Soccer

5 ties to look out for in the FA Cup third round

The FA Cup third round draw sees rivals Sunderland and Newcastle face each other for the first time in seven years, while Arsenal host Liverpool (Owen Humphreys/PA)
The FA Cup third round draw sees rivals Sunderland and Newcastle face each other for the first time in seven years, while Arsenal host Liverpool (Owen Humphreys/PA) The FA Cup third round draw sees rivals Sunderland and Newcastle face each other for the first time in seven years, while Arsenal host Liverpool (Owen Humphreys/PA)

The third-round draw for the FA Cup was made on Sunday, with Premier League and Championship clubs entering the competition.

All fixtures will be played over the weekend of January 6/7 and include an all-Premier League meeting between Arsenal and Liverpool, Wear-Tyne derby clash between Sunderland and Newcastle, while reigning holders Manchester City face Huddersfield.

Here the PA news agency looks at some of the best ties to watch in the third round.

Sunderland v Newcastle

One of the biggest draws of the third round sees fierce rivals Sunderland and Newcastle go head-to-head for the first time since 2016.

The last meeting between both senior sides came in the Premier League, resulting in a 1-1 draw at St James’ Park in March 2016 and ending the Black Cats’ run of six derby victories on the trot.

Both sides have endured plenty of changes since then, with Sunderland suffering back-to-back relegations and reached the Championship play-offs last season, while since their takeover, Newcastle have challenged at the top end of the Premier League table, securing Champions League football this season.

Their first meeting in seven years will take place at the Stadium of Light.

Arsenal v Liverpool

Soccer – FA Cup – Fifth Round – Arsenal v Liverpool – Emirates Stadium
Soccer – FA Cup – Fifth Round – Arsenal v Liverpool – Emirates Stadium Arsenal and Liverpool last faced each other in the FA Cup in 2014 (Adam Davy/PA)

An all-Premier League clash sees Arsenal host Liverpool at the Emirates.


Both teams are meeting for the first time in the competition since 2014, when the Gunners earned a 2-1 victory in the fifth round and went on to win the trophy that season against Hull.

Arsenal have since won the competition three times, while Liverpool were last crowned winners in 2022 after beating Chelsea on penalties.

Wigan v Manchester United

Last year’s finalists Manchester United will make the short trip to former champions Wigan.

The Latics won the competition in 2013 with a huge upset against Manchester City at Wembley as Ben Watson’s late header clinched the trophy.

The club have since fallen on hard times, suffering relegation from the Championship last season and started their League One campaign this year with an eight-point deduction due to off-pitch issues.

Wigan progressed to the third round with a 1-0 win against York on Saturday and come up against United, who have won the competition 12 times in their history but have stuttered this season under Erik Ten Hag.

Ramsgate/AFC Wimbledon v Ipswich

A tough test lies ahead for Isthmian League South East Division side Ramsgate if they can get past League Two outfit AFC Wimbledon on Monday night.

Currently the lowest-ranked side left in the competition, Ramsgate overcame National League strugglers Woking to book their spot in the second round of the competition.

The winner of Monday’s tie will face high-flying Ipswich, who are second in the Championship table having only lost two games so far this season.

Manchester City v Huddersfield

Champions League Final Package
Champions League Final Package Manchester City are the reigning FA Cup holders (Nick Potts/PA)

Current holders Manchester City kick off their defence against Championship strugglers Huddersfield.

In an all-Manchester final back in June, City earned a 2-1 win against rivals United through Ilkay Gundogan’s double and went on to secure the treble the following weekend.

Pep Guardiola’s side will be aiming for back-to-back FA Cup victories starting with a third-round tie against Huddersfield, who are lingering above the Championship relegation zone.