Newcastle, Reading and Villa out to avoid cup shocks
Brighton & Hove Albion will be looking to knock Newcastle United out of the FA Cup for a second year running when they kick off this season's third round on Saturday lunchtime, while the likes of Stoke City, Reading and Sunderland also face potentially awkward away ties.
Newcastle were beaten 1-0 by Brighton in the fourth round of last year's competition and will be looking for revenge, and a first away win in the FA Cup since 2006, when they travel to the Amex Stadium.
Aston Villa, like Newcastle, are struggling in the Premier League this term and will be hoping for a cup run to boost spirits around the camp, but Mick McCarthy's Ipswich Town will be determined to spring a surprise when they travel to the Midlands.
Reading, second from bottom in the top flight and with just a couple of league wins all season, make the trip to Crawley Town to meet a side that reached the fifth round last season.
Stoke, quarter-finalists last year and runners-up in 2011, could be dark horses for the trophy yet again but they must first negotiate a difficult tie against Championship high-flyers Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.
Bolton Wanderers, knocked out by Tottenham Hotspur last season in a rearranged tie following Fabrice Muamba's cardiac arrest at White Hart Lane, entertain a Sunderland side looking to bounce back from a 3-0 defeat by Liverpool in the league.
League One leaders Tranmere will fancy their chances of causing an upset when they visit Derby County, who currently occupy a mid-table position in the Championship.
There are a number of all-Championship ties, with Gary Bowyer and Terry McPhillips again taking charge of Blackburn Rovers for their home clash with out-of-form Bristol City.
Barnsley, bottom of the second tier, do battle with Burnley, while Charlton Athletic's game against Huddersfield Town pits together two teams separated by just a point in the league.
A representative from League Two is guaranteed to be in the fourth round after Aldershot Town were paired with Rotherham United, and the Millers would settle for a repeat of their 3-0 away win from earlier in the season.