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FA Cup Final betting trends with 28/1 Bet Builder
Alex Wrigley
Alex Wrigley
June 1, 2023
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Content Editor at Free Super Tips, Alex was born in the shadow of Old Trafford and is an avid Man Utd fan. After graduating from university he combined his love of football, writing and betting to join FST and now closely follows goings-on in all of the top European leagues.

The world’s oldest cup competition ends the 142nd iteration of the tournament at Wembley on Saturday as the Manchester derby heads to London and to say it’s a game of high stakes would be an understatement.

Manchester United are the FA Cup’s second-most successful team with 12 trophies to their name and are the only side in history to win the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League in the same season.

However, Manchester City are looking to add their name to that exclusive list and their arch-rivals, along with Inter Milan next weekend, are the only side standing in their way.

With Saturday’s huge final at the forefront of our minds, along with our in-depth match preview I have compiled a host of stats on every FA Cup final since the Red Devils’ landmark win in 1999 in an attempt to unearth some FA Cup final betting trends.

I have also put together a tasty 28/1 FA Cup Final betting trends Bet Builder, which Betfair customers can back below in a single click! Not a Betfair customer? Not to worry. New customers can click below to get up to £30 in free bets!

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Match goals & both teams to score markets

Trends bet – Under 2.5 goals

We all know cup finals can be cagey affairs and the same is true for the FA Cup, with an average of 2.16 goals-per-game being scored over the last 24 years.

This only takes into account goals in regulation time, with extra-time goals not counting towards pre-match bets.

While 2.16 goals-per-game seems a reasonable figure, the data is slightly skewed by a few high-scoring affairs. Only ten, or 41%, of the 24 finals analysed saw the over 2.5 goal line breached, while 46% of them saw fewer than two goals.

To put that into context, this season’s Premier League matches saw Over 1.5 goals scored in 76% and Over 2.5 goals in 53% of fixtures.

With so many low-scoring games, it should not come as a surprise to see a bounty of clean sheets.

Only a third of these 24 FA Cup finals saw both teams get on the scoresheet and only one of the last five has.

Once again, this is significantly lower than you would expect, with 52% of Premier League games this season featuring goals at both ends.

Extra-time & penalties

Last season’s FA Cup final between Liverpool and Chelsea was the first to be decided on penalties since Liverpool’s last cup final win over West Ham in 2006 and they are two of just three penalty-shootout wins since 1999.

The other saw Manchester United involved as they lost to Arsenal in 2005, while exactly a quarter of the finals analysed went to extra-time.

Referring back to the Premier League stats once again, this is only slightly higher than the percentage of Premier League games to end all square this season.

Favourites vs underdogs

Trends bet – Manchester City to win in normal time

Historical pre-match odds only go back to 2004/05 but of these 18 FA Cup finals, 13 of them were eventually won by the pre-match favourites.

These consist of eight odds-on favourites, with the shortest-priced winner being Chelsea’s triumph over Portsmouth in 2009/10. They went off as 17/100 favourites, closesly followed by a certain Manchester City, who thrashed Watford in 2018/19 to live up to their 1/5 favourites tag.

The shortest-priced favourite to lose the final is also Manchester City, a decade ago when they faced Wigan. Kicking off as 1/3 favourites, City lost the final 1-0 thanks to an injury-time Ben Watson winner.

It’s safe to say the two teams’ fortunes have gone separate ways in the decade since.

In the five finals won by the underdog, the favourite on the day was odds-against three times, with that Manchester City defeat to Wigan and Chelsea’s loss to Arsenal in 2016/17 being the only time the underdog defied odds-on pre-match odds.

Interestingly, specifically because Manchester City are 1/2 to win the tie in normal time, the game has only gone to extra-time only three of the 11 times in which there has been an odds-on favourite.

Yellow & red cards

Trends bet – Over 3.5 cards & a red card to be shown

Anybody who watched the Europa League final on Wednesday will know that cup finals can be hot-tempered affairs and Saturday is expected to be even more fiery as two arch-rivals go head to head.

The last 15 FA Cup finals have averaged a shade over four cards-per-game, and red cards have been dished out regularly in recent years.

Only six players have been sent off in the 141 FA Cup finals so far and, incredibly, four of those have come in the last decade.

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