FA Cup final latest score and goal updates as both sides go close at Wembley

Follow live coverage of the FA Cup final as Liverpool face Chelsea in what promises to be another Wembley classic. It has been less than three months since the sides last met in a cup final, as Liverpool prevailed on penalties to win the Carabao Cup and set in motion their quest for an unprecedented quadruple. It remains a possibility for Jurgen Klopp’s side, even if Manchester City are closing in on the Premier League title, but Chelsea and Thomas Tuchel will be out for revenge as they aim to win the competition for the ninth time.

Chelsea will also be desperate to avoid becoming the first team in FA Cup history to lose three consecutive finals, after they were beaten by Leicester and Arsenal in 2021 and 2020 respectively. Tuchel has guided the Blues to the final despite the uncertainty that was hanging over the club following the sanctioning of Roman Abramovich, and the era of Todd Boehly’s ownership now has the chance to start with a further trophy.

Liverpool, meanwhile, have not appeared in an FA Cup final since 2012, where they lost to Chelsea, and you have to go back to their Steven Gerrard-inspired win in 2006 for their last triumph in this competition. These are different times under Klopp, however, but as their bid for multiple titles this season approaches its climatic end, the stakes also become higher. Follow live coverage of Chelsea vs Liverpool in the 2022 FA Cup final, below:

FA Cup final: Chelsea vs Liverpool

  • 33’ – Mo Salah goes off injured for Liverpool (0-0)

  • It is a rematch of the Carabao Cup final – won by Liverpool on penalties

  • Liverpool are trying to clinch the second trophy of a potential unprecedented quadruple

  • This is Chelsea’s last chance to win a domestic cup this season, although they have claimed the Super Cup and World Club Cup

  • Chelsea XI: Mendy; Chalobah, Silva, Rudiger; James, Jorginho, Kovacic, Alonso; Mount, Pulisic; Lukaku

  • Liverpool XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Keita, Henderson, Thiago; Salah, Mane, Diaz

  • Delaney: Chelsea vs Liverpool has every ingredient to be an all-time Wembley classic

  • Evans: Chelsea vs Liverpool is a modern rivalry steeped in FA Cup history

Chelsea FC 0 – 0 Liverpool FC

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

18:06 , Michael Jones

60 mins: Chance! Sadio Mane wins the ball from a Chelsea throw in and pokes it to Robertson before drifting inside and receiving it back. He gives it to Keita who threads the ball into the right side of the box where Jota brings it under control and drills a shot across goal and sends it narrowly wide of the back post!

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

18:02 , Michael Jones

57 mins: Reece James curls a cross in from the right wing and almost sets up Marcos Alonso by the far post but the Chelsea wingback can’t quite reach the ball.

Earlier Trent Alexander-Arnold put in a last minute block to stop another through ball reaching Christian Pulisic inside the six-yard box and Liverpool scrambled it away. Chelsea are hunting down the opening goal.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

18:00 , Michael Jones

54 mins: Marcos Alonso is having a decent game. He gets forward on the left and brings cross field pass under control but swinging an early ball into the box for Romelu Lukaku. The forward tries to get his head to the ball but Alisson is quickly off his line to pluck the ball out of the air.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:57 , Michael Jones

51 mins: Chance! Naby Keita is marshalled out of the Chelsea box with the ball and decides to pass it back to Trent Alexander-Arnold who swings a first time cross over to the back post. It flies over the head of Sadio Mane, passes Reece James and hits Andy Robertson in the chest before bouncing out of play. Robertson wasn’t expecting James to miss it and he puts his head in his hands over an opportunity missed.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:53 , Michael Jones

48 mins: Chance! What a start this is from Chelsea. Marcos Alonso fires a shot wide of goal before Christian Pulisic draws a low save out of Alisson. The Blues have started the second half in a blistering mood.

Reece James is taken out deep down the right wing and Chelsea win a free kick .

Off the woodwork! Marcos Alonso saunters over to take the set piece and curls his effort over Alisson before rattling it into the crossbar and seeing the ball bounce clear. Liverpool are rocking here.

Second half: Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:51 , Michael Jones

Kick off: Liverpool get the match back underway. There hasn’t been any further changes from either team.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:47 , Michael Jones

With this match a repeat of the 2021-22 League Cup final, Liverpool are looking to win both of England’s domestic cups in the same season for the first time since 2000-01, whilst the last team to lose both finals in the same campaign were Middlesbrough in 1996-97.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:43 , Michael Jones

Mo Salah had to be taken off with just over half an hour played. How big of a blow will that be to Liverpool both in the second half of this final and for the Champions League final later in the month?

(The FA via Getty Images)

 (The FA via Getty Images)

(The FA via Getty Images)

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:39 , Michael Jones

Diogo Jota had the chance to put Liverpool in front…

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

…but sent his effort over the crossbar.

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Half-time: Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:36 , Michael Jones

45+4 mins: Liverpool started as the brighter side but were denied by some early saves from Edouard Mendy. Chelsea fought back and Alisson was called into action to deny Marcos Alonso. Mo Salah tweaked something, probably his groin, and had to depart just after 30 minutes and Diogo Jota had the chance to send the Reds in front right at the end of the half.

As it stands though the teams head into the break on level terms.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:31 , Michael Jones

45 mins: Oh chance! Jordan Henderson sweeps the ball over to Thiago Alcantara who feeds it up to Andy Robertson making his way down the left wing. Robertson curls a cross into the box and perfectly picks out Diogo Jota who’s broken away from Mateo Kovacic. He meets the ball at the near post but can’t get on top of it and hits his volley over the crossbar!

Four minutes of added time to play in the first half.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:28 , Michael Jones

42 mins: Alexander-Arnold’s cross into the box is headed away by Chalobah who knocks the ball over to the far side of the box where Mount recovers it. He’s closed down by Robertson who wins Liverpool a throw in deep in Chelsea’s half.

Liverpool work the ball into the middle to Konate who fancies himself from range and blasts his shot high and wide.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:24 , Michael Jones

39 mins: Chelsea have slowly chipped away at Liverpool’s early dominance and are now seeing more possession and creating the better chances.

Sadio Mane is still playing through the middle for the Reds and he tries to win the ball off Jorginho but arrives late and gives away a free kick.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:20 , Michael Jones

36 mins: The ball is whipped over to Mason Mount from the left wing and he brings it under control before sliding Christian Pulisic into the box. Romelu Lukaku provides an option in the middle but Pulisic takes too long on the ball and when his pass does come Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ibrahima Konate are back in position to keep it out.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:18 , Michael Jones

33 mins: This is a worrying sign for Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool. Mo Salah has gone down off the ball and seems to be in a bit of pain. After a talk with the medical staff he’s not going to continue. Diogo Jota comes on to replace him.

Huge blow for Liverpool.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:16 , Michael Jones

30 mins: Alonso’s follow through saw him collide with Alisson who took a knock to his right knee and needed a bit of treatment from the physios.

