English FA Cup

FA Cup Tips: All the best bets and odds for Saturday's fourth round clashes

Jesse Marsch, Leeds boss
Accrington Stanley? Who are they?

Ste Tudor highlights where the goals, drama and magic might transpire this Saturday as the FA Cup goes again.

Accrington Stanley v Leeds (12:30) - No magic in the air

Accrington's tight Crown Ground will no doubt evoke lots of cup cliches but once the whistle blows we can expect Leeds to turn up and make their quality tell, even if in recent years that hasn't been the case. Should the Yorkshire side progress they will reach the fifth round for the first time since 2016.

Jesse Marsch's men impressed against Cardiff to break their third round curse, racking up 23 shots and with Wilfried Gnonto superb throughout. The teenager will likely play a prominent role again and allied with Rodrygo and new signing Georginhio Rutter - along with Patrick Bamford coming off the bench - it's a forward line too strong for a League One outfit that has conceded 1.6 league goals per 90 all season.

Since returning from injury, Bamford has two goals and an assist in 79 minutes.

Leeds and over 2.5 is the way to go @


Walsall v Leicester (12:30) - Cup specialist

There's a big Danny Johnson-shaped hole in Walsall's attack now their prolific loanee has returned to Mansfield and if the Saddlers' task was already daunting, it has become that twice-fold. Johnson has scored 40% of Walsall's league goals in 2022/23 and converted the opener vs Stockport in round three.

The Foxes may have consistently underwhelmed in the Premier League but in the FA Cup, Kelechi Iheanacho usually steps up and reminds one and all of his finishing skills.

Typically a frustrating front-man, the 26-year-old has scored 16 goals in 22 appearances in this tournament, a haul that includes a coolly-dispatched winner in the previous round.

Take a punt on Iheanacho being first goal-scorer @


Blackburn v Birmingham (15:00) - Good, bad and atrocious

When Rovers beat City back in October it consolidated their promotion charge. Eleven games on, the play-offs are now their only realistic route to the top-flight.

It's been a sustained slump that has led to them hemorrhaging goals though it is a point of interest that in all four of their triumphs since besting Birmingham they have won to nil.

Jon Dahl Tomasson's side remain capable of grinding out 1-0s and 2-0s on their day. When they're poor though, they're atrocious.

It's unlikely the visitors will be able to capitalize whichever Blackburn they face. Five league losses on the bounce have sent them spiraling and wastefulness up front is partly to blame. Their 7.6% chance conversion rate is worse than Blackpool's, who are second from bottom.

Back the home side to win to nil @


Bristol City v West Brom (15:00) - Baggies have less baggage

Since the tail-end of October the Robins have begrudgingly become the draw specialists of the Championship so it was hardly a surprise that their third round clash with Swansea needed a replay.

An inability to maintain leads is one half of their sorry tale. No side in the second tier have scored more goals in the first half of games yet Nigel Pearson's men languish in 19th.

On 14 occasions meanwhile they have gone behind. Not once have they won.

The Baggies can empathize because under Steve Bruce they too tended to share the spoils, drawing six of their opening eight, but they're a very different proposition now with Carlos Corberan at the helm. Nine league wins in 11 make them favourites to prevail at Ashton Gate just like they did on Boxing Day.

Corners are the way forward here. West Brom have won a league-high this season, averaging 6.9 per game.

Over 6.5 corners for the Baggies is offered up @


Marco Silva.jpg

Fulham v Sunderland (15:00) - Resting is risky

A theory among Fulham fans after successive 1-0 losses, is that their over-achieving side is beginning to run out of steam. Subsequently, a cup game against lower league opponents presents Marco Silva with the perfect opportunity to rest a few key players.

Should their theory hold, it would be a risky manoeuvre by the Cottagers' boss given that Sunderland have started to play themselves into a bit of form of late. Ten points from 15 is their joint-best return from a five-game sequence all term.

Furthermore, the Championship side boast a terrific away record, last losing on the road back in mid-October.

However this one plays out, we can expect it to be physical. The Black Cats have the worst disciplinary record in the second tier. They have also scored 66% of their goals this term after the break.

