As we have mentioned many times here at Goals Galore, just one win on this treble per season will leave you sitting happily in profit. We have been close many times already and the FA Cup should bring plenty of goals leaving this looking very tasty. We have also included a Championship fixture which has been a reliable division throughout the season when it comes to BTTS.
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Leicester City v Middlesbrough – 3.00pm Saturday
Leicester to win and BTTS is 27/10 with Coral
Leicester are on a crest of a wave at present and now have a five point gap at the top of the table thanks to their 1-0 win at Elland Road last Saturday courtesy of an 87th minute winner from top scorer Dave Nugent. Nugent really is on top form right now and showing great consistency having scored six goals in his last six games, scoring in all but one of those ties. Leicester have the best home record in the division and have won 10 of their 13 games at the King Power Stadium and I can see them delivering the fans another three points. Six league wins in a row have included victories against the stronger sides in the Championship, Derby, Reading and second placed QPR- you cannot bet on anyone beating them on current form! Promotion looks likely for the Foxes and home wins will be imperative to that, a win here will further establish their place at the top and I can see them delivering.
Let’s not totally discard the opposition as cannon fodder and you would be forgiven if you did but Middlesbrough have come on a lot since hiring Aitor Karanka as manager and are now looking to challenge for a Play Off spot as they currently sit in 9th place. Interestingly, top of the form table are Leicester with their six wins from six but Boro’ are second having won five and drawn one. Just two goals have been conceded and a huge 11 goals scored. I believe their six games unbeaten will come to an end here however it should be a close game with plenty of goals. The North East outfit have scored in all but three away games this season including goals against sides strong at home, Wigan, Nottingham Forest, Derby County and Ipswich. I can see them scoring again here.
Sheffield United v Fulham – 1.00pm Sunday
Fulham to win and BTTS is 21/5 with Coral
League One Sheffield United have an uphill task as they face Premier League opposition, however as they proved in the last round they can get results against anyone. Just under three weeks ago they visited Villa Park and came away with a 2-1 win over Paul Lambert’s Aston Villa, in what was shock of the round. You would expect now being at home this should be an easier tie but I cannot see the Blades replicating that performance once more considering they have struggled all too often in League One this season. Expecting a big cup atmosphere and with a packed crowd which should help out the home side, therefore I am predicting a goal but expecting the Sheffield United cup run to come to an end.
Fulham will certainly have more important concerns than this weekend with many pundits predicting relegation for Rene Meulensteen’s and his side. There is no doubt many changes will be made for the trip North, but as they proved against Norwich, despite making changes the Whites are able to put out a strong team still, capable of putting in a good performance. Meulenesteen will also be well aware of the threat the opposition pose after their Third Round scoreline. The likely candidates to be given an opportunity include Darren Bent, Giorgios Karagounis, Pajtim Kasami and a number of promising youth players who will all want to stake a claim for future opportunities. The eleven should not look too dissimilar to the side that beat Norwich City 3-1 at Craven Cottage in the previous round and that team should be able to win fairly comfortably here at Bramall Lane.
Bolton Wanderers v Cardiff City – 3.00pm Saturday
Cardiff City to win and BTTS is 9/2 with Coral
Bolton are having a season to forget. Not only did their financial woes go public but their season under manager Dougie Freedman has seen them flounder in the bottom half of the Championship. To add salt to the wound, the Trotters hit a whole new low last weekend when Reading hosted the North West club, only to send them packing after putting seven goals past them. 7-1 the game finished and the situation surely cannot get worse seven days on? Well, Cardiff arriving at the Reebok is unlikely to provide much amnesty and a defeat seems just 90 minutes away but I do not think it will be quite as easy as Reading will declare. The Bolton players need to give the fans something/anything to cheer about and even though I cannot see Round Five being a feature in their fixture list this season, I can see them giving the Welsh side a battle and getting a goal for their efforts.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer started his Cardiff managerial career by pulling off a surprise victory away at Newcastle United and the Norwegian has made no indication that he is going to discard all the efforts in the North East by fielding a weakened side here in the North West. Cardiff have been on the dip for the last two months and the FA Cup has been a nice reprieve from duties in the League and a good run in the Cup will only raise spirits in and around the club. The Bluebirds took the Championship by storm last season and were comfortable winners in the end, Cardiff have strengthened in most areas and should easily overcome this struggling Bolton side.