Middlesbrough FA Cup hopes boosted by home draw with Oxford, while big five all travel

Middlesbrough's Stewart Downing hits the winner against Accrington Stanley. Picture by TOM COLLINS
Middlesbrough's Stewart Downing hits the winner against Accrington Stanley. Picture by TOM COLLINS
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Middlesbrough’s hopes of FA Cup glory have been boosted by a kind draw in the fifth round.

Boro have been handed a home tie with League One Oxford United – the third stage in a row they have been paired with a lower division rival at the Riverside.

The Teessiders have their former skipper and manager, Gareth Southgate, to thank for the match, with England boss picking out the number 15 ball.

Boro will now be very hot favourites to reach the last eight by beating an Oxford side who dumped out Newcastle United in one of the many fourth-round upsets at the weekend.

Boro got past League Two Accrington on Saturday 1-0, Stewart Downing scoring the only goal, having swept past Championship outfit Sheffield Wednesday 3-0 in the previous round.

The two non-league giant-killers in the fifth round draw experienced mixed fortunes.

Both received Premier League opposition – Lincoln City facing a trip to Burnley, while Sutton United were given a home date with Arsenal.

Elsewhere, get ready for another live televised Manchester United tie as the holders face an all-Lancashire affair at Championship strugglers Blackburn.

The big five survivors in the competition were all drawn away, with Tottenham having a London derby at Fulham, Chelsea visiting Liverpool’s conquerors Wolves and Manchester City making the trip to Huddersfield.

Fifth round draw: Burnley v Lincoln; Fulham v Tottenham; Blackburn v Manchester United; Sutton v Arsenal; Middlesbrough v Oxford; Wolves v Chelsea; Huddersfield v Manchester City; Millwall v Derby/Leicester

Ties to be played 17-20 February