The Brazilian is fine to play on though and he rolls the ball over to Virgil van Dijk to get the match back underway.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:14 , Michael Jones

27 mins: Save! Another fine move from Chelsea almost makes it 1-0 to the Blues as Mount feeds the ball across to Pulisic. He puts on the brakes to collect the ball that’s a little behind him before threading it into the left side of the area for Marcos Alonso. Alonso’s first touch isn’t the best but he manages to fire a shot at goal that gets charged down by Alisson who throws his body in front of the ball and blocks it. Brave goalkeeping from the Liverpool goalkeeper who seems a little worse for wear after that one.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:09 , Michael Jones

24 mins: Close! Reece James gets forward on the right as a diagonal ball is sent over to him. Andy Robertson wins the initial ball but can’t gather it as it drops and Mason Mount nicks the ball from him. He gives it to James then makes a run into the right side of the box. James returns the ball and Mount pulls it back to Christian Pulisic whose shot from the centre of the area rolls wide of the back post! Lovely move from Chelsea.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:07 , Michael Jones

21 mins: Sadio Mane is given the ball on the halfway line and he squares it over to Andy Robertson who drives forward from the left back position. He’s helped out by Luis Diaz making a decent run off the ball and drawing away Trevoh Chalobah to open up space for Robertson to dart inside. He does and then lets fly with a shot from range but it’s a poor one and sails wide of the target.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:04 , Michael Jones

18 mins: Mateo Kovacic makes a run down the right side of the pitch and is taken out by a sliding tackle from Thiago Alcantara. The Liverpool midfielder avoids a booking but Chelsea have a free kick in a dangerous area. Marcos Alonso and Reece James stand over it but it’s Alonso who whips the ball into the penalty area and sends it straight into the hands of Alisson.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

17:00 , Michael Jones

15 mins: Another corner for Liverpool is curled into the middle of the box. Lukaku is there again to win the initial ball and his clearance goes out for a throw in. Liverpool take it quickly and switch the play over to the left side of the pitch where Reece James and Naby Keita tussle over possession and the ball rolls out of play. Keita touched it last so it’s a goal kick to Chelsea.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

16:58 , Michael Jones

12 mins: Thiago Silva stayed down after that attack clutching his leg. He’s helped off the pitch for some treatment and looks in a bit of pain but will continue for Chelsea. Malang Sarr has been sent out to warm-up though by Thomas Tuchel.

Chelsea try to keep possession and work it over to Marcos Alonso on the left wing. He’s put under pressure and attempts to chip it over to Lukaku only for Virgil van Dijk to nip in front of the striker and win the header for the Reds.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

16:55 , Michael Jones

9 mins: Chance! Huge moment in the game. Liverpool are starting to impose themselves. Chelsea lose possession in midfield and the ball squirts out to Trent Alexander-Arnold. He threads a pass through the defence with the outside of his right foot and plays Luis Diaz into the box.

He’s got Mo Salah up there with him but decides to shoot himself and fires his effort into the chest of Edouard Mendy. The ball is scrambled out to the edge of the box but Thiago Silva where Naby Keita runs onto it and smokes an effort wide of the right hand post.

Great save from Mendy!

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

16:53 , Michael Jones

6 mins: Jorginho takes hit and needs a moment to recover as Liverpool win themselves a corner kick. Trent Alexander-Arnold swings it in from the right side but Romelu Lukaku nods it clear for the Blues.

Liverpool recover the loose ball and guide it up to Mo Salah. He attempts to run it into the box from the right but Jorginho is quickly across to tackle him for Chelsea.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

16:51 , Michael Jones

3 mins: It’s been a cagey start as both teams try to work each other out. Edouard Mendy floats the ball over to the right side of the pitch where Reece James works it up to Romelu Lukaku. He’s closed down by Ibrahima Konate who recovers the ball for Liverpool and ends the Chelsea attack.

The Reds dink the ball over the top to Luis Diaz who drives at Trevoh Chalobah and weaves his way into the box. He crosses it from the left and almost picks out the run from Thiago Alcantara but the midfielder can’t get a touch to turn it home.

Kick off: Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

16:46 , Michael Jones

Chelsea – dressed in the yellow kit – get the game underway with a long ball up the pitch. There’s a bit of headed interplay before the ball drops to Liverpool who try to quickly play Mo Salah in down the right only for the diagonal pass to skip out of play.

Chelsea 0 – 0 Liverpool

16:44 , Michael Jones

Chelsea vs Liverpool

16:40 , Michael Jones

The warm-ups are done and it’s almost time for kick off. Which way is this one going to go?

All three meetings between Chelsea and Liverpool have ended in draws this season with Liverpool winning the Carabao Cup following a penalty shootout.

Are we heading for a similar scenario this afternoon?

 (AFP via Getty Images)

(AFP via Getty Images)

 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Jurgen Klopp on winning trophies for Liverpool

16:35 , Michael Jones

Liverpool’s manager Jurgen Klopp says his players need to enjoy playing in a ‘special game’ at Wembley but rues the schedule that will cut short any celebrations if the Reds were to win the trophy today. He said:

“It’s a busy season, but it will never happen that the FA Cup is just a normal game. It’s a special game and, for some, the biggest in their career. We want to enjoy it and deliver for our people.

“We couldn’t celebrate the Carabao Cup because we played three days later. If we win FA Cup it’s the same. We had a parade with Dortmund when we won the cup. It was big. Now we play Southampton instead of a possible parade.

“I’ve never won the FA Cup before and most of my players have never won it before. We are really looking forward to this opportunity.

“The boys worked their socks off to arrive here, with all the different challenges over the year.

“It’s now a massive final for us and I’m really happy we are part of it. We always gave our all to arrive to the final [previously], we just didn’t make it.”

The supporters arrive at Wembley

16:30 , Michael Jones

There is expected to be 90,000 fans arriving at Wembley to watch the FA Cup final live this afternoon with millions more watching the tv broadcasts.

It’s a stark contrast to the previous two editions when the 2019 final was played behind closed doors and the 2020 final had a limited capacity of 20,000 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

 (The FA via Getty Images)

(The FA via Getty Images)

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

 (The FA via Getty Images)

(The FA via Getty Images)

Tuchel on starting Kovacic

16:25 , Michael Jones

Thomas Tuchel spoke to BBC Radio 5 Live ahead of kick off and explained his delight in choosing to start Mateo Kovacic in midfield today.

“It was nice [to pick Mateo Kovacic], I couldn’t believe it but he trained yesterday. He wants to play.” he said. “We take the risk and see if it works in the match.

“There was no need to change up top. Why break the rhythm? You don’t need to lift anyone for a cup final. We are close to the stadium, we see the arch every day.

“We want to win in yellow today.”

