The Six Pointer – FA Cup Fourth Round Edition

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This will be a quick one as these days I find it hard to take interest in the FA Cup before the latter stages. Too few shocks and too many boring games. Here goes…

 

1. Rafa shouldn’t really be surprised that Everton came for a draw given they were missing Arteta, Fellaini and several strikers. He should instead worry about being unable to beat them for the second time in a week. Once Everton scored they weren’t exactly going to push on for a second – David Moyes is more than confident in his defence being able to hold out. In the event they didn’t quite manage it, but only because Howard should really have done better with Gerrard’s equaliser. As for Liverpool, it’s another extra game they could do without and it wouldn’t surprise me to see an even weaker team played in the replay. Maybe that will mean Keane getting a game!

Has never, ever played negatively. Ever...

Has never, ever played negatively. Ever...

 

2. Beyond draws for Aston Villa and West Brom, the only real shock was Swansea dumping out Portsmouth at Fratton Park. Tony Adams has really struggled since taking over as manager and seems unable to get the best out of his players in the same way Redknapp did. Of course Defoe is a big loss but they really lack quality in midfield at the moment, especially since Diarra’s departure. With Kranjcar and Diop out, Porstmouth fielded Nugent, Pennant, Hughes, Davis and Traore on Saturday. Three of those are plodding journeymen while Traore and Nugent are not yet the finished article. Compare this with the midfield in last season’s final against Cardiff – Utaka, Mendes, Diarra, Kranjcar, Muntari – and you begin to see why Portsmouth have regressed this season.

 

3. It was inevitable that Spurs wouldn’t hold on and that Berbatov would score the winner. I’d suggest Spurs’ season ended on Saturday but then I remembered they’re in a relegation fight. Taarabt was all stepovers and no end product (though to be fair C-Ron was once too) and Alnwick meanwhile looks even dodgier than Gomes. Right now it’s difficult to say who is having a worse season out of Redknapp and Adams. 

The new C-Ron? Perhaps. Not.

The new C-Ron? Perhaps. Not.

 

4. Was Sunderland 0-0 Blackburn the most predictable result of the weekend? They have played each other four times in the last two months and are evenly matched at a 2-1 away win a piece and now two goalless draws. They will be glad to see the back of each other after next week’s replay.

 

5. Arsenal didn’t have it all their own way against a good Cardiff side but should have too much in the replay at home. It was a pretty dull game truth be told and Adebayor was guilty of a pretty poor miss. I still wonder why Wenger persists in playing Eboue, Diaby and Song and then wonders why there is no creativity. Nasri can’t do it all himself.

 

6. The draw for the fifth round isn’t that exciting really and obviously depends on replay results. If Villa get through their game will probably become tie of the round, while Arsenal may face Burnley for the second time this season following the Carling Cup quarter final. I think potentially the most interesting thing will be if Derby beat Forest as that will see Clough Jnr take on Fergie. Only Premier League and Championship teams left too.

Maybe gets a shot at Fergie

Maybe gets a shot at Fergie

Sheffield United v Hull City

Watford v Chelsea

West Ham v Middlesbrough

Sunderland/Blackburn v Coventry

Derby/Nottingham Forest v Manchester United

Swansea v Fulham

Liverpool/Everton v Doncaster/Aston Villa

Cardiff/Arsenal v West Brom/Burnley 

 

T.

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