Team news, team news. Who wants some team news? Here you go, Torres is on the bench.
Chelsea: Cech, Bosingwa, Ivanovic, Terry, John Terry's baggage, Cole, John Terry's self-regard, Lampard, Mikel, Ramires, Mata, Kalou, Drogba.
Not too surprising line-up named by Kenny Dalglish. Downing starts for Liverpool, which means Carroll can't play in case they link up well together. Carragher also misses out and puts his hand over the TV cameras as he makes his pre-match walkabout.
Liverpool: Reina; Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Jose Enrique; Spearing, Henderson; Downing, Gerrard, Bellamy; Suarez.
ESPN point out that if Liverpool win today, they'll have completed the domestic double. Well, it would be a domestic double but I take their point. If they do win today, it'll be a just about acceptable season – a sign that the slump Liverpool and the FA Cup – have experienced over the last few years. As for Chelsea, I think Roberto Di Matteo's future will be decided by the result of the month's other final rather than anything that happens today.
Wonga.com are sponsoring ESPN's coverage. It's a little known fact that Liverpool actually bought Andy Carroll for an extremely competitive 78p but took a loan out from wonga.com to cover the transfer and with the 33,698% APR ... Well, it's £35m before you can say fluffed header.
Steven Hughes has been listening to the radio: "Gerrard on 5 Live: 'It's been astonishing but no surprise to me'". Well, 33,698% is very high.
"On ITV, Roy Keane is talking about Dalglish threatening to hunt him down when he backed out of a move to Blackburn," begins Phil Wren. "Kenny may have an icy cold stare but I think there's only be one one winner there."
Good omens for a thrilling game: the two sides played out a 3-2 barnstormer in the 2005 Carling Cup final as well as a 4-4 draw in the Champions League knockout stages in 2009.
Bad omens for a thrilling game: Stewart Downing.
* Warning: gallery may contain comedy wigs and pictures of midtable indie bands.
New Wembley may have been offensively expensive but it does create a very good noise (posh seats excepted). Fabrice Muamba is at the game and gets a huge round of applause. A lady in a nice dress is belting out Abide With Me.
"Anyone out there know of a Cup Final live feed," asks Mac Millings. "Doesn't have to be great. As a 40-year-old man of dubious virility, I'm used to having a weak stream." You could try our gallery. It may be 30 minutes behind the action and only be still images but it's a step up from reading this.
"Any white suits at all?" asks Gary Naylor. The suits in the FA box are pretty much exclusively white and male, Gary.
Another lady in a nice dress sings the national anthem. The problem with having good singers doing the anthem is that no one else has the courage to join in for fear of humiliation. They should get an lager-addled fan to belt it out, mumbling the bits - 84% of the song - they don't know. On Twitter, people are saying Liverpool fans booed the anthem. Are they seceding?
1 min: We're off. Drogba attempts to do a Di Matteo with a shot from distance after 0.0004 seconds. It flies over.
3 min: My God, the sun is out at Wembley. The players are stunned at feeling the first warmth in two months. In defence of Downing by Chris Bannister. "What we also must not forget is that during the majority of Downing's time at the club, Boro, like Liverpool, were a mid-table side focussed on cup competitions. He's a perfect fit for the club. Just a few thoughts, now I'll put on my tin hat and await the inevitable barrage of derision from Liverpool fans."
5 min: Cole stops Johnson's scrabble down the wing. And yes, Clive Tyldesley did just say that Graham Norton got inside Dider Drogba last night. Our double entendre count for the day is now filled. And that wasn't a double entendre.
7 min: It's Liverpool who are in control at the moment, happy to keep possession. To be fair, Chelsea coped with that fairly well against Barcelona. Kalou and Drogba nearly combine to create a shot on the edge of the area.
10 min: Cech route-ones it into the stands as Chelsea go for the more straightforward approach. Enrique then tiki-takas it into the stands. So differing approaches with the same results so far.
GOAL!!! Chelsea 1-0 Liverpool (Ramires 10) Ramires scores another important goal. His finish isn't quite as sublime as in Barcelona. Spearing gives the ball away in midfield, he muscles past Enrique and shoots straight at Reina's legs – they kindly usher the ball into the net.
13 min: Well, Liverpool have to attack now. We may have a game on our hands now. Mata surges clear and Gerrard brings him down but the ref waves play on. Bellamy's shot is then blocked brilliantly by Ivanovic. We do have a game on here.
