As always Football fans up and down the country have been waiting in anticipation to find out who their club have drawn in the World’s most famous Cup competition the FA.
Now that the draw has taken place, punters have turned to their attention to finding that elusive Amazing Bet that will see them profit from selecting the winner of this seasons FA Cup. With that in mind, we take a look at the five favourites to lift the famous trophy next May.
Pep Guardiola’s side are still in with a shot at four potential titles (Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Champions League). After bulking up their already stellar squad in the summer with Riyad Mahrez and the return of Benjamin Mendy (who is expected to be fit in early February) The Citizens are showing no signs of slowing down, even though they were beaten by Liverpool at the weekend.
Last year’s Premier League and League Cup double marked a significant milestone in City’s history, but City fans will have their eye on the coveted FA Cup this year – a title they last won in 2011 under Roberto Mancini.
City have been given a favourable draw at home to Championship outfit Rotherham United and Guardiola will be looking to some of his younger players to see off the threat of the Yorkshire club on January 4th.
After last season’s Champions League heartbreak against Real Madrid, Liverpool’s season fizzled out with no silverware to show for their valiant efforts. The Merseyside outfit have gone from strength to strength under Jurgen Klopp’s guidance, and after bolstering his squad in the summer, they have started the season in superb fashion, and sit a point ahead of Manchester City in the league, and similarly fighting in all four competitions.
Despite getting Liverpool to three separate finals (2015/16 League Cup, 2015/16 UEFA Europa League and 2017/18 UEFA Champions League) since his arrival at Anfield three years ago, Klopp has ultimately come up short, finishing as runner-up on all three occasions.
Liverpool fans will fondly remember the last time they won the FA Cup when Steven Gerrard almost single-handedly saved them from the jaws of defeat with two second-half goals to level the scores at 3-3 against West Ham United. Gerrard went on to score in the following penalty shootout and lift the trophy for The Reds.
Klopp’s Liverpool have however been dealt a tricky away fixture against Wolverhampton Wanderers in the third round of the FA Cup but will be looking to progress and have a chance of lifting the coveted trophy once again.
A rejuvenated Arsenal have looked exceptional in attack this season, and managed to pave over the obvious cracks in their defence in years gone by. Unai Emery has done a terrific job at reversing The Gunners’ fortunes and will be looking to clinch some silverware in his first season at the club – especially given how impressive Arsenal’s performances have been so far this season.
In one of the more interesting draws of the FA Cup third round, the winner of non-league outfit Solihull Moors and Blackpool FC will get the chance to host Emery’s high-flying Arsenal side.
Arsenal have won the FA Cup a record 13 times, with their most recent win coming in the 2016/17 final against Chelsea where Alexis Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey found the net and earned Arsene Wenger his last piece of silverware at The Emirates.
Having lost against Spurs and Wolves recently, Sarri’s side bounced back to beat Man City last time out to knock the champions off top spot, and the Blyes will be looking to lay down a marker in their busy run of fixtures in the month of December.
Chelsea will host Nottingham Forrest in the third round of the FA Cup, a side who are in a run of good form at the moment and pushing for a long-awaited return to the English top-flight.
Last season’s FA Cup final victory over Manchester United marked Chelsea’s eighth occasion lifting the trophy, thanks to a cool Eden Hazard penalty. The Premier League title may just be out of Chelsea’s reach this season if City and Liverpool keep up their extraordinary pace at the top, but Sarri will have his eyes fixed on retaining the FA Cup crown in what would be his first taste of silverware in his career.
Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United have been struggling to string together back-to-back wins all season, and despite a second place finish in the Premier League season, look like they will struggle to cement a top four space with their remarkably poor league form.
If the Premier League and Champions League titles are to be written off at this early stage of the season, Man United’s only chance at silverware this season will be the FA Cup, after Frank Lampard’s Derby County knocked them out of the League Cup at Old Trafford earlier in the year. United have drawn Reading FC in the third round of the competition.
Mourinho will feel the pressure to bring something home to Old Trafford this year and the FA Cup presents his only realistic shot at a trophy this season. The Red Devils have won the FA Cup 12 times, most recently in the 2015/16 final against Crystal Palace after Jesse Lingard scored an extra time winner to lift the cup in what was Louis van Gaal’s last game as head coach of the club.