After Wrexham beat Coventry City, Sheffield Wednesday beat Newcastle United and Blackpool beat Nottingham Forest in the Third Round, the FA Cup returns for another weekend of shocks. It is seen by many as the most difficult weekend to pick a winner, but we see it as a chance to bag huge value and win big. Here’s some of our selections for the weekend’s action, including some shocks.
Walsall v Leicester City - Walsall double chance - 21/10
Postponements have kept Michael Flynn’s Walsall out of action since the 14th January but, weather permitting, they should be back on track here. They currently sit 11th in League Two but are on a stonking run of form that has seen them lose just once in 13 matches in all competitions, stretching back to mid-October. With some January reinforcements in the form of Jamille Matt from Forest Green Rovers and the return of Joe Riley from injury, the Saddlers could be in for a big second half of the season.
Meanwhile Leicester’s only win in their last seven was the 1-0 success over Gillingham in the last round. A trip to the Bescot for Brendan Rodgers could prove to be a banana skin and we are backing the in-form side to at least take it to a replay, although the 8/1 on Betfred for the outright win is tempting.
Ipswich Town v Burnley - Burnley win - 21/20
After some heavy investment in January, promotion is all that matters for Kieran McKenna and Ipswich Town this term. The arrival of Nathan Broadhead in particular has raised expectations but they are coming up against one of the best teams the Championship has ever seen.
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- FA Cup odds with Betfred*
Burnley have been sensational under Vincent Kompany and look certain to return to the Premier League. They are this term better than the teams at the bottom of the top flight, and proved that with a 4-2 win over Bournemouth in the Third Round. Ipswich are good, but Burnley are exceptional.
Fulham v Sunderland - Sunderland double chance - 8/5
Fulham have been superb in the top flight this season, but we are backing another shock here. Marco Silva has lost his last two Premier League games - albeit narrowly - and it is yet to be seen how seriously he really wants to take the FA Cup.
Sunderland meanwhile have been impressive this season and now sit just a point outside the Championship play-offs. With a big following behind them at the capital, they can avoid defeat against the Premier League outfit.
Wrexham v Sheffield United - Sheffield United win - 4/5
In the best match of the Third Round, Wrexham stunned Coventry City 4-3 at the CBS Arena to leave owner Ryan Reynolds’ in ecstasy. Now they will face another Championship outfit in Sheffield United, this time at the Racecourse Ground. Wrexham are in flying form and sit top of the National League after six league wins on the bounce. They are sure to be up for this one, but Phil Parkinson knows his priority has to lie with promotion back to the Football League.
Sheffield United under Paul Heckingbottom should be too strong for even their best XI however. Alongside Burnley, they are another standout team in the Championship this term and should be able to get past a spirited and talented Wrexham outfit.
Derby County v West Ham United - Derby win - 4/1
Anyone fancy a special night at Pride Park under the lights? Derby County are absolutely flying at the moment and are currently on the second longest unbeaten run in English football, only behind Sheffield Wednesday. Their run stretches back to the 9th November when they lost to Liverpool on penalties, but they haven’t been beaten in 90 minutes since Ipswich overcame them 1-0 on October 21.
Paul Warne has shown his quality once more and they are now up to fourth in League One, with promotion a real possibility. They are taking on a West Ham side in relegation danger, with manager David Moyes under pressure. The recent 2-0 success over Everton alleviated that slightly, but the Toffees are absolutely tragic at the moment. This one could be the shock of the round.
The Sportsman’s five-fold accumulator pays 148/1 with Betfred.
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