15 min: Liverpool have been roused by that goal. Suarez attempts to repeat his 45-yard lob against Norwich. It's a carbon copy but without the going anywhere near the goal bit.
17 min: Ramires tries a chip of his own – he does have previous – but Reina handles it on the second attempt. Not his finest game so far. "Whoever had 11:40 in the pool for the first time Suarez would absurdly
call for a hand ball wins," chortles JR in Illinois.
19 min: Kalou's had some decent runs down the left and nearly plays Lampard in. "Reina was left exposed but really should have saved that," says Simon McMahon. "I note the link alongside the MBM in which he claims Chelsea have not 'delivered' for Fernando Torres. Delivered what exactly? An FA Cup winners medal? The Champions League? A hundred grand a month into his bank account? Sometimes modern footballers can be so stupid it's painful." In Reina's defence, he's trying to deliver Nando an FA Cup winner's medal.
22 min: Replays of the goal. Reina should have had it. "Re: Liverpool seceding," says Ryan Dunne. "Given his response to bening sporting queries, can you imagine Kenny Dalglish being asked his thoughts on all the Real News stories of the day? ('the death of the Big Society? mibbees Aye, mibbees naw') etc."
24 min: Kalou again. He jinks into the Liverpool area and Agger gets the ball away at the last minute.
27 min: Suarez cuts a frustrated figure, he's not getting the service Chelsea's front players are from Mata. Kalou has another chance but wafts over. I'm not sure I've ever typed "Kalou" and "chance" so many times in one-half. I'm not sure anyone has.
29 min: Suarez gets the ball - but from a ricochet off a tackle but is dispossessed himself. Henderson gifts the ball to Chelsea in his own half – incredibly sloppy stuff he was under no pressure. Lampard shoots from 40 yards out and it trundles wide.
31 min: Spearing launches the ball forward but Gerrard doesn't go through with his run and the ball bounces through to Cech. "Re: an independent Liverpool," writes Jack Hunter. Is your name really Jack Hunter, does a name get more action-packed than that? "If only they had some kind of king figure to act as their monarch."
33 min: Free-kick for Chelsea around 35-yards out. Mata swings it in but Liverpool clear. Here's Phil Sawyer: "The psychology of superstition's an interesting thing. If Liverpool score, I'll usually carry on slavishly doing whatever I was doing at the time of the goal in the misguided notion that I somehow have an effect on events (behaviour which, as a rationalist, annoys me - insert your own 'if you're a rationalist why do you support Liverpool' gag here). This left me wheezing quite badly by the end of the match when I happened to be smoking a fag when Liverpool scored their first goal in Istanbul. However, does it follow that you should change your activities when the opposition score? Following that Chelsea goal should I get out of my chair? Stop drinking (like that's going to happen)? Stop reading the MBM?" Don't stop reading the MBM! It'll cut our traffic by 50%.
35 min: Cole advances but loses his footing and Liverpool counter-attack. Liverpool are stagin most of their attacks down the left through Enrique and Downing but they're not getting a great deal of joy.
37 min: Skrtel is caught offside at a Liverpool free-kick. Gerrard is down after Mikel nips at his heels – he's booked.
40 min: Downing crosses! He's doing what he's paid to do! And it's a good one too and forces a corner. Cech punches clear awkwardly but it's enough. "If Liverpool does secede, do Everton fans then secede from Liverpool?" wonders Pete Gilson. "And what about Tranmere fans? Or people who prefer lacrosse? This could descend into chaos very quickly."
43 min: Downing crosses again! Two in a half! Both of them half-decent! He's starting to come a bit of a danger. Enrique brings down Ramires as Liverpool attack. "Is Ramires sucking his thumb in a Totti-like fashion in the photograph?" asks Steven Hughes. "Is he commenting that even a teething infant could walk through Liverpool's hapless defence? "
44 min: Agger booked for a full-bodied lunge at Mikel.
Half-time: Liverpool mount a final attack in the first-half but Gerrard's flick goes to a blue shirt. Liverpool fought back briefly when they conceded but have offered little since. Chelsea are sitting on their lead with relative ease and there's little creatively from Liverpool. Still, Downing - two crosses.
Half-time emails: "People who pilloried Lucas Leiva the last few years must be wishing he was fit now," says CS Smith. "A Henderson-Spearing midfield might not even work in the Championship."
