Fa Cup Third Round 5 Things To Look Out For On Sunday As The Big Hitters Enter The Scene
A second packed day of FA Cup third round action gets underway on Sunday and it has plenty to live up to after some great games on Saturday.
Can we hope to see that fabled magic of the FA Cup after it threatened to emerge on Saturday before ultimately going down as a no show?
Will there be giant slayings before the week is out?
Will the repeat of last year”s final turn out any differently this time?
We”ll have to wait until the dust has settled to answer those questions, but in the meantime let us speculate!
GettyMissing in action: None of Saturday”s FA Cup gamse were televised
Saturday was a strange entry in recent annals of the FA Cup.
Not because of the way that the fates cruelly conspired to dump out Blyth Spartans, Gateshead and Southport despite their valiant efforts.
Although on that note, Tony Pulis”s first match in charge at the Hawthorns was like that bit from Game of Thrones when the Mountain fought the Viper, as plucky non-league underdogs Gateshead started brightest before being crushed by West Brom 7-0.
No, instead, it was strange because rescheduling meant that there wasn”t a single game on television despite some of the mouth-watering match-ups that were billed.
Many of us were instead left listening to the radio, a novel experience for young Millennials – although a healthy helping of Twitter coverage would have taken the edge off.
We”ll suffer no such worrisome withdrawal on Sunday, with three games on the tube.
Pardew”s second Palace debut
@CPFC TwitterNew start: Pardew will want to start his time at Palace with a win
One of those televised affairs sees Premier League strugglers Crystal Palace travel to Crabble in Kent where they will face Conference side Dover Athletic.
The minnows may be hoping for an upset, but they”ll be wary of the prospect that the Eagles will be on a high following the appointment of Alan Pardew and eager to impress the new manager during his first game in the dugout.
There”s plenty of love for Pards in south London from his playing days with the club, and he”ll be looking forward to a warm welcome after taking so much flack on Tyneside.
But a shock exit for Palace followed by a continuation of their league struggles could see that all change rather quickly.
This will be one to watch, that”s for sure.
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The arrival of the big boys
Gareth CopleyFirst taste: Louis van Gaal oversees his first FA Cup tie on Sunday
Leicester City, Newcastle, Swansea City and West Brom marked the arrival of the Premier League in this year”s FA Cup competition on Saturday and there were emphatic wins for the Swans and the Baggies, while the Foxes ensured that John Carver”s side are the first top-flight casualties this year.
But Sunday is when the big boys really get going.
Manchester City welcome Sheffield Wednesday to Eastlands, Manchester United travel to Yeovil for Louis van Gaal”s first taste of the world”s oldest domestic cup football competition with the Red Devils , Chelsea host Watford and Arsenal face Hull.
QPR are also in action against Sheffield United, while Sunderland take on Leeds, Southampton host Ipswich, Aston Villa welcome Blackpool and Stoke play Wrexham.
Of course there”s also the aforementioned trip for Crystal Palace to take on Dover in Kent.
What does all that mean?
It means we”re in prime giant territory and those Football League and non-league hunters have spent the week sharpening their knives. Bring it on.
A repeat of last year”s final
Michael Regan – The FAFading fast: The buzz of last year”s FA Cup win is already a distant memory at the Emirates
One of three all-Premier League fixtures in the third round of the FA Cup is a repeat of last year”s final as Arsenal welcome Hull City to the Emirates.
If you cast your mind back to May, last year”s domestic showcase at Wembley was a hell of a game, with the Tigers finding themselves sitting on a two-goal lead after just eight minutes, thanks to strikes by James Chester and Curtis Davies as well as some atrocious Arsenal defending.
Eventually, the Gunners prevailed, with Santi Cazorla”s amazing free-kick and a late scrambled goal by Laurent Koscielny ensuring extra-time and setting things up for Aaron Ramsey”s 110th-minute winner.
Here”s hoping that this year”s fixture will be as exciting. Both teams could do with a confidence-boosting win after indifferent league campaigns so far.
Chelsea target a return to winning ways
Action ImagesJose Mourinho gestures on the touchline
Chelsea are aiming to get back on track after their stunning 5-3 defeat at the hands of Tottenham on Saturday.
Jose Mourinho”s men were tormented by a Harry Kane inspired Spurs side at White Hart Lane and, after early season talk of an Invincible-esque season, the Blues have now lost two of their last six Premier League games.
The Special One”s side welcome Championship high-fliers Watford to Stamford Bridge and the Hornets could face an angry backlash from Eden Hazard and co.
Chelsea have lifted the cup four times in the last eight seasons, with their most recent success coming against Liverpool in 2012.
Mourinho will be looking to win the competition for the second time after he instigated a win over Manchester United in the first final at the new Wembley in 2007.
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