11 FA Cup Fourth Round matches to get involved with on Saturday. Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) did the research for us.
Blackburn v Swansea | Saturday 12:45 | BBC2 Wales
It was an alarming day for Swansea last Saturday when they lost 5-0 to Chelsea in the Premier League. It was perhaps their worst performance since they entered the sexed-up rebranded top flight for the first time in 2011. I’m fairly sure they’ll overcome that this Saturday.
There seems a bit of a cloud over the South Wales horizon at the moment with star striker Wilfried Bony leaving for Manchester City but I reckon Garry Monk’s the kind of guy who’ll banish that vibe pretty quickly.
On Saturday they face Championship mid-table side Blackburn Rovers and they really should be too strong for them. I tend to get the feeling that this club enjoys these Cup adventures. Their 2013 League Cup win will be talked about by locals a century from now (presuming IS don’t blow us off the planet before then of course) and they did knock Manchester United out this competition last year.
I’ve been a bit disappointed with Blackburn this season. I thought they might seriously challenge for automatic promotion but it just hasn’t materialised. They look a fairly ordinary side in a fairly ordinary division and with just three wins in their last 12 fixtures I expect them to be on the end of a Swansea backlash.
Liverpool v Bolton | Saturday 17:30 | BT Sport 1
Now this is tasty. Alas, I don’t have a BT Sport subscription, so I might have to nip off to the pub to watch this. I really think Bolton can give Liverpool a tough game.
Bolton were flirting with League One back in the autumn but the decision to bring in Neil Lennon was an inspired one. Lenny has overseen the side’s rise up the table and it’s not surprise to hear him talk about the play-offs. This is one ambitious guy.
Lennon’s side have lost just once in their last 12 matches and are closing in in the Top 10 in the Championship. There’s a definite feel-good factor about the club and this provides a proper platform for the under-rated Northern Irishman to show off his managerial talents. Remember, he’s good at slaying giants as the underdog manager. Celtic 2 v 1 Barcelona anyone?
The much derided Brendan Rodgers deserves a lot of praise for the way he’s turned things round at Liverpool after their mid-December meltdown. His side performed magnificently on Tuesday night to pick up a League Cup semi-final draw with Chelsea, but with the return leg just three days after this, do you think Rodgers will be frothing at the mouth desperate to win here? Nah, me neither.
I’ll back Bolton with a two goal start at Evens with Ladbrokes. I’m confident Lennon will be imagining an upset as he nods off on Friday night.
Blackburn v Swansea – Swansea to win (29/20 BetVictor)
Liverpool v Bolton – Bolton +2 (Evens Ladbrokes)
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