It's a long shot but Draw/Sunderland is worth a punt @


Ipswich v Burnley (15:00) - Back-up brilliance

Both teams have their eyes firmly fixed on promotion from their respective leagues and this offers up the possibility of weakened line-ups.

This we saw from the Clarets in the previous round although it hardly hindered them with two of their peripheral fare - Manuel Benson and Anass Zaroury - scoring a brace apiece against top-flight opposition. The former incidentally is well worth looking out for, the flying winger scoring 10 and assisting four this campaign from just 14 starts.

Ipswich boast their own significant goal-threat in the form of Freddie Ladapo and Conor Chaplin, the deadly duo firing 21 league goals between them, but as fluent and impressive as the Tractor Boys can be on their day it's still difficult to see past Burnley's remarkable season to date.

A bet builder backing Benson to score and BTTS is a shout @


Luton v Grimsby (15:00) - Hatters in the hat

Elijah Adebayo has bagged three in three for the free-scoring Hatters who last drew a blank in early November. Better yet, getting off the mark early has become a welcome habit under Rob Edwards with four of their last nine in the league converted in the 11th minute or before.

Starting on the front foot is paying dividends, even for a side who are at their most dangerous on the counter.

Grimsby meanwhile have shipped in three-plus goals on three occasions in recent weeks as a once promising campaign has given way to mid-table mediocrity.

Roll the dice on Luton/Luton @


Sheffield Wednesday v Fleetwood (15:00) - Closer than you think

The Owls have twice beaten Fleetwood in recent weeks, with Marvin Johnson scoring the winner on each occasion, and a third success feels on the cards given their starkly different campaigns.

Wednesday are flying high in League One, on a 15-game unbeaten streak and keeping clean sheets in ten of them. The Cods are mired in their worst form all season, losing four of their last five.

How closely contested those league encounters were however must be a consideration, with a red card in one, and a great, late save in the other playing a part.

In both games combined, Fleetwood recorded seven shots on target to Wednesday's eight.

An anytime correct score of 1-1 is well priced @


Mick McCarthy.jpg

Southampton v Blackpool (15:00) - Saints to squeak it

The Saints have a decent record in the cup against sides from lower divisions, but the visitors will be greatly encouraged by their toppling of Nottingham Forest in the third round, especially the emphatic nature of it.

Unfortunately, Blackpool's four-goal spree earlier this month was an entirely unexpected jewel in the mud and 10 league games without a win brought an inevitable end to Michael Appleton's tenure last week.

A new manager bounce, as the players seek to impress incoming gaffer Mick McCarthy, is the Tangerines' best hope on the south coast against a Saints side who are improving, if only to the eye. Southampton continue to flounder in front of goal but they should just about have enough to prevail here.

Go for under 2.5 goals @


Preston v Tottenham (18:00) - Kane again

Injuries to Ben Whiteman and Brad Potts weakens Ryan Lowe's midfield options while he may secretly wish the game was taking place in North London. Preston's last four league wins have been secured on their travels. Their last four defeats have come at Deepdale.

Goals have been a problem for the hosts this term, with only two sides in the Championship scoring fewer, while at the other end they must be extra vigilant either side of the break. Spurs have scored six of their last eight between the 44th and 53rd minute.

Half of those were notched by Harry Kane who thoroughly enjoys this tournament, bagging 14 in his last 14 FA Cup appearances. Another here would make him Spurs' all-time leading goal-scorer and that feels fated.

A bet builder backing Kane to score anytime and for Spurs to win the second half offers up


Man United v Reading (20:00) - No alarms, no surprises

For inspiration the Royals only need look back a year, to fellow Championship side Middlesbrough's victory at Old Trafford via pens at this stage of the competition.

Alas, that aside, there is really not much cause for optimism, or genuine reasons to suspect an upset is afoot. It was a very different United that succumbed to Boro and with a strong starting line-up expected, a routine win can also be anticipated.

Intriguingly, as our own Andy Schooler points out, the markets have not yet caught up with Marcus Rashford's prolific form and with ten goals in ten, he's the obvious danger here.

As for Reading, they have won just one in their last 10 on the road, conceding 1.5 goals per 90 in the league all season long.

Back the hosts to win by exactly 3 goals @


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