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For either Manchester City or Burnley, who square off at the Etihad Stadium in the FA Cup quarterfinal against the intriguing managerial subplot, a Wembley semi-final beckons. Guardiola played 62 times with current Burnley manager Vincent Kompany during his time at City, as part of an incredible 360 appearances for the legendary Sky Blue, but as the Etihad manager has demonstrated in his eight managerial head-to-head matches against his former assistant Mikel Arteta (W7, L1), he doesn’t like the student to defeat the teacher.
Guardiola’s unstoppable City juggernaut has advanced to the FA Cup semifinals in each of the previous four seasons, and there doesn’t seem to be much chance that streak will end here given that City has won the last eight home games against Burnley by a combined score of 31-2! By extending that even further, City would make history as well, turning into only the third team in history to advance to five straight FA Cup semifinals.
Undoubtedly, Burnley will have something to say about it. The revitalized Clarets will have a 7800-person traveling support as they attempt to reach their first FA Cup semifinal since 1973/74. The runaway Championship leaders should have more confidence after a 3-1 win over Hull City in midweek, but Kompany is aware of the magnitude of the challenge ahead after Manchester United eliminated them from the Carabao Cup.
Although Kompany, who ironically has a statue outside the Etihad, is likely to have a tearful day, he won’t let emotion take control of his judgment as Burnley looks to extend their 18-match unbeaten streak across all competitions. (W14, D4). Burnley’s prospects are slim considering they are huge underdogs, but they may find some solace in the fact that Middlesbrough of the Championship League was the last visiting team to triumph in FA Cup competition at the Etihad back in 2015.
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