The FA would be wrong to punish Tottenham’s Eric Dier

Eric Dier made more headlines off the pitch then on it as Tottenham crashed out of the FA Cup in midweek against Norwich, who are currently bottom of the Premier League table.

As the players were leaving the pitch with his side Tottenham having just lost on penalties to the Canaries Dier could be seen to jump into the crowd in amazing scenes. What transpired was that he was reacting to something that was said to his brother who was in attendance. As a fan had shouted abuse, Dier found his tipping point, blood boiling and entered the stands to confront the fan. As cowards go, this fan was top of the list and seeing Dier coming towards him he ran off. Not in a million years did he actually think Dier would jump the advertising boards to confront him, but he did.

Inevitably the FA have got involved and Dier could be looking at a ban, but the FA need not show their power in this incident. When matters of racism arise in England the FA are always quick on the mark and show a zero tolerance attitude and they need to be applauded for that, other leagues can learn from the FA’s attitude on this. But it does seem that the FA love to show their power to other matters.

Take the Everton game when Carlo Ancelotti was sent off for swearing at the referee after seeing a last minute Everton winner ruled out against Manchester United. Whilst the FA rescinded the red card, they still fined Ancelotti £8,000. Pocket money to him, but why the fine for a swear word?

What Dier did was nicely summed up by his manager Jose Mourinho who said it was not professional but he could understand the circumstances as it was an attack on his family member.

Some have tried to compare the incident to Eric Cantona’s infamous kick on a fan in 1995, and that is so wide of the mark. There was no violence in this confrontation, although the fan ran away so we will never know. What Dier did wasn’t correct but there is two sides to the story. No abusive fan bullying his brother and no incident. That is as clear as day and one would hope that the FA would consider this.

The ideal scenario would be to see the fan banned from the ground, if not for life at least for the next couple of years. The season is almost over, so a season ban makes no sense. They should talk to Dier and that should be it, no ban and no fine. But make it clear that they won’t tolerate that behaviour again. For example why didn’t Dier motion to the stewards to act on the incident before he had too?

So Dier was silly to react but he was also protective. Maybe the people who decide his fate need to think what they would do in that situation before handing down judgement.

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This isn’t the Jose Mourinho Tottenham were looking for as season boils down to the FA Cup

So it looks like the season for Tottenham is going to come down to the FA Cup, and they have a manager in Jose Mourinho who wins trophies. Even at his nightmare period with Manchester United Mourinho won silverware and this is the hope that Tottenham cling on too.

In truth has Mourinho’s appointment improved Tottenham as a whole since sacking Mauricio Pochettino last November? Statistically it just about has in Mourinho’s first 12 games in charge he earned 20 points. In Pochettino’s 12 games in charge before being sacked this season he earned 14. But this season under Mourinho Tottenham are on course to earn at least 10 points under what Pochettino earned last season.

Though Tottenham still find themselves in the mix for a top 4 spot, which would mean Champions League football next season, this is not down to how good they have been, but more about how inconsistent Chelsea have been in 4th place. The lack of putting any number of winning games together has given the likes of both Tottenham and Manchester United hope. But the reality is that Tottenham look like they will miss out on Champions League football next season, evidently they are just not a good enough side this season to finish in the top four. That was hammered home again last weekend when they lost 3-2 at home to Wolves, despite being a goal up.

One of the biggest factors in getting Mourinho in and reportedly paying him in the region of £15m a season was that he wins games on a consistent basis and finds a way. His home form in league games is undisputed, but this season under him Tottenham have already lost 3 at home, this under a man who once went 9 years over 150 games without defeat at home. It does feel that Tottenham were looking for the Jose Mourinho of 2005 and have landed with an inferior product.

The Champions League this season is very much in the balance after the club lost the 1st leg against RB Leipzig 1-0. That was a home game and if Leipzig score first in Germany in the return match, Tottenham would need to score at least 2 goals on the night. Tottenham remains a very good side, let’s not forget that they made the Champions League final last year, but they are clearly a few levels below most of the teams left in this seasons competition.

Of course injuries have played their part. Not only did they lose Harry Kane but Heung-Min Son who had found his goal scoring boots is also out injured, and both players are missing months instead of weeks. But something else is missing with the club and it could well be that Mourinho is well past his sell by date, or maybe he just doesn’t have the quality of players at his disposal. Will more money be spent this summer, well you can guarantee it, but then all of the pressure will be under Mourinho with nowhere to escape if the club do not pick up and start challenging for trophies.

