Despite their rising form through the English league, Crawley Town, who are surprisingly odds against with Labrokes, are also looking to continue their success in the FA Cup this weekend when they play hosts to Premier League opposition Stoke City.
Following on from their promotion from the Conference at the end of last season, Crawley have begun life in League Two in similar fashion and currently sit in fifth place as they hope to go one step further and gain promotion to League One.
Steve Evans’ side go into the encounter with a record of three wins, two draws and one loss but will be hoping that they can replicate some of their earlier season form as they head into a tough fixture.
Stoke are usually known for their formidable home record and although the Potters have recorded victories over the likes of Liverpool and Tottenham at the Brittania Stadium but their performances have been nearly as impressive when playing away from home.
However, Tony Pulis’ side have failed to put together a consistent string of victories this campaign and are currently going through one of their worst patches, failing to win since their first match of 2012 in early January.
Stoke City are currently engaged on several fronts and will still be recovering from Thursday’s Europa League match against Valencia by the time Saturday rolls around, making for an even harder trip to Crawley.
The Potters went down to a single goal thanks to a 30 yard wonderstrike by Valancia’s Mehmet Topal, and Tony Pulis will be desperate not to experience another agonising result in a Cup competition.
Asmir Begovic should continue in goal, giving veteran Thomas Sorensen a rest, while Robert Huth and Matthew Upson should return to bolster the defence, while it remains to be seen whether Peter Crouch will be given the weekend off.
Crawley will hand a debut to goalkeeper Rene Gilmartin, who has signed an emergency one month loan deal from Watford following a horrific knee injury to normal shot stopper Scott Shearer.
As a result, Crawley will feel they could take advantage of Stoke’s distraction on Sunday and run out as Cupset victors and extend their home winning streak to three games.