FA Cup Fourth Round Preview

Thursday, January 24th, 2019

By Jonathan Willis
Arsenal vs Manchester United Fourth Round of the FA Cup

There are just 32 teams left in the FA Cup, and this weekend might show us some of the magic that has been missing from the competition over the last few years. A whopping seven Premier League squads were one and done in the tournament, with league leaders Liverpool being the biggest club bounced. That means 19 of the 32 teams left are second-tier teams or lower, and we will see a healthy representation of non-EPL teams in the Round of 16 in a few weeks.

This weekend, we have four matches between EPL teams with Arsenal and Manchester United leading the way. Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur are playing fellow EPL teams too, so the threat of mayhem is there.

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Arsenal vs Manchester United

  • Date and Time: January 26, 2019, 10 a.m. ET
  • Location: Emirates Stadium, London, England
  • Betting Line: Arsenal PK -120, O/U 3

Even though Arsene Wenger and Alex Ferguson are no longer managing these two historic clubs, there is no love lost between these teams. Unai Emery and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer are both taking part in their first FA Cups, and both men know that a win over an old rival would help them out.

Nearly two months ago, these two clubs met in Old Trafford, and the result was a 2-2 draw. Arsenal took the lead twice, but the Red Devils quickly equalized both times and settled on a tie.

That was under former manager Jose Mourinho. With Solskjaer at the helm, United have been playing better and they are hoping for an outright win. They must overcome important injuries that threaten to keep some of their stars out of this clash though.

Soccer Sports Betting

Shrewsbury Town vs Wolverhampton Wanderers

  • Date and Time: January 26, 2019, 10 a.m. ET
  • Location: New Meadow, Shrewsbury, England
  • Betting Line: Wolverhampton -1, O/U 2.5

Third-division Shrewsbury could become everyone’s favorite underdog with a win over Wolves this week, and it’s not out of the realm of possibility. Shrewsbury are playing at home, and they have been solid in the back for most of the year.

They also have something else going for them ahead of this match. Wolves have been a notoriously fickle bunch all year. They have taken down Chelsea and Liverpool in the last two months, but they have played down to their opponents too often.

Barnet vs Brentford

  • Date and Time: January 26, 2019, 10 a.m. ET
  • Location: Canons Park, London, England
  • Betting Line: Brentford -1, O/U 2.5

Following Woking’s loss to Watford last week, Barnet are the lowest-tier team involved in the FA Cup. Barnet are a fifth-division non-league side, but they managed to overcome the odds and knock off Sheffield United on the road last week to set up this meeting.

Brentford have been a lower tier Championship team, but they have played well in recent weeks. They have picked up a result in seven straight matches, and they are out to make it eight.

Crystal Palace vs Tottenham Hotspur

  • Date and Time: January 26, 2019, 10 a.m. ET
  • Location: Selhurst Park, London, England
  • Betting Line: Tottenham Hotspur PK -128, O/U 2.5

Spurs are in real trouble of losing this match. Not only are they on the road against a quality side in Palace, their injury situation is abysmal. Harry Kane and Dele Alli are out for at least another month, while Son Heung-Min is playing for Korea at the Asian Cup and Lucas Moura is banged up.

To make the challenge even more difficult, Spurs will be playing Chelsea in the second leg of the Carabao Cup semifinals on Thursday, and they are unlikely to have much depth. Mauricio Pochettino must make a decision over whether to roll the dice with young players or risk his remaining starters by playing them here too.

FA Cup Fourth Round Free Picks

In the two tilts between the Premier League sides, I like Manchester United and Crystal Palace. I think Shrewsbury and Barnet have a decent chance too, and it wouldn’t shock me to see one of the two win outright.

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