In England, the FA Cup Final will take place between Arsenal and Hull City at Wembley Stadium while at the very same time in the Nou Camp in Barcelona, the destination of La Liga will be decided when Barcelona host league leaders Atletico Madrid in a winner-takes-all clash.
Let’s take a closer look at each of these massive events individually.
The FA Cup Final – can Arsenal end eight years without a trophy?
Most of the build up to this game has been focused on Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal who have now gone eight years since last winning a trophy. That barren spell could come to an end on Saturday as the much-fancied Gunners face a Hull City team that they easily beat in the Premier League just a few weeks ago.
Arsenal have been bolstered by the return to the team of Welsh skipper Aaron Ramsey after a lengthy spell out with injury and the news that Jack Wilshere could also be fit means that Arsene Wenger, minus Theo Walcott, could have almost a full strength squad to pick from for Saturday’s showpiece game.
For Hull City, this is their first ever FA Cup Final appearance, their best other showing being as a semi-finalist way back in 1930. However it will be their third appearance at Wembley having won the Play-Off Final in 2007-08 and also having beaten rivals Sheffield United in the semi final of the current competition 5-3 a few weeks ago.
Steve Bruce’s men have toiled somewhat since they confirmed their Premier League status a few weeks ago and they were soundly beaten 2-0 by Everton at the weekend. They’ll also be without two new signings, Shane Long and Nikica Jelavic, who are both cup-tied, which means that Bruce will have a couple of key decisions to make as to who starts in attack for his team.
Our top tips
Bet365 have Arsenal as the clear 4/9 favourites to win the FA Cup and it is hard to make a case for Hull City (6/1) to cause an upset here.
In their league encounters, Arsenal won 2-0 at the Emirates and then recorded a 3-0 win at the KC Stadium in April. Arsenal however, do have a history of being upset in the final by underdogs. Birmingham City managed to beat them a few years back in the Carling Cup Final, so Hull will go into this game with little to fear.
However, we can’t back against the Gunners, so we’d get on the 4/9 for Arsenal to lift the trophy with a little side bet on the impressive Aaron Ramsey to score at anytime (which you can back with Bet365 at 7/4).
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La Liga decider – will the Nou Camp roar Barcelona to success or can Atletico claim the point they need to lift the title?
It has been an epic season in La Liga with three teams, Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid fighting out one of the closest and most dramatic title races in many years. Real Madrid were the first to fall by the wayside when in Week 37, their 2-0 defeat at Celta Vigo meant they could no longer add La Liga title to their Spanish Cup success, and possible Champions League victory.
There was plenty of drama last weekend too when Barcelona were held 0-0 by lowly Elche and a win for Atletico would have given them the title at home against Malaga, however Malaga clung on for a draw meaning all will be decided in the final week of the season.
And who do you think the fixture list put together on the final week of the domestic season in La Liga? Barcelona at home against Atletico Madrid, setting up a winner-takes all clash with the Spanish league title on the line.
Victory for Barcelona will hand them the title as in Spain, goal difference is not used as the determining factor when teams finish level on points, but rather the head to head between the two teams is used. With a 0-0 draw at the Vicente Calderon and a win at home, Barcelona would therefore take the title.
Atletico therefore only need a point to win the game, but they will have to do so with over 90,000 fiercely loyal Barcelona fans baying for the win which would give them yet another league title. The teams have already met three times this season and Barcelona are yet to record a win.
The teams drew 0-0 in the league, and in the Champions League quarter final, Atletico drew 1-1 in the Nou Camp before edging to victory at home in the second leg 1-0. Who will be celebrating on Saturday night?
Let’s see what the bookies think.
Our top tips
Currently Barcelona are the 10/11 favourites with Bet365 for this game, with Atletico the 3/1 outsiders. You can make a convincing case for either side to win the game, but personally, I like the odds on 11/4 for the draw and that would be my selection in the full time result market.
Atletico’s dogged resistance and defensive nous saw them produce a magnificent display away at Chelsea recently and I’d expect them to do the same at the Nou Camp against a Barcelona team that is not really in its best run of form and certainly lacking confidence.
As a side bet on the event, there are two that I like the look of. In the Result/Both Teams to Score market with Bet365, a draw as the result and both teams to score offers odds of 15/4, which looks a great bet. Finally, Lionel Messi to score anytime and the game to finish in a 2-2 draw is currently 18/1 with Bet365 and I think that offers excellent odds in what is likely to be a dramatic game with so much on the line.
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