One last time in the 2017-2018 season, two of the biggest Premier League sides will face off for England’s most revered cup.
Chelsea and Manchester United head to Wembley this Saturday with plenty on the line, and a win for either side can help alleviate some rough feelings about this year’s league and European campaign.
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A win for Man United gives manager Jose Mourinho a ton of momentum heading into the summer, where he’s expected to make multiple signings and shake up his squad as Man United looks to compete with Manchester City. On the other side, Chelsea has had a disappointing season after winning the league title in 2017, but an FA Cup title can help give Antonio Conte one last big win as he likely leaves the club this summer.
Here’s three keys to watch for in Saturday’s big-time matchup.
Unleash the Pogba
While he’s been stellar in some matches, Paul Pogba has been quite underwhelming in others, whether due to injury, lack of form, or issues with confidence due to being benched by Mourinho.
But when Pogba is at his best, he’s nearly impossible to defend or get the ball off of, and he adds a crucial physical and pacy presence in the middle of the park for Man United that the club doesn’t have otherwise. When Pogba is unleashed on the left side of a 4-3-3, defenses beware.
Hazard/Willian can make the difference
The two tricky wingers can be a nightmare for defenders when they’re on their game, and they’re set to play at a high level with their last game before the World Cup. When the pair have the ball, they can either create chances for themselves or create space for others, and it will be crucial for Chelsea to get them involved early and often, cutting inside and combining with likely center forward starter Olivier Giroud.
Sanchez on the wing
Alexis Sanchez can truly be the difference maker for Man United. He’s had a muted impact since joining in January from Arsenal but he loves the Wembley Stadium turf. Sanchez scored in 2015 and 2017 as Arsenal took home FA Cup titles and should he do it again, he could win his second straight title before a rare summer off.