FA Cup Nuggetz!!

Are you ready for some knockout football?! Arguably one of the most prestigious team competitions in the world begins tomorrow. Well, the 3rd Round, aka “The FA Cup proper,” begins tomorrow, anyway. It’s called FA Cup proper, not because MC Hammer is involved but because the Premier League sides enter the tournament following the several qualification rounds and the opening two rounds where the League Two and League One sides enter.

Everybody loves the cups, especially the FA Cup. Well, except for Paul Lambert. Senile Scot besmirches hallowed English competition story on BBC1!

Wait, what? Where was I? Anyway, everybody loves the cups, especially the FA Cup, since it’s direct knockout football/soccer and lends itself to intriguing fixtures and multitudes of upsets as struggling sides in the Premier League and lower league sides are afforded the opportunity to go for broke and take the scalps of giants.

Why do I call the picks “Nuggetz?” Because, they’re tasty little morsels that may or may not leave a good taste in your mouth. It’s spelled with a “z,” because by rules of the interwebz everything spelled with a “z” on the end is kewler, amirite?!

With that, to the picks!

Disclaimer: These are mostly jokes. If you don’t get them, please go to an outlet store and get a sense of humor.

Blackburn Rovers-Manchester City
It was once rumored that €iteh’s Mansour bin Zayed Al-Nahyan was going to buy Blackburn Rovers initially but backed out of the deal when he learned that the Rovers were not referring to Mars rovers and thus decided to push once-upon-a-time regular crowd shots of Oasis to the background by dropping zillions of dollars and buying the Noisy Neighbor Manchester Club. Success has followed since that time if albeit in fits and starts but the Citizens are seemingly everyone’s current title favorites because… um, money and they score goals for fun at home. However, they’re on the road in this tie but I doubt the Mars Rovers, erm, I mean Blackburn Rovers will offer much a challenge once €iteh get into gear.

Manchester City 11, Blackburn Rovers 3

Nouchâteau Unité-Clwb Pêl-droed Dinas Caerdydd
Who the Hell are these two clubs you might ask? Well, Nouchâteau Unité, is Newcastle United in half-assed French whilst Clwb Pêl-droed Dinas Caerdydd is Cardiff City FC in Welsh. After years of a contentious Arsène Wenger relationship by Alan Pardew, Pardew had an epiphany awhile back and went with the if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em philosophy and decided to turn Newcastle United into Arsenal Francophile club 2.0. The man even went so far as to rebrand himself as Alain Pardieu and was going to unveil a quenelle celebration if Les Merles had defeated Arsenal in their recent match but luckily Nicolas Anelka’s travails saved Alain Pardieu some deep blushes. Cardiff City has recently hired Olé Gooner Solshire as recently as yesterday, though the former “Baby-Faced Assassin” was seen sitting next to Insane-o Vincent Tan during the Dragonbirds match against Arsenal on Wednesday. Didn’t take a rocket surgeon to figure out he was 99.9% going to be hired. Once Solshire hits puberty, he’s going to be a helluva manager… seriously, the man is forty and looks like he’s going on 15.

Nouchâteau Unité trois, Clwb Pêl-droed Dinas Caerdydd dau

Woolwich Wanderers-Middlesex Rovers
Totteringham Sp*rs fans love to carp that Arsenal are “Woolwich” and belong in South London and that Sp*rs are the only true North London EPL side. Which is hilarious because that’s the kind of stuff you rely on when you last won the league when television was black and white and it was also curiously right before Totteringham itself became North London rather than Middlesex. So, at least one club in the North London Derby has always been in London. But that’s history and history is where Liverpool fans live, so let’s move on. Tim Sherwad is apparently the second coming of Harry Redknapp which means he’ll win all of one trophy. Or none actually, since that last Sp*rs trophy was won by Juande Ramos who was run out of town, London that is rather than Middlesex, for the crime of being able to ingest lasagna without getting dysentery which is the largest taboo in Totteringham. Meanwhile, Woolwich are no doubt hurriedly trying to cobble together “Frankenstriker” from the body parts of long lost Arsenal greats. You think I’m kidding? We’ll see who’ll last laugh when 8’3″ Thierry van Smithwrightkamp starts at center forward on Saturday!

