Manchester City vs Watford : will attempt to complete a domestic treble as they meet Watford in the FA Cup final at Wembley Stadium on Saturday.
Pep Guardiola’s men would become the first side to complete a full scoop of English trophies after retaining the Premier League and winning the Carabao Cup.
Watford have pieced together one of their most impressive campaigns in their history, and an FA Cup victory would represent a first after previously finishing runners-up in 1983-84.
Javi Gracia has watched his team grow over the season but three consecutive defeats at the conclusion of the Premier League was a disappointing end for the Hornets.
Liverpool chased City until the final day for the Premier League trophy and now the pressure is off Guardiola and his world-class team.
The English champions missed their objective of UEFA Champions League glory but they have proven their standing in world football with a fantastic end to the season.
An astonishing 21 victories in their final 22 games in all competitions guaranteed a successful conclusion to proceedings.
However, City need one more win to complete an English treble that has never been done before, also providing the Etihad Stadium club their first league and cup double in their history.
City would join an elite band of English teams to win the double, becoming only the eighth club in history to achieve the feat.
Watford stand in the way of the champions’ date with destiny and the Hornets have stung many an opponent this term.
Gracia’s side was expected to struggle this season but the 49-year-old Spaniard has impressed during his first full campaign in charge after taking over from Marco Silva in January, 2018.
Watford found methods to defeat Tottenham Hotspur and Everton in the Premier League this term but it has been their consistency against their fellow mid-table sides that has impressed.
Gracia’s 4-2-2-2 system is unconventional in English football but it has provided his team with a platform to succeed.
The narrow formation could give City large amounts of space on both wings, but Watford will suffocate the central positions if their usual game plan remains in place.
Gerard Deulofeu has been known to football fans for years, but the 25-year-old has finally begun to fulfil his potential. He is facing a fight to be fit for the cup final but if he starts, he will be Watford’s most likely threat.
The forward has 12 goals and five assists in the Premier League and FA Cup this season, and City will have to pay special attention to the Spaniard if he wins his fitness race.
Gracia gave his thoughts ahead of the final and said he thinks “it’s possible” his team can win:
Guardiola has won almost everything in football but the FA Cup remains one trophy he is yet to capture.
Victory at Wembley will mean the Catalan boss has won England’s three major trophies five times in just three years.
Gracia was a defensive player during his years in La Liga, but it is debatable whether he will be able to stop the attacking juggernaut he will be face as a coach in London when City arrive in town.