FA Cup returns

FA Cup is back under way after two preliminary and four qualifying rounds to reach the first round proper.

Friday night saw Milton Keynes Dons, Notts County and Port Vale all book their place in Monday’s second round draw.

Now several clubs have a chance to join them in that draw and here are some stand out games to watch out for.


Shaw Lane vs Mansfield Town (12:30 – BT Sport 1)

Steve Evans will be hoping to avoid a cupset here as he takes his Mansfield Town players to Shaw Lane. 

Both teams however are in contrasting form.

Shaw Lane have taken three wins, two draws and a defeat from their last six games.

Mansfield on other hand have won two drawn three and also suffered one loss. 

Non League sides however have a woeful record at this stage on BT Sport. 

Since the 2014-15 season, non league sides have lost five of their six first round games at home to EFL opposition on BT Sport. The aggregate score is 2-17 for those interested in the goals stat.

One moment of salvation is that Southport drew 0-0 at home to Fleetwood Town last season on BT Sport to end that miserable form. 

Visiting non league grounds are always tough but I reckon Mansfield Town will get the job done here because EFL clubs have always done well on BT Sport.

Prediction: Shaw Lane 0-3 Mansfield Town

Result: Shaw Lane 1-3 Mansfield Town


Boreham Wood vs Blackpool

Boreham Wood will fancy their chances of causing an upset, if can extend their unbeaten run to eight games here. 

Blackpool currently sit 46 places above their hosts in the football pyramid but have a W4 D1 L2 record across the same seven game period. 

The Wood have reached this stage in last two seasons, drawing original tie before losing the replay. 

Blackpool won their first round tie at home to Kidderminister Harriers last season but were away the season before and lost at Barnet. Could a pattern start to emerge if history repeats itself?

Ultimately, I can see this going to a replay in an entertaining draw. 

Prediction: Boreham Wood 2-2 Blackpool

Result: Boreham Wood 2-1 Blackpool


Ebbsfleet United vs Doncaster Rovers

Doncaster Rovers have struggled to settle in Sky Bet League One so will look to this for motivation. 

Ebbsfleet however are having a solid season in the National League sitting 13th and just 44 places above their visitors. 

Form wise, Rovers have won three of their last five, losing the other two. 

Ebbsfleet are in similar form with two wins, a draw and two defeats, making this a tough match. 

Ebbsfleet’s Danny Kedwell has six goals and all of his shots on target so will be a real threat here. 

Doncaster however have three players as their top scorer with two capable of assists. 

John Marquis, Alfie May and Benjamin Whiteman all have five goals but May has two assists to Marquis’ one. Whiteman is yet to claim an assist. 

Either way, this will be a opportunity for the Yorkshire side to continue their upturn in form. 

Although it will be a tough start, I expect Doncaster Rovers to be safely through.

Prediction: Ebbsfleet United 0-3 Doncaster Rovers

Result: Ebbsfleet United 2-6 Doncaster Rovers


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