Middlesex 2, Woolwich 1, number of times Middlesex Sp*rs invoke “North London power shift” 4,573

Derby County-Chelski
The Special One is more prolific at scoring zingers in his pressers lately than Chelsea’s middling strikers have been since Didier Drogba left Stamford Bridge. However, Chelsea’s dynamic midfield players have picked up the burden, as in the past, but now the goals mainly come from Eden Hazard, which is code for “the moment before the serpent tempts Eve with original sin,” and not Frank Lampard, which is Anglo-Saxon for “deflected free kick goal.” Despite being on the road and despite the Cup being prone to upsets, I don’t see how Derby can ram more goals past Chelski than the Blues can past Derby. At least Derby has the ability to say every match they play is a “Derby match.” Wakka wakka wakka!

Chelski 5, Derby 1

Liverpool-Oldham Athletic
Liverpool is flying high  at the moment with Luís Suarez’s EPL-leading 243 goals. Even without R&B midfielder, Stevie G, the Reds have picked up points at rates not seen since they last won the league nearly a quarter of a century ago. But I bet we can all guess how many times Liverpool has won the European Cup since that’s what Kopites love to shout. Meanwhile, Oldham Athletic was named after the leftover holiday ham that is torn up and made into casseroles and pies just before it spoils. They tacked Athletic on to the name in honor of the little dance you do when you bring spoiled ham to the garbage can trying to avoid most of the smell as possible. This technique helped Oldham players work on their footwork and become more athletic, hence the name. Spoiled ham is the story of a ham that was once great and that’s where Liverpool is at their best- talking about the past.

Liverpool 4, Oldham 0

Manchester United-Swansea City
Alex Ferguson’s hand-picked successor, David Moyles, has been having a rough go of it of late, despite recently reeling off four straight wins. Moyles can’t be faulted because in this day and age when you have the likes of Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney, Javier “Chicharito” Hernández, Danny Welbeck, Shinji Kagawa and Adnan Januzaj to grace your attack, a brother just can’t be expected to win. Looking at that list and the price tags on them it’s just a miracle a penny pinching club like Man U hasn’t fallen down to the lower leagues. But much like the plastic that makes up their alleged 600 million worldwide fans, Man U is durable and is a big enough club they can survive many of their gloryhunter plastic fans jumping ship to hotter, en vogue clubs such as Southampton, Chelsea, and any club that wins their most recent game. Swansea were once the upcoming “second team,” i.e. a lot of fans’ second club they didn’t mind seeing win but have seen been eclipsed in that category by Southampton due in part to Swansea basically being on holiday since winning the League Cup last year.

Glory Glory Man U Plastic Club 3, Swansea Second Sity 1

the rest of the matches:

Barnsley-Coventry City
Barnsley shalt not Coventry your neighbor’s wife!
Barnsley 1, Coventry 0

Yeovil Town-Leyton Orient
Yeovil Reddenbacher makes delicious popcorn even if it leaves Leyton butter residue on your fingers after eating.
Leyton Orient 2-Yeovil Town 1

Click the red box to the right to read on (more bad jokes are on the way).

Bristol City-Watford
With the transfer window open, Watford will bring in sixty-players players on loan, sixty-two of them Italian.
Watford 2, Bristol City 0

Southend United-Millwall
I managed both of these sides a long time ago in a FIFA Manager game far, far away. I turned Millwall into an EPL challenging side after taking them over in the second division. Never won the league, did win the 1st division (before it was called the Championship) at a trot and won two FA Cups and a League Cup there. Where have you gone, Danny Hockton and Guðmundur Steinarsson?
Millwall 3, Southend United 1

Middlesbrough-Hull City
Hull sounds like a Scotsman saying “Hell.” Middlesbrough sounds like a person from the suburb of New Orleans called Kenner saying, “(in the) Middles, bruh (brother).”
Middlesbrough 2, Hull City 1

West Bromwich Albion-Crystal Palace
In lieu of being able to do a quenelle, if Anelka scores in this match he should run up to Tony Pulis and snatch his baseball cap off and play keepaway. I’d be amused.
Crystal Palace 2, WBA 1

Kidderminster-Peanutbutter United
Kidderminster sounds like some really awful toffee based candy bar while Peanutbutter United is what I mockingly call Peterborough since it’s Adrian Derpham’s club that he supports. Victory for TalkShite!
Peanutbutter 3, Kidderminster 2

