No cup competition in the world captures the imagination or offers such scope for upsets as the FA Cup. And first round weekend in particular provides a plethora of David v Goliath clashes and you can almost guarantee that a handful of underdogs will make it through against the odds. But which ones will it be?
Here are five potential first-round upsets that give punters a chance of big returns and new customers signing up to bwin using the free £25 bet they receive on any of these games would win at least £156.25.
LEYTON ORIENT v BROMLEY
Bromley to win @ 9/1
Blue Square South side Bromley beat Kent rivals Dartford to earn their shot at Leyton Orient, who’ve won just two of the last ten at home in the league. Visiting manager Mark Goldberg (yes, the same one who had a disastrous reign as Crystal Palace chairman) will be hopeful of getting their fourth away win of the season to finally make it through on his third attempt at the first round proper.
BRENTFORD v BASINGSTOKE
Basingstoke to win @ 29/4
Basingstoke are flying high in the Blue Square South having lost just once in the last 15 games and will hope that form is enough to beat League One Brentford, who are definitely vulnerable at Griffin Park. They recently endured a six-match streak without a home win which was only snapped with a 6-0 success against Bournemouth in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.
DAGENHAM & REDBRIDGE v BATH CITY
Bath City to win @ 23/4
Until this season Bath City had been on a remarkable run, going from the bottom of the Southern League to 10th place in the Blue Square National (their highest league finish in 15 years) in just four seasons.
While they have struggled this year and are bottom of the Blue Square, the Romans will hope their great FA Cup tradition – they’ve reached the third round six times – will see them through against League Two strugglers Dagenham & Redbridge, who’ve lost their last seven in all competitions.
PLYMOUTH v STOURBRIDGE
Stourbridge to win @ 29/4
Having won through four qualifying rounds to reach this stage, Southern League side Stourbridge will arrive at Home Park confident of taking advantage of the turmoil at Plymouth Argyle, who are rock bottom of the Football League and have only just had their recent takeover approved by the authorities following months of players not being paid in full.
HALIFAX TOWN v CHARLTON
Halifax Town to win @ 21/4
On the face of it, League One leaders Charlton don’t look primed to be embarrassed by non-league Halifax but they have a poor record against lower ranked opponents in the FA Cup in recent years, including going out to another Blue Square North side, Northwich Victoria, in their last televised FA Cup tie in 2009.
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