Warm-ups underway at Wembley

16:20 , Michael Jones

Chelsea vs Liverpool

16:15 , Michael Jones

Sadio Mane has six goals in 16 appearances against Chelsea, while Mohamed Salah has scored four in 14. How important will this two be for Liverpool’s chances today?

 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Mane on what winning the FA Cup would mean

16:10 , Michael Jones

Sadio Mane has been speaking about the determination in the Liverpool dressing room to win the FA Cup today and increase the Reds’ trophy haul to two for the season.

“We’ve been talking about it in the dressing room,” he said. “I’ve been asking the boys, ‘When was the last time Liverpool won it?’ I think it was a long time ago. Not only the players, I think all the fans around the world are very excited to win it again.

“Years ago, we won the Premier League, Champions League, so winning the FA Cup will be massive for us, for everyone at the club as well and the fans.

“Like I always say, a final is always special, especially in this season. We know already our target from the beginning is to do everything possible to win all the trophies possible.

“So we have a chance to make another step, so let’s see what’s going to happen because we know we’re going to face a very, very good side. Everything is possible, so we will see.”

 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Third time lucky for Chelsea?

16:05 , Michael Jones

Chelsea are the first side to reach three consecutive FA Cup finals since Arsenal between 2000-01 and 2002-03. They lost the previous two against Arsenal and Leicester City.

 (The FA via Getty Images)

(The FA via Getty Images)

Chelsea vs Liverpool

16:00 , Michael Jones

This will be Liverpool’s 43rd Wembley appearance in total. They have won 21 and lost 15, scoring 55 goals, with Ian Rush (10) having scored the most.

Liverpool have not lost any of the 42 matches this season in which they have scored the first goal of the game – 38 wins and four draws.

Can the Reds go on to lift the FA Cup for the first time since 2006?

Who will win the FA Cup?

15:55 , Michael Jones

Liverpool handed huge boost ahead of the FA Cup final as new stats reveal Jurgen Klopp’s squad have a superior record in finals than Chelsea players.

Here we consider the record of all players likely to appear in this years FA Cup Final and how they have previously got on when playing in major cup finals for club and country in the past.

Looking deep into Football Final Statistics research via OLBG, players in Jurgen Klopp’s squad have an average final win percentage of 62%, while Chelsea is considerably lower at 52%.

However, when it comes to the managers that trend reverses as Jurgen Klopp’s winning record is only 36% compared to 56% for Thomas Tuchel.

Chelsea vs Liverpool team changes

15:51 , Michael Jones

Thomas Tuchel makes just one change to the Chelsea team that started against Leeds in the Premier League last time out. Andreas Christensen is replaced in the back line with Thiago Silva.

Jurgen Klopp meanwhile makes five changes to the Liverpool starting XI that faced Aston Villa in their previous game. Andy Robertson and Ibrahima Konate come into the back line to replace Joel Matip and Kostas Tsimikas. In midfield Fabinho is out through injury and Curtis Jones drops to the bench as Jordan Henderson and Thiago Alcantara slot in. Mo Salah also returns taking the place of Diogo Jota in the front three.

Chelsea vs Liverpool line-ups

15:45 , Michael Jones

Chelsea XI: Mendy, Chalobah, Silva, Rudiger, James, Jorginho, Kovacic, Alonso, Mount, Pulisic, Lukaku

Liverpool XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Keita, Henderson, Thiago; Salah, Mane, Diaz

Wembley Atmosphere

15:40 , Jamie Braidwood

The atmosphere is building nicely at Wembley as the fans start to flock to the stadium.

Chelsea vs Liverpool

15:36 , Michael Jones

Since the turn of the millennium, Liverpool and Chelsea have met 68 times, with the Reds winning 24 matches, two fewer than the Blues’ 2 and there have ben 18 matches ending in a draw.

Chelsea vs Liverpool

15:31 , Michael Jones

From the players who appeared in the 2012 FA Cup final meeting between Chelsea and Liverpool only Jordan Henderson remains at either club.

Following on from this season’s Carabao Cup final, this will be the first FA Cup final to be contested between two managers from Germany with no German manager having ever won the competition.

This is also the first time since Arsenal vs Sheffield Wednesday in 1993 that both domestic cup finals in a season have been contested by the same two teams.

Will Liverpool come out on top once again or is it Chelsea’s turn to lift the silverware?

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Werner on facing Liverpool at Wembley

15:26 , Michael Jones

Timo Werner started in the FA Cup final last year when Chelsea lost 1-0 to Leicester and came on in the second half of the Carabao Cup final back in February but despite scoring a penalty in the shootout Werner was on the losing end of another domestic cup final with the Blues.

He gets another opportunity to collect a trophy today as Chelsea take on Liverpool at Wembley in what Werner believes will be a ‘very good game’

“The FA Cup final is always a nice game and with the stadium in Wembley full, the two sides, Chelsea and Liverpool, the atmosphere will be very good,” he said.“I think against Leicester it was also a very good game, a lot of fun to play, but we were unlucky we didn’t win it. This time I think there will be much more atmosphere. We had this in the Carabao Cup final and the FA Cup semi-final. We want to win this cup and the Chelsea fans will support us very good.

“Chelsea against Liverpool has always been very, very good games. A lot of fun for the people to watch and also very good for us players. This season we haven’t lost one game against them, we always played very good, and that gives us a lot of confidence to go into this game and say we want to win it.

“I think the reasons why the games have been good is they are open games, both teams want to win. No one is sitting deep and defending, both want to have the ball, both teams want to attack. Both teams have very fast players as well to attack the goal.“It was always up and down in those games this season and in the Carabao Cup final at the end, it was a shame that it was 0-0. I think it could be 3-3. So always good games and hopefully again this time.”

 (AFP via Getty Images)

(AFP via Getty Images)

Liverpool vs Chelsea is a modern rivalry steeped in FA Cup history

15:20 , Michael Jones

There is always a sense of theatre around matches between Chelsea and Liverpool. The teams meet today at Wembley in the FA Cup final and if the match has anything like the drama of February’s EFL Cup final, it will be a classic.

Jurgen Klopp’s team emerged victorious three months ago after a humdinger of a 0-0 draw and a penalty shootout where the tension built to unbearable levels. For much of the past two decades there have been attempts to manufacture a rivalry between the clubs that goes beyond the natural levels of antagonism. This fixture has not needed an extra helping of friction. It has an edge that goes back way beyond the Jose Mourinho-Rafa Benitez period of the 2000s and some of the first shots were fired in the FA Cup.

Both clubs took a long time to make an impact on the world’s oldest knockout tournament. Their 1965 semi-final showdown had huge significance. One of the cliches used around the cup is that it gives a chance for “unfashionable teams” to capture the public imagination. In the mid-60s, Liverpool and Chelsea were the most fashionable sides in the game.

