Man City and Leicester favourites for May showdown

It’s FA Cup semi-finals weekend on April 17 and 18, with Chelsea, Manchester City, Leicester and Southampton battling it out to reach the Wembley showpiece final in May. First up is Chelsea v Manchester City at 5.30pm (GMT) on Saturday, followed by Leicester v Southampton at 6.30pm on Sunday. But who do the bookies fancy to make it to the final? Let’s have a look.

Blues collide

Chelsea and Manchester City face up to each other in the weekend’s first semi final match. Chelsea made it to the final last season, after overcoming Manchester United 3-1 in the 2019-2020 season semi. They ultimately lost the final to Arsenal 2-1, but will be desperate to go all the way this season.

A mid-season change of manager, from Frank Lampard to German Thomas Tuchel, has seen the club shore up defensively (OK, so we’re ignoring the 5-2 defeat against West Brom in the league). But they’ll need to be on top form against City. Pep Guardiola’s side stumbled at this stage last season, being beaten 2-0 by eventual winners Arsenal.

Incredibly, despite their strength in the league and depth of squad, City have only reached one FA Cup final in the last seven seasons, when they battered Watford 6-0 in the 2018-2019 competition. Their progress in the competition this season has been typically solid, having only conceded 2 goals in the four matches they have played so far, including a 2-0 win over Everton in the quarter-finals.

William Hill sees this as a City win, meaning their quadruple attempt remains on track. They have City at 19/5, Chelsea at 4/6. With plenty of attacking talent on show, both teams to score is priced 4/5. Over 2.5 goals in the game comes in at 8/11.

Foxes on top

Leicester and Southampton, meanwhile, clash heads in the Sunday showdown. Brendan Rogers’ side is going well in the Premier League in third place and looking sure of Champions League football next season. They reached the quarter-finals last season, where they came unstuck 1-0 against Chelsea, but they’ve gone one better this season, after an impressive 3-1 win against Manchester United saw them reach the last four for the first time since 1982.

Jamie Vardy is obviously always a threat up front, but Kelechi Iheanacho has also found form, hitting five goals in three games against Sheffield United, Brighton and Burnley in March. Southampton, meanwhile, sit 14th in the league (at the time of writing) with more varied results. What will be worrying for Saints fans is that they are leaking goals, too. Apart from the clean sheet against Bournemouth in the 3-0 FA Cup quarter-final win, Southampton have failed to keep a clean sheet since February 11.

But, with Danny Ings up front and free-kick specialist James Ward-Prowse in their line-up, they also pose attacking threat. William Hill has Leicester as evens, and Southampton at 27/10 for the win. If you fancy goals in this match, you can get odds of 17/20 for both teams to score. For more than 2.5 goals in the game, the odds are 1/3.

Last five FA Cup winners:

  • 2019-2020 – Arsenal
  • 2018-2019 – Man City
  • 2017-2018 – Chelsea
  • 2016-2017 – Arsenal
  • 2015-2016 – Man United