It’s the fifth round where we usually see the teams that want to win the trophy lay down a marker, usually with a massive performance . The draw has thrown up some absolute crackers, it’s what I’ve been looking forward to for weeks.
My treble is Chelsea to beat Man City, Spurs to knock out Crystal Palace and Manchester United to avoid a banana skin on Monday night. That’s coming up at 3/1 which for three favourites is pretty good. If you don’t want to wait that long, get on a West Brom and Watford double at the same odds.
Arsenal vs Hull City – Saturday 12:45 – BT Sport 2
Hull are on top of the Championship and have only lost once in their last nine league games. Arsenal have a little bit of wiggle room to ring some changes especially seeing as their Champions League game against Barcelona is on Tuesday. Their bench was the strongest I’ve seen it in a long time against Leicester, and the subs made the difference. Steve Bruce knows whoever is picked, it’ll be a whole host of international footballers.
It’d be a major surprise if they threw away their FA Cup title. I’ve been saying for weeks that there’s a beating coming for a team against Arsenal. It might happen to Hull.
Andy’s bet: 2-0 Arsenal
Bournemouth vs Everton – Saturday 17:15 – BBC One
This was a fantastic league game. If Everton come close to how they played for the first 70 minutes of that game, they’ll go through to the quarter finals. The game was won, but six minutes of stoppage time were added and Bournemouth never let go. What it means is that even if the Toffees go 3 or 4 ahead on Saturday, they know Bournemouth won’t give up.
They did have 34 shots against West Brom last weekend, and were slightly robbed of at least a point. But they’re a bit porous at the back. They need to stop that if they want to be a top, top team. This might take a replay, that would not surprise me.
Andy’s bet: Draw at
Blackburn Rovers vs West Ham – Sunday 2pm – BT Sport 2
This is a good game for West Ham. They did well to eliminate Liverpool after a replay. Blackburn stuttered a little bit when Paul Lambert came in at first, but then they steadied. Losing Jordan Rhodes to Middlesbrough was big for them though, because they now don’t have a 20 goal per season striker anymore. The Hammers are consistent under Slaven Bilic and look to be finishing the season strongly.
The way West Ham have gone about the cup ties is impressing me. They’re putting their strongest side out in every round. If they do it again on Sunday, they’ll go through.
Andy’s bet: West Ham to win 2-1
Chelsea vs Manchester City – Sunday 4pm – BBC One
Chelsea are warm favourites to win this one. It’s all they have to play for this season. Man City have a massive European campaign to look forward to, and a league to chase down. What’ll happen here that Chelsea will field a much stronger side than Man City.
Manuel Pellegrini has to let one of the trophies go in order to keep pace, and it’ll have to be this one. They’ve got a final, a winnable European tie and an outside chance at the Premier League. He’ll rest a couple of big players and Guus Hiddink will capitalize.
Andy’s bet: Chelsea to win
Shrewsbury Town vs Manchester United – Monday 7:45 – BT Sport
I was really shocked by the depths that Manchester United have fallen. I cannot think of a worse European result in their history. It could’ve been so much worse than 2-1. But I think against Shrewsbury needs to be taken. It’ll be a horrific pitch, terrible weather, one or two of the big names won’t fancy it. They’ve been bad, but not bad enough to lose to a League One side.
LVG will be gunning for a reaction from his team after that embarrassment in Denmark. I don’t know if it’ll be a hammering, but they’ll pick up the win.
Andy’s bet: Man United to win
- Think you can top my treble? Come and have a go if you think you’re brave enough! The latest FA Cup odds are here
Reading vs West Brom – Saturday 3pm
Reading are 15th in the Championship, but you never know against West Brom. Tony Pulis has needed replays in the last two rounds of the cup to get through against lower league opposition at home. It’s taken some big performances for them to get through. But I think after that big win over Everton, West Brom have been given a kick up the backside. I think they’ll just go through.
Andy’s bet: West Brom to win
Watford vs Leeds – Saturday 3pm
If this was at Elland Road, I’d have a lot of difficulty predicting it. But the fact that it’s at Vicarage Road gives Quique Flores’ side the advantage. There seems to be a new story about Massimo Cellino every week and I feel it might distract the players even moreso now away at a big Premier League side. Watford may be dark horses if the draw is kind to them after this.
Andy’s bet: Watford win
Spurs vs Crystal Palace – Sunday 3pm
Everyone is looking at Spurs as title contenders. They’re in so many competitions, so I think they need to decide on what their priorities are. I believe Pochettino has the squad capable of winning any of the tournaments they’re still in. I don’t think they’ll go into this game with every one of their big hitters playing.
Palace’s form is poor, their defeat to Watford was a kick in the teeth and they’ve only got 1 point from the last 18 available. It won’t be a classic, but I think Spurs will sneak it.
Andy’s bet – Spurs to win