The fifth round of the FA Cup is upon us this weekend and now that we are in the final 16, things are picking up. 11 Premier League teams have survived and are looking to finalize their journey at Wembley Stadium. That also leaves five lower league teams who are trying to get as far as they can and if fate is decides to throw them a bone, they could prove to be a shock.
Arsenal vs. Hull City
Reading vs. West Brom
Watford vs. Leeds United
Bournemouth vs. Everton
Saturday provides us with just one all-EPL matchup as Bournemouth play Everton. The other three games are EPL vs. Championship games but all the EPL teams involved shouldn’t take those games lightly. Arsenal/Hull is a rematch of the 2014 FA Cup Final and while Arsenal is fighting for a title, Hull is doing something similar. It’s not the English Premier League, but Hull is doing work in the Championship, leading by two points over Middlesbrough.
Even teams like Reading and Leeds can provide shocks and attempt to make the quarterfinals. Bournemouth/Everton is going to be a more even matchup that could legitimately go either way.
Blackburn vs. West Ham
Tottenham vs. Crystal Palace
Chelsea vs. Manchester City
Sunday provides two all-EPL matchups as well as arguably the best matchup of the fifth round. Chelsea vs. Manchester City is sure to go back and forth. Both teams had their Champions League games earlier in the week so neither will have that advantage. Should be a great game. Tottenham/Crystal Palace is the remaining all-EPL game but Spurs should take the win, despite having played this past Thursday in the Europa League because Crystal Palace has seemingly fallen off the face of the earth the past couple months.
Shrewsbury Town vs. Manchester United
The lone League One team will play in the final game of the round and will face Manchester United. Yes, the 19th place team in the third division has a chance to be in the final eight of the FA Cup. One reason why Shrewsbury Town has been able to get to this point is because they haven’t played an EPL opponent until now. Sure, they upset a couple of Championship teams but Manchester United is a different beast.
At least for Shrewsbury Town, they will face Manchester United when they are arguably at their weakest. Wayne Rooney got injured and was ruled out for 6-8 weeks and now United savior David de Gea came down with an injury in training before their Europa League game against Danish side Midtjylland. Midtjylland got through and took a 2-1 win in their first leg, Shrewsbury Town will look to strike while the iron is hot and grab a win of their own against the hurting and struggling Manchester United.