Betting round-up: Reds and Blues do battle for FA Cup
They are regulars in cup finals but have met rarely. So will the FA Cup go to Liverpool or end up in London?
Everything seemingly points to a Chelsea victory over Liverpool in Saturday's FA Cup Final except for one thing ‑ the Reds' never-ending ability to get up for the big occasion.
Incredibly, despite appearing in ten of the last 18 finals between them, Chelsea and Liverpool are meeting in the final of the world's oldest domestic cup competition for the first time and it is the Blues that go in as overwhelming favourites.
Luxbet has Chelsea at $2.40 to win in 90 minutes, with Liverpool at $2.95 and the draw at $3.20, and Luxbet's Andy Scott says all the money has been for the Blues.
That is hardly surprising.
After all, Chelsea are 12 points better off and two places higher on the EPL table than Liverpool, which is in danger of recording its lowest-ever league finishing position in the top flight since the last time it was relegated in 1953-54.
The Reds have won just one of their past eight league games and are sitting in eighth spot, where they finished in 1962-63 and 1993-94 - the only times they have finished that low on the table since re-joining the top flight in 1962.
Chelsea, in contrast, are still in the race for a top-four finish and have the final of the Champions League to look forward to, when they face Bayern Munich on May 19 in Germany.
And while Liverpool has spluttered along in the league for months, Chelsea's revival since caretaker manager Roberto Di Matteo took charge from the sacked Andre Vilas-Boas in March has been extraordinary.
And if you need extra reason to be confident about a Chelsea victory, then remember the Blues are aiming for their fourth FA Cup success in just six seasons, having lifted the trophy in 2007, 2009 and 2010.
But in saying all that, we are going to tip Liverpool.
Why, you ask?
Well, the Reds just always seem to find a way to win when it really counts.
They have already lifted the League Cup this season after beating Cardiff on penalties, and their last two appearances in the FA Cup Final produced memorable come-from-behind wins against London opposition in Arsenal in 2001 and West Ham in 2006.
And few can ever forget their famous win in the 2005 Champions League final, when they beat AC Milan on penalties after coming from 3-0 down to snatch a 3-3 draw, having famously knocked out Chelsea in the semi-finals in a season when Chelsea won the EPL title.
|Didier Drogba to score for Chelsea v Liverpool at $2.80 at Luxbet
||Liverpool and Chelsea to draw 1-1 in 90mins at $6 at Luxbet
Liverpool have also won their past four meetings against Chelsea and one senses that, while the Blues have been expending their energies in the race for a top-four finish in the league and in the Champions League, the Reds players have only had their minds on this game for months.
The Reds might be in horrible form but they were heading into the FA Cup semi-final against Everton as well, and responded with a 2-1 win at Wembley.
But with the past seven Cup finals having been either decided by a goal or going to extra time and penalties, we expect this one to be just as tight.
So while we think Liverpool will eventually prevail - possibly even on penalties - we like the look of the draw at $3.20 after 90 minutes.
For those that want to have a crack at the correct score betting, we say go for a 1-1 draw after 90 minutes ‑ which is actually the favoured option at Luxbet at $6.
And who will score those goals?
Considering Chelsea's Didier Drogba has scored seven times from seven appearances at Wembley ‑ including in the 5-1 win over Spurs in the semi-final ‑ he has to be worth a bet at $2.80 at Luxbet to score at any time, while for Liverpool, Uruguayan star Luiz Suarez ‑ who last Saturday scored a hat-trick against Norwich - is the man to back at $3.10 to score at any time.
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