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Cherries: Di Canio tips rivals to spring a cup surprise
FA CUP giant-killer Paolo Di Canio is backing Cherries to strike a blow for League One – by causing a shock against top-flight outfit Wigan.
The Swindon Town boss insisted Cherries had a “big chance” of springing a surprise after his team had earned a point at Dean Court on Saturday.
Cherries and Premier League Wigan clash tonight (7.45pm) in a third round replay following their 1-1 draw at the DW Stadium earlier this month.
Eddie Howe’s men will be bidding to set a new club record of 19 matches unbeaten when they step out in front of a sell-out home crowd.
But Wigan, despite the prospect of manager Roberto Martinez tinkering with his team, remain slight favourites in the eyes of the bookmakers.
Di Canio, 44, knows all about upsetting the odds in the famous knockout competition – both as a player and manager.
The Italian scored the winner when West Ham defeated Manchester United 1-0 at Old Trafford in 2001. He also got the better of Wigan from the technical area when masterminding Swindon’s 2-1 third round win over the Latics last season.
And the Hammers legend believes Cherries possess the attributes to cause problems for Martinez’s men.
Di Canio said: “They have a big chance of beating Wigan – absolutely.
“I saw the draw at Wigan and I have the clips to study Bournemouth again.
“They play with a discipline and quality. When you play against a Premier League side, that gives you the opportunity to play football and gives Bournemouth a bigger chance.
“Last year, we beat Wigan, and I can see a weakness in them away from home. We dominated at our place.
“And with this ground and this atmosphere, they (Cherries) have a big chance to go through because they have quality, a system and a good manager.”
Di Canio was impressed by both teams in Saturday’s 1-1 draw.
He added: “I thought it was a Championship performance.
“To produce good attacking football with this surface was very good and I was happy for the people.”