Weblog: The football punter

Off-colour Blues could be feeling sick once again

I’M sure we’d all rather see them getting it on again in the Premier League now that there appears to be a hint of life in the title race, but Chelsea against Spurs in the FA Cup should make for a decent TV spectacle.

Arsenal against Manchester City 24 hours later is arguably more interesting, and not only because both sides are gung-ho.

It’s also always nice to see the Wenger Out placards, carefully and imaginatively created by kids in a bilingual Montessori creche somewhere in downtown Islington for their dads to hold aloft when they’re not glued to their Facebook feeds.

The romance of the cup has been replaced by a bunfight between four of the biggest clubs in the land and my cash is on a Spurs-City final.

So Chelsea lost at Old Trafford. United were entitled to beat someone at home eventually and they bumped into the Blues when they were off-colour (and off their food by all accounts).

But they didn’t look great and you get the impression they’re running into a Tottenham machine which looks pretty much unstoppable right now on the back of eight straight wins.

Arsenal look there for the taking against anyone and the way City tore a fairly competent Southampton side to shreds last weekend should have every Gunners’ fan fearing the worst.

Yes, they’ve had a knack of raising their game for the FA Cup in recent years but the formbook says Pep Guardiola’s boys all day long.

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Match in Focus

11:35 Th 22Mar BBC1

China v Wales

Home Win Draw Away Win
Key stats
  • China failed to win both of their 2017 China Cup games
Expert verdict
Ryan Giggs takes charge for the first time as Wales manager when they face the hosts in the China Cup and the Manchester United legend will be delighted to have the services of talisman Gareth Bale. His presence is a huge boost for Giggs in his bid to get off to a winning start and his team should be able to secure a victory.