FA Cup Outright Betting: Man City odds-on but Man United the value at 6/1

We now know the quarter-final line-up for the FA Cup after Manchester United's win over Derby on Thursday night and Alex Keble thinks the Red Devils are a decent price to go all the way...

The FA Cup quarter-finals exclusively contain Premier League clubs for the first time since 2006, which could be a sign of the ever-growing chasm between England's top tier and the rest - or it could signify nothing. After all, Reading, West Brom, Birmingham City, and Sheffield Wednesday were all fairly close to an upset.
Unfortunately, the quarter-finals - which take place on the weekend of March 21 - do not include any clashes between 'Big Six' clubs, suggesting the tournament favourites will all make it to Wembley unscathed.
Here's look at the odds for the 2020 FA Cup winners.

Man City - 8/13

Being banned from Europe for the next two years has refocused Manchester City, creating a vengeful atmosphere in the dressing room that has seen Pep Guardiola's side kick up a notch. Their 1-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday in midweek made it five in a row in all competitions and, while the form may slide at some point over the next two months, City are unlikely to let up much.
With nothing to play for in the Premier League, Man City can afford to rotate key players out of the side in the build-up to FA Cup and Champions League games, giving them a clear advantage over most of their rivals.
If that wasn't enough reason to back them, Man City should ease past Newcastle United in the quarter-finals to leave two hurdles, both at Wembley, a venue Guardiola has been victorious at in each of his previous seven attempts. But, for all that, a heavy odds-on price isn't an attention grabber at this stage.

Man Utd - 6/1

Surprisingly, Man Utd have only won one FA Cup in the past 15 years, which is why victory for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in May is likely to be enough for the Norwegian to keep his job. Counter-intuitively, the biggest challenge for United might be their quarter-final tie away at Norwich, whose improving record against the big teams makes it unlikely Solskjaer's side will win comfortably for the third time this season.
Beyond that, United will relish the big occasions at Wembley. For all his tactical flaws, Solskjaer clearly has the players on side, regularly producing strong performances against 'Big Six' opposition. His counter-attacking tactics favour playing elite teams, too, and so it is certainly feasible his hungry young side will rise to the occasion in a semi-final and final against, for example, Chelsea and Man City.
After all, Man Utd have convincingly beaten both clubs already this season. With little value in backing Man City, even though it's the most likely outcome, United appeal at 6/1.

Chelsea - 7/1

Frank Lampard's side are dramatically slowing down and show little sign of picking themselves back up, with new injuries every week undermining attempts to rediscover their early-season form. Coupled with the naivety they have shown in big matches, it feels unlikely they will lift the FA Cup in May.
That Bayern Munich defeat in the first leg of the Champions League reaffirmed the problem with trusting young players on high profile occasions, and reaffirmed that Lampard's tactics aren't quite complex enough to outwit the top teams.

On top of that, Chelsea's players look tired, they will be locked in an exhausting top four battle until the end of the season, and they face a daunting quarter-final away at Leicester City.

Leicester City - 7/1

It would be a fitting end to an excellent 2019/20 season if Brendan Rodgers could rally his side for one final push and win the FA Cup, but the way they limped out of the EFL Cup over two legs to struggling Aston Villa suggests it won't happen.
Leicester have won three of their last 11 in all competitions and picked up 12 points from their 12 league games stretching back to December 14. That's a pretty abysmal run, and even if it stabilises soon a run-in from April that includes Arsenal, Sheff Utd, Tottenham, and Man Utd should dent confidence before a potential semi-final or final.
To top it off, Leicester have lost twice to the favourites Man City this season.

Arsenal - 10/1

Although results are beginning to match their improved performances under Mikel Arteta, there is a long way to go before Arsenal stop shooting themselves in the foot. They still drift through periods of matches, still make unforced errors, and still often find a way to blow a lead. Consequently beating Sheffield United in the quarter-final is definitely not a given.
Should they get to Wembley, it is hard to see this clumsy, in-transition team beating two of the traditional 'Big Six' and lift the trophy. That defeat to Olympiacos last week was proof of their brittleness, both defensively and psychologically.

The rest: Sheff Utd (19/1), Norwich (60/1), Newcastle (80/1)

Among the three outsiders there is definitely a case to be made for Chris Wilder's team, who are very difficult to beat and could conceivably squeeze past anyone on their day, although an aggregate 3-0 defeat in two league games against Man City this season says otherwise. With Arsenal in the quarter-finals, they would have to beat three 'Big Six' teams consecutively, which feels unlikely.
Norwich and Newcastle stand almost no chance of doing this. However, it's worth noting that, despite their respective odds, Steve Bruce's ultra-defensive tactics make them a more likely prospect to cause cup upsets than a wide-open Norwich.

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