It’s an all-London affair to begin semi-final weekend in the capital. Club historian Rick Glanvill and club statistician Paul Dutton look ahead to the last-four local derby…
The famous arch of Wembley winks again for Chelsea. This will be the Blues’ 28th official match at the national stadium in its various incarnations – 13 at the old ground, 15 since the reopening in 2007.
This is what would once have been dubbed a cockney showdown, and it remains a tasty tussle for the pride of London. It is Chelsea’s 22nd FA Cup semi-final showing, and the Blues have tasted success in 11 of them. Ten have ended in defeat, a number shared by the Lilywhites, for whom this is the 20th last-four appearance.
Yet Spurs have lost their past six FA Cup semi-finals in succession, bookended by the neighbourly disputes with Arsenal in 1992/93 (1-0) to a 5-1 defeat at the hands of Roberto Di Matteo’s Chelsea in 2011/12. (See ‘We Have History’ section tomorrow for more.)
One novelty this year is that Spurs have been playing their European matches at the national stadium. So: a crucial cup match, tipped to fail, on a neutral stadium that also doubles as our opponents’ home… anyone for a repeat of Munich 2012?