|Hello and welcome to Sportstar’s LIVE coverage of the FA Cup final between Arsenal and Chelsea at the Wembley.|
5′ GOAL! Pulisic side-foots the ball bast Martinez to give Chelsea an early lead! Pulisic picks up the ball in midfield, plays in Mount on the left side. Mount’s cut-back is flicked on by Giroud to find Pulisic’s run, and the American side-steps a challenge to slot the ball home.
3′ Maitland-Niles does well on the left side to run on to a long ball. He checks his run, then plays in a ball into the near post where Aubameyang heads wide.
Both teams set up in a 3-5-2 formation.
1′ Chelsea gets the all-London final underway. They will be playing from right to left. Early foul on Lacazette.
Players take a knee to show their supoort for ‘Black Lives Matter’ campaign.
— The national anthem is done and players bump fists/elbows as they run to finish their final pre-game stretches.
— Both teams walk out to the Wembley pitch at the time of the year that’s usually associated with the Community Shield. Arsenal in its regular red and white home kit while Chelsea is in its all-blue kit.
Chelsea: Caballero; Azpilicueta, Zouma, Rudiger; James, Jorginho, Kovacic, Alonso; Mount, Giroud, Pulisic
Arsenal: Martinez; Holding, Luiz, Tierney; Bellerin, Ceballos, Xhaka, Maitland-Niles; Pepe, Lacazette, Aubameyang
Arsenal has made one change from the team that defeated Watford on the final day of the Premier League season. Hector Bellerin replaces Joe Willock.
Chelsea has named the same side that defeated Wolverhampton Wanders last Sunday, which means Willy Caballero continues in goal and Kepa Arrizabalaga stays on the bench.
- No two teams have had more success in the FA Cup since the turn of the century than Arsenal and Chelsea, lifting the famous trophy a combined 11 times since 2001.
- History will be made today with this being the latest date an FA Cup final has ever been played.
- Arsenal has won both of its previous FA Cup finals against Chelsea – 2-0 in 2002 and 2-1 in 2017.
- Chelsea, though, has won its other two meetings in major finals, beating Arsenal 2-1 in the 2007 League Cup and 4-1 in last year’s Europa League final in Baku.
- Arsenal has reached the FA Cup final a record 21 times and has also won the competition 13 times – more than any other side.
On the other hand, this is Chelsea’s 14th FA Cup final – only Arsenal and Manchester United (20) have reached more.
- Since his FA Cup debut in 2013, Olivier Giroud has scored 16 goals in the competition – only Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero has netted more.
Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal, which finished eighth in the Premier League, will be able to seal a spot in the Europa League if it can get the better of Frank Lampard’s side.
Lampard, who steered Chelsea to a fourth-place finish and a slot in the Champions League, will also be eager to win his first silverware as manager.
– Here to win it, says Lampard –
The result arguably means more to Arsenal, who need to win to qualify for the Europa League, but Lampard said Chelsea would not take its foot off the gas having already sealed Champions League qualification.
“We have to make sure we are not negatively affected by having qualified for the Champions League,” added Lampard, who won the FA Cup four times as a player.
“It doesn’t affect preparations, we still want to win it. A trophy like this stays with you for life and you’re quickly forgotten if you’re a losing finalist.
“If you get to a final you want to win it. It will be difficult, many a great manager haven’t won things but now we are here, I want to win it.”
Chelsea will be boosted by the return of influential duo N’Golo Kante and Willian, who have both recovered from injuries.
– Past results don’t matter to Arteta
Mikel Arteta feels Arsenal’s heavy loss to Chelsea in last season’s Europa League final will not play on his players’ minds ahead if the FA Cup final.
Arsenal was outclassed 4-1 by Chelsea in the Europa League final in Baku last year when the two sides were managed by Unai Emery and Maurizio Sarri respectively.
However, Arteta, who took over from Emery in December, was confident Saturday’s clash will have a different outcome.
“A year in football is a different life,” Arteta said. “Even two weeks or three days later you can see a team performing one way then they can be a different team so there is not many things to take from that.”
The Spaniard acknowledged the gulf in class between the two sides as Frank Lampard’s Chelsea finished 10 points ahead of the Gunners in the Premier League.
However, Arteta insisted Arsenal would not be overawed by the occasion as it chases a record-extending 14th FA Cup triumph.
“I always say that the league table doesn’t lie too much. You can look at some decisions, even in the games that we played together, where we could have the gap a little bit smaller,” he said.
“…Our only aim and all our energy is going to be on winning that trophy, it doesn’t matter where we start. They are playing at a really good level but we are going to go for it,” he added.
Sony LIV will live stream the FA final of Arsenal vs Chelsea from 10.00 pm (IST) on Saturday.