Liverpool vs Chelsea is a modern rivalry steeped in FA Cup history

Thomas Tuchel happy for Chelsea to be ‘the bad guys’ against Liverpool

15:14 , Michael Jones

Thomas Tuchel has branded Jurgen Klopp “the master of being the underdog” as he praised his compatriot for fostering a countrywide “sympathy” for Liverpool.

Pep Guardiola lit a fuse between his Manchester City side and Klopp’s Liverpool by claiming “everyone in this country” wants the Reds to pull off an unprecedented quadruple this season.

Liverpool could yet sweep the board of Premier League, League Cup, FA Cup and Champions League.

But Chelsea can thwart Liverpool’s bid to break new ground in English football by beating Klopp’s men in Saturday’s FA Cup final at Wembley.

Thomas Tuchel happy for Chelsea to be ‘the bad guys’ against Liverpool

‘Liverpool’s season has surpassed my wildest dreams’ says Ibrahima Konate

15:07 , Michael Jones

Ibrahima Konate has admitted he could not have dreamt of being part of the extraordinary and historic season Liverpool are enjoying.

The defender, who signed from RB Leipzig last summer, is set to mark his first year at Anfield with an appearance in the FA Cup final as Liverpool continue their quest for the quadruple.

Konate has already played at Wembley twice, converting his penalty in the Carabao Cup final shootout win over Chelsea and opening the scoring in the FA Cup semi-final victory over Manchester City.

The 23-year-old has also played in every minute of the Champions League quarter- and semi-finals, scoring in each leg against Benfica in the last eight.

And he said: “Never at any moment in my life could I have imagined this. I knew I was joining a very big club, a club that has set out to win things, titles and trophies. But this season has been exceptional, a historic one for the club and it’s hard to put into words. It’s super exciting to be a part of.”

Ibrahima Konate: Liverpool’s season has surpassed my wildest dreams

Liverpool and the FA Cup

15:00 , Michael Jones

Liverpool have lifted the FA Cup seven times, the last coming in 2006, while they last appeared in the final in 2012 – losing 2-1 to Chelsea.

This will be the Reds’ 15th FA Cup final and of the previous 14, eight have been goalless at half-time. They have also won three of their four finals that have gone to extra-time, losing only to Arsenal in 1971.

Liverpool are aiming to become only the fifth team ever to win the FA Cup and League Cup in the same season – the others being Arsenal (1993), Liverpool (2001), Chelsea (2007) and Manchester City (2019).

Chelsea’s big weekend

14:54 , Michael Jones

Chelsea could have a history making weekend as, for the first time, the men’s and women’s FA Cup finals will be played across the same weekend, with Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea taking on Liverpool today before Emma Hayes’ Blues face Manchester City in the Women’s final tomorrow.

In the women’s game the holders and three-time winners, Chelsea, are going for the double, having aleady lifted the Women’s Super League title last Sunday whilst their opponents, Manchester City, are also aiming for their fourth FA Cup triumph and second piece of silverware this year after beating Chelsea 3-1 in the Continental League Cup in March.

The last five FA Cup finals have been won by either Chelsea or City, but this will be the first time the teams have met in the final which will be shown live on BBC One on Sunday.

‘You could write books about Liverpool squad’s resilience’ says Jurgen Klopp

14:48 , Michael Jones

The quest for the quadruple has taken its toll on Liverpool. Not, perhaps, on their players. “You could write books on the resilience of these boys,” reflected Jurgen Klopp, talking about Tuesday’s comeback at Aston Villa. But fatigue caught up with him.

“I had two afternoon naps yesterday,” he exclaimed. “Two. It worked well. I feel really good.” Re-energised, reacquainted with his beaming grin and booming laugh, Klopp heads to Wembley, looking to the FA Cup to provide a second trophy of the season and perhaps a first of three in May.

“I don’t run, I don’t fight,” he rationalised. “I have different kinds of challenges. It’s tough, but it’s fine. It has never been done before [the quadruple] so it’s like the first step in whichever island.”

Liverpool may be alone in achievement. But if not, it won’t be failure. Klopp is urging everyone else to savour the moments. “When I say, ‘enjoy the journey’ I mean it,” he explained. “We only cause ourselves problems as human beings. ‘Don’t come home without a quadruple’, for example: you will never be happy. If that is the only way to satisfy you that is really difficult.”

Jurgen Klopp: ‘You could write books about Liverpool players’ resilience’

‘Ups and downs’: Christian Pulisic on FA Cup final redemption and his Chelsea future

14:42 , Michael Jones

As a player who himself offers such sharp turns, Christian Pulisic finds it’s better to follow his instincts than overthink them. This has, after all, been a season that could have gone in so many different directions at so many defining moments. Chelsea could have been champions, and certainly should have been title contenders. It could have been Pulisic’s year, and the player’s father feels he should have played much more.

At the same time, Chelsea could well have gone out of business. There’s an element of symmetry about the fact that the club now look to have new owners before a domestic cup final against Liverpool, when the build-up to their last domestic cup final against Liverpool saw the first questions about Roman Abramovich’s future raised in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

That Carabao Cup final was itself a game that summed up much of this. Chelsea were the equal of a team that may now be the best in Europe, and could have secured another trophy had a shot off the post, marginal offside call or shootout penalty gone a different way.

‘Ups and downs’: Christian Pulisic on FA Cup redemption and his Chelsea future

Liverpool must add more silverware to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with club’s all-time greats

14:36 , Michael Jones

No one who has watched Liverpool’s development under Jurgen Klopp can deny the greatness of his team. This side is one of the most complete in the club’s history. They could still finish with a clean sweep of trophies. They could also end up with just the one they already have in the bag.

Liverpool have a chance to seal the second leg of the quadruple when they face Chelsea at Wembley today in the FA Cup final. This is a rematch of February’s EFL Cup final, which ended in an epic penalty shootout when all 11 Liverpool players who were on the pitch at the final whistle scored from the spot. Klopp’s side showed that they know how to get over the line in tight situations.

They need to show the same resilience over the next two weeks. The margins were tight against Chelsea three months ago. Thomas Tuchel’s team had the better chances in the 0-0 draw and Romelu Lukaku had a goal disallowed for the most ludicrously tight VAR decision. Wembley will present a real test.

Klopp’s team must add more silverware to stand among Liverpool’s all-time greats

Tuchel on how to beat Liverpool

14:30 , Michael Jones

Chelsea have matched Liverpool this season with three draws – two in the Premier and one in the Carabao Cup final which they lost in a penalty shoot-out.

Boss Thomas Tuchel has been asked how his team can go one step further and beat the Reds to which he replied: “They allow chances, and we proved it,

“We had big chances in the Carabao Cup final but it’s their approach [playing with a high defensive line]. Liverpool is the team that by far the most puts the strikers of the other team offside, so it’s not easy.

