With both sides currently sitting in fifth in their respective leagues, Chelsea and Birmingham City will both be looking at the FA Cup as an alternative route to a successful season, as Paddy Power make the Blues odds on for victory at Stamford Bridge, which would take the media spotlight off manager Andre Villas-Boas for a short time at least.
The battle of the Blues will take place at Stamford Bridge and with competition for a Champions League spot higher than ever, Andre Villas Boas will view the tournament as an opportunity to salvage some pride this season.
The West London outfit have had a difficult campaign so far and will be disappointed with the reign of their Portuguese boss so far, with his position being thrown into question barely eight months into his appointment.
Chris Hughton’s Birmingham will travel to London with the mentality that despite the one division gap between their clubs, they can advance to sixth round with a shock win this weekend.
The last time these two sides met, Chelsea ran out as 3-1 victors but the Premier League team aren’t hitting the same level of performance that they were on that occasion.
Birmingham will also be boosted by the fact that they are unbeaten in their last 12 outings, recording eight wins in their last ten matches.
Chelsea, on the other hand, have gone three games without a win, stumbling to consecutive draws against Swansea and Manchester United as well as failing to score in a 2-0 loss against Everton last weekend.
The English giants will be keen to get back to winning ways this weekend but face stern competition from Birmingham, who could go up against Chelsea next season if their recent Championship form results in promotion back to the top flight.
Chelsea will go without the services of John Terry and Ramires this Saturday due to injury, but Ashley Cole is reportedly in the running to make his return from a calf strain.