In our weekly feature, we will be pre-viewing both FA Cup Semi Final games and picking out what we see to be good value odds. Including a preview of each game.
All prices by Bet365 our favourite Bookie.
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Man City v Arsenal
City go into this game on the back of a convincing 3-0 away win against Southampton. Significantly for City they kept a clean sheet and were rarely troubled defensively by the Saints despite having Claudio Bravo between the sticks. This new found defensive solidity was down to one thing, the return of club captain Vincent Kompany. The big Belgian was immense and like any true leader his mere presence seemed to get the best out of those around him.
The problem with Pep’s Man City this season has never been with their attacking play, it has been their defensive frailties that have cost them in terms of fighting for the Premier League title. Kompany is a game changer in this regard for City and surely Pep, and most Man City fans, must be wondering where they would be in the Premier League and Champions League had they been able to call on him for the vast majority of this campaign.
The FA Cup represents the last chance saloon for Guardiola if he is in fact to finish this season with a trophy to his name, as has been the norm so far in his managerial career. Therefore, expect City to be up for this and they will fancy their chances against an Arsenal side low on confidence.
I won’t even try and dress it up, Arsenal are a car crash. In the last 2 months they have won only 4 games, with the defeated opposition being Lincoln City, Sutton United, West Ham and Middlesborough. Shocking form at the business end of the season for a club of Arsenal’s size and tradition.
Despite a 2-1 victory against a poor Middlesborough side on MNF, this Arsenal side still look bereft of confidence and leadership. The continuing saga around the contracts of Wenger, Sanchez and Ozil continue to dominate the headlines. Some days I feel slightly sorry for Wenger and on others I think how unbelievably arrogant and out of touch he is not to make any announcement on his future. It’s clear he needs to go and if he signs a new contract extension, which many expect him to do, it will only prove that he is delusional and the board lack the backbone to do what is necessary for the good of the club.
The frustrations among Gunners fans have been well documented and that frustration has been palpable at recent games. Some recent performances also suggest that the players are far from united and playing for their manager.
Surely it has even got to the stage where large sections of the Gunners’ fanbase, are so heavily invested in “Wenger Out” that they will hardly shed many tears if Arsenal lose here, as a loss will only strengthen their calls for their long serving manager’s departure.
It will be interesting to see how Wenger lines up here having experimented with the in-vogue 3-5-2 formation against Middlesborough. No matter what formation the Frenchman goes with I still expect a City attack containing Aguero, De Bruyne, Silva, Sterling and Sane to have too much for Arsenal at Wembley. Kompany is a game changer for City no doubt but even without the influential Belgian I would still fancy City to roll over Arsenal pretty easily. I am smashing into City and over 2.5 goals here. Predicted scoreline 3-1.
A penalty at 11/4 is always a decent shout in big games like this. I’ll be backing this in both FA Cup Semis and expect to come out with a tidy profit. This bet always makes watching the match that extra bit more interesting as you’ll spend the whole game screaming for a penalty every time the ball goes near the box!
- City and over 2.5 goals
- Score 3-1, 12/1
- Penalty in game 11/4
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