Semifinals - Wembley Derby Dramas
By Joe, bettingexpert.com | Published
Google+: Joe Bexpert
Wembley is awaiting for the Merseyside derby and also the London derby in the FA Cup semifinals 2012. Steven Gerrard is certainly gear up to face their local rivals, Everton, on neutral ground after hitting a hattrick in their most recent encounter. Manager Kenny Daglish will remember his last two derby back in the late 80s. Sunday will see Chelsea facing Tottenham Hotspurs and after a stalemate in both Premier League occasion, winner takes it all this time.
Liverpool vs. Everton
Saturday 12:30 Kickoff – Wembley Stadium
The 218th Merseyside derby is heading towards London, Wembley for the semi-finals of the FA Cup to take place. The all Merseyside derby is booked to start a little bit after noon due to the TV rights timings of other premiership fixture on the day. The joyous of having over 70,000 scousers travelling down from Liverpool to London could bare a lot of burden on the transports and all other travel means. The surprising factor is that the English Football Association scheduled this game for a kickoff of 12:30.
Getting back to the game itself, Liverpool might not have the form on their side of the late but one thing still remains, they are the stronger team in Merseyside. They will fill half of the Wembley stadium with the official 32,000 number of Reds on the East stand while unofficial, there is good over 50,000 Reds hovering around London. Although, Liverpool fans will have familiarity of Wembley as they were here two months for the Carling Cup, that day they face a blue team, but that was Cardiff City, disposing them through the penalties.
Kenny Daglish did start the season with a positive note of what the football is to be played on the pitch but most importantly, getting Liverpool back lifting the silverwares. He managed to complete winning all British competitions on offer after taking the Carling Cup. The Premiership has past the expiry date for Liverpool as they are too far off from the league leaders and Champions League spot isn’t near to get a sniff. That leaves only the FA Cup left and Daglish is hard on the press to get this one right. His tactics of the late have seen a bit of change to the starting line up in the league. Defender Flanagan and Jonjo Shelvey have got the nod leaving midfielder Jay Spearing on the bench. Out of those three players, it is Spearing who got the nod in the recent 3-0 win over Everton, courtesy of a Steven Gerrard’s hat-trick. The return of Daniel Agger will be an immense to strengthen the stability while the choice using Luis Suarez up front by his own or partner up with Andy Carroll, both started in the 3-0 win. The midfield is where the battle has to be won and Liverpool has got under Everton’s skin in many occasion with Steven Gerrard as their main architect. The absences of both keeper Pepe Reina and Brazilian Doni leaves Daglish only with young Brad Jones, who got his first premier league start and penalty save in the midweek 2-2. There were six changes to the team against Blackburn and after giving a losing a 2-0 lead, Andy Carroll in injury time make it a Liverpool 3-2 win.
David Moyes has reached a centurion this year with the blue side of the Merseyside and looks to bring some silverware to the club to cap off his work with Everton. Living in the shadows of Liverpool, Everton hasn’t managed to get one over their rivals for a long time and when they did, they were overshadowed by Liverpool’s achievement in Europe. However, bright times are ahead of them, being placed above Liverpool in the Premiership and also finding a striker that can get goals week in, week out, Croatian Nikica Jelavic bought from Glasgow Rangers before the January window closed. Moyes went for the gamble and got a reward as he is linking up with on-loan Steven Pienaar and Tim Cahill. The midfield battle will be left up to Fellaini, Osman, Drenthe and Gibson to hold off the Reds, while Jack Rodwell could well get the nod on the day to give Moyes some option. The back four will likely see Baines, Jagielka, Heitinga and Distin to start, but if anything was to go by the last two games, then Moyes will have to come up with another game plan as a 2-0 home and 3-0 away lost are no confidence boosters for an Everton team. The 4-0 home win over Sunderland, same that they knocked out in the quarterfinals, serves just the best run up for yet another Merseyside derby.
It all depends on who will be delivering on the day when it comes to derby day. On many occasions, Liverpool has the physiological advantage, even when it comes to Wembley, over the blue half of Merseyside and that could be bad news for Moyes. Punters will see this as an opportunity for Everton to go one above the Reds, however, Liverpool are always hungry against Everton and when there is silverware. Hillsborough will be remember on the day.
Chelsea vs. Tottenham
Sunday 18:00 Kickoff - Wembley Stadium
This is another derby but this time from Merseyside to London and what better place to see two London club playing on neutral ground. However, Chelsea has have the luxurious in several occasions to play in the New Wembley surface through FA Cup semi-finals, finals and charity shield. However, it is the conversotial kickoff time that Chelsea is not happy with. The Blues asked for re-arrangement of this game to be on a Friday instead but FA didn’t comply and pushes Chelsea to re-organise their planning as they face Barcelona in the following midweek.
Ever since AVB left the club, it seems like Chelsea had a burden lifted off their shoulders and they are able to find their old self. Whether that is a good or not, the reality is that Chelsea is getting a bit of luck, getting the goals and getting the right results under caretaker Roberto Di Matteo. Under Matteo, whether it is him making the decisions or not, the team is organised, more of an unit and talking football once again. It shows in their result and certainly fighting in three multi-fronts, Chelsea have a lot to play for but as a tournament, the FA Cup is their least priority in terms of the silverware. Their fight for next season’s champion spot was hit with a setback after a 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage against Fulham. Chelsea did look a bit tired in the hard punishing schedule which lies ahead of them.
The North Londoners are on the verge in destroying a fine season under Harry Redknapp. They started out brightly in league and they were even once contenders for the title but that swiftly fell through. Their European campaign didn’t last long so champions league and their only piece of silverware has to come from the FA Cup. The rumours of Redkanpp leaving Spurs for the England job hasn’t really helped Spurs in their recent form. Drawing away to Sunderland 0-0 and losing 2-1 at home to Norwich City. Redknapp has ample of staff members that can do the job but they just haven’t hit the form that they did earlier on the season, maybe rotation has hit a bit of confidence amongst some players. Although, both Aaron Lennon and Gareth Bale have returned to the starting line up, it seems their final touches aren’t there yet. It will be the midfielders that will provide the difference between the two. Captain Parker could well lead Tottenham out on the field but it is the magic of Van der Vaart and Luka Modric that will provide the inspiration moves for their side.
Considering that these two teams have played twice in the league this season and both ended up with a draw, latest 0-0 stalemate at Stamford Bridge, this could yet go into extra time on Sunday evening. Their latest ever encounter at Wembley was back in 2008 for the Carling Cup final and Spurs ran out as 2-1 winners and with all the considerations around this, Chelsea could be holding back a few players for the midweek game while Spurs will be going for it. Tottenham to make the final after extra time.
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