Everyone loves an FA Cup upset, especially if you’ve got money on it. FA Cup clichés dictate that the minnows have missed their chance for glory if their tie goes to a replay but several will still fancy their chances of getting through this week.
Here we look at where the biggest upsets might happen in the third-round replays:
Aston Villa v Wycombe (7/1)
Villa have been so poor this season that many pundits suggested a victory for Wycombe in the first meeting would not have been an upset. The Premier League side were held to a 1-1 draw, prompting an angry reaction from some of the travelling fans. Remi Garde’s men have at least taken four points from their last two league games to boost morale but if League Two promotion hopefuls Wycombe can take the lead, the home fans may again get restless.
Bristol City (27/10) v West Brom
West Brom were seconds away from defeat at The Hawthorns when a last-gasp equaliser from James Morrison kept them in the competition. It was a cruel blow for City, who had come from behind to lead 2-1, but their performance will give them hope they can finish the job at Ashton Gate to earn a home tie with Peterborough. City have since sacked manager Steve Cotterill due to their poor league position and first-team coach John Pemberton is in temporary charge – victory tonight would boost his chances of being handed the role on a permanent basis.
Bolton v Eastleigh (18/5)
Eastleigh may be three tiers below Bolton in the National League but it is the cash-strapped Championship club that most needs the revenue from a decent cup run and that will add to the pressure on Neil Lennon’s side to avoid an upset. Eastleigh were unfortunate not to win the original meeting following Darren Pratley’s 87th-minute leveller for Wanderers and the Spitfires are yet to concede a goal in two away matches in the FA Cup this season.
Liverpool v Exeter (23/2)
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp fielded a young and very inexperienced team for the first meeting and almost paid the price as they twice went behind in a 2-2 draw. Their packed fixture schedule and lengthy injury list means he is expected to name a similar line-up at Anfield where a better playing surface should help them. But League Two Exeter – impressive 3-1 winners at Leyton Orient on Saturday – will head to Merseyside believing they have nothing to fear.