, we are looking to lift the trophy for the ninth time. We have previously faced United twice in the final, losing one and winning the other. This mirrors our league record against the Red Devils this season, beating them at home but falling to a narrow defeat away. Conte is looking to win his first cup final, but faces Mourinho who has won 12 of the 14 he has managed. However, winter signing Olivier Giroud knows how to win finals too, lifting the trophy in three of the last four seasons. I can see the occasion being a tight, nervy one which could well go the distance. I’m going for 1-0 to Chelsea after extra time.”
Route to the final:
R3 – Norwich City (A), 0-0
R3 replay – Norwich City (H), 1-1 AET, Chelsea won 5-3 on penalties
R4 – Newcastle Utd (H), 3-0
R5 – Hull City (H), 4-0
QF – Leicester City (A), 2-1 AET
SF – Southampton (N), 2-0
Hasnain Mohammed, BA (Hons) Football Business & Marketing student at UCFB Etihad Campus
“Going into this game I think United ever so slightly have the upper hand. My reason for this is not because we’re playing the better football but simply because our manager is Jose Mourinho, and if there’s one thing he knows how to do it’s win cup finals. Ever since Mourinho and Conte had their war of words, the Chelsea manager has struggled to fire his team up. Mourinho needs this trophy to inject some confidence back into the team and encourage fans that it’s going to get better. Mourinho is a winner and I think he knows exactly how he’ll approach this final. My prediction for the game is 2-1 to the Reds!”
Route to the final:
R3 – Derby County (H), 2-0
R4 – Yeovil Town (A), 4-0
R5 – Huddersfield Town (A), 2-0
QF – Brighton & Hove Albion (H), 2-0
SF – Tottenham Hotspur (N), 2-1