This season then looks like it will come down to the FA Cup. And make no mistake if Tottenham did finish outside the top four, but qualified for the Europa League and won the FA Cup the fans would take that. For all of the great play under Pochettino and the memorable wins, the club won nada, nothing, zilch. And fans want to see trophies held aloft at the end of the day.

Today the club will turn to the FA Cup where they will play Norwich in their replay and try to qualify for the quarter finals. Lose that and one senses all momentum could depart a ship that sometimes looks worryingly lost at sea.

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FA Cup: Game of the Weekend: Shrewsbury 2-2 Liverpool

Nobody would have expected the European and club world champions to have many problems when they were drawn against Shrewsbury in the 4th round of the FA Cup. Liverpool were expected to win comfortably against the League one side playing in the third tier, but the match ended in a 4 goal thriller as the underdogs drew the game 2-2 and forced a replay.

Liverpool did not start with their strongest team which seems par for the course for Klopp and domestic cup competitions. However there were still some recognisable faces on the pitch in the form of Dejan Lovren, Divock Origi, Fabinho and Adrian was in goal. Liverpool opted to play a 4-3-3 whilst the home team had a slightly daring 3-5-2 wanting to try and pack the midfield out. It was risque to see the team happy to play 2 up front and just 3 at the back against the Reds.

The away side dominated possession and it was no surprise that they took the lead within 15 minutes through Curtis Jones who had stunned Everton in the 3rd round. Scoring so early it felt like Liverpool could 5 or 6 goals, but to their credit Shrewsbury held firm and the half time score read as 0-1.

As the 2nd half got under way Shrewsbury would have had the belief that they were still in the game but just a minute after the whistle they found themselves 2-0 down and practically out of the cup. To add insult to the wounds it was an own goal converted by defender Donald Love. Well no home fan was loving this.

But Shrewsbury found a way back, which was handed to them by one of Liverpool’s youngsters Yasser Larouci his foul giving away a penalty. Jason Cummings made no mistake and slotted home- suddenly there was belief that this game was not dead. Ten minutes later the stadium erupted like it had not done so before when Cummings ran through and took a shot, now it was 2-2 and the atmosphere in the stadium was simply electric.

Jurgen Klopp looked like someone who had been told that Christmas had been banned for the rest of his life. Distraught, angry on the touchline he played his ace cards. On came quality, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Alex-Oxlade Chamberlain but for the final ten minutes Liverpool could not find a breakthrough and the game ended 2-2.

It was a shock result even if we consider that Liverpool did not start their strongest team and the clubs will meet again in a weeks time.

But there will be a bigger fall out from this as Klopp desperately wanted to win this game and has announced that not only will he field a complete second string side at Anfield he will also not be there to coach the team. This is because there is a gap week in the Premier League and players and coaches have taken pre-arranged holidays.

This is great news for Shrewsbury though, who now have a chance to reach the 5th round of the FA Cup. You would think that any neutral will be willing them on to do it now.

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Why Jurgen Klopp is 100% wrong about the FA Cup

At the very moment that Jason Cummings scored his 2nd goal and Shrewsbury’s equaliser against Liverpool in the FA Cup 4th round the Reds manager may well have been thinking about his wife and his holidays. Earlier in the game Klopp saw that his team were cruising 2-0 up, this game looked dead. Except it wasn’t, Shrewsbury tore up the rule book, came back and now a replay will be played. But there is a problem.

That problem lies in the fact that the replay must take place in the scheduled Premier League break at the beginning of next month and Klopp evidently has other plans. The German said: “We intend to honour the original idea of the break, we have respect for the players’ welfare and they need this time off. We got a letter from the authorities in April last year asking us not to organise anything during the week of the break and we haven’t. We have given the players the time off, and some are going away. They will still be keeping fit, but they do not have to play football that week and they do not have to come in to Melwood.”

Firstly Liverpool did indeed get a letter from the FA requesting that certain games are not played during the break, those are money making friendly matches and not competitive games, that he did not clearly point out.

Klopp will play a youth side it seems, the same that played against Aston Villa in the Carabao Cup and were destroyed. So secondly Klopp simply doesn’t want to be in the FA Cup, his total lack of regard for the competition is a little staggering. Yes the league title is more important but the club do have a 16 point lead at the top with a game in hand. The Champions League doesn’t kick off for almost another month and in short Liverpool could have started the replay with a strong squad.

