Why Man United fans want City to win FA Cup


Why Man United fans want City to win FA Cup
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is thrown in the air by players as they celebrate winning the Premier League REUTERS/Toby Melville

In Summary

  • Man City will be the first men's team to win the English domestic treble if they beat Watford at 7pm.
  • Watford, if they win, would qualify for the Europa League group stages and Wolves would miss out while Man United would go into the second qualifying round, which starts on 25 July.

Manchester City can claim a historic domestic treble, while Watford will be looking to cause a major upset in Saturday’s FA Cup final at Wembley.

Pep Guardiola’s City have already won the Premier League and Carabao Cup.

They will be the first men’s team to win the English domestic treble if they beat Watford at 7pm.

If the Hornets, who finished 11th in the Premier League table, win a first ever FA Cup, they will earn a place in next season’s Europa League.

It would also be the biggest shock in a final since Wigan beat City 1-0 in 2013.

Man United, Wolves fans supporting City?

Wolves fans will be cheering on Guardiola’s side, and not just because Watford beat them in the semi-finals.

If City win at Wembley, having already qualified for the Champions League, then Wolves – as the team who finished seventh in the Premier League – will qualify for Europe for the first time since 1980.

The Hornets, who played in Uefa Cup in 1983, would qualify for the Europa League group stages and Wolves would miss out.

In that scenario Man United would go into the second qualifying round, which starts on 25 July.

The problem with that?

They are due to face Tottenham in Shanghai that day in the International Champions Cup, a pre-season tournament.

They would go into the second qualifying round of the Europa League, which will be played before the start of the 2019-20 Premier League season.

That would see Manchester United, who finished sixth in the Premier League, qualify for the Europa League group stage, the first game to be played on 19 September.

But if Watford win the first major trophy in their history, that changes everything.

 

Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United famously won a Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup Treble in 1999.

Meanwhile, Liverpool won an FA Cup, League Cup and Uefa Cup treble in 2001 under Gerard Houllier.

However, no men’s team has won all three major domestic competitions in one season in England before (Arsenal Women have won the domestic treble in the past).

City clinched the league last week, finishing one point ahead of runners-up Liverpool, having beaten Chelsea on penalties in the Carabao Cup final in February.

Their last FA Cup triumph was in 2011 when they beat Stoke City at Wembley. In the eight years since then, City have gone on to be crowned champions of England four times and won four League Cups.

“It is a cup final, anything can happen like a red card,” said Guardiola, who is seeking to win the FA Cup for the first time in his third season in charge at City.

“In one game, anything can happen. Normally the better team wins but a decision of the referee could make the difference.

“In the Premier League you have another chance and can be more relaxed, but this is completely different.”

The last team to win the Premier League and the FA Cup in the same season were Chelsea in 2010.

The last team to win the FA Cup outside the ‘big six’ were Wigan Athletic in 2013. Roberto Martinez’s side were relegated from the Premier League a few days after beating City 1-0 at Wembley.

Watford would have to pull off a feat nearly as large to upset City, whose record signing Riyad Mahrez cost £60m – the Hornets’ most expensive signing was Andre Gray for £18.5m.

The Hornets, whose only previous appearance in the final ended in a 2-0 defeat against Everton in 1984, started their FA Cup run with a 2-0 win at non-league Woking in the third round.

VAR

For the second successive season, the video assistant referee (VAR) system will be used during the final.

Kevin Friend will referee the match, with Andre Marriner taking the role of video assistant referee.

Should the game end in a draw after 90 minutes, 30 minutes of extra time will be played. If the teams still cannot be separated, a penalty shootout will decide the winners.

If the final goes to extra time, both teams will be allowed to use a fourth substitute.

-Report by BBC Sport

 

 

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