What Are The Biggest Ties Of The FA Cup Third Round This Weekend?
While it may have lost some of the glitz and glamour that it once had, there is still no doubt that for purist football fans, FA Cup Third Round weekend at the start of January each year is still one of the biggest dates in the football calendar.
It is at this stage of the famous knockout competition, the oldest cup tournament in world football, that the top Premier League and Championship teams enter the fray, alongside the 20 qualifiers or so from the earlier rounds of the tournament.
For the football punter, it is also a big weekend as it can pit lower league, or even non-league sides, up against some of their more illustrious opponents, as well as seeing big Premier League teams drawn together.
As such, you can expect bet365 Sport to be offering an extensive range of bets both Pre-Match and In Play ahead of the games this weekend, while if you fancy a flutter on the outright winner market, then there is an extensive list of teams available to back to win the FA Cup outright in May.
Last year, Liverpool defeated Chelsea on penalties to take the trophy back to Anfield and before that, it was Leicester who hoisted the cup after beating Chelsea 1-0 in the final.
So Chelsea fans will certainly be hoping their team can go one better this year, although the draw has not helped them in that respect, as we shall find out below!
The Full FA Cup Third Round Draw
Any game in the third (or fourth) round that finishes in a draw will be decided by a replay, with extra time and penalties used in the replay to decide the winner.
From the Fifth Round onwards, games will be played out over 90 minutes, then extra time, then penalties if required with no replays.
Friday 6th January
- Manchester United v Everton
Saturday 7th January
- Preston North End v Huddersfield Town
- Reading v Watford
- Tottenham Hotspur v Portsmouth
- Gillingham v Leicester City
- Forest Green v Birmingham City
- Crystal Palace v Southampton
- Hull City v Fulham
- Middlesbrough v Brighton
- Fleetwood v QPR
- Ipswich Town v Rotherham United
- Bournemouth v Burnley
- Blackpool v Nottingham Forest
- Chesterfield v West Bromwich Albion
- Millwall v Sheffield United
- Boreham Wood v Accrington Stanley
- Shrewsbury v Sunderland
- Brentford v West Ham United
- Coventry City v Wrexham
- Luton Town v Wigan Athletic
- Grimsby Town v Burton Albion
- Sheffield Wednesday v Newcastle United
- Liverpool v Wolverhampton Wanderers
Sunday 8th January
- Derby County v Barnsley
- Bristol City v Swansea City
- Cardiff City v Leeds United
- Stockport County v Walsall
- Hartlepool United v Stoke City
- Norwich City v Blackburn Rovers
- Aston Villa v Stevenage Borough
- Manchester City v Chelsea
Monday 9th January
- Oxford United v Arsenal
FA Cup Winner Outright Betting Odds
All the odds shown below are from bet365 Sport and were correct at the time of writing, but may change over the course of the competition.
- 10/3 Favourites – Manchester City
- 6/1 – Liverpool
- 7/1 – Arsenal
- 8/1 – Tottenham
- 10/1 – Manchester United
- 12/1 – Chelsea, Newcastle United
- 25/1 – Leicester City, Brighton
- 33/1 – Aston Villa, West Ham United
- 40/1 – Crystal Palace
- 50/1 – Everton, Leeds United, Southampton
- 66/1 – Brentford, Fulham
- 80/1 – Wolves, Bournemouth, Nottingham Forest
- 100/1 bar
Unsurprisingly, given their record in cup competitions over the years, Manchester City are the clear favourites to win the FA Cup for the first time in three years with bet365 but there are a host of teams in the 6/1 to 12/1 bracket that will fancy their chances of success.
However, at the other end of the scale, you can back Hartlepool United to win the FA Cup at 2,500/1.
With Each Way prices available for finalists, I think there is a solid chance an outsider team could do well this year and Brentford at 66/1 catch my eye.
They have won four and drawn one and lost one of their last six games against the Big Six, nobody will want to face them if they are drawn to play at home especially.
I also feel Newcastle United will target this tournament as a realistic chance of silverware given their excellent season and as such, I think at 12/1, they are also a decent value bet.
FA Cup Third Round Accumulator
In addition to my outright picks above, I have also put together what I feel is a great value FA Cup Third Round accumulator bet:
- Manchester United to beat Everton – 1/2
- Reading and Watford to draw – 9/4
- Fulham to beat Hull City – 1/2
- Sunderland to beat Shrewsbury Town – Evens
- Cardiff and Leeds Utd to draw – 13/5
- Manchester City to beat Chelsea – 1/2
This sixfold accumulator would return at odds of 77.97/1 with bet365 Sport and it would also be eligible to include the Early Payout and Accumulator Bonus promotions too.
Any Giantkillings Or Upsets On The Cards?
Part of what makes the FA Cup 3rd Round so appealing to fans is that there is always a chance of a huge upset, or at the very least a surprise victory.
We may be a long way away from Hereford United beating Newcastle, Wrexham beating Arsenal, Sutton United beating Coventry City and Bristol City beating Liverpool, but each year still throws up some surprise results.
That is partly because many Premier League teams, and even some Championship teams, will rest players for FA Cup games and play a weaker than usual team, which of course gives those lower ranked teams a greater chance of success.
So what games could we see an upset or giantkilling on this weekend?
- Chesterfield v West Brom – 9/2 Chesterfield Win
The Baggies have not enjoyed a good campaign this year and while Chesterfield are non-league, they do have a good FA Cup pedigree and they will certainly be a tough test for the Baggies here.
- Middlesbrough v Brighton – 17/4 Middlesbrough Win
I can’t see Roberto De Zerbi playing too many first teamers in this game as Brighton seek to continue their fine Premier League form and that may give Middlesbrough a very good chance of landing an upset win over their higher division opponents.
- Coventry City v Wrexham – 3/1 Wrexham win
Could thew Rob McElhenney, Ryan Reynolds owned Dragons spring a surprise? They have nothing to lose against a Coventry side that has been the brunt of a number of FA Cup upsets over the years so don’t rule them out here.
- Liverpool v Wolves – 9/1 Wolves win
Jurgen Klopp will give his fringe players a chance against Wolves here but the visitors have won at Anfield in the FA Cup in recent times and after that shocking display by Liverpool at Brentford, where they lost 3-1, I would not rule out Wolves from landing the win here.
So tune in to the action over the course of the weekend and see who makes it into the Fourth Round of the competition and which, if any, of the big teams suffers a defeat to end their interest early.