Arsenal fans will be hoping that the Championship club Bolton Wanderers can do us a favour tonight by knocking Brendan Rodgers and his Liverpool side out of the FA cup. It is certainly a more likely upset than the one we were hoping for last night, because Bolton are a bigger team and in a higher league than Cambridge United and they are also at home.
If Liverpool do get through, however, they will join Arsenal and Manchester United as the three big clubs still in the competition and the three big favourites to win the trophy, but they will be faced with the toughest tie in the next round, away to Crystal Palace. And that would be one of three all Premier League ties, opening up the road to Wembley nicely.
But the United manager Louis van Gaal seems to think that it is them rather than defending champions Arsenal who should be seen as the favourites, mainly because they are the highest placed league team left in the competition. Also, as a report in The Telegraph shows, the Dutchman seems to think that his record of always winning a trophy in his first season with a club means that his name is on the famous old trophy.
LVG said, “We have a real chance now,” Van Gaal said. “Why? We are the highest qualified team in the FA Cup, our status is the highest club, so people are maybe betting on us.
“I am not allowed to, but I give you a tip.
“I am not a casino man, but of course I think the highest qualified teams have more possibilities to win than lower qualified teams.
“That is why everyone was in favour of Cambridge tonight. But Arsenal is still in the cup and they are also a very high competitor. Liverpool is also there and will fight against Bolton (in Wednesday’s replay).
“For me, personally, I won always a title in my first year everywhere where I worked and the chance I will win the title is bigger in the FA Cup than the Premier League.”
I am not so sure about that Louis. Scraping past a League One and a League Two side so far has not convinced me. I think the fact that United have struggled away from home could give them problems at Preston. And I also feel confident that we are the better team right now and should be favourites. The bookies tend to agree, although it is a close run thing, with the Gunners at 5/2 and United at 3/1. What do you think?