Who would have predicted a FA Cup quarter-final clash between two mid-table Championship sides at the start of the season?
But, here we are, with underperforming Millwall and Blackburn Rovers coming up against each other for a chance to make the last four and the opportunity to play at one of the greatest stadiums in the world – Wembley.
I am sure at the start of the campaign there would have been people predicting that Millwall would be involved in a scrap for survival and despite some encouraging early-season form, that assessment has proved correct, as the Lions are only six points above the relegation zone.
A defeat on Tuesday night at home to lowly Wolverhampton Wanderers only further underlines the troubles they currently find themselves in.
However, an FA Cup quarter-final will certainly take their minds off the league for the next few days and boss Kenny Jackett will be determined to give the Den faithful something to cheer about on Saturday afternoon.
Home advantage makes the Lions slight favourites for the clash, and bwin punters can back Millwall to progress to the semi-final with a win in 90 minutes at 27/20.
As for Rovers, their season has not been one to write home about unfortunately. We all knew that it would be eventful under the ownership of the unconventional Venky’s, but I am not sure that many would have guessed just where Blackburn would be sitting in the league table at the start of March.
One of the favourites to gain promotion straight back to the Premier League following their relegation last year, Blackburn have well and truly failed to live up to the pre-season hype.
Now under the managerial rein of Michael Appleton, who is not particularly a fans’ favourite, Rovers are positioned 13th in the table and are well adrift of the play-off places.
The gap to sixth-placed Brighton and Hove Albion currently stands at 11 points and considering they are without a win in their last six Championship fixtures, it looks extremely unlikely that Blackburn will be playing top-flight football again next year.
Similarly to Millwall though, Saturday is a whole different ball game for the Lancashire club.
The manager, players and fans will go into the weekend’s tie on a high after defeating Arsenal 1-0 at the Emirates in the last round and will forget all of their season’s woes with regards to the league.
If they do produce a performance akin to the one they mustered up against the Gunners, then Blackburn must be good value at odds of 2/1, which bwin are offering in its 3Way market.
As with all FA Cup ties up until the semi-final, a draw will require a replay and this outcome cannot be written out of the equation.
Neither of these sides will want to throw their Wembley dream away early on with some haphazard defending and therefore I expect it to be very cagey and a game in which chances are few and far between.
Without sounding as though I am sitting on the fence, I am going to plump for a draw and am advising bwin customers to follow my lead and back the stalemate, which is priced at a tasty-looking 11/5.
In other words, any new customers registering with bwin today and backing the draw with their free £20 bet would secure returns of £64 if the game finishes all square.
It was only November when these two sides last played each other and on that day, Millwall ran out 2-0 winners at Ewood Park thanks to two goals in the final 19 minutes.
A repeat of that scoreline can be backed at odds of 29/2, but without one of the goalscorers from that day, the Lions may struggle to find the back of the net.
Chris Wood joined Leicester from West Brom after his loan spell at the Den ended and Kenny Jackett’s side have certainly missed his firepower.
Since Wood’s departure, Millwall have only recorded two league victories and have failed to score in six of those 11 fixtures.
The New Zealand-born striker bagged an impressive 11 goals in 19 appearances at the club and they have unfortunately not been able to replace his goals.
Luckily for Millwall though, Blackburn have not exactly been free-scoring of late either.
Rovers have only managed three goals in their last six Championship matches and given the fact that both teams are struggling for form and goals, 0-0 could be on the cards.
This outcome can be backed at 15/2, but I am more than happy to just take a punt on the draw at tempting odds of 11/5.