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The FA Cup, which is the oldest knockout competition in world football, will hold its first semifinal for the 2019-20 season on Saturday 18 July, with Arsenal taking on Manchester City at Wembley Stadium.
The teams met on the first day of post-lockdown football in England midway through last month and City were able to record an emphatic 3-0 victory, with goals from Raheem Sterling, Kevin De Bruyne and Phil Foden.
Despite their strong record against the Gunners (City have seven successive wins in the rivalry), manager Pep Guardiola is taking nothing for granted.
“The win against Arsenal (in June) means nothing now. Both teams have progressed since then and we cannot predict based on what happened in the past. Arsenal will offer us many difficulties, they have fast and high energy players. We will need to be at our best,” said the Citizens’ boss.
Arsenal have improved since their thrashing at the hands of City, with manager Mikel Arteta putting more emphasis on the defence: ““You can see all the teams that are in the title race, that win championships, the amount of clean sheets they need in order to do that,” said the Spanish tactician. “The more we improve here, the more solid we are the better chance we’re going to have to win football games. It’s simple.”
The second FA Cup semi final pits together two teams who are being spoken of as potential challengers for major honours next season, as Manchester United and Chelsea meet at Wembley Stadium on Sunday 19 July.
These two young and exciting sides – led by former players in the shape of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Frank Lampard – have shown fine form since the end of lockdown and SuperSport viewers can expect a thriller.
The Blues will be itching for revenge after losing all three matches they have had against the Red Devils this season: 0-4 and 0-2 in thePremier League, as well as 1-2 in the EFL League Cup. Chelsea and United also met in the FA Cup final as recently as 2018, with the Blues winning 1-0.
“I think every game’s going to be pressure now. It’s a different kind of pressure but it’s still the same. It’s how you focus on the game and the job in hand, we cannot get too caught up with what everyone else does at the moment,” said Lampard, who is chasing his first piece of silverware in charge of Chelsea.
The same can be said of Solskjaer at United, with the Norwegian stating: “The boys have played well of late, but now is not the time to take their foot off the pedal. We need to finish as high as possible in the Premier League and do all we can in the two cup competitions [FA Cup and UEFA Europa League].”
Don’t miss the conclusion of the 2019-20 football season on DStv and GOtv. Visit www.dstv.com to subscribe or upgrade and join in on the excitement. And while you’re on the move, you can stream matches on DStv Now.
Please note that due to travel restrictions, SuperSport is unfortunately, temporarily unable to provide any local commentary on the above sporting action.
FA Cup semi finals 18-19 July 2020 – Broadcast details
Saturday 18 July
Sunday 19 July
6:00 PM: Manchester United v Chelsea – LIVE on SuperSport 3