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Monday, 27 January 2014

FA Cup: City to host Chelsea and Arsenal will face Liverpool - who will win the FA Cup?

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After a pretty non eventful fourth round in the FA Cup, the fifth round looks like being a corker with two massive games coming our way.

The first biggie out of the hat was free-scoring Manchester City against Jose Mourinho's Chelsea followed by Premier League leaders Arsenal hosting the resurgent Liverpool. Two mouth-watering clashes that will put the FA Cup back in the headlines once more.

Fac upBut who will ease through these ties and fancy themselves for Wembley glory?

Manchester City remain the bookies' favourites for the cup, even after their terrible first half against Watford. They are best priced 7/2 at Ladbrokes and the home draw has certainly favoured them, but if anyone can stop the rampaging City from progressing it will be Chelsea. Mourinho's men have travelled to Old Trafford and the Emirates this season and held the hosts at bay. In a week's time the two will come head-to-head in the Premier League and that will take precedence with both manager's, but neither Pellegrini or Mourinho will want to lose this one. This draw has seen Chelsea drift out to 6/1 with Sky Bet.

Arsenal will certainly fancy their chances against Liverpool when the two meet in the middle of February. The draw may just spur Wenger into signing someone before the window closes as they have a number of massive games between now and the end of the season. 

The Gunners remain at 5/1 at Bet Fred with Liverpool out to 8/1 at Betway. Again, like Man City and Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool lock horns the weekend before the fifth round tie. Both managers will see the FA Cup as a realistic prize. Arsenal haven't won anything since they won the trophy back in 2005, while Liverpool haven't won the cup since beating West Ham United in that epic final of 2006. However, comes through this tie will seriously fancy their chances of success.

Everton, who saw off the potential banana skin of Stevenage on Saturday, have now emerged as third favourites for the cup. Coral has placed Roberto Martinez's men at 6/1 and their home draw against struggling Swansea has definitely helped their plight. The Toffees have never lost to the Swans in competitive football and Martinez must already be planning for the next round. Swansea are 40/1 to add the FA Cup to last season's League Cup.

Southampton, who held the cup aloft in 1976, head north to face the 1973 winners Sunderland in a tight fifth round clash. The Saints squeezed past Yeovil on Saturday while the Black Cats were made to sweat against non-league Kidderminster Harriers, but despite home advantage and the fact that Gus Poyet's men have reached the final of this season's Capital One Cup, it's Southampton who are more likely to win the competition - according to the bookies. 

The Saints are 14/1 with Boylesports while Sunderland are double those odds at Coral.

In the round's other ties, cup holders Wigan travel to Cardiff City, Hull City travel to Brighton & Hove Albion and Sheffield Wednesday host Charlton. Two ties still need to be resolved. The winner of Fulham v Sheffield United will face the winners of Preston and Nottingham Forest. 

Here is a full rundown of the latest odds complete with their best prices.

Man City 7/2 Ladbrokes

Arsenal 5/1 Bet Fred

Everton 6/1 Coral 

Chelsea 6/1 Sky Bet

Liverpool 8/1 Bet Way

Southampton 14/1 Boylesports 

Sunderland 28/1 Boylesports

Hull City 39/1 Unibet

Cardiff City 40/1 Stan James

Swansea City 40/1 Ladbrokes

Fulham 44/1

Brighton 99/1

Nottingham Forest 124/1

Wigan 149/1

Sheffield Wednesday 150/1 Paddy Power

Charlton 200/1 Stan James

Sheffield United 499/1

Preston 499/1

So who is your money on? We'd love to hear from you.

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Colin Illingworth



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