Pete O’Rourke’s FA Cup Pick 8 Preview
This week the Premier League big guns enter the FA Cup third round, and there’s some interesting ties that we’ve included in our Pick 8. Pete O’Rourke has a syndicate which he has previewed for us below which you can get involved in here.
Liverpool v Everton
An intriguing Merseyside derby is the pick of the FA Cup third round ties and picking a winner could be difficult. Everton boss Sam Allardyce will again set up his team to frustrate Liverpool’s free-flowing attack after earning a 1-1 draw at Anfield in the Premier League last month.
After such a busy period this looks being a tight encounter and I would not rule out a replay.
Home Win or Draw
Man Utd v Derby
Manchester United will be aiming to avoid a shock when they play host to high-flying Derby at Old Trafford.
United boss Jose Mourinho will be looking for a long cup run from his side and although he might rest a few starts after a hectic Christmas period United should have enough quality to get the job done at the first time of asking.
Fleetwood v Leicester
Jamie Vardy returns to his old team Fleetwood determined to help Leicester avoid an FA Cup giant-killing at the hands of the League One club.
Leicester looked an improved team under Claude Puel and with Fleetwood having won just once in their last seven games the Foxes should take care of business at Highbury.
Fulham v Southampton
Southampton face a tricky trip to Fulham with their season in danger of falling apart on them after the home defeat to Crystal Palace stretched their winless run to nine games.
Fulham have won their last four games at Craven Cottage and they will fancy their chances against an out of form Southampton who have not enjoyed the best of FA Cup records in recent seasons.
Home Win or Draw
Wolves v Swansea
These two sides could be swapping leagues come the end of the season with Wolves running away with the Championship and Swansea rooted to the bottom of the Premier League table.
The FA Cup is not a priority for Swansea this season with survival their main aim and Wolves can show they are ready for the Premier League by dumping Swansea out at Molineux.
Bolton v Huddersfield
Huddersfield face a potential banana skin when they travel to Championship strugglers Bolton Wanderers. Bolton have picked up of late with three wins from their last four games and Trotters boss Phil Parkinson has enjoyed good cup runs in the past with Bradford City.
Huddersfield’s away form in the Premier League has not been great and they will need to be at their best to avoid a shock at Bolton.
Away Win or Draw
B’mouth v Wigan
Bournemouth take on 2013 FA Cup winners Wigan and the Premier League side could find themselves on the end of a shock. Wigan are riding high at the top of League One and they enjoy the FA Cup having won in 2013 and reached the semi-finals the following season.
Bournemouth’s priority is Premier League survival rather than an FA Cup run their recent record in the competition gives Wigan great hope of taking the scalp of their Premier League opponents.
Home Win or Draw or Away Win
Norwich v Chelsea
Chelsea will be looking to go one better than last season when they lost in the final to Arsenal and they should successfully negotiate a third round trip to Norwich. Norwich have crashed out of the FA Cup at this stage for the last four seasons and Chelsea are unlikely to show them any mercy at Carrow Road. Chelsea are in a good run of form and they will have too much firepower for the Canaries.