Host of Greater Manchester clubs set for FA Cup action

The FA Cup returns next weekend where four Greater Manchester clubs remain in the world’s oldest football association competition.

Holders Manchester United have been drawn against Wigan and a victory for Jose Mourinho’s men would put them into the last 16 where they would be three wins away from the final.

Here is a look at those fixtures which feature Greater Manchester teams and their chances of making it through into the fifth round of the tournament.

Crystal Palace v Manchester City

Manchester City were back to their very best against West Ham in the third round of the FA Cup where they ran out 5-0 winners at the London Stadium.

In what was a tricky tie on paper, Pep Guardiola’s side got off to a flying start to put themselves in control very early into the fixture where they were 3-0 up after just 43 minutes.

City will once again have to travel down to London where they are 5/1 with Ladbrokes to win.

As you can see from the Oddchecker review of the bookmaker, they offer a free bet to new customers, so if you are looking to back Guardiola’s men to go all the way in the FA Cup they’re a good choice.

Crystal Palace are now managed by former England boss Sam Allardyce but have struggled for form in recent months. They have had just one win in their last eight Premier League games, which means they are only one place above the relegation zone in the table.

This competition could be City’s best chance of silverware this season. At the time of writing, they are 10 points behind leaders Chelsea in the Premier League table.

Guardiola came out after their 4-0 loss to Everton to say they were out of the title running.

The Blues have a tough last 16 tie against Monaco to negotiate in the knockout stages of the Champions League, while they have already been eliminated from the EFL Cup.

Rochdale v Huddersfield Town

League One outfit Rochdale are through to the fourth round of the FA Cup for the third time in the last four years.

They’ve had wins over Maidstone, Chesterfield and Barrow to reach this stage of the competition this season.

Keith Hill’s side are having a fantastic season in League One where they are currently in a play-off position heading into the second half of the campaign.

The draw against Huddersfield was probably not the glamour tie they were looking for but Dale have been able to win their last 10 league games at Spotland. Therefore they will be confident of getting past the Terriers in front of their home supporters.

Huddersfield are going well in the Championship, they lie in fifth place and are pushing for one of the two automatic spots at the end of the season which will give them promotion into the Premier League.

Manchester United v Wigan Athletic

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho is likely to rest a number of his first team regulars when his side play host fellow Greater Manchester side Wigan on January 29.

United have a busy few weeks coming up as they have the second leg of their semi-final clash with Hull in the EFL Cup to worry about, while just three days after FA Cup tie they travel to Hull again in the Premier League.

The Reds had no problems getting past Reading in the third round of this competition in the game which saw Wayne Rooney equal Sir Bobby Charlton’s record of 249 goals for the club.

Wigan, on the other hand, are struggling at the wrong end of the Championship table where they sit in 19th place with just Rotherham below them in the standings. The Latics defeated Nottingham Forest 2-0 to advance into the fourth round.

The 2013 winners’ main priority will be to remain in the Championship this season, however, their trip to Old Trafford will be a welcomed break from the league.

They’ll hoping to find some magic of the cup by producing one of the biggest surprises of the round next weekend.

All 16 ties of the FA Cup will take place from January 27-29. Manchester United’s tie with Wigan will be broadcast on BBC One, while the draw for the fifth round will take place on January 30.

Image courtesy of FATV via YouTube, with thanks.

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