Despite masterminding the downfall of Manchester United last time out, Roberto Mancini must now beat Chelsea to save his post at the Citizens’ helm.
His side can be backed as 11/8 favourites to do so, which seems a bit short given that they’re facing a Blues team who haven’t lost an FA Cup game in an aeon.
They’ve faced 29 opponents in this competition without suffering defeat – taking penalties out of the equation – and have hoisted the trophy in three of the previous four seasons. The one season they didn’t achieve the feat, Man City took it home and, whoever comes out on top here, it’d take a brave punter to oppose either of their names being carved into the pot come the season’s end.
On top of Chelsea’s apparent FA Cup invincibility, they also have a phenomenal record at the new national stadium. Since Wembley’s resurrection in 2007, the Blues have featured in an incredible 11 games there, seven of which were contested in this tournament and all of them have given them cause to celebrate.
City, however, are displaying the sort of FA Cup form that warrants the Chelsea seal of approval and there’s every chance that they can shoot down Rafa Benitez’ men at the semi-final stage.
In the four games leading up to this final-four showdown, the outgoing champions have plundered 13 goals and not allowed a single one in at the other end, while the Blues have stuttered in comparison, drawing twice – one of which coming against Brentford – on their route to the semis.
Carlos Tevez has flourished on City’s cruise to Wembley, banging in five goals in the four starts he’s made, including a hat-trick in the quarter-final mauling of Barnsley who, incidentally, were the last team to knock Chelsea out of the FA Cup in 90 minutes.
For him to bag again in a City win, a price of 3/1 is on offer and it looks the pick of the bunch ahead of this mouth-watering tie.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date