Having said that Klopp rings the changes when it comes to cup matches and he has promised players time off, that is acceptable in a way, so they come back refreshed. However the sticking point here seems to be that he will not oversee the replay. Instead he intends to honour the break. Now giving your players that time off is one thing, but really, does anyone want to see the manager doing the same thing? Really? Don’t lose youngsters want to look over in the dugout and see Klopp there?

Last month he couldn’t be there against Aston Villa and neither could the first team who were playing in the World Club Cup, this time the excuse is holidays. But for Klopp being absent it just leaves a sour taste in the mouth. Liverpool have been non existent and to a case very disrespectful of the domestic cups. And yet took FIFA’s World Club Cup seriously, it has prestige maybe only in the clubs trophy room.

Klopp is one of the most likeable managers out there right now, but his likeability slipped a little this week.

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FA Cup: Team of the 4th round

The Premier League took a break at the weekend to make way for the 4th round of the FA Cup. Some Premier League teams were involved and whilst, as ever, there were some lower league teams looking to become the new giant killer of the famous competition. Below we take at the team of the 4th round of the cup based on performance.

Goalkeeper: Sergio Romero- Manchester United

Manchester United pick Romero when playing cup games and United easily beat Tranmere 6-0, but it was still important for Romero to stand firm and focus and brilliant for his confidence to keep a clean sheet.

Defender: Robert Dickie- Oxford United

Oxford United produced one of the ties of the round drawing 0-0 away to Newcastle who put out a strong side. Robert Dickie in central defence saw a lot of the ball and did a sterling job.

Defender: Elliott Moore- Oxford United

Keeping with brilliant Oxford United Moore also had an exceptional game and was focused as the Premier League stars remained frustrated and Moore deserves high praise.

Defender: Conor Townsend- West Bromwich Albion

Possibly the player of the round. Conor Townsend not only helped keep a clean sheet away to West Ham, but he also scored what turned out to be the winning goal as Albion knocked out West Ham 1-0.

Defender: Ryan Tafazolli- Hull

True Hull were knocked out by Chelsea, but the gulf in class and budget was there to see and Hull held their own for long periods of the game. Ryan Tafazolli was a rock in defence and played well, he got unlucky a few times but helped to keep the score low.

Midfielder: Olivier Norwood- Sheffield United

Oliver Norwood did his confidence very well as his side advanced to the 5th round of the cup by beating Millwall 2-0. He also helped keep a clean sheet and scored a goal, for a perfect cup game.

Midfielder: Curtis Jones- Liverpool

Curtis Jones did it again as he scored for Liverpool when given the chance to play. He now has 2 goals in two cup games and is full of confidence. One for the future perhaps?

Midfielder: Ben Close- Portsmouth

Close got the ball rolling and opened the scoring for Portsmouth who went on to score 4 goals and beat Barnsley 4-2. It’s already quite an achievement for the side to reach the 5th round and they will try and go further. His goal was a cracker too.

Midfielder: Sofiane Boufal- Southampton

Sofiane Boufal scored against Tottenham and played a pivotal role as his team Southampton frustrated last seasons Champions League finalists and the game finished 1-1.

Striker: Jason Cummings- Shrewsbury

Jason Cummings will never forget this game as long as he lives. The striker that not many people would have heard of scored 2 goals against Liverpool, who had been cruising and were leading 2-0. Cummings converted a penalty then sealed a draw that will see the club play at Anfield in the replay.

Striker: Gabriel Jesus- Manchester City

A more familiar name, but nonetheless Gabriel Jesus was on top form for Manchester City who made light work of Fulham and beat them 4-0. Jesus scored two goals in what ended up being a stroll for the Premier League champions.

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Man Utd 6-0 Tranmere Rovers; The Red Devils continue to progress in the FA Cup as they cruised past Micky Mellon’s men with ease

After a really difficult week with defeats to Burnley and Liverpool in the league, Manchester United had only two things on their mind, of getting back to winning ways and aiming to end the season with a bit of silverware, as they travelled to Tranmere Rovers for the fourth round of the FA Cup.

Going into the game, majority of football fans were expecting a potential upset and some FA Cup magic, especially if one was to consider the away side’s poor form over the last couple of weeks whilst the state of the pitch at Prenton Park would have surely been an advantage to the hosts only.

