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Rupert Wyman 22nd Jan 2010 - 16:07

The magic of the FA Cup!

It is one of the favourite and most heard football cliches of all time, 'the magic of the FA Cup'.

In modern day football terms it is when David gets to swing a shot at Goliath. The third round epitomised it with Leeds trouncing of Manchester United.

Now Preston, the 1938 FA Cup winners, are inviting the ITV cameras up to Deepdale; the oldest continually-used football league site in the world, to try and write another chapter in their FA cup history.

The fans at Deepdale could be in for an excellent day out. No, it's not because there may be a surprise cup result but because it should be an excellent game of football between two entertaining sides that are capable of goals galore.

Ancelotti, not for the first time since his appointment as manager, has killed the speculation concerning the starting eleven, by answering a request to name the team in his pre-match conference.

The team is: Hilario, Paulo Ferreira, Alex, John Terry, Yury Zhirkov, Juliano Belletti, Michael Ballack, Frank Lampard, Deco, Nicolas Anelka, Daniel Sturridge.

Preston reached this stage by beating Colchester 7-0 at home but they have a few injury problems and are missing the likes of the former Cardiff winger Paul Parry and Barry Nicholson.

Chelsea managed to put five goals past Watford in the previous round. I perceive a good bet being both teams to score at 6/5, there should be no shortage of goals at the Deepdale.

Hilario is in goal and Terry is Chelsea's only Premier League regular in the back four. Chelsea's defence could have a shaky start and Ferreira is not the player he was under Mourinho.

And with the majority of the defence having little match practice my value bet would be Chelsea to come from behind and win at 7/1.

Darren Ferguson loves his attacking football and it would not be a surprise to see Preston make a strong start. This bet would allow for an early Preston goal before Chelsea's quality prevails.

Leeds United are languishing in league one, however their fans would tell you, the F.A Cup is the ultimate football democracy, where on the day money does not matter.

The neutral never enjoys seeing money prevail, but those who love an upset will find little consolation at Deepdale.

 

 
 
 

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