How the Bookies See it
- Winners: Manchester United 17/20 – SkyBet
- First Goal Scorer: Anthony Martial 6/1 – William Hill
- Either Team to Win on Penalties: 4/1 – SkyBet
- Red Card Anytime: 4/1 – Bet365
- Manchester United come into this game having failed to qualify for next season’s Champions League, despite their destiny being in their own hands with two games to go. In the Cup, however, the Red Devils have performed well, seeing off the likes of West Ham and Everton on their road to Wembley.
- Crystal Palace have had a nightmare end to the season, having recorded just two victories in the league since late December. Their Cup form, however, has been exemplary as the Eagles have soared into the final, scoring eight goals in five games and conceded just two in the process.
Manchester United will be desperate to restock their trophy cabinet and are firm favourites to beat a Crystal Palace side that has plummeted down the league since the tail end of 2015. It isn’t just the players who will be hungry for success either, as this final could potentially be Louis Van Gaal’s last game in charge of United. Failure to deliver a piece of silverware in his second year at the club could cost the Dutchman his job, especially after his side fluffed their lines by missing out on next season’s Champions League.
Don’t rule out Crystal Palace, though, as the Eagles will be determined to upset the odds and claim the club’s first major piece of silverware. Alan Pardew certainly knows how to fire his team up as he has shown in the previous rounds of this year’s tournament. However, the FA Cup final does not hold fond memories for Pardew, having been on the losing side in the 1990 final to Manchester United and seeing his West Ham United team twice surrender the lead before succumbing to Liverpool on penalties in May 2006.
Emmanuel Adebayor could prove to be the difference between the two teams, with the Togolese striker possibly making his farewell appearance for Palace. The former Arsenal and Manchester City front man recently stated that he wanted to be remembered in England as fondly as Chelsea legend Didier Drogba and scoring the winning goal in this Wembley showpiece could do just that.
- Sports.net’s top tip: Adebayor to score anytime 10/3 – William Hill