However, it was a straightforward victory and a walk in the park for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United, as the three goals by the 16th minute mark was more than enough to put the game to bed despite the efforts and hard work that was shown by the Tranmere Rovers players from start till the end.

With the goals coming from the most unlikely of sources in the first half through Harry Maguire, Diogo Dalot, Jesse Lingard and even Phil Jones, it was the fifth time this season were the side has scored four goals or more in a single game. On top of that, Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood were able to chip in with a goal, two individuals who have to step up in Marcus Rashford’s absence.

Now, we look onto the three key things we learnt from United’s latest match…

The back-three/five formation has it’s benefits when correctly utilised

The back-three/five formation is often seen as a defensive and pragmatic system, due to the number of defenders and lack of attacking-minded players that are utilised within the setup. However, when having the ideal individuals and intelligent players that fit into each specific role flawlessly, then it works out perfectly, just like what the Red Devils had seen from their team today at Prenton Park.

With the likes of Rashford, Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay remaining out on the sidelines and are not expected to return from injury anytime soon, United could possibly use the 3-4-1-2 setup more often as they aim to the remaining schedule game by game. Given the energetic wing-backs in Brandon Williams and Diogo Dalot, as well as a playmaker like Juan Mata to link the midfield to attack, the back-three/five formation could be seen a short term solution for Solskjaer and his men.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer gets back to winning ways and fights to live for another day

It’s not been an easy week for Solskjaer, as the defeats to Burnley and Liverpool have had the United fans and the Premier League pundits questioning if he is the right man for the job, someone who is lacking the needed experience and tactical knowledge in order to succeed at one of the biggest clubs in the world. Though, with the dominant victory over Tranmere Rovers and the players putting on a discipline and composed display, it could possibly be something that they can build on from here.

As the side continue to remain in the FA Cup, Europa League, EFL Cup (not for long) and six points away from fourth-place Chelsea, there is still a lot to fight for as long as Solskjaer can remain open-minded on and off the pitch whilst proving that he can get the best out of the current squad. If he can get maximum points from now until the key players return from injury, then there is a possibility of the team ending the season on a high note, however, it is a big if as the side have not been able to show their dominance, consistency and quality on a regular basis so far this footballing campaign.

The United supporters continue to protest against the Glazers and Ed Woodward

Despite the 6-0 victory over Tranmere Rovers and the fact that the side have qualified for the next round of the FA Cup, the United supporters were still not satisfied, as they went on to directing their anger and frustration to the Glazers and Ed Woodward, who have played the pivotal role to the club’s decline. With the fans raising their voice today and recently against Burnley and Norwich, it looks like they will continue to do so until there is a huge change to revive their football club.

It’s actually been a long time coming, as the hierarchy and the owners have not shown enough attention and care towards the club’s performance and results on the pitch, whilst they are more bothered and focused about the income and profit they have been able to make off it. However, the Manchester United fans are taking a stand and are now saying enough is enough, as the side have failed to make a single challenge for the Premier League title since the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson.

Manchester City’s quest for a cup treble continues

Manchester City are through to the fifth round of the FA Cup after an emphatic 4-0 win against Scott Parker’s Fulham. Ilkay Gundogan, Bernardo Silva and a Gabriel Jesus brace ensured City’s quest for a cup treble continued in a season that could still be an impressive one.

Despite being 16 points behind leaders Liverpool in the Premier League, Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City find themselves in good stead in the FA Cup, Carabao Cup and the Champions League, a trophy that has eluded the blue side of Manchester. Continue reading

Slaven Bilic criticises West Ham’s stadium move, was he right?

Former West Ham player Slaven Bilic has criticised West Ham’s move to London Stadium. Bilic who commands much respect from the West Ham faithful is bringing his side West Bromwich Albion to the Hammers new ground to play out their FA Cup 4th round tie at the weekend.

Bilic played for West Ham at their old stadium the Boleyn Ground and also managed the team, in fact he was in charge when the club played their last ever season at the historic ground. Bilic said: It’s not an excuse, but if you ask me if it was better to play at Upton Park or not then there’s no discussion,” he said. ”It was more home, it was more hostile. Not one opposition player enjoyed it when they had to go to Upton Park. That’s a fact. The Olympic Stadium is very different for an away team. You enjoy it more.”

