The FA Cup 4th Round Draw and Michael Owen’s “smile”

The Emirates FA Cup

Last night saw the always exciting FA Cup fourth round draw as the world’s most boring pundits, Michael Owen and Martin Keown poured some balls out of a bag and then picked them up again. And while I would like to talk endlessly about Michael Owen’s forced smile every time he drew a team out it’s probably best to talk about the draw itself.

Arsenal were over the moon with the draw as for the first time in ages they didn’t draw Bayern Munich. True, Bayern weren’t actually in the draw so they couldn’t have played them regardless, but this has not stopped Arsenal in the past. They get a tasty away day in either Southampton or Norwich.

A fair few local derbies came from the draw as well, especially Derby County and Leicester City. Admittedly this isn’t the most enticing tie but it’s under a 30 minute train journey and for me that’s enough to consider the tie a grudge match. Chelsea drew Brentford while Manchester United drew Wigan and this is a big deal for fans of the Championship sides yet a minor inconvenience for the Premier League boys.

Watford pulled the short straw as they play Millwall away in what I’m sure will be a deeply unpopular away day. If Liverpool can overcome the mighty Plymouth then Wolves at home is their reward while Spurs get to entertain Wycombe Wanderers.

If non-League sides Sutton and Lincoln manage to manoeuvre past their Football League counterparts in their replays they get rewarded with home ties against some more pretty non-descript Football League sides, which is not exactly a money spinner.

If Blackpool can win their replay against Barnsley then they get to play an actual local derby in the form of Championship strugglers Blackburn Rovers. Hopefully Blackpool can advance because god knows that club could do with some positivity.

Accrington Stanley (who are they etc.) have a tricky away tie against the mighty Middlesbrough (definitely not biased) and while this may seem like a tough tie for the League 2 side they did beat us, I mean Middlesbrough, in the first round of the League Cup in 2013 so an upset could be on the cards here.

There’s a bunch of other cup ties to talk about that really are not that exciting and I couldn’t exploit them at all for comedic purposes. I will give out the award for most boring tie to Fulham v Hull City. I mean seriously what can you talk about with that one? The matches are played at the end of January and I’m not sure I’ll sleep at all until then, the matches are genuinely that exciting.