Buaksib Asia presents the 2019/2020 Emirates FA Cup Semi-Finals preview and predictions.
Highlighting upcoming games between Arsenal VS Manchester City on 18th July 2020 & Manchester United VS Chelsea 0n 19th July 2020.
Arsenal Vs. Manchester City
Thirteen-time winners Arsenal take on Manchester City in this FA Cup semi-final. Real cup royalty, the ‘Gunners’ have won this tournament three times across the last six seasons. Still, this draw likely produced grim faces as they’ve lost seven straight H2Hs against Manchester City – although their previous H2H victory was in an FA Cup semi-final! Arsenal’s last three competitive matches saw both teams score, as did two of their four FA Cup games this season. Notably, since competitive football resumed, Arsenal have scored the first goal in seven of their nine matches – proceeding to win four of those seven.
Man City, meanwhile, have reason to be confident here. They’ve scored precisely three goals in six of the seven most recent H2Hs, winning all seven despite a -1 handicap, and keeping five clean sheets. Notably, they’ve also led at HT in all of those wins. Interestingly, City haven’t drawn in 19 competitive matches. Indeed, things have been one-sided on the day, with just four of those 19 featuring both teams scoring. Regardless, seven of their last nine fixtures saw at least three goals, while ten of the previous 12 competitive H2Hs also produced over 2.5 goals (regular time only).
Players to watch: Nicolas Pépé scored in the last round for Arsenal – six of his eight goals (in all competitions) this season arrived after HT. Meanwhile, Gabriel Jesus has two FA Cup goals for City so far and has netted a first-half strike in three straight matches (in all competitions).
Stat attack: Arsenal are appearing in their 30th FA Cup semi-final – a (joint) record.
Five of Arsenal’s last seven competitive defeats came by a 2-1 scoreline.
The last seven competitive H2Hs have averaged 4.0 yellow cards per fixture.
City have covered a -2.5 handicap in five of their latest seven wins.
City have scored at least two first-half goals in four straight wins.
Manchester United Vs. Chelsea
The FA Cup finals of 1994, 2007, and 2018 get a semi-final rerun at an eerily-empty Wembley Stadium. Chelsea won both of the last finals 1-0, and the latter of those cup finals also completed a run of three 1-0 Chelsea wins from the previous four H2Hs in this competition. Across all competitions, Chelsea comes into this one after eight wins in their last ten fixtures. Their average margin of victory across those eight wins was 1.75 goals, with the last six of those wins seeing an odd-numbered winning margin.
Both of Manchester United’s FA Cup ties won/drawn vs. Chelsea within the last ten years have seen them lead precisely 2-0 at the interval. Meanwhile, their only prior FA Cup semi-final stage clash vs. Chelsea (Mar 1996) saw them win 2-1 after a second-half won 2-0 via goals inside the 46th-60th minute period.
Each of Man United’s last five FA Cup ties vs. Premier League opposition have seen at least one goalless half – with four goalless first halves therein. Furthermore, none of them produced a goal before the half-hour mark, though their last four FA Cup wins vs. Premier League opponents have seen the 31st minute-HT period average 1.25 goals per game.
Players to watch: Ross Barkley scored the winner for Chelsea in the last round. His previous three goals have come beyond the hour mark in clean-sheet wins.
Man United’s Odion Ighalo has averaged 1.5 goals across his last two FA Cup appearances.
Stat attack: Chelsea have won or proceeded to the next round in 12 of their last 13 FA Cup ties.
A significant 40% of Man United’s last ten FA Cup ties vs. Premier League opponents have witnessed both teams score.
The overall FA Cup H2H record stands in Man United’s favour.