Premier League sides in danger of third round upsets

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Frank Lampard

The third round of the FA Cup kicks off on Friday night but the tournament truly gets going on Saturday when there are 22 games to look forward to.

This competition is famed for its ability to shock and surprise and it could prove to be a decent day for those Championship sides taking on top-flight rivals.

Derby to beat Southampton @ 7/4

Arguably the value bet of the three o’clock kick-offs could be Derby to down Southampton.

The Rams have lost just one of their last seven in the Championship to move up to sixth and have taken the cup competitions seriously this season, beating Manchester United on penalties in the EFL Cup before going out to Chelsea.

Frank Lampard will fancy a win here and leads his team into battle against a Saints side fighting for their lives in the Premier League.

After drawing 0-0 at Chelsea on Wednesday, Ralph Hasenhuttl will again make considerable changes as he prioritises league survival.

With no defeats in four at home, Derby look a decent price to seal another result against Premier League opposition.

Blackburn to beat Newcastle @ 4/1

Back in the day Newcastle and Blackburn were Premier League title contenders, with the Magpies twice finishing second while Rovers lifted the trophy in 1994-95.

A lack of investment has turned the Tynesiders into a yo-yo club and boss Rafael Benitez has said it would be a “miracle” if they avoid relegation this season.

Rovers head to the north east in one of the 5:30 kick-offs following an impressive 2-1 home win over West Brom – a result that ended a run of three straight defeats.

Saturday’s game appears the perfect chance to cause an upset against a tiring Newcastle squad that is already stretched without factoring in the changes Benitez often makes in the cup competitions.

Do not be afraid of the price on Rovers in this one and those looking for something extra might take a look at the 13/5 for former Magpie Adam Armstrong in the anytime scorers market.

The 21-year-old left his boyhood club in the summer in a permanent move and having been in and out of the team in recent weeks, will be desperate to prove himself.

Bristol City to beat Huddersfield @ 5/4

On a similar theme and at the same time, Bristol City can do a number on Huddersfield at 5:30, with the Robins on a decent little run.

Eight games unbeaten has seen Lee Johnson’s men move up to 11th in the Championship standings and they have made a habit of cup progress in recent years, reaching the semi-finals of last season’s EFL Cup.

Huddersfield look in dire straits, with Wednesday’s 2-1 home reverse to Burnley making it eight defeats in a row and leaving the Terriers rock bottom of the Premier League.

Like Benitez and Hasenhuttl, survival is David Wagner’s only goal for the season and the German will rotate at Ashton Gate.

Johnson could also make changes but the confidence flowing through his squad means another home win for a Championship club appears a likely prospect.

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