The Fifth round of the FA Cup kicks off this evening, with games once again spread over four days and nights. There are some majorly interesting clashes. Here is the pick of those fifth-round ties:
Newport County v Manchester City (Kick-off 5:30 PM)
On Saturday evening, League Two Newport County host reigning Premier League champions Manchester City at Rodney Parade in a classic David vs Goliath FA Cup tie.
Newport are currently 15th in the fourth tier of English football after an inconsistent run of form of late in League Two. The Welsh side are six games unbeaten in the FA Cup, having recorded four wins and two draws.
Mike Flynn’s side has knocked out the Metropolitan Police, Wrexham, Leicester and Middlesbrough in the previous rounds of the competition. They also have an impressive recent home record in the competition, as County are unbeaten in their last seven matches on home soil, winning six times. They even held Premier League Tottenham to a 1-1 draw a Rodney Parade in last season’s competition.
Manchester City are still gunning for quadruple this season. However, the Citizens face a big week with the Champions League last 16 returning in midweek and the Carabao Cup final next weekend. City heads into this clash on the back of 11 wins in their last 12 games in all competitions. The Citizens have also have won four of their last five matches in the FA Cup, scoring at least twice in all four wins.
Manchester City are obviously massive favourites to progress to the last eight of the competition. It would be one of the biggest upsets in the history of the competition if the Welsh side eliminated the men from Manchester.
Chelsea v Manchester United (Kick-off 7:30)
On Monday night, Chelsea host Premier League rivals Manchester United at Stamford Bridge, in arguably the biggest tie of the round.
Chelsea have really gone off the boil recently and boss Maurizio Sarri is under immense pressure for results to improve. The Blues recorded a 2-1 win at Swedish outfit Malmo on Thursday night the Europa League last 32 first leg. The win was unconvincing, but much needed after their 6-0 mauling at Manchester City last Sunday.
The FA Cup is a favourite competition of Chelsea’s. The Blues are current holders of the trophy after beating United 2-1 in last season’s FA Cup final. The home side has recorded victories in six of their last seven matches in the competition, winning their last four games.
The Blues are unbeaten against the visitors on home soil since 2012. They will be hoping that that record stays in place after this clash.
Manchester United heads into this match on the back of a 2-0 home defeat against PSG in the Champions League last 16. The defeat ended interim boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s 11-match unbeaten run as temporary boss.
United have a good recent record in the FA Cup, as the only game the Red Devils have lost in their last eight games in the competition is that aforementioned defeat against Chelsea. The visitors have won the other seven games in that eight-match run.
Their last away defeat in the FA Cup, ironically also came against Chelsea, as United suffered a 1-0 quarter-final defeat at Stamford Bridge.
This weekend’s other FA Cup fifth round ties
QPR v Watford (Kick-off 7:45 PM)
Brighton v Derby (Kick-off 12:30)
AFC Wimbledon v Millwall (Kick-off 3 PM)
Bristol City v Wolves (Kick-off 1 PM)
Doncaster v Crystal Palace (Kick-off 4 PM)
Swansea v Brentford (Kick-off 4 PM)
Can Newport County cause a massive upset in the FA Cup against Manchester City?