Can Arsenal end nine years of trophyless seasons with a FA Cup win against Hull City at Wembley?
Despite being clear favourites to lift the Cup, Arsenal will not be taking anything for granted against a resilient Hull City side managed by Steve Bruce. The Gunners lost a 2011 League cup final to Birmingham City, who were relegated the same season, which has added four years to any movement in the Arsenal trophy cabinet. The last piece of silverware won by Arsene Wenger was this very trophy back in 2005, courtesy of a penalty shoot-out win over Manchester United. In Wenger’s opposing dug-out, Bruce himself is no starnger to the most prestigious cup in English football. Despite, never winning it as a manager, the former United centre back won it three times under Sir Alex Ferguson.
“No matter what the result will be, this club – and this is always most important – can deal with the consequences of any game.”
Arsene Wenger (Arsenal manager)
Hull go into this fixture off the back of a dismal ending to their Premier League campaign. Four losses and a draw from their final five matches, including a 3-0 loss at home to Arsenal meant the Tigers finished in 16th place, despite a great start to the season. It is also their first ever time in an FA Cup final in the clubs history. Arsenal won all five of their final Premier League games and have been boosted by the return of form to Aaron Ramsey and the return of fitness to Jack Wilshere. The North Londoners have despatched of lower league sides all season, although their semi-final of the competition went to penalties with Championship club Wigan Atletic. Wenger will walk out to his 6th FA Cup final as Arsenal manager in front of a packed out Arsenal end despite some fans shelling out as much as £2,300 for a ticket.
- Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Thomas Vermaelen will undergo late fitness tests
- Jack Wilshere is pushing for his first Arsenal start since 1st March
- Lukasz Fabianski is likely to start in goal having played in every match leading up to the final
- Shane Long and Nikica Jelavic are cup-tied
- Matty Fryatt is pushing for a start having scored 10 goals in his last 13 FA Cup starts
- Robbie Brady faces a late fitness test
Form guide (Last 5 games)
|Man Utd||3-1||Hull City|
|Aston Villa||3-1||Hull City|
Head to Head (Last 5 games)
Arsenal – Fabianski, Sagna, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Gibbs, Arteta, Ramsey, Cazorla, Ozil, Podolski, Giroud
Hull City – McGregor, Davies, Bruce, Chester, Elmohamady, Rosenior, Livermore, Huddlestone, Meyler, Quinn, Fryatt
- Arsenal have won 10 FA Cup finals, only Manchester United have won more (11)
- The Gunners have kept a clean sheet in their last three FA Cup finals
- Hull have scored just once in their last four clashes with Arsenal
- This is the Tigers first time in an FA Cup final