"Is it just me who thinks that Stewart Downing constantly has the look of someone who's worried they've left the iron on," says Lee Broderick. "Considering his anonymity in a Liverpool shirt this season, I suppose its quite possible he's been nipping home mid-game to double check. Just a thought."
46 min: Off again. "Liverpool must beef up the bland midfield: Downing off, Aquilani on," says Karan Ahuja. "Henderson off, Meireles on. Oh wait a minute."
47 min: Ashley Cole has space in the box but his ball to Mata is cut out. A good chance to seal the game there. "To be fair to Liverpool, they usually end up with a trophy when they've been this bad and/or complacent in a first half of a final, don't they?" points out Shoaib Akhtar. I assume not that one.
48 min: Corner to Liverpool but Bellamy's delivery was terrible, bobbling along the ground apologetically. He's no Downing. Talking of Craig ... "I think the problem with Liverpool in the first half was that Bellamy didn't look particularly angry about anything," says Phil Sawyer. "He needs an incident to get him riled up and gabbling angrily at anyone nearby, which is when he generally plays at his best. If Gerrard's got any sense he should get a reducer in early doors when the second half kicks off, since the Chelsea players don't seem to be obliging."
50 min: Corner to Chelsea now. Let's see if they can do better than Liverpool. Cole won it. Lampard's delivery is good and it reaches Terry, who is grappling with Skrtel, but the ball flies over. And I think he fouled Skrtel too. "What with all this talk of two, TWO, whole crosses within just the one half, is it likely that there will be a doping spot check on Downing before the day is out? Or are Liverpool fielding a ringer?" wonders Jonny Mills.
51 min: Gerrard slips the ball past Lampard and rushes into the area he goes down but he's lost possession and doesn't bother to appeal for a penalty. Mata's excellent ball is cleared by a Agger diving header. "What with ITV Sport's determination to be shamelessly biased towards English clubs, you'd think they'd be less keen on Liverpool winning," says Chuck Schick. "What with them seceding and that."
GOAL!!! Chelsea 2-0 Liverpool (Drogba 51) His eighth goal in nine Wembley starts. Lampard plays a great ball through to Drogba and he hits it across Reina and into the net. Brilliant finish.
54 min: Based on their play so far, Liverpool should be able to muster an equaliser sometime in the 24th century. Here's Suárez though, he slams the ball across the six-yard box and Cech has to dive to gather. Drogba then volleys wide at the other end. "What with ITV Sport's determination to be shamelessly biased towards English clubs, you'd think they'd be less keen on Liverpool winning," says Chuck Schick. "What with them seceding and that."
55 min: Here comes Carroll! Spearing is off.
56 min: That subsitution was merciful for Spearing who looked out of his depth. "Spearing getting absolutely skinned by Lampard in the midfield on the Drogba goal is another example of Liverpool missing Lucas, and, well, a midfield," says Lorenzo Landin. "Also Suarez looks even more constantly out of position than usual. Every time the ball is on the wings he's been running over to stand right in front of the winger."
58 min: Drogba is jogging about looking – justifiably – pleased with himself. What a superb player he's been for Chelsea down the years, once he was clear it was almost inevitable he would score. "Considering Chelsea's continued search for a new home to move to from Stamford Bridge, why don't they apply to become tenants at Wembley," says David Wall. "It'd help the FA pay off their debt on the place and, given his scoring record at the place, Chelsea could postpone replacing Drogba indefinitely. A win-win situation if ever there was one."
60 min: Kalou trots towards the area with very little interference from Liverpool. He has enough time to set himself and attempt to curl the ball into the top corner. Which he doesn't. A few people wondering why Liverpool haven't chosen a certain player. "Watching one of the worst Liverpool teams I've ever seen I was wondering what it was Maxi Rodrigeuz has done wrong. Must have been bad not to get a game with this lot," says Tony Reekie.
62 min: Drogba jogs forward and five Liverpool players let him get on with it. Why would you bother closing him down? He's only Chelsea's most potent player.
63 min: Lampard's swerving free-kick creeps past Reina's left-hand post.
GOAL!!!!! Chelsea 2-1 Liverpool (Carroll 63) Andy Carroll?! He collects the ball around eight yards out and as he fumbles about, the entire television audience is waiting for an air shot. But get this – he thumps it into the roof of the net. Brilliant finish.
