Most of the big clubs are out. Those that are left have been kept apart in the 5th round. Manchester United, although not yet through to the next stage of the competition will be expected to dispose of Cambridge United at the second time of asking. Surely!
Nevertheless big upsets have occurred and we’re taking nothing for granted. Liverpool still need to find a way past Bolton after struggling against the Championship side at the weekend. They will get a result at Anfield in the replay, however will it be the result that Rodgers is hoping for?
Should the Reds win through, they will face an improving Crystal Palace side in south London, Manchester United’s reward should they dispose of League Two side Cambridge United being a visit to either Preston or Sheffield United.
Current cup holders Arsenal are the only ‘big’ side definitely through to the fifth round and their efforts have rewarded them with what appears to be a routine match against Middlesbrough. Let us not forget however that the Tees-siders disposed of Manchester City 2-0 in the last round and such an upset is also possible at the Emirates.
West Brom face West Ham at home, the Hammers enjoying an excellent season to date and surely confident that they can go all the way in this competition.
Bradford City’s surprise win against Chelsea sees them welcome either Fulham or Sunderland to Valley Parade and Stoke’s thrashing of Rochdale last night sees them through to meet Blackburn at Ewood Park.
Arsenal remain favourites to win the cup for the second successive season at 5/2, Manchester United up for grabs at 3/1 and Liverpool 13/2. West Ham are certainly dark horses at 10/1 with Coral and are worthy of consideration should they find a way past the Baggies in the next round.
Will there be any more upsets? We don’t think so!
Complete fifth round draw
Crystal Palace vs Bolton or Liverpool
Arsenal vs Middlesbrough
Aston Villa vs Leicester City
West brom vs West Ham
Bradford City vs Fulham or Sunderland
Blackburn Rovers vs Stoke
Derby vs Reading
Preston North End or Sheffield United vs Manchester United or Cambridge United