“They play this high line because there’s always pressure on the ball, them working hard and counter-pressing and pressing. It’s not easy to exploit these spaces because you need perfect timing, you need the connection between the guy with the pass and the guy who receives it, and then you have to be precise and you’re constantly under pressure.

“So that’s why they do it and they have a point, with the the amount of success they have with it. It’s their style of playing and it’s very difficult to find solutions but like always, you can find solutions if you have the perfect day – and we’re hoping for that.”

Henderson on verge of Liverpool milestone

14:23 , Michael Jones

Jordan Henderson will become the first Liverpool captain to lift six different trophies if the Reds are victorious in this afternoon’s FA Cup final.

Liverpool earned a penalty shootout win against the Chelsea back in February as Henderson went on to lift the Carabao Cup and are looking to claim their second piece of silverware of the campaign.

If they do, Henderson will make club history by securing his sixth different trophy as skipper having already lifted the Premier League, Champions League, Carabao Cup, Uefa Super Cup and Fifa Club World Cup.

 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Four major finals in one year and 108 days

14:17 , Michael Jones

Thomas Tuchel has been in charge of Chelsea for just one year and 108 days since taking over from Frank Lampard in January 2021. Today, he is preparing to take charge of his fourth major final at the club.

Last season his side were beaten 1-0 by Leicester City in the FA Cup final but two weeks later the Blues were crowned champions of Europe after a 1-0 victory of their own against Manchester City in the final of the Champions League.

Tuchel’s men have already added the Uefa Super Cup and Fifa Club World Cup to the trophy cabinet this season but the defeat to Liverpool on penalties in the Carabao Cup final stung and Tuchel is hoping his players will use the pain of that defeat to motivate them on Saturday.

“We want to get them back, simple as that,” said Blues midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

Tuchel himself added: “It will be another hard fight, given the quality and run of form of Liverpool, but this is what a cup final is all about.”

‘Wembley is a great stadium’ says Klopp

14:11 , Michael Jones

Speaking ahead of the game, Jurgen Klopp explained the feeling of taking charge of Liverpool at Wembley and addressed the rumour that he doesn’t respect domestic cup competitions.

“I said it after the Carabao Cup final, it was no different to the Champions League final three years ago. No difference.” he said. “It was blue and red, bam, both went for each other, so easy to see where we were and the others. Massive atmosphere, really, and I expect exactly the same again.

“It’s outstanding. Wembley is a great stadium. It would be nice if it could be a bit closer to Liverpool, to be honest, because it’s always a proper trip, but that’s the only negative thing I can say about it.

“People always said I’m not the biggest fan of the domestic cup competitions – that’s not true, it just never happened. Now this year it happened the second time. I honestly can’t wait to feel the atmosphere again.

“Let’s give it a go against an incredibly good opponent, unfortunately – but that’s the nature of the thing that in the final you barely meet teams that cannot play football.”

History maker

14:04 , Michael Jones

Liverpool could win both of England’s domestic cup competitions in the same season for the first time since 2000-01 if they beat Chelsea in the FA Cup today.

Jurgen Klopp’s side have also reached the Champions League final – where they will meet Real Madrid in Paris on 28th May making Klopp the first manager to reach the finals of the Champions League, FA Cup and League Cup in the same season.

Can the German boss collect all three cup trophies this year? Possibly even the Premier League title as well.

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Yellow strip for the Blues

13:55 , Michael Jones

Chelsea will be wearing their yellow second strip when they take on Liverpool at Wembley in this season’s FA Cup final and it isn’t the first time they’ve worn that colour in a cup final.

In fact, this will be the third time the Blues have worn yellow in an FA Cup final and the sixth time in a final overall. They donned the yellow kit in the 2009 FA Cup final and had yellow shirts for the second leg of the 1965 League Cup final.

The distinctive yellow socks and stripes on the shorts of the 1970s era made appearances in the 1970 FA Cup final replay, the 1972 League Cup final and both games of the replayed 1971 European Cup Winners’ Cup final.

Why does it matter?

The colour yellow has been associated with several firsts for the club, they were wearing it the first time they ever triumphed in the FA Cup, the League Cup and the Cup Winners’ Cup with the latter being Chelsea’s maiden European trophy.

Will it prove lucky for Thomas Tuchel’s men today?

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

A landmark FA Cup

13:49 , Michael Jones

The FA Cup is the world’s longest-running knockout football competition and is celebrating it’s 150th anniversary this year having started in the 1871-72 season although this game is only the 141st edition of the final.

The destination of the Cup will be decided on the day and teams will be able to name nine substitutes and make five substitutions, with a sixth allowed if it goes to extra time.

This is the first time that the same teams have met in the both the EFL Cup and FA Cup finals in the same season since Arsenal and Sheffield Wednesday did so in 1993.

On the 27th February, Liverpool won a penalty shootout against Thomas Tuchel’s men to secure the EFL Cup and today’s final will be the 10th time Liverpool and Chelsea have met in three seasons.

Six Premier League meetings in that time have resulted in three wins for Klopp’s side, one victory for the Blues and two draws. But, the last time the teams met in the FA Cup Chelsea won 2-0 in March 2020 at the fifth-round stage.

Chelsea vs Liverpool

13:38 , Michael Jones

Liverpool are chasing an unprecedented quadruple this season after reaching the Champions League final, while they are three points behind leaders Manchester City in the Premier League with two games to go.

The beat Liverpool beat Chelsea in the Carabao Cup final in February and face Thomas Tuchel’s men in the FA Cup final later today.

Eight-time FA Cup winners Chelsea are appearing in the final for the third successive season – and fifth in six seasons – after finishing runners-up to Arsenal in 2020 and Leicester in 2021.

Liverpool are appearing in their first final since 2012, when they lost 2-1 to Chelsea. The Blues have won the competition five times since the Reds last lifted the FA Cup in 2006.

It is the first FA Cup final to be played in front of a capacity crowd at Wembley since Manchester City beat Watford 6-0 in 2019 watched by 85,854 fans.

Coronavirus restrictions meant the 2020 final between Arsenal and Chelsea was played behind closed doors while a reduced crowd of 20,000 watched last season’s final between Leicester and Chelsea.

Early team news for Chelsea

13:27 , Michael Jones

Chelsea’s Thomas Tuchel also has some decisions to make regarding his midfield. Mateo Kovacic and N’Golo Kante both trained on Friday afternoon after missing recent matches for the Blues through injury.

Kovacic sustained a knock against Leeds United on Wednesday and Kante has missed Chelsea’s last three matches.

“We will try it today actually, which is pretty surprising news that we are even in the situation where we can try it.” Tuchel said about Kovacic returning to training . “Mateo wants to try it and the medical department gave the green light to try it.

“The ‘advantage’ is that the ligament is anyway torn from the last incident so there is no new injury, but heavy pain and heavily swollen. So we are hoping that maybe time is enough that he makes it but we will try it… in training and then we know more about it.”