66 min: My oh my, Liverpool needed that. Chelsea just needed to go through the motions to win or so it seemed and Carroll is rampant now. The strutting powerful figure who was terrific for Newcastle.
69 min: Can Liverpool maintain their momentum. Well Suárez has a half-chance. Carroll spreads out to Downing but he pushes over his marker and concedes the foul. "I'm all for Liverpool seceding from a kigdom that never much cared for it," trumpets Gary Naylor. "The new city state would need its founding marking with a new name though and, with Monaco and Andorra and the likes taken, I'd like to suggest 'Everton'." I got for "Manchester".
71 min: This is turning into the best Cup final since West Ham-Liverpool in 2006. Carroll wins a towering header and flicks it back to Gerrard on the edge of the area but his volley is 40 yards or so over. That header by Carroll was magnificent.
73 min: Torres is having a jog on the sidelines. Suárez's stinging shot is turned around the post by Cech for a corner. Agger's header flies wide. Not sure Chelsea have left their own half in the last 10 minutes or so.
75 min: Carroll is running around like a big lolloping dog now. Bellamy has a header but Carroll steams in to nick it off him and flattens his team-mate.
77 min: Andy Carroll is the greatest player of the last 500 years. His header goes just over. Meireles is on for Ramires. "Kenny missed a trick, he should have selected a bin in midfield instead of poor Jay," says Anton Bolton. "At least it would have stayed in position, wouldn't have bought Lampard's dummy and the average household bin is taller."
79 min: "So after 180 minutes of defending against a false 9, Chelsea have simply forgotten how to deal with an old-fashioned center-forward. Is that what's happening?" asks Paulo Padilha. In a word, yes. Barcelona have to realise that route one always wins. Kuyt is on for Bellamy.
80 min: With all the excitement over Carroll being able to play football, I'd forgotten that Chelsea are actually winning this game. Ten minutes to go ...
81 min: The ball comes out to Henderson 30 yards out but he's Jordan Henderson. "Just seen a version of the Greek Tragedy Antigone," says Gary Naylor. "Not sure how relevant it is today. I mean who would believe that a King could make such poor decisions on the advice of a counsellor who was too clever by half and had to fall on their own sword, in order to impress his fickle followers? And it all ends in tears and a bloody red mess."
82 min: GOAL? GOAL! NO! Carroll has a header five yards out and thumps it into the top corner but Cech pulls off an amazing save, he had no time to readct and claws it away off the bar. Did it cross the line though? Replays suggest the whole of the ball didn't cross the line but it was very close.
85 min: I've no idea how Cech got to that, let alone had the strength to keep it out. He's had a magnificent end to the season in Europe, and in this final.
87 min: Liverpool have a free-kick on the edge of the area. It deflects off the Chelsea wall and out for a corner. I hear Bryan Adams is reading? Hello your honour! The noise in the stadium could have woken up the neighbourhood.
90 min: We're into injury time. Five minutes of added time. Mata is off for Malouda.
90min +2 min: Carroll races into the box, he's terrifying when he bears down on the opposition. And isn't rubbish. His cross is cut out.
90min +3 min: High ball into the Chelsea area. Cech collects. Carroll's flick on has too much on it and Cech collects again.
90min +4 min: Kuyt just misses a flick on and it slips out for a goal kick. Valuable seconds are lost.
90min +4 and a bit min: Drogba brought down by Gerrard. Suffice to say he takes a while to get up.
90min +4 and a bit more min: Reina keeps out Lampard's free kick. Reina then flies out of goal and Kalou gets it off him but Liverpool bodies clear.
90min +5: Throw in to Liverpool but they can't get it into the Chelsea half and that's it. CHELSEA WIN THE CUP.
Full-time: Chelsea were completely and utterly dominant until Carroll came on, after that they were on the ropes. That would have been an incredibly dperessing performance but there are small signs Carroll is finding form and if he can pick that up next season, Liverpool will be a much better side. But Chelsea set up the victory with a controlled performace for the first 65 minutes or so and deserve the win. Dalglish looks devastated on the sidelines. Hey! Petr Cech doesn't think the ball was over the line. I agree with him.
Cech is asked if he thinks Di Matteo should get the permanent manager's job. He says "he isn't the owner" but Di Matteo has done an excellent job.
Terry says the ball wasn't over the line "honestly".