The Croatian went on to say,”what also changes are the fans. It’s like pubs; now you have modern bars. When you take people out of the pub and go to them, they don’t feel comfortable. They prefer pubs where it is packed and you are shoulder to shoulder. Like what Roy Keane said about the ‘prawn sandwich brigade’ – it leads to that. You don’t want to lose that hostile home advantage and there are very few of those traditional clubs left in the Premier League because the league forces you to become more a corporation than a football club.”

Bilic did not mix his words, but is he right about the new stadium? Well fans of the club do seem to think so, and whilst the stadium is modern and state of the art compared to the old ground it has completely lost it’s sense of atmosphere.

It’s a difficult situation for clubs now who don’t want to be seen playing in old stadiums that feel well past their prime and there does seem to be a pressure in the digital age to move on. Change of course is natural and in 100 years time West Ham most probably won’t even be at the London Stadium.

A reason they could move is that they don’t actually own the stadium and it is being paid by taxpayers, which is a disgrace in all honesty, though that argument is for a different day and topic. It does seem as if the clubs owners have made a mistake in moving though. Surely the biggest asset of moving ground would be for money reasons but it is reported once all rent has been paid that the club only make an extra £2m in revenues.

Was that worth such a drastic change, in losing that intimidating atmosphere at the club? At the same time even when they were at their old ground they had won nothing in over 35 years, so maybe the closeness of the fans to the pitch worked for some games, but overall did staying at Boleyn Ground really make that much difference?

Perhaps the problem is in ownership, David Sullivan and David Gold are true supporters and love the club but at the same time maybe there time with the club is up. Maybe change is needed on a vast scale. Relegation could well be a possibility this season and playing in the Championship in a 60,000 concrete bowl with less atmosphere doesn’t sound too appetising. If Sullivan and Gold do indeed love the club maybe they need to sell up.

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FA Cup 4th Round Predictions

It’s the FA Cup 4th round at the weekend in England as the Premier League takes a break. Whilst possible points can’t be gained in cup games, it is still interesting to look into the teams in the Premier League that are still left in the competition and who we think could qualify for the 5th round. Or will there be shocks, and who can emerge as cup heroes at the weekend?

Brentford v Leicester

Brentford will be very determined in this match but look at how well Leicester have performed this season in the league. The Foxes will be strong and have reached the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup too. Manager Brendan Rodgers will be determined for his side to reach the 5th round. Leicester to beat Brentford

Southampton v Tottenham

Southampton have been in good form in the league and they have a chance to knock out Tottenham in this game. The club look solid. As for Tottenham their form has been average, and they could well be relying on Heung-Min Son to get them out of trouble. This is a massive game for Tottenham, they need trophies. Tottenham to beat Southampton

Millwall v Sheffield United

Sheffield United are having a strong season in the Premier League but manager Chris Wilder played a second string side in the last round. They got away with it then but if he chooses to play them again Millwall away could be a step too far, and we fancy the Championship side here. Millwall to beat Sheffield United

West Ham v West Bromwich Albion

It has not been a good start for West Ham manager David Moyes, whose side lost 4-1 at Leicester in the league a few days ago. They have the quality to win this game, and it will be interesting to see if Moyes picks Sebastian Haller who could be a danger if used in this game. West Ham to beat West Bromwich Albion

Burnley v Norwich

This all Premier League tie should see Burnley prevail. Norwich have bigger problems at the foot of the table and look like they could go down. Burnley have a lot of confidence and they have just beaten Manchester United away. Burnley to beat Norwich

Newcastle v Oxford United

Andy Carroll could return for this game and the centre forward getting a run out for a cup game could be the perfect tonic. Newcastle should have little problems in winning this game given that they are at home and we fancy a comfortable win. Newcastle to beat Oxford United

Hull v Chelsea

Chelsea will start as favourites but this could be a very close game and they will give the Blues some troubles. Chelsea manager Frank Lampard isn’t afraid to play a strong team and promising youngster Callum Hudson-Odoi could make all of the difference here. Chelsea to beat Hull

Manchester City v Fulham

Fulham just need to enjoy this game, try and defend and try to counter. The problem they have is that Pep Guardiola will most likely play a very strong team- he’s in need of trophies given that the league looks over. Ayermic Laporte is set to make his long awaited comeback in this game too. Manchester City to beat Fulham.

