Who’s in Contention for the FA Cup

Manchester United Forward Anthony Martial fights for the ball against Derby's Morgan Whittaker during the fifth round of the FA Cup at Pride Park in Derby, England.  Manchester United would go on to win the match 3-0.

Rui Vieira

Manchester United Forward Anthony Martial fights for the ball against Derby's Morgan Whittaker during the fifth round of the FA Cup at Pride Park in Derby, England. Manchester United would go on to win the match 3-0.

Sam H.'22, Writer

The Football Association, or FA Cup, is a soccer tournament in England where clubs are selected to play each other by a lottery in a knockout tournament.  If there is a tie, the match is replayed, and if that match ends in a tie, it goes to a penalty shootout.

The FA Cup is now in its final stages.  The next matches, or the Quarterfinals, were scheduled for March 21 but were postponed due to concerns over the recent Coronavirus outbreak across the world.  Norwich City will play Manchester United, Sheffield United will play Arsenal FC, Leicester City will play Chelsea, and Newcastle will face Manchester City.  

All of these teams are in the English Premiere League, the League made up of the best clubs in England.  Currently, Manchester City is the favorite to win the tournament.  They have the most points this season out of the eight teams in the quarterfinals.  Manchester City is also second in the Premier League behind Liverpool, who were upset by Chelsea in the fifth round and ending Liverpool’s chances at the cup.  

Besides Manchester City, the third and fourth seeds in the Premier League, Leicester City and Chelsea, who are also favorites to win.  However, both of those teams play each other, so one of them will go home early.  Chelsea has a well balanced squad, while Leicester City is led by star striker Jamie Vardy.  

“I think Leicester City will win because they have been playing well this year an have a young squad who is hungry for success,” former Leicester City player Simon Davis said.  

Manchester United is also in contention, and they are fifth in the Premier League this season.  Led by England National Team players in Harry Maguire, Jesse Lingard, Spanish National team midfielder Juan Mata, and the speedy Welsh National Daniel James, this young team is one of the most dangerous to come across.  The team has had talent, but has struggled for years due to an incompetent staff, who finally made a good decision in adjusting their staff, according to Bleacher Report.  Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has finally stepped up and turned Manchester United into a winning club.  

“Manchester United is a good team, I know they are not doing the best this season, but they are on a hotstreak.  They haven’t lost after they picked up Bruno Fernandes, and they can get top 4 in Premier League,” said Beckham C. ‘22.

United is not alone, as five years ago, Leicester City had barely avoided relegation, then the season after managed to win the Premier League against 5000-1 odds.  Leicester is now third place in the Premier League, and is a contender in the FA Cup.  However, they will have to face a strong Chelsea team that includes USMNT striker Christian Pulisic, Croatian midfielder Mateo Kovačić, and Fikayo Tomori, a defender who was recently called up to the England National team.  Out of all four matches, Chelsea and Leicester City will be the best game to watch.  

Manchester City, however, is a force to be reckoned with and will be tough to beat.  Led by Belgian National Team midfielder Kevin de Bruyne, City has six players that play or have played at an international level, making them extremely dangerous.  They will have an easy opponent in Newcastle, but the semifinals is where Manchester City will be tested.  

Manchester City is easily the favorite to win the FA Cup, but other clubs will be gunnning for the throne.  Soon, the best soccer club in England will be chosen by one match, where the team that plays the hardest will emerge victorious.