FA Cup provides a welcome break for some, but a big opportunity for those still standing

January 27 – Almost half the Premier League will have a break this weekend as the FA Cup takes centre stage with just 11 of the top clubs still left in the competition.Four of them face each other, including Arsenal and Manchester City tonight.

For many of the Premier League clubs, this season’s FA Cup has been akin to a trip to online casino real money sites. Clubs that gambled on resting key players for their Premier League campaigns, found themselves tumbling out the cup to lower league opposition.

Others had to battle through replays to get into the next round. Liverpool overcame Wolverhampton Wanderers only to find themselves drawn against Brighton who beat them in the league earlier this month.

For clubs like Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur, who realistically are now left chasing Champions League slots, the FA Cup offers the one realistic chance of domestic silverware.

For clubs like Everton, dwelling in the relegation zone, not having to play this weekend offers them a chance to regroup. Chelsea, knocked out by Manchester City last round will similarly welcome the break as they put their season back togeither with a raft of big money new signings.

In contrast, bottom of the table Southampton will likely welcome the FA Cup as an opportunity to further bed their new signings into the team. Although losing by a goal mid-week to Newcastle in the first leg of the Carabao Cup, Saints showed signs of improvement and the addition of new signing Carlos Alcaraz could be the major addition needed to kick start their season.

The FA Cup, taking place in what has been a focused on what could easily pass as the most significant sporting event of the 21st century.

The FA Cup has a reputation for upsets and the biggest last round came at Villa Park where Aston Villa were knocked out by fourth-tier Stevenage Town who scored twice in the last two minutes for a famous 2-1 win.

Newcastle, who sit third in the Premier League, were also got knocked out, losing 2-1 to League One (third-tier) side Sheffield Wednesday.

And top flight Nottingham Forest, who made 11 changes, paid the price as they went out 4-1 to Championship strugglers Blackpool.

Elsewhere Premier League Leeds made a late come back from two goals down to force a replay with Championship side Cardiff, while Wrexham, in the National League (tier 5) had their best win since being taken over by Hollywood co-owners Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney, beating Championship side Coventry in a 4-3 thriller.

This round promises to be no different in terms of thrills and the potential for big spills. And first up tonight is the Man City vs Arsenal blockbuster.

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