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Football: London Calling - FA Cup final preview

It’s a London derby in the 2020 FA Cup final, with Arsenal and Chelsea meeting at what will be an eerily empty Wembley Stadium on August 1st – the latest date it’s been held in its 139 editions. This is the third time Arsenal & Chelsea have contested an FA Cup final, after 2002 and 2017. No two sides have met in the showpiece more often than these London rivals. And no club is more familiar with FA Cup finals than Arsenal. The Gunners are in a record 21st, having previously lifted the trophy 13 times – also a record. It’s Chelsea’s 14th appearance, with half of these coming since the ‘new’ Wembley opened in 2007. They’ve won seven of their last nine FA Cup finals, but their two defeats both came against Arsenal. The North London giants have been victorious in their last six FA Cup finals – win this game and they’ll equal Tottenham’s record of seven consecutive successful final appearances, between 1901 and 1982 - but instead of an 81-year gap, the Gunners will have achieved the feat in just 18 years. Both Mikel Arteta and Frank Lampard have played in FA Cup finals for their current side. The Spaniard becomes just the second to play for and manage Arsenal in the final after George Graham, but should the Gunners win then he’d be the first to both captain and manage them to a win in this fixture. Lampard will be hoping to utilise Chelsea’s FA Cup specialist; Olivier Giroud. His 30 appearances in the competition have seen him involved in 24 goals, with 18 of these coming in an Arsenal shirt. The Frenchman is aiming to become just the second player to score for and against a specific side in separate FA Cup finals after Frank Stapleton, who netted for and against Manchester United. Arsenal’s dangerman will undoubtedly be hotshot striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Since debuting for the team in February 2018, he’s scored more than a quarter of Arsenal’s competitive goals (28%), netting 68 times – the only Premier League player to score as many in this time is Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah (68). After his brace saw off Manchester City, Auba is aiming to become just the fourth Arsenal player to score in both an FA Cup semi-final and final within the same campaign. The Gunners ended last season with a 4-1 cup final thrashing at the hands of Chelsea in the Europa League final in Baku, so they’ll be hoping that they avoid that misery in the final scene of the prolonged 2019-20 campaign.

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  • Released : 01-Aug-2020

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  • Football, Viral