Too close to call as Chelsea and Liverpool clash in FA Cup final

For the fourth time this season, Chelsea and Liverpool face-off, and this time, in the world’s oldest football tournament – the English FA Cup.

After two draws in the Premier League (1-1 at Anfield, and 2-2 at Stamford Bridge), the teams drew 0-0 in the League Cup final at Wembley in February.

Liverpool won the penalty shootout, 11-10.

There was hardly anything between the two sides in those three games, and with luck, Chelsea could probably have won the match at Anfield.

“Chelsea never once looked like being overrun by Liverpool and could have won the first game if Reece James did not receive a red card,” said Adrian Yap, who works in human resources.

“Chelsea is going through a patchy run, and Liverpool will start as the favourite.

“But if Chelsea players bring their A-game, I fancy us winning it 2-1.”

Business development manager, Yeo Keat Lim, said a victory would bring some much-needed joy to the team after Roman Abramovich had to sell the club due to his ties with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

And although Thomas Tuchel and Jurgen Klopp know each other too well, Yeo expects plenty of goals today.

“Chelsea’s defence has been porous recently. That is worrying,” said Yeo, who named his seven-month-old daughter, Chelsea.

“(Romelu) Lukaku has not been the striker we thought he could be, but at least he has started scoring goals again.

“It will either end 3-2 or 4-3 in Chelsea’s favour.”

Liverpool fans are just as confident of a victory. Astro Arena sports broadcaster Edleen Ismail expects a 2-1 win for The Reds.

“Apart from the Premier League, the next prestigious title in England is the FA Cup. It has been so long since Liverpool last won it (in 2006), so the desire is there for The Reds,” said Edleen.

“Liverpool still has a chance for the quadruple (Premier League, League Cup, FA Cup and Champions League). But the schedule and injuries are a problem.

“We already have the League Cup, and even if we do not get all four titles, I would be happy with a double, this season.”

Port and logistics consultant, Dev Prasad, is betting on Mohamed Salah haunting his old team.

Salah has faced Chelsea 18 times for Liverpool, scoring seven times and assisting two goals.

“It will be a tough, tight match just like the three other games this season,” said Dev.

“The League Cup final went to penalties, but I feel Liverpool will win this within 90 minutes.

“Salah will be the difference in this match. My prediction is 2-0.”

STAT ATTACK

  • This is only the second time the same teams, that contested the League Cup final, are meeting in the FA Cup final in the same season. The first time that happened was in 1993, when Arsenal beat Sheffield Wednesday on both occasions.
  • Middlesbrough (1997) was the last team to lose both finals in the same season. Chelsea won the FA Cup that year and Leicester the League Cup.
  • Liverpool hopes to win both trophies in the same season for the second time. It won both in 2001.
  • The only other time Chelsea and Liverpool met in the FA Cup final was in 2012. The Blues won 2-1.
  • Chelsea is only the second team to qualify for three consecutive FA Cup finals. Arsenal did so in 2001, 2002, and 2003.
  • Chelsea lost to Arsenal (2020) and Leicester (2021). If it fails to win, it will be the first team since Newcastle (1974, 1998, and 1999) to lose three consecutive finals.
  • Arsenal is the most successful team in the competition, with 14 titles. Manchester United has 12, Chelsea and Tottenham have eight, and Liverpool and Aston Villa have seven.
  • This is Chelsea’s 16th FA Cup final and Liverpool’s 15th.
  • Liverpool and Chelsea will end the season having played 63 games each – a joint record for each club. Liverpool also played 63 games in 2015-2016, and Chelsea did so in 2018-2019.
  • Liverpool have scored 142 goals this season, and Chelsea, 119.

 

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