It's as simple as AVB to find FA Cup winner

I LOVE it when you can look at a 64-runner betting heat and  immediately narrow the field down on some simple trends and it could help to pinpoint the value bet in this season’s FA Cup.

Since West Ham won the cup in 1980 - there have been ten, just ten, winners of the famous old competition - Manchester United and City, Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham, Liverpool, Everton, Portsmouth, Coventry and Wimbledon.

So we have already scrubbed out many of the runners and Portsmouth and Wimbledon won’t be winning it seeing as they are no longer involved, while Coventry’s best days are behind them and are unlikely to get anything at Spurs.

Having narrowed it down to ten we are now into seven and I’m scrubbing out Arsenal and Chelsea on the basis I’m not certain they will win their FA Cup third-round ties at Swansea and Southampton respectively.

The same can be said of Manchester United and their trip to West Ham, particularly when Sir Alex Ferguson has suggested his team line up will be strong. I’ve been done by that one before Sir Alex.

City are favourites but there’s more fighting than fighting spirit at the Etihad these days and I can’t forget Everton sending out a weakened team i n the League Cup at Leeds.

Nope, I won’t be trusting David Moyes and I’m not sure I have ever predicted a Liverpool match correctly so I will swerve them on that basis alone which leaves Tottenham.

Spurs seem to tick every box I am looking for. Andre Villas-Boas picks strong teams for the Europa League so I am sure he will be up for the cup and a team of Lennon, Sandro, Dembele, Bale, Defoe and Adebayor can win anywhere, a point highlighted by this season’s famous success at Old Trafford.

It’s a long time to wait for a payday so I will also have a crack on the third-round coupon and I fancy two upsets on the cards. Firstly, Wigan always play reserve teams in the knockouts so get with Bournemouth at the DW Stadium and the MK Dons are overpriced for their trip to Sheffield Wednesday.

However, my main punt is on Tottenham to win the FA Cup. It’s lucky for Spurs when the year ends in three...

Match in Focus

13:00 TODAY BBC1

Belgium v Tunisia

Home Win Draw Away Win
Key stats
  • Belgium have kept clean sheets in six of their last eight fixtures
Expert verdict
Belgium cruised to an easy win over Panama in their World Cup opener and could be just as comfortable against Tunisia in Moscow. The Belgians took a while to get going against Panama but should be better for the experience and face very little threat from the defensive-minded Tunisians.



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