Newcastle United and Norwich City could be on the end of shock defeats while West Ham and QPR could also wave goodbye at the first hurdle. Liverpool, Manchester City, Everton, Tottenham and Reading should go through while Arsenal, Wigan and Stoke may have to settle for replays in our predictions for the FA Cup Third Round this weekend.
Here are the predictions for all the Premier League ties in the FA Cup third round this weekend.
Brighton v Newcastle: 2-1
A trip all the way down to the Amex against a fired up Seagulls team sounds like the recipe for an FA Cup upset. This is exactly what I predict as the Championship side could reign supreme.
Aston Villa v Ipswich: 2-0
Despite recent woes in the Premier League Paul Lamberts side should be too strong for their Championship opposition at Villa Park.
Bolton v Sunderland: 1-2
Sunderland should be able to battle away for a victory over Bolton. Dougie Freedman’s men are currently languishing down the table in the Championship but will still put on a brave fight at home.
Crawley v Reading: 0-3
Potential for a giant-killing in this fixture perhaps but I just personally cannot see it happening.
Crystal Palace v Stoke: 1-1
Stoke may have to endure the annoyance of a replay as they face high-flying Crystal Palace on Saturday. Will be a good chance to see how Wilfried Zaha shapes up against Premier League opposition.
Fulham v Blackpool: 3-0
A comfortable win should be in store if Martin Jol picks a strong enough team for the home tie with Blackpool.
Man City v Watford: 3-0
Despite recent off-field troubles at City Gianfranco Zola’s side should offer little resistance at the Etihad.
Peterborough v Norwich: 2-1
The Posh have been in great form in recent weeks and will look to carry that into the fixture with Norwich. This could be a second upset in a Championship versus Premier League tie.
QPR v West Brom: 0-2
Can see Harry seriously downgrading the importance of the Cup considering the relegation fears at the club. West Brom should capitalise with an easy win.
Southampton v Chelsea: 1-3
All depends on what type of team Nigel Adkins fields as he has a tendency to sacrifice the cup competition in order for better league form. If that is the case then Chelsea should win an entertaining affair.
Tottenham v Coventry: 3-0
A repeat of the 1987 FA Cup Final between the two but Sky Blue fans will not be expecting a similar result.
Wigan v Bournemouth: 1-1
The only Premier League team at home against lower league opposition that I am not backing for victory is Wigan. Under Eddie Howe Bournemouth have been superb and can just see them forcing a replay out of this tie.
West Ham v Man Utd: 2-3
Tempted to go with West Ham but Sir Alex should be able to rotate his squad while retaining just enough quality to defeat The Hammers; even at Upton Park.
Swansea v Arsenal: 2-2
Swansea could continue their stranglehold over The Gunners by dumping out of the FA Cup this weekend. However Arsene Wenger knows how badly his fans want silverware so they should be able to force a replay.
Mansfield v Liverpool: 0-4
No cup miracles predicted here. Liverpool should waltz to victory over the Conference side.
Cheltenham v Everton: 0-2
Everton will not need any reminder of the parralells between this Cheltenham side and the Shrewsbury team that dumped them out at this stage so unceremoniously ten years ago. Could history repeat itself? I am saying no but this is the FA Cup.
Here is a quick run through of predictions from the games not including Premier League teams.
Aldershot v Rotherham: Away Win
Barnsley v Burnley: Home Win
Blackburn v Bristol City: Home Win
Charlton v Huddersfield : Home Win
Derby v Tranmere: Home Win
Hull v Leyton Orient: Home Win
Leeds United v Birmingham: Home Win
Leicester v Burton Albion: Home Win
Luton v Wolves: Score Draw
Macclesfield v Cardiff: Away Win
Middlesbrough v Hastings United: Home Win
Millwall v Preston: Score Draw
Nottingham Forest v Oldham: Home Win
Oxford Utd v Sheff Utd: Score Draw
Sheff Wed v MK Dons: Score Draw
Southend v Brentford: Away Win
Who do you think could pull of giant killings in the third round of the FA Cup?
image: © flawka