He also gave an update on Kante saying: “He is also trying. He tried yesterday in team training and trained more or less everything. Hopefully now without a reaction.

“It was a reduced training session because of quite a long travel and fatigue of the travelling so it was not a high-intensity training session. We will also try today with him. He is keen to make it and hopefully he makes it to training 100 per cent, then we could plan with him for tomorrow [and that] would be crucial for us.”

Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ben Chilwell will definitely be absent for Chelsea and when asked whether he may gamble on Kovacic and Kante if they were not deemed to be 100 per cent fit Tuchel replied:

“It’s the moment to take risks, yes.”

Early team news for Liverpool

13:21 , Michael Jones

Liverpool will be without Fabinho for today’s FA Cup final after the Brazilian picked up a knock in their Premier League game against Aston Villa. Manager Jurgen Klopp is confident that the Reds have sufficient midfield options to cover Fabinho’s absence and is confident that the midfielder will be fit in time for the Champions League final later this month.

“[He] will definitely be back for the [Champions League] final, and for the Chelsea final and before, we will see, we don’t know.” said Klopp on Friday.

Thiago Alcantara, Jordan Henderson and Naby Keita are the other three midfielders to regularly take the field for Liverpool this season but Klopp has options with the likes of Harvey Elliott, Curtis Jones, James Milner and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also in the squad.

The manager was asked whether these players can play a part in Liverpool’s run-in and he replied: “A very important part. They played all the time a very important part,

“These few minutes a week where we can really train, without these boys showing the attitude they showed the whole year we have no chance to deliver the performances we delivered. That’s absolutely 100 per cent true.

“We will see. We might play tomorrow 90 minutes, we might play 120 minutes, that will not change the kick-off time for the Southampton game. Depending on the result from [Manchester] City on Sunday then we go for something or not, or whatever.

“We will see that at Southampton but we need to be ready for that game and we have to make decisions then again. Yeah, enough options for the moment, the job is now to find the right one. That’s it.”

Other than Fabinho, Jurgen Klopp has a full squad to select from so expect a very strong XI to line-up against Chelsea this afternoon.

‘The greatest thrill is playing at Wembley’: What the FA Cup final used to mean

13:15 , Michael Jones

There aren’t too many similarities between the football of 1953 and now, but there’s something about Saturday that means Chelsea and Liverpool players might feel the way Nat Lofthouse did ahead of that most famous of FA Cup finals. With a capacity crowd returning to Wembley for the first time since 2019, Liverpool enjoying their first in a decade and many of these Chelsea players gracing their first non-pandemic final, they might well have the same sense of wonder Lofthouse did in 1953. The Bolton Wanderers hero had played at Wembley many times, but even he was struck by the uniqueness of the stage as he lined up in the tunnel that day.

“All you can see of the stadium is a small square of light some 20 or 30 yards ahead,” Lofthouse is quoted as saying in David Tossell’s book The Great English Final. “There will be a joke and a laugh but the tension is there. Then you start the long walk towards that square of light.”

Graeme Sharp felt the same in 1984. “The closer you’re getting to the top, the noisier it’s becoming,” the Everton FA Cup hero tells The Independent. “Then you come out of the tunnel into the open air, and it’s just unbelievable.” The immediate thought, Sharp says, is that “I’m in a game now.” Lofthouse described it as being “in another world”.

The truth is that it has been a different world for the FA Cup final for some time, one which doesn’t inspire the same awe. Rather than again lamenting that the competition has lost meaning as it reaches its 150th anniversary, though, it is for once worth reflecting on what that meaning has been for so much of the time. They are values that are all the more important to cherish amid Champions League changes, and two years when everyone has been forced apart.

What the FA Cup final used to mean

Tuchel on being the ‘bad guys’ against Klopp’s Liverpool

13:05 , Michael Jones

Speaking about the Premier League title race in which Manchester City are battling against Liverpool, City boss Pep Guardiola said ‘“everyone in the country” supports Liverpool’ and would prefer to see them win the league.

That race takes a break this weekend as the Reds face Chelsea in the FA Cup final and Blues manager Thomas Tuchel admitted he understands where Guardiola was coming from with his comments.

He spoke about how Jurgen Klopp is a master at gaining sympathy for his team whether it is during his time at Anfield or previously as manger of Borussia Dortmund in Germany

“Jurgen Klopp is the master of being the underdog,” said Tuchel as he considered Guardiola’s words about Liverpool. “He can talk you into Liverpool being an underdog against Villarreal and against Benfica, and that it is a miracle how they make it to even draw against them. He does it a lot of times and that’s part of where the sympathy comes from.

“There’s nothing to be jealous of from my side. Klopp is a fantastic guy and a funny guy, one of the very, very best coaches in the world. And that’s what he does.

“When he trained Dortmund, the whole country [of Germany] loved Dortmund so now he trains Liverpool, the whole country loves Liverpool and it’s a big, big credit to him.

“This is what you deal with when you play against them. It’s always like this, but it’s also the fun part. So if we are the bad guys, no problem. We don’t want to have the sympathy of the country today. We want to have the trophy.”

 (AFP via Getty Images)

(AFP via Getty Images)

Klopp on ‘big’ FA Cup final and claiming ‘massive prize’

12:55 , Michael Jones

For the second time this season, Liverpool will face Chelsea in a domestic final at Wembley, with Jurgen Klopp’s side bidding to add the FA Cup to the Carabao Cup they won back in February.

The Liverpool boss spoke about the team’s run-in to the end of the season which feels like they play a final every few days as they look to clinch an unprecedented quadruple this term.

The next step in that goal is to win the FA Cup later today and Klopp spoke about the expectation leading up to the game saying:

“So, it’s a big expectation, to be honest. It is our first FA Cup final but we played two Carabao Cup finals – once we lost, once we won – so we have a little bit of a sense of the atmosphere, which is absolutely great.

“I loved the Carabao Cup final this year, it was an incredible game, it was against Chelsea and 120 minutes – madness! So, yeah, massive game coming up and you are right: final after final after final, but we make differences still. That’s a real final, there is no game coming after. So yeah, we are all really looking forward to it. It will be big.

“‘Second’ competitions like the Carabao Cup, I loved it so much, and now the FA Cup the same. That’s what I love most about it: that we really can say we are here, we arrived in the final and we used the full squad pretty much, and the extended squad if you want.

“Massive experience for the boys, for Kaide [Gordon], for Elijah [Dixon-Bonner], my God! I can remember his face when he came on and all these kind of things. It’s just great and the boys, the first-team players, they see it exactly the same. Always when you have this kind of journey it brings you closer together.

“We always [did] it but never for that long, to be honest. It started as a similar experience but ended earlier, so this year it is really special and it is a big one. It is our first one and we are a different kind of team than we were in the past.

