FA Cup Fourth Round Sunday, Open Thread

Two big FA Cup matches are on deck today. The 11am ET/4pm GMT kickoff between Arsenal and Aston Villa is the one that most will be interested in, but the 8.30am ET/1:30pm GMT match between Sunderland and Middlesbrough shouldn’t be overlooked either. Plus, we have the draw for the fifth round of the FA Cup, which is scheduled for approximately 10:40am ET today.

In 10 previous FA Cup meetings Arsenal have beaten Villa six times, lost three times with one draw, while Sunderland lead the Wear-Tees derby tally 59-45. This should be a straightforward win for Arsenal, but based on their confidence lately, it’s possibly that Villa could cause an upset. Arsenal will want to win especially knowing that Manchester United and City are out of the FA Cup. Winning some silverware this season would be vital for Arsene Wenger and the Gunners fans.

Having said that, Wenger will know that McLeish was the manager that helped Birmingham City beat Arsenal last season in the Carling Cup Final. This one should be an intriguing encounter.

In the early match, Middlesbrough, fifth in the Championship and hunting promotion under Tony Mowbray, have only won one of their last five. Meanwhile for Sunderland, Connor Wickham makes a rare start up front for the Black Cats.

Before, during and after today’s FA Cup matches, post your rants, raves, questions and observations in the comments section below.

7 thoughts on “FA Cup Fourth Round Sunday, Open Thread”

  1. Expecting a Sunderland win as they have been resurgent under Martin O’Neill. Middlesbrough are in a mini slump and given that their priority is getting promotion I don’t see anything but a Sunderland win.

    Arsenal should beat Villa but with Bent and Keane on form Villa could get a draw which is not what Arsenal would want as they have to play in the Champions League and try to get that 4th spot in the league. More games for Arsenal means more chances for injuries which they can ill-afford.

    Prediction for the FA Cup draw. Everton vs Liverpool and Spurs vs Arsenal/Aston Villa.

  2. Good start to the Sunday games. Middlesbrough deserved their draw at Sunderland. Maybe Middlesbrough can use this to push ahead in the race to get promotion.

  3. The fifth-round draw is in.

    The games will take place Feb. 18-19.

    Millwall or Southampton v. Bolton
    Sunderland or Middlesbrough v. Arsenal or Aston Villa
    Norwich v. Leicester City
    Stevenage v. Spurs
    Crawley v. Stoke
    Chelsea v. Birmingham
    Everton v. Blackpool or Sheffield Wednesday
    Liverpool v. Brighton

    1. Wow. Great pick for former Colorado Rapids manager Gary Smith who now is in charge of Stevenage. Best of luck to him against Spurs.

      The Gaffer

  4. Crazy turnaround at the Emirates. After we were down 2, I almost turned it off. Glad I didn’t! Arsenal showed great character to keep fighting and get the win. And how about Ox!? The kid has to be on cloud 9 right now, what another spectacular showing.

  5. A much needed victory for Arsenal.Hope this will be the turning point for the team this season.But I still worry about our defense.We must keep more clean sheets.

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