With the FA Cup well under way, take a look at some of the fixtures coming up in Round Four.
The FA Cup is, without doubt, English football’s favourite yet most unpredictable competition. For the underdogs of the National League, there’s nothing more satisfying than the rumble of the balls delivering a home draw against one of the top-flight clubs.
So far, four Premier League sides, including the holders Arsenal, have exited the contest, whilst 14 teams from the Football League have already confirmed their place in the final 32, with at least another three set to follow.
The likes of Coventry, Newport County, Yeovil and Peterborough, who caused major surprises against high profile opposition in the last round, will be relishing the opportunity of progressing to the last 16.
Unfortunately for the lower ranked teams hoping for a longer stint in the competition, Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Tottenham and Chelsea all remain contenders and will certainly be relishing a cup run this season.
Betting odds suggest that Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City side are the 3/1 favourites to win this season’s FA cup, followed at 4/1 by rivals, Manchester United. However, expect plenty of market movers as the competition continues to progress.
With six of the 16 ties yet to be decided due to third round replays, here are five (confirmed) ties for fans to look forward to in the FA Cup fourth round.
Liverpool vs West Brom
One of the two (potentially four) confirmed all Premier League clashes in the fourth round, Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool will take on West Brom at Anfield.
Alan Pardew’s men have proven a bit of a bogey side for Klopp during his stint in England. In the five encounters they’ve had, Klopp has come out victorious twice, drawing on the other three occasions.
This is the second time he will come up against Alan Pardew since he’s been manager at West Brom.
Their last encounter ended 0-0, and Pardew will be hoping for a similar result in the fourth-round tie too.
West Brom currently sit 19th in the Premier League, so it will be interesting to see whether multiple changes are made so they can prioritise their survival dogfight.
Liverpool face a similar selection dilemma as they will want to put all their attention into the current race for top four.
Liverpool are considerable favourites for the tie, and looking at West Brom’s current form, it’s easy to understand why.
Betting Odds: Liverpool 2/9, Draw 9/2, West Brom 7/1
Yeovil vs Manchester United
Arguably the stand out fixture of the fourth round is that of lowly Yeovil versus Manchester United.
The lowest ranked side left in the competition beat Bradford in the last round to set up a dream tie against United in the next round.
These sides faced each other in the third round back in 2014/15 at Huish Park, where United overcame a resolute Yeovil side. Second half strikes from Ander Herrera and Angel Di Maria saw off The Glovers, securing a win for Louis van Gaal’s men.
Now it’s Mourinho’s turn to take his side to Somerset. As a manager who takes all domestic competitions seriously, we should expect him to field a very strong side to avoid what would be the shock of the competition so far.
Betting Odds: Yeovil 14/1, Draw, 5/1, Manchester United 1/8
Newport County v Tottenham
The second lowest ranked team confirmed in the fourth round of the FA Cup, Newport County, take on Premier League big boys Tottenham Hotspur at Rodney Parade.
Newport produced one of the major upsets of the competition so far, beating Championship promotion hopefuls, Leeds United, 2-1 in round three.
Spurs’ trip should generate great revenue for the club after they were gifted a home draw.
Tottenham are understandably favourites for the tie. However, if Newport can match the performance they put in against Leeds, Mike Flynn’s men may have enough to give Spurs a real tough clash.
It took a strong Spurs side until the 63rd minute to break down League One side AFC Wimbledon in the previous round and fans can expect a similar scenario on their visit to Newport.
Betting Odds: Newport County 11/1, Draw 5/1, Tottenham 1/7
MK Dons v Coventry
Two sides who pulled off the expected in round three, face each other in round four.
Mark Robin’s Coventry side managed a major 2-1 upset as they dumped out Premier League side, Stoke City. Victory for the League Two highflyers brought the end of Mark Hughes’ reign at Stoke.
They’ll come up against League One opposition, MK Dons, who knocked Championship side QPR out in the last round.
The Dons are considered favourites for the game, but with Coventry well in the race for automatic promotion in League Two, football betting experts will be struggling to call which of these sides will be progressing to the next round.
Betting Odds: Mk Dons 10/11, Draw 12/5, Coventry 9/4
Southampton vs Watford
The second confirmed all Premier League tie in this season’s FA Cup fourth round is 17th placed Southampton versus Watford, who stand half way up the table, at Saint Mary’s.
These two sides faced each other in September, when Watford won 2-0 away from home, temporarily leaving them in fourth place in the Premier League.
Watford’s form has dipped in recent weeks, but they will come up against a Southampton side also low in confidence and without a win in their last nine Premier League games.
Southampton will be looking to reinvest the money they received for former skipper Virgil van Dijk with most of the transfer window still remaining. Expect a couple of new faces at Saint Mary’s before this tie takes place.
Betting Odds: Southampton 10/11, Draw 12/5, Watford 9/4
With plenty of free bet offers being promoted by some of the UK’s biggest bookmakers, it would be worthwhile to take up this option during the fourth-round weekend.
With many potential upsets on the cards, expect to find some big odds when placing a bet on these fixtures.
Odds provided by William Hill.