“These boys are now really ready to go for the biggest prizes and the FA Cup is a massive prize. So, we will try to be the best version of ourselves and bring it home.”

 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

How Liverpool reached the FA Cup final

12:44 , Jamie Braidwood

Liverpool 3 Manchester City 2 (semi-final, Apr 16)

Liverpool ended Manchester City’s hopes of a treble in another engaging encounter at Wembley, having drawn 2-2 in the league six days previously. Defender Ibrahima Konate headed home an early corner before Zack Steffen’s error saw Sadio Mane force home from close range and then beat City’s second-choice goalkeeper at his near post on the stroke of half-time. Jack Grealish scored two minutes into the second half but Bernardo Silva’s 90th-minute goal came too late to give City a chance of forcing extra-time.

 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

How Liverpool reached the FA Cup final

12:29 , Jamie Braidwood

Nottingham Forest 0 Liverpool 1 (quarter-final, Mar 20)

Diogo Jota’s 78th-minute goal was enough to end Nottingham Forest’s valiant FA Cup run. The City Ground had been a graveyard for Premier League sides with Arsenal and Leicester both exiting at the hands of former Reds academy coach Steve Cooper’s exciting side. The match hinged on a three-minute spell preceding Jota’s close-range strike when Forest’s Philip Zinckernagel shot wide with only goalkeeper Alisson Becker to beat.

 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

How Liverpool reached the FA Cup final

12:14 , Jamie Braidwood

Liverpool 2 Norwich 1 (fifth round, Mar 2)

Cup specialist Minamino scored both goals to put Jurgen Klopp into his first FA Cup quarter-final. In a team registering 10 changes from one which won the Carabao Cup three days previously the Japan international took his tally to seven goals in eight cup games for the season. Lukas Rupp’s goal 14 minutes from time gave the visitors a lifeline but they could not prevent Liverpool booking a place in the last eight for the first time since 2015.

 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

How Liverpool reached the FA Cup final

11:59 , Jamie Braidwood

Liverpool 3 Cardiff 1 (fourth round, Feb 6)

Teenager Harvey Elliott marked his return from almost five months out with a serious ankle injury with his first goal for the club. Diogo Jota and Takumi Minamino both scored in the second half before the 18-year-old Elliott, sidelined since a fracture dislocation at Leeds in September, produced a brilliant swivelled finish in front of the Kop. New £37.5million signing Luis Diaz also made his debut, before Cardiff substitute Rubin Colwill scored an 80th-minute consolation.

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

How Liverpool reached the FA Cup final

11:45 , Jamie Braidwood

Liverpool 4 Shrewsbury 1 (third round, Jan 9)

Seventeen-year-old Kaide Gordon became Liverpool’s youngest FA Cup goalscorer when he equalised Daniel Udoh’s surprise opening goal for the League One visitors. The £1million signing from Derby last season, aged 17 years and 96 days, started the comeback on only his second appearance which was completed with two goals from midfielder Fabinho, the first a penalty, and a Roberto Firmino backheel.

 (AFP via Getty Images)

(AFP via Getty Images)

How Chelsea reached the FA Cup final

11:29 , Jamie Braidwood

Chelsea 2 Crystal Palace 0 (semi-final, Apr 17)

A tired-looking Chelsea laboured through a goalless first hour, before Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s powerful drive broke the deadlock. Palace were unable to find another gear, and Mason Mount’s neat finish sealed the Blues’ win.

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

How Chelsea reached the FA Cup final

11:14 , Jamie Braidwood

Middlesbrough 0 Chelsea 2 (quarter-final, Mar 19)

Lukaku and Ziyech handed Chelsea a stress-free victory on the pitch, amid one of the most hectic times off it. The Blues were unable to sell their full allocation of tickets for the Riverside Stadium clash, after owner Abramovich was sanctioned by the UK Government. Downing Street froze Abramovich’s UK assets having claimed to have proven his links to Russian president Vladimir Putin. The Government allowed Chelsea to continue trading, but only under strict terms of a temporary licence. The Blues had no real pressure dealing with Middlesbrough, however, and progressed to the last four.

 (AFP via Getty Images)

(AFP via Getty Images)

How Chelsea reached the FA Cup final

10:59 , Jamie Braidwood

Luton 2 Chelsea 3 (fifth round, Mar 2)

Roman Abramovich announced he had put Chelsea up for sale just hours before kick-off. Chelsea managed to shake off any distractions, then also a spirited and threatening Luton. Reece Burke put the hosts ahead just two minutes in, before Saul Niguez levelled midway through the first half. Harry Cornick rocked the Blues again by putting the Hatters 2-1 up, but Chelsea equalised through Werner before Lukaku grabbed the winner.

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

How Chelsea reached the FA Cup final

10:44 , Jamie Braidwood

Chelsea 2 Plymouth 1 (fourth round, Feb 5)

Kepa Arrizabalaga was the extra-time hero for Chelsea, saving Ryan Hardie’s spot-kick to sneak the Blues through without the need for a shoot-out. Macaulay Gillesphey stole an early lead for Argyle to shock Thomas Tuchel’s men, before Cesar Azpilicueta levelled with a poacher’s finish just before half-time. Chelsea could not crack the visitors, however, with the game drifting into extra time. Marcos Alonso’s effort had Chelsea edging towards victory, only for that late penalty to add yet more drama. Plymouth hoped to force a shoot-out, but instead Kepa saved Hardie’s spot-kick to send Chelsea through.

 (AFP via Getty Images)

(AFP via Getty Images)

How Chelsea reached the FA Cup final

10:28 , Jamie Braidwood

Chelsea have reached their third FA Cup final in a row and will take on Liverpool in the showpiece on Saturday. Here’s how Thomas Tuchel’s Blues’ route to another Wembley showdown.

Chelsea 5 Chesterfield 1 (third round, Jan 8)

Chelsea cruised through their opening encounter, with Timo Werner, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Romelu Lukaku and Andreas Christensen all on target in the first half. Hakim Ziyech added a fifth from the penalty spot 10 minutes after the break, with Chesterfield claiming a late consolation through Akwasi Asante.

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Liverpool vs Chelsea is a modern rivalry steeped in FA Cup history

10:13 , Jamie Braidwood

A modern rivalry, steeped in FA Cup history. Tony Evans remembers Liverpool’s FA Cup semi-final victory over Chelsea in 1965, that proved a turning point in the club’s history.

“There is always a sense of theatre around matches between Chelsea and Liverpool.. The teams meet today at Wembley in the FA Cup final and if the match has anything like the drama of February’s EFL Cup final, it will be a classic.

“Jurgen Klopp’s team emerged victorious three months ago after a humdinger of a 0-0 draw and a penalty shootout where the tension built to unbearable levels. For much of the past two decades there have been attempts to manufacture a rivalry between the clubs that goes beyond the natural levels of antagonism. This fixture has not needed an extra helping of friction. It has an edge that goes back way beyond the Jose Mourinho-Rafa Benitez period of the 2000s and some of the first shots were fired in the FA Cup.

