FA Cup fixtures usually fall victim to CL and Premiership aspirations. However, today's encounter with Man U may not be as insignificant as guano in the Galapagos because of its Premiership and CL implications. In the Premiership we have witnessed a very tight race between the teams before a suddenly vulnerable Man U team ceded five points to create some daylight. The psychological boost provided by an Arsenal win today would be tremendous ahead of its April return to Old Trafford.
This match is important too for Arsenal's overseas challenge. They meet Milan midweek for the start of the CL knockout phase. Milan, the present CL champion beat out Man U last year in a memorable semi-final, after falling back in the first leg. Milan has revived its Serie season with Ancelotti's new signings providing a shot in the arm. And of course the triple threat posed by Kaka, Seedorf, and Pirlo remain intact. Last season Arsenal's chances ended prematurely against PSV. A win over Man U would be a nice confidence booster in its CL match up with Europe's best.