Premier League and FA Cup Weekend Preview and US TV Schedule
Saturday 7:45 am
Swansea City v Fulham (Live Setanta Sports). Swansea’s first game at home in this season’s competition sees them host Fulham, who’s only wins this season away have been in the FA Cup. Swansea have more draws than wins at the Liberty Stadium and are close to the playoff places in the Championship. With draws abound for both sides this season, logic would dictate a replay. But Roberto Martinez has done special things with Swansea City and I think there will be magic in Wales on Saturday…for the Welsh (both Football and Rugby). Swansea City 2 Fulham 1
Saturday 10:00 am
Sheffield United v Hull City (Live Fox Soccer Channel). Hull City have been better away than they have been at the KC Stadium this season, and take on a Sheffield United side who’s form since their win against Charlton in the fourth round has been sporadic at best. The loss in the Steel City Derby to Sheffield Wednesday will still be fresh in their minds, Hull City could very well springboard after their Chelsea performance. Bet Premier League to prevail here. Sheffield United 0 Hull City 2.
West Ham United v Middlesbrough (Live Setanta Sports). I don’t know what to make of this game. West Ham is on a roll, Middlesbrough can’t buy a win in the Premier League to save their lives right now and really don’t need the extra games right now. West Ham should do them a favor and let Gareth Southgate focus on the Premier League…if he survives another loss. West Ham United 1 Middlesbrough 0.
Blackburn Rovers v Coventry City (Replay Saturday 4:30 pm Fox Soccer Channel). I wonder how seriously Blackburn will take this game being in the relegation zone. Coventry City are mid-table, just far enough out of the promotion race and safe enough from relegation that they can afford a deep cup run. However Sam Allardyce usually has a plan for situations like this and should be able to sneak a late win here. Blackburn Rovers 2 Coventry City 1.
Saturday 12:30 pm
Watford v Chelsea (Live Setanta Sports). This game has torn at me all week. Watford has a former Chelsea man at the helm and Frank Lampard Sr will be on the bench against Frank Lampard Jr. Chelsea lose a manager, have not been playing anything up to their promise, and are on the road against a side who are in a Championship relegation fight. All that keeps going through my mind is Barnsley away last season and those infamous words from Jon Motson “And it’s a goal for Barnsley”. Yes you may officially call me insane, crazy and stupid. But in a move that I hope backfires perfectly, I predict Watford to advance. Watford 1 Chelsea 0.
Sunday 9:30 am
Everton v Aston Villa (Live Setanta Sports). This to me is the tie of the round. Jo won’t be able to play for Everton, and that could play into Villa’s advantage. It’s a tricky tie for both sides as a good core of both sides have been out on international duty this week. All signs point to replay for me. Everton 1 Aston Villa 1.
Sunday 11:30 am
Derby County v Manchester United (Live Fox Soccer Channel). I don’t think Sir Alex will be fielding the same side that lost at Pride Park 1-0 back in the League Cup Semi-Final. Derby County took Manchester United to the brink then, but I think Manchester United knows how to turn the screws when the time is right and will get the result. Derby County 0 Manchester United 1.
Monday 2:45 pm
Arsenal v Cardiff City (Live Setanta Sports). Cardiff can’t play for the away draw here. Arsenal will want revenge from their first meeting. I don’t think this one will be close. Arsenal will get to the fifth round here. Arsenal 3 Cardiff City 0.
Premier League Saturday 10 am
Portsmouth v Manchester City (Live Setanta Xtra. On replay Setanta Sports 9:15 am). Will Portsmouth have the bounce back post manager sacking? Manchester City have only won once away this season and will hope their second is similar to the 6-0 victory they had back in September against Portsmouth. I simply don’t know how Portsmouth don’t respond to what happened to Tony Adams. Manchester City at home is the perfect bounce back opponent for Portsmouth. Portsmouth 2 Manchester City 0.
What are your thoughts on the action to come this weekend? Let us know by leaving a comment below.