The FA Cup 2016-17 Quarter Finals are here, and providing a small inconvenience to the regular EPL weekend.
A welcome diversion away from Chelsea running away with the league and far too much Arsenal talk for a week anyway.
The FA must be pleased with the final 8 sides. They have almost all of the top 6 sides left, they have the romance of the Non League battler Lincoln making it to the quarter finals for the first time ever and around 100 years since a Non League side did it last. There’s also a second underdog in Millwall. And most importantly a 60th or so consecutive TV game for Manchester United. As a bonus it is a premium match against Chelsea. But it does remove one of the big names.
The only fly in the ointment is Middlesbrough. One of the least exciting sides to hit the EPL in years. They seems unlikely to remain in the cup past this weekend nor in the EPL they way things are going.
So onwards to our FA Cup 2016-17 Quarter Finals preview.
MIDDLESBROUGH V MANCHESTER CITY
Whilst the football world were getting excited about Barcelona’s amazing comeback, Manchester City drew 0-0 with Stoke City. The prospect of this match being exciting seems low.
However Middlesbrough has scored 7 goals in their last three FA Cup games in comparison to their 2 in their last 6 EPL games. And they upset Manchester City as a Championship club a few years back.
But Manchester City should win it unless Boro can match their feat of scoring plenty of goals in their FA Cup games so far.
ARSENAL v LINCOLN CITY
Lincoln City manager Danny Cowley reckons his team are a 1000-1 shot to beat Arsenal. Some say it could be closer than that. Perhaps…5-1. After Arsenal’s capitulation of the same score the football world will be watching the reaction.
Arsenal seemed to bounce back OK from the previous 5-1 in the FA Cup with a win over Sutton United that is now more famous for pie eating than scoring, so will probably do the same here.
But Lincoln City have been great thus far, and were the better side in all three of their previous FA Cup fixtures. Making a Semi Final is probably a step too far, but they have ensured one of the romance that is lost with under strength and insulting EPL and Championship sides remains alive for at least another year.
TOTTENHAM v MILLWALL
A rare London Derby between Spurs and Lions who are covered by just 10 Miles, and who probably haven’t met since Millwall was last in the old Division 1 in the late 1990’s.
Spurs easily accounted for Fulham last time out, but the round before then they had real trouble getting past fourth tier Wycombe Wanderers. We say it was purely because of the big man, Adebayo Akinfenwa aka The Beast.
So will big time Spurs send out an equally undercooked team. They wouldn’t want to as Millwall have already taken Bournemouth and EPL premiers Leicester City. Respect for opposition should lead to an easy Spurs win. Depends on the team though.
Millwall are trying their hardest to return to the Championship, so the priority may not be Cup, but if they’ve made it this far, why not replicate their final feat of 2004.
CHELSEA v MANCHESTER UNITED
The premium clash of the FA Cup 2016-17 Quarter Finals, and plenty of Mourinho talk for all.
With no chance of beating Chelsea to the League, the Special/Happy One will be plenty keen to take something off Chelsea in addition to his League Cup.
All will depend on what sides are put out, but with close to 1 Billion dollars worth of talent, any side should be top class.
FA Cup 2016-17 Quarter Finals – TV TIMES
SAT 23:10 – ESPN1 (508) – MIDDLESBROUGH v MANCHESTER CITY
SUN 04:25 – ESPN2 (509) – ARSENAL v LINCOLN CITY
MON 00:55 – EPSN2 (509) – TOTTENHAM v MILLWALL
TUE 05:40 – ESPN1 (508) – CHELSEA v MANCHESTER CITY
FA Cup 2016-17 Quarter Finals – FEARLESS SELECTIONS
MANCHESTER CITY to beat Middlesbrough
ASRENAL v LINCOLN – LINCOLN to score first
DRAW – SPURS v MILLWALL
DRAW – CHELSEA V MANCHESTER UTD
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