The top four sides in the Premier League standings will be in FA Cup action this weekend with a place in the semi-finals at stake.
Manchester City, runaway leaders, travel to face Everton in the pick of Saturday’s action while on Sunday, Chelsea host Sheffield United before Manchester United visit Leicester City.
That last fixture pits second against third although league form can be almost put to the side when you consider that Sheffield United are bottom of the table but still in this competition.
Upsets in the cup are waiting to happen and this game is the one which springs to mind when looking at this round of fixtures.
Bournemouth, under Jonathan Woodgate, are playing an expansive game and could take advantage of the Saints’ wobbly defensive line. A 3-0 win over Swansea was the perfect preparation for the Championship team as they welcome 14th-placed Southampton.
The Saints have won just one of their last 12 Premier League matches, so could be focussing on a Cup run to get anything from this otherwise disappointing campaign.
Suggested bet: Bournemouth or draw at 1.74
Everton vs Manchester City – Saturday, 7:30pm
City chasing four trophies could make history on Saturday as their star-laden squad heads to Goodison Park. A win for the 2019 FA Cup winners will make it three semi-final spots in three years – a run that would mark a streak last matched in 1934.
While Everton have proven themselves as a capable unit under Carlo Ancelotti, they have not proven themselves worthy contenders when facing City.
Pep Guardiola has overseen six wins from as many games against the Toffees. The Spanish manager has been fortunate to rest a number of key players recently and has an almost fully fit squad to call upon.
Suggested bet: Manchester City win 2-1 at 8.4
Chelsea vs Sheffield United – Sunday, 3:30pm
After Blues saw off the threat of Atletico Madrid, who’d be hard-pressed to think that the Blades stand any chance. Every indicator – form, Cup pedigree, historical battles between the teams, points to a Chelsea win. And probably as things stands, quite comfortably so.
Leicester City vs Manchester United – Sunday, 7pm
The Foxes injured list appears to grow by the day … Harvey Barnes, Cengiz Under, James Justin and James Maddison will all miss this showstopper fixture. But after Leicester demolished Sheffield United last week, there is room for optimism that the Foxes can turn over one on the competition’s most successful side.
United also have injury concerns with Marcus Rashford now in doubt after his side’s 1-0 win at AC Milan. Edinson Cavani is definitely out but Anthony Martial may return to partner French international teammate Paul Pogba – himself the hero for the Red Devils at the San Siro on injury return – in the attacking department.
Manchester United’s away form is now growing into the stuff of legends and stand-in goalkeeper Dean Henderson continues to collect clean sheets.
Third hosts second … only one team will advance.
Suggested bets: Draw or Manchester United at 1.41 or half-time the match is a draw at 2.22