FA Cup & Premier League predictions: Chris Sutton v singer and Arsenal fan Sam Tompkins

Home » FA Cup & Premier League predictions: Chris Sutton v singer and Arsenal fan Sam Tompkins

Cole Palmer has been Chelsea’s standout performer this season – can he lift them again to sink former club Manchester City in Saturday’s FA Cup semi-final?

“Pep Guardiola and City have not made many errors in the transfer market, but there’s one,” said Sport’s football expert Chris Sutton.

“It’s not just his goals, it’s the way he moves and takes the ball and makes things happen. Chelsea’s plan a lot of the time is basically ‘get the ball to Palmer’. When it goes to him, you think ‘here we go’, and it will be the same at Wembley.

“Whatever happens in this game, I think Pep will regret selling him last summer.

“He may not have thought Palmer was going to develop like he has done, but he is one hell of a player and I am sure he would have benefited City this season – including moments like Wednesday, when they needed a game-changer against Real Madrid.”

As well as the FA Cup, Sutton is making predictions for every Premier League game this season against a variety of guests.

For all of this weekend’s games in both competitions, he takes on singer-songwriter and Arsenal fan Sam Tompkins.

Tompkins new single Numb was released this week. His debut album Hi My Name Is Insecure is out on 24 May.

Sam grew up in Eastbourne but is a lifelong Arsenal fan.

“I can’t really put my finger on the moment I started supporting them, because it’s more that it was always around me,” he told Sport.

“My grandad and my uncle on my mum’s side were huge Arsenal fans and one of my earliest memories is of being sat on my grandad’s knee, watching a game.

“That is how it started, then my first season of watching football fully as a human being on this planet was the Invincibles season, and my first hero on earth was Thierry Henry.

“So, you can imagine how much that locked me in – but under false pretences of what was to come for Arsenal!

“It was impossible to live up to that, and it gave me such an unrealistic idea of what the Premier League is like – but I would not trade my fan journey with anyone.

“I have seen us go through so many bad times, so to see us doing this well again is amazing, especially with Bukayo Saka, who has come through the academy to become our star player, at the centre of it all too. That is important, and refreshing.

“At the start of this year I actually got to present Martin Odegaard with his player of the month award, which was nuts because they hadn’t told me I was doing it. They just surprised me as I was getting in the lift down to pitchside to do an interview.

“Also, I had a recent tragedy in my family and I got a letter signed from Mikel Arteta himself, which was a super nice touch, and meant an awful lot.

“So, I really feel like after all these years, I support the right club.”

Sam is enjoying watching the Gunners challenging for the top honours again after a few lean years, and feels there is more to come from Arteta’s side, whether they win the Premier League this season or not.

“When I look back at the Invincibles side, I loved so many of the players but there is something about our team now where I feel, if I was a kid now, it would give me the same feeling,” he explained.

“The biggest thing I love about us now is our drive. There was that moment a few games ago where we were 3-0 up against Brighton and Gabriel blocked a shot in stoppage time, then the whole team celebrated with him like he had scored.

“That’s the kind of elite mentality we have not had for years, and it is what you need to win things.

“We are a young team too. Declan Rice has transformed us in the middle of the park and the way the ball is fed through. He makes you feel so confident as a fan, and he is going to be so important for us for the next few years.

“And I have such a soft spot in my heart for Ben White, who has been fantastic for us, especially in this calendar year.

“I performed at Ben’s wedding last summer and since then we’ve become quite good mates, so to see him playing so well is amazing.”

Luton v Brentford (Premier League, 15:00 BST)

Live commentary on Radio 5 Live.

I am at this game for 5 Live, and it will be my first time at Kenilworth Road all season.

There is an argument that had you had offered Luton this situation before the campaign started, and told them that with five games to go, they would have a chance of staying up, then they would have taken it.

However, I cannot help thinking there have been a few missed opportunities for the Hatters in recent weeks, and they should be in a much stronger position.

This is a huge game for Luton because it is a chance for them to climb out of the bottom three and also drag Brentford back into the relegation fight, or at least make life uncomfortable for them.

The Bees are not safe yet but after beating Sheffield United last week, they probably only need one more win.

I don’t see them getting it here, though. Both teams have got a goal in them, but also I don’t see either of them keeping a clean sheet.

Sutton’s prediction: 1-1

Sam’s prediction: They will both throw the kitchen sink at each other, but it will end up in a draw. 2-2

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