“Both clubs took a long time to make an impact on the world’s oldest knockout tournament. Their 1965 semi-final showdown had huge significance. One of the cliches used around the cup is that it gives a chance for ‘unfashionable teams’ to capture the public imagination. In the mid-60s, Liverpool and Chelsea were the most fashionable sides in the game.”

Liverpool vs Chelsea is a modern rivalry steeped in FA Cup history

‘Ups and downs’: Christian Pulisic on FA Cup redemption and his Chelsea future

09:58 , Jamie Braidwood

Miguel Delaney spoke with Christian Pulisic, as the Chelsea forward looked ahead to playing in a FA Cup final in front of a full crowd for the first time, after ending up on the losing side in each of the last two seasons.

“‘Wembley is an incredible stadium and when it’s full it’s even better, so I think it’s going to be a great night. Playing in an FA Cup final without any limitations, I’ll enjoy that,’ Pulisic says. ‘For sure, the last two have been very tough to be on the wrong side. They were both very close. It’s a cup I definitely want to add to my collection.’

“Much of Pulisic’s experience will of course depend on whether he gets on the pitch. The American star has appeared in just over half of Chelsea’s matches this season, and often out of his best position. It has been a source of frustration, most of all to his father, who took to social media to complain about how his son is not used more.

“Pulisic himself is much more diplomatic. ‘Yeah, I think I of course want to be on the pitch, and recently with the limited times that I have had, I have been trying to make as big of an impact as I can. And prove that I should be out on the pitch. Sometimes that’s how it goes. I enjoy this club a lot, and I’m looking at everything and hoping that I can get more opportunities and yeah just really get out there on the pitch and help the team.’”

‘Ups and downs’: Christian Pulisic on FA Cup redemption and his Chelsea future

Ibrahima Konate: Liverpool’s season has surpassed my wildest dreams

09:45 , Jamie Braidwood

Richard Jolly also sat down with Ibrahima Konate, as the defender admitted he could not have dreamt of being part of the extraordinary and historic season Liverpool are enjoying.

Konate, who signed from RB Leipzig last summer, is set to mark his first year at Anfield with an appearance in this afternoon’s FA Cup final as Liverpool continue their quest for the quadruple.

Konate has already played at Wembley twice, converting his penalty in the Carabao Cup final shootout win over Chelsea and opening the scoring in the FA Cup semi-final victory over Manchester City.

Here’s the piece:

Ibrahima Konate: Liverpool’s season has surpassed my wildest dreams

Thomas Tuchel: Jurgen Klopp is the master of being the underdog.

09:32 , Jamie Braidwood

More from Tuchel: “You know Klopp is the master of being the underdog.

“He can talk you into being the underdog against Villareal and against Benfica, and it’s a miracle, miracle how they even draw against them.

“He can talk you into it and he does it all the time, he does it a lot of times. That’s part of it, that’s also like from where the sympathy comes.

“There’s nothing to be jealous of from my side. Klopp is a fantastic guy, funny guy, one of the very, very best coaches in the world and that’s what he does.

“When he trained Dortmund, the whole country loved Dortmund. So now he trains Liverpool and you have the feeling the whole country loves Liverpool.

“It’s big, big, big credit to him and this is what you deal with if you play a team against him, it’s always like this, but it’s always the fun part and so if we are the bad guys tomorrow, then no problem.

“If we take that role, no problem. We don’t want to have the sympathy of the country tomorrow – we want to have the trophy.”

Thomas Tuchel happy for Chelsea to be ‘the bad guys’ against Liverpool

09:31 , Jamie Braidwood

Some nice pre-match chat from Thomas Tuchel, here, as the Chelsea manager branded Jurgen Klopp “the master of being the underdog” as he praised his compatriot for fostering a countrywide “sympathy” for Liverpool.

Responding to Pep Guardiola’s claim that “everyone in this country supports Liverpool”, Tuchel said: “There are huge sympathies for Liverpool, I feel that as well, in the whole country and I can understand it.

“Of course it is also because of Jurgen, but in general what this club stands for and how they run the business, and how the fans push their team.

“You have the feeling it’s purely about football and this is like a huge history in this club and there is a huge sympathy for it.

“If you fight against it, like Pep for many, many years, I can understand his comment that it feels sometimes like this.

“But at the same time, I don’t think it’s only here. It’s in Germany like this and in France too.

Thomas Tuchel happy for Chelsea to be ‘the bad guys’ against Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp: ‘You could write books about Liverpool squad’s resilience’

09:15 , Jamie Braidwood

Richard Jolly was with Jurgen Klopp as the Liverpool manager looked ahead to the FA Cup final.

“The quest for the quadruple has taken its toll on Liverpool. Not, perhaps, on their players. ‘You could write books on the resilience of these boys,’ reflected Jurgen Klopp, talking about Tuesday’s comeback at Aston Villa. But fatigue caught up with him.

“‘I had two afternoon naps yesterday,’ he exclaimed. ‘Two. It worked well. I feel really good.’ Re-energised, reacquainted with his beaming grin and booming laugh, Klopp heads to Wembley, looking to the FA Cup to provide a second trophy of the season and perhaps a first of three in May.”

Jurgen Klopp: ‘You could write books about Liverpool players’ resilience’

Chelsea vs Liverpool has every ingredient to be an all-time Wembley classic

09:01 , Jamie Braidwood

Let’s kick off with an FA Cup final scene-setter from Miguel Delaney:

“There is a classic FA Cup final decision to be made, as the competition celebrates its 150th anniversary. Those familiar with its lore might sense echoes of Manchester United’s Jim Leighton in 1990, or Leicester City’s top scorer Ken Leek in 1961.

“Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel is currently weighing up whether to start his own expensive signing, Romelu Lukaku. Whatever decision the German makes will have bigger repercussions, not least for Lukaku’s career, but it could also follow 1961 and 1990 in dictating the game. That points to something else that stands out, on a day when the FA Cup will celebrate so much history. Like the best of previous finals, this one really is all about the game alone.”

Chelsea vs Liverpool has every ingredient to be an all-time Wembley classic

Good morning

08:55 , Jamie Braidwood

Hello and welcome to live build-up to the FA Cup final as Liverpool face Chelsea in what promises to be another Wembley classic.

It has been less than three months since the sides last met in a cup final, as Liverpool prevailed on penalties to win the Carabao Cup and set in motion their quest for an unprecedented quadruple.

It remains a possibility for Jurgen Klopp’s side, even if Manchester City are closing in on the Premier League title, but Chelsea and Thomas Tuchel will be out for revenge as they aim to win the competition for the ninth time.

We’ve kicked off early – as it tradition on FA Cup final day – and we’ll bring you all the build-up and preview content you need before kick-off later this afternoon.