Arsenal vs Sunderland 01/09/2016 FA Cup Preview, Odds and Predictions
Sunderland vs Arsenal
Saturday 9th January 2016 10:00(ET)
The Line: Arsenal 1/3 Draw 13/2 Sunderland 10/1 See the Latest Odds
TV: Setanta sports; Fox Soccer
One of the best games of the round in the FA Cup will see Sunderland travel to London to take on Premier League leaders Arsenal. Arsenal are both the league leaders and the FA Cup holders, this is a team flying high at the moment and Arsene Wenger's side have been excellent this season. Arsenal though come into this game with some huge games on the horizon. Arsenal travel to Liverpool and Stoke in the next seven days and then they host Chelsea and Southampton. This is just before they take on Barcelona in the Champions League it is the busiest part of the rest of the schedule so is it possible that Arsenal will take one eye off the ball against Sunderland? A team in the bottom three and one that has looked likely to be relegated for most of this season?
Sam Allardyce though has always been able to get his teams to play well against Arsenal. Sunderland have some players that suit the Allardyce method of playing Wenger's teams, lots of energy and a few tough tackles. Lee Cattermole is the epitome of both of those descriptions and he will be a key figure for the black cats tomorrow. Sunderland came to the Emirates at the start of December and actually played quite well without being able to stick with Arsenal in the second half. A cup game is different though , one goal can mean so much more in a cup game and with Arsenal concentrating on both the league and the Champions League I think that this is a game maybe where there is value in taking Sunderland to win straight up.
This is a pick based on Arsene Wenger maybe having more focus on the league. I'm going to take Sunderland here at the huge price of 10/1. A win here would be most unlikely but I have a feeling it might just be one of those days for Arsenal. Of course Sunderland could make me look silly here by completely collapsing and Sam Allardyce has his own league worries being a team with major relegation troubles but I just think Allardyce will want to do well here in the FA Cup and this is a good chance to create a huge shock.