Doncaster Rovers-Stevenage
A Stevenage is the period of time, i.e. “Steven Age,” that it takes one metric Steven to circumnavigate the non-leagues. Doncaster is staffed by those who have been cast as former mafia dons. James Gandolfini holds a posthumous place on the board… too soon?
Doncaster Rovers 1, Stevenage 0, potentially offensive jokes 2

Stoke City-Leicester City
The Leicester said about Stoke, the better. Orc City ain’t exactly the Orcs anymore but rather have an ogre in Mark Hughes managing them now instead.
Stoke City 1, Leicester City 0

Southampton count Lucy Pinder amongst their supporters. Google her.
Southampton 3, Burnley 1, sexy Pinder pics eleventy billion

Rochdale-Leeds United
Remember when Leeds were Premier League champs? Barely remember? Yeah, me too. Hell, that was so long ago, I was in high school.
Leeds United 2, Rochdale 0

Wigan Athletic-Milton Keynes Dons
Speaking of when I was in high school, back then Milton Keynes Dons were Wimbledon FC and Wigan Athletic were toiling in the lower leagues. Wimbledon went down hill once Ivan Lendl, Boris Becker and John McEnroe retired if you ask me.
Wigan Athletic 4, MK Dons 2

Charlton Athletic-Oxford United
The club that sounds like a cigarette brand takes on the club named after a type of button-up shirt.
Charlton Athletic 2, Oxford United 0

Norwich City-Fulham
I tell you what, I ate so much ham over the holidays I was Fulham. (rimshot) But neither twitch Norwich could keep me from making an awful play on words in either of these sentences…
Norwich 1, Fulham 0

Aston Villa-Sheffield United
Well, obviously Paul Lambert doesn’t even want to be here. I bet he won’t turn down a win if Villa wins though, the silly bastard.
Sheffield United 2, Aston Villa 0

Macclesfield Town-Sheffield Wednesday
I hope Wednesday shows up on Saturday.
Sheffield Wednesday 4, Macclesfield Town 3

Bolton Wanderers-Blackpool
Bolton, bolt off. Blackpool, white jacuzzi.
Bolton 1, Blackpool 0

Everton-Queen’s Park Rangers
Is Peter Odemwingie going to drive up to the gates of QPR and beg to be signed again?
Everton 3, QPR 2, media-loved managers 2, nutty Nigerian forwards (potentially) 1

Brighton & Hove Albion-Reading
It’s really not fair Reading has to face two teams. How the FA sought fit to have them face both Brighton AND Hove is beyond me.
Brighton 3, Hove 3, Reading 2

Grimsby Town-Huddersfield Town
Things are always grim in Grimsby Town, meanwhile Huddersfield Town is pondering changing their name to Huddlestone Town and declaring Tom Huddlestone mayor for life.
Huddlestone Town 2, Grimsby Town 1

Ipswich Town-Preston North End
Ipswich Town is where all IP addresses originate from. Preston North End once had David Beckham in their side. That was the last time anybody had heard of Preston North End.
Ipswich Town 3, Preston North End 1

AFC Bournemouth-Burton Albion
Jason Bournemouth versus Richard Burton Albion. Acting! Genius, thank yoooooooouuuuuu!
Richard Burton Albion 5, Jason Bournemouth 2

Nottingham Forest-West Ham United
As much as Allardyce likes him some long balls he should spend time in Nottingham Forest and attempt to sign some tall trees as strikers to pump those long balls too.
Nottingham Forest 2, West Ham Long Ball Squad 1

Sunderland-Carlisle United
FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, JOZY, SCORE, DAMMIT. Facing Belinda Carlisle United, this should be an easy task. Do you have the beat, Jozy? Go-go!
Sunderland 4, Belinda Carlisle United 1, Jozy nets a hat-trick, Altidore scores Sunderland’s other goal

Port Vale-Plymouth Argyle
Plymouth Checkered Pattern Sock & Sweater Club should win against Port Bride’s Vale. Then again, I should come up with better joke references too.
Argyle Socks 3, Bride’s Vale 2

Birmingham City-Bristol Rovers/Crawley Town
Birmingham City, the home of Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, would likely rather face Aleister Crawley Town than Bristol Rovers because of each other’s familiarity with the dark arts. I recently managed Bristol Rovers in my current Football Manager 10 game. “Bristolona” with Michael Mifsud aka Maltese Messi & Marc Nygaard the towering Dane were a formidable strike force!
Birmingham City 3, Bristol Rovers 2, Crawley Town 2

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