Wolves v Man United
Saturday January 4, 17:31
Live on BT Sport
A long campaign for Wolves
This will be Wolves' 36th competitive game of the season and the big question is - what kind of line-up will Nuno Espírito Santo put out? He did rest some of his top players, including Raul Jimenez, for their trip to Anfield last Sunday, but they were all back in the team for the 2-1 defeat at Watford on New Year's Day.
The FA Cup of course represents Wolves' best chance of a trophy this season, but they are still in the mix for a Champions League place, and they are through to the last 32 of the Europa.
The only confirmed absentees for Wolves are Willy Boly and Morgan Gibbs-White, who are out with long-term injuries. I am not fully convinced that the manager will want to risk all of his star players though, so expect a slightly under-strength XI to start the game.
United need some silverware
The FA Cup is going to be a big competition for Manchester United this season, as they are a club who need to win silverware, and while they are still in the Europa League, Ole Gunnar Solskjær could do with a very big run in the cup to ease the pressure on himself.
Things had been looking up for United following wins over Spurs and Man City, and while they have won plenty of games since, 2-0 defeats at Watford and Arsenal have blotted their copybook a bit.
Mason Greenwood has looked hugely promising this season, and he will surely get the nod to start at Molineux. I wouldn't expect too many other fringe players to get a chance though, as I believe Solskjær will start a strong team.
Visitors to outperform their odds again
The hosts have a great record against United since their promotion back to the top flight, as they have played them four times in league and cup, and they are yet to lose. Two of the three on this ground have resulted in 2-1 victories - including an FA Cup tie last season.
Given those stats, it probably comes as no surprise that Wolves are the favourites at the 2.427/5 mark. I am not too keen to back them at that price though, as they come into the game on the back of two straight defeats and they could drift in the betting prior to kick off once the teams are announced.
I am interested in backing the visitors at odds of 3.1511/5 however. United have often performed well when they have been the underdog this season, and they will be desperate to win this competition.
They also have a fine record in the third round of the cup, as Opta tells us that Manchester United have been eliminated in the FA Cup third round in just one of the last nine seasons, losing to Swansea City in 2013-14 under David Moyes.
I was half tempted by the draw at 3.613/5, but given the commitments of the teams involved, it's safe to say that they will be doing all they can to avoid a replay.
No clean sheets when these two meet
Both teams scoring has been a feature of the meetings between these two in recent years, but only two of the four have gone Over 2.5 Goals. The over is the slight outsider at 2.021/1, with the under at 1.9620/21.
This game could be set up for goals, as the attacking players have been in decent form of late. Six of Wolves' last seven in all competitions have had at least three, and they come into this fixture on the back of three straight home matches to see Over 2.5 backers collect.
United fired a blank at the Emirates on Wednesday, but they had scored six in two prior to that, and three of their last six away from Old Trafford have seen the ball hit the net on three occasions or more.