Newcastle Out At Blackburn Tonight
Rafa Benitez is used to dining at the top table of the Champions League and not fighting for scraps in the FA Cup. His Newcastle side are at Blackburn in a replay for the right to play Watford at home in the fourth round. In theory Newcastle have two winnable ties that could take them into the last 16 and three matches away from playing in the final of the FA Cup.
Newcastle last lifted the trophy in 1955 and have won the Cup six times. The club owner would probably swap 10 FA Cups for Premier League survival so Benitez’s team selection for the Blackburn tie will be revealing. NEWCASTLE are 70/1 with Betfair to win the 2018/19 FA Cup but they could be out tonight.
Blackburn are now becalmed in mid-table safety in the Championship. They have too much quality to be dragged into the relegation mire but slightly off the pace in the race for the play-offs. Rovers have played 14 matches at home in all competitions this season and suffered just two defeats.
Newcastle have not won on the road in the FA Cup since 2006. Benitez will probably send out a weakened team and his priority is dragging the club away from the relegation places. BLACKBURN are on a good run of form and that can continue by beating Newcastle in 90 minutes at 7/5 with Coral.
Andy Murray lost his first round match in the Australian Open but is considering extending his career to Wimbledon with more surgery. The procedure will probably only be a sticking plaster and the career of one of Britain’s best sportsman is coming to an end. There may be one last hurrah at Wimbledon but his appearance will be more ceremonial than as a competitor. Sentimental punters may back MURRAY at 10/1 with Coral, a price that is missing at least one nought.
On an average day for racing there is a decent hurdle over two miles at Fairyhouse (2.00). On form and ratings there is a lot to like about Oscars Den and Inca Gold ticks many of the right boxes. However, there is a progressive horse in the field who has won five times on the Flat and tooks a decent handicap at Leopardstown over Christmas. TRY AGAIN is weighted for a good run at 7/2 with Betfair.