Derbies, cupsets & more: Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round storylines
Once again, the underdogs in the Third Round of the Emirates FA Cup didn’t read the script, and went on to upset the big boys, with Millwall downing Premier League Bournemouth and Non-League Lincoln City sweeping aside Ipswich Town.
And rising stars like Blackpool’s Bright Osayi-Samuel, Sutton United’s Dan Fitchett and some bloke for Man United called Anthony Martial caught the eye.
They’re among the big themes of the cup’s Fourth Round ties. But first, there are some local affairs to sort out.
Derby days promise cup crackers
The Fourth Round draw has thrown up no fewer than six local derbies, with Brentford’s visit to Chelsea and Millwall v. Watford perhaps the most eye-catching pair from a superb half-dozen.
With away crowds always sizeable for Emirates FA Cup ties, we’re expecting a terrific atmosphere from the likes of the Bees, and Blackpool fans travelling to Ewood Park for a Lancashire derby against Blackburn Rovers.
Elsewhere, Manchester United look to continue their defence of their cup crown against Wigan Athletic – and record a seventh win in eight home games in the process.
So, will the cup kings finish the weekend with local pride intact? Can the Bees sting the Blues? And are Watford set for a mauling in the Lions’ den? All will be revealed…
Where will the cupset(s) come?
There’s always one, and often more. If you support a Premier League heavyweight, you’re praying it’s your team who avoids the lower-league banana-skin, if you’re a follower of a small-town club, it’s a time to dream big.
Millwall are aiming for a fourth successive home win in this competition, so could cause problems for a Watford side who have suffered five defeats in their last six away games – including a 6-1 tonking at Anfield.
Elsewhere, Sutton United are keen to continue their cup heroics as they welcome Leeds United. The hosts have won nine of their last 14 at home, and will look to draw on the spirit of 1989, when they beat then top-flight giants Coventry City.
And you can’t overlook Oxford United, who knocked out Premier League Swansea City last season, as they host a Newcastle United side with just one Emirates FA Cup win in the last five years.
Can lower-league aces continue to shine?
While Tottenham v Wycombe Wanderers will likely see the world-renowned attacking talents of Harry Kane and Dele Alli on show for the hosts, the Chairboys have a young star of their own looking to give his reputation a boost – Scott Kashket.
The 21-year-old has netted nine times in 10 games, including a hat-trick against Chesterfield in the Emirates FA Cup Second Round, and could well get his name up in lights again at White Hart Lane.
Elsewhere, Bright Osayi-Samuel netted the winner for Blackpool in the 121st-minute of their Replay at Championship Barnsley, and the nerveless 19-year-old will be looking to add to his one senior goal so far at Ewood Park.
Likewise, Sutton pair Dan Fitchett and Roary Deacon, with the duo already chalking up a combined six goals in this year’s tournament so far. Garry Monk and co. beware…
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing