A team of bin men and teachers whose league has been suspended as it is not deemed ‘elite’ will be facing off against the likes of Gareth Bale in an attempt to earn what might be the greatest update in the history of the FA Cup. Marine play in the eighth tier of English football in the Northern Premier League North West Division. Tottenham were recently fighting near the top of the Premier League. Never in this competition has there been a bigger gap between two teams.
Marine had only reached the third round once before in 1993 and have had to win seven games to reach this stage, where Premier League giants such as Spurs enter the competition. The Merseyside club certainly won’t want their guests to go easy on them, with right-back Josh Soloman-Davies saying: “I hope they bring everyone to be the honest, I’d love to test myself against the likes of [Heung-min] Son. I want the challenge, so I would like him and [Harry] Kane to start.”
Here is how you can watch the match and what you need to know:
Viewing informationDate: Sunday, Jan. 10Time: 12 p.m. ETLocation: Rossett Park — Crosby, Merseyside, United KingdomTV and live stream: ESPN+Odds: Marine +3300; Draw +2800; Tottenham -5000 (via William Hill Sportsbook)Storylines
Marine: As they plot to pull off a remarkable giant killing Marine have been getting support their local Merseyside neighbours. They trained at Everton’s Finch Farm centre whilst Liverpool have provided Neil Young with access to their analysis facilities so that he can plot a way to overcome a side that will be bristling with quality.
Spurs will certainly not feel at home when they play at Rossett Park though they cannot say that Marine have not been accommodating to their visitors. Young’s side usually get changed in the bar area but will hand that over to Jose Mourinho’s team so that they have more space in which to prepare.
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Tottenham: Mourinho certainly has no intention of sending the Spurs youngsters to Merseyside, indeed the likes of Gareth Bale could make the trip up north with the Tottenham boss having no intention of writing himself into FA Cup folklore for all the wrong reasons.
“I don’t think they want to play against Tottenham Under-23s, they want to play against the guys they are used to watching, admiring, used to following and we want to give them that,” said Mourinho. “Myself and my staff, the respect is the way we are preparing the game and the same way we’re trying to know their striker, their center back, keeper, their tactical organization. It’s the same we do with other opponents, of course of a different level.
“I feel very happy to play them and I understand the dream. It’s up to us to bring them back to reality, but I clearly understand the dream.”
Much as any neutral would will Marine to overcome the odds the simple reality is that whatever team Mourinho deploys the gulf will almost certainly be too significant for Spurs to be defeated. PICK: Spurs (-5000)