Arsenal’s status as members of the English footballing aristocracy means the odds are stacked in their favour when it comes to the pursuit of FA Cup final glory at the expense of Hull City.
The Gunners finished the Premier League season 42 points better off than the Humberside side, meaning Steve Bruce’s men must overcome a trend that encompasses all but four of the 25 finals since 1990.
Tottenham (1991), Everton (1995) and Liverpool (2001) join Wigan (2013) as the only teams to defeat a rival who had finished the campaign in a higher position in the footballing pyramid during that period.
Of the aforementioned upwardly-mobile quartet, only Wigan were capable of surmounting a points difference as great as the gulf between Arsenal and Hull in the 2013/14 standings.
Spurs were five behind Nottingham Forest in 1991, Everton were 38 behind Manchester United in 1995, while Liverpool were but a single point behind Arsenal in third place back in 2001.
North London’s Wembley representatives are priced up at 11/25 to bring the crushing weight of the status quo down upon the Tigers, themselves rated a sceptical 11/2 shot, in normal time at HQ.
Not bad considering Arsene Wenger has already out-thought Bruce home and away this term.
Sign up with the boys in black and gold at bwin.com post haste and receive a £30 free bet that could harvest a useful £13.20 profit, enough to purchase not one, but two official Gunners dog leads and still have enough left over for a kebab, if invested in an Arsenal win.
Punters fearful that a Hull outfit who have earned themselves a reputation for stinginess this term might down the wager by taking the match into extra time should take note that a mere three of the last 20 FA Cup finals have been decided with recourse to an additional period.