Watford/Tranmere v Manchester United

Watford and Tranmere will play a replay before this game, although we think Watford should make it through. The Hornets have already beaten Manchester United a few weeks ago, and we think they can force a draw here, and play in another replay. Watford and Manchester United to draw

Shrewsbury v Liverpool

On paper you would say Liverpool will win and will score many goals. But Jurgen Klopp will probably stick with the same youthful side that beat rivals Everton 1-0 in the last round. This won’t be an easy game, and Klopp’s ace card will be having some quality on the bench. Expect Sadio Mane to come on if everything is a stalemate late in the game. Liverpool to beat Shrewsbury

Bournemouth v Arsenal

This is a big game for Arsenal who have struggled in the league and not played well away from home. But Mikel Arteta has stated how important the cup is to Arsenal and having a deep run in it will be important. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is suspended and a lot of the responsibilty could fall on Alexandre Lacazette. Arsenal to beat Bournemouth

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11 Players to look out for in the FA Cup 4th Round

The Premier League is taking a break this weekend as focus turns its attention to the FA Cup one of the oldest cup competitions in the world. Even though we can’t score points in cup games, how some players perform this weekend can bode well for their form and confidence coming back to Premier League football for next weekend.

Let’s look at some of the players who will try and continue to light up the competition and possibly cause some problems along the way.

Goalkeeper: Adrian- Liverpool

Alisson of course is the main man for Liverpool when it comes to keeping guard in goal for the Reds but Adrian will step in for this game. Adrian has been really impressive when he has had the chance and kept a clean sheet in the last round against a full strength Everton team.

Defender: Kyle Bartley- West Bromwich Albion

Kyle Bartley’s West Bromwich Albion did well in the last round by beating Charlton 1-0 with the defence keeping a clean sheet. They will play West Ham away in the next round and could provide a stern test for the Premier League side who usually struggle in cup games against non top flight teams.

Defender: Isaac Hayden – Newcastle

Isaac Hayden has been in good form for Newcastle lately, and the question will be if manager Steve Bruce selects him for their FA Cup game? The Magpies will be at home to Oxford United and so will be the big favourites to win it and Hayden if he plays could well be part of a defence that keeps a clean sheet.

Defender: Conor Townsend- West Bromwich Albion

Conor Townsend has been one of WBA’s best players this season and is adept at keeping clean sheets. West Ham who the club are playing in the next round are not in great form. Could WBA provide a shock?

Defender: Jordan Orbita- Reading

Jordan Orbita could well be playing in the Premier League soon. He has been impressive for Reading this season and in the last round he scored the winner as the club overcame Blackpool 2-0. Reading will play Cardiff at home in the next round.

Midfielder: Adam Lallana- Liverpool

Adam Lallana is sure to start when Liverpool face Shrewsbury Town away from home. Lallana is a fringe player now at the Reds but does get the nod to start cup games. He was very impressive as Liverpool beat Everton 1-0 in the last round.

Midfielder: Mathieu Smith- Millwall

Mathieu Smith’s future may lie elsewhere than Millwall if he continues to put in good solid performances and the player scored when the London club knocked out Newport County in the last round. He can play as an attacker or just drop down into attacking midfielder and is worth keeping your eye on.

Midfielder: Callum Hudson-Odoi- Chelsea

Another player who can just drop off the strikers. He doesn’t always get regular starts for Chelsea in the league, but he has been picked as first choice for cup matches. He scored a goal in the last round as Chelsea beat Nottingham Forest and he will be tipped to do well when the Blues take on Hull in the 4th round.

Striker: Alexandre Lacazette- Arsenal

Alexandre Lacazette was the hero for Arsenal in the last round against Leeds, and the Gunners will need him to perform when they take on Bournemouth. In part this is because Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will be suspended for this game. Lacazette can hopefully provide the front line that Arsenal need.

Striker: Curtis Jones- Liverpool

Who is Curtis Jones? Well a few weeks ago not many people knew outside of Liverpool football club. But Jones a teenager scored the only goal and a cracking one at that to give the Reds a 1-0 win over their local rivals Everton. Now people know who Jones is and surely Jurgen Klopp will give Jones another opportunity to play and shine when they take on Shrewsbury Town in the 4th round?

Striker: Jay Rodriguez- Burnley

Jay Rodriguez scored in the last round as Burnley overcame Peterborough 4-2 in  an entertaining game. Burnley will now play Norwich at home and will start as favourites to advance to the next round. Rodriguez has every chance of playing and helping his team.