Tottenham v Chelsea FA Cup betting preview: Spurs to roll back the years


A season that was shaping up to be an extraordinary one for Harry Redknapp and his swashbuckling Tottenham side has drifted off course since the turn of the year, but all is not lost and we believe victory over Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-final on Sunday can breath fresh life into their campaign, setting them up for a grandstand finish on two fronts.

We already have the Lilywhites onside at 8/1 in the outright market but we're not about to take cover on our original stake by siding with Chelsea. Based on the campaign to date, we don't see why we should.

With a dominant Tottenham display in the league game at Stamford Bridge still fresh in the memory, we firmly believe that Spurs are the better side and that's why we're backing them to produce the goods and get the job done inside 90 minutes at 17/10.

To punters of a certain age, Tottenham is a club steeped in FA Cup tradition. Back in the pre-Sky era when the FA Cup final really was an occasion to savour, the North London club were regular visitors to Wembley. Between 1981 and 1991, they appeared in four finals, all of which went to extra time, three of which they won, needing a replay in two.

But 21 years have passed since their last appearance and now it's Chelsea who can lay claim to being the most successful FA Cup team of the modern era. Since the turn of the Millennium, the West London outfit have appeared in five finals and won four, including three out of five at the new Wembley.

However, the climate is changing and it seems as though the layers are letting history get in the way of their better judgement. As things stand, Tottenham are two points ahead of Chelsea in the Premier League table in spite of a dodgy eight-match sequence during which the Blues have made up eight points.

The 2-1 home defeat to Norwich on Easter Monday is likely to be a key stumbling block for many punters but a watershed performance can be no bad thing immediately prior to a game as big as this - just ask Manchester City fans how they felt going into last season's semi-final with United on the back of an abject 3-0 defeat at Liverpool.

The sense of debt the follows such a display, the sheer desire to quickly make amends, can often over-ride any nerves that may otherwise have surfaced to hinder the next performance.

Of much greater significance, we feel, is the distraction of a Champions League semi-final against Barcelona that Chelsea must cater for. It's a little harsh on Roberto Di Matteo that this game must be played on Sunday evening, leaving him with just two full days to prepare for the first leg against the all-conquering European champions.

You simply cannot peak for a game like this and then expect to live with Pep Guardiola's men so soon afterwards, so compromises will have to be made somewhere and we see that coming in the shape of Chelsea's tactics.

Given the obvious attacking threat that Tottenham pose, it would be folly for the Blues to become embroiled in an emotional rolloer-coaster and we should expect them to try and suffocate the play. As such, we should expect a low-scoring encounter and there's added value to be found in backing Tottenham to win 1-0 at 8/1.

Recommended bet:

2pts Tottenham to beat Chelsea at 17/10 (Ladbrokes)

1pt Tottenham to beat Chelsea 1-0 at 8/1 (Bet365)

For more betting news and views, please visit You can also follow Mike Holden on Twitter: @Miguel_BOTB

i100 In this video, the late actor Leonard Nimoy explains how he decided to use the gesture for his character
Arts and Entertainment
Secrets of JK Rowling's Harry Potter workings have been revealed in a new bibliography
arts + ents
Down-to-earth: Winstone isn't one for considering his 'legacy'
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower