Replays done, FA Cup fifth round matches are set

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The FA Cup’s 4th round gave us only one Premier League battle: Chelsea’s 1-0 victory over Stoke City. After mid-week wins by Sheffield United and Nottingham Forest dwindled the competition to 16, such match ups are unavoidable, but for those who thrive on cup competitions for their Cinderella runs, the Cup’s fifth round couldn’t be any more accommodating.

Of the six lower-division sides who’ve made it this far, four are were draw against each other on Jan. 26, ensuring at least two Football League clubs will be in the competition’s quarterfinals. Those match ups feature Sheffield Wednesday hosting Charlton Athletic (Feb. 15) and Nottingham Forest visiting Sheffield United (Feb. 16) – the competition’s only club not in England’s top two tiers.

The tournament’s other two lower-level sides, Wigan and Brighton, also have winnable matches. The Latics will visiting the Premier League’s 19th place side, Cardiff City (Feb. 15), while Brighton & Hove Albion host Hull City to wrap up the round proper on Feb. 17.

All it will take for four lower-level sides to make it to the quarterfinals are minor upsets at Cardiff City and Falmer Stadiums. Given the talent available to the Bluebirds and Tigers, it wouldn’t be a shock to see either underdog land in the competition’s final eight.

As for the Premier League battles: Sunderland continues their quest for a second cup final when they host Southampton (Feb. 15); Chelsea and Manchester City square off in the round’s marquee match up at the Etihad (Feb. 15); Roberto Martínez welcomes his old club to Goodison when Everton hosts Swansea (Feb. 16); and Arsenal and Liverpool take part in the round’s other headlining tie when they meet at the Emirates (Feb. 16).

Full Schedule
Feb. 15: Sunderland vs. Southampton
Feb. 15: Sheffield Wednesday vs. Charlton Athletic
Feb, 15: Cardiff City vs. Wigan Athletic
Feb. 15: Manchester City vs. Chelsea
Feb. 16: Everton vs. Swansea
Feb. 16: Sheffield United vs. Nottingham Forest
Feb. 16: Arsenal vs. Liverpool
Feb. 17: Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Hull City

Viktoria Plzen set to sign midfielder Andreas Ivanschitz

Obafemi Martins, Oniel Fisher, Andreas Ivanschitz
Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)
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PRAGUE (AP) Czech champion Viktoria Plzen is close to signing Austrian midfielder Andreas Ivanschitz.

Plzen says Ivanschitz agreed terms for a contract lasting 1 + seasons and will sign it when the team returns from a training camp in Spain. Ivanschitz has already joined the squad at the Oliva Nova resort, the club says.

Ivanschitz helped the Seattle Sounders win their first MLS Cup in December.

[ NEW HOMES: Fonte | Berahino ]

No financial details were given.

The 33-year-old Ivanschitz also played for Rapid Vienna and Red Bull Salzburg in Austria, Mainz in the Bundesliga, Levante in Spain and Panathinaikos in Athens.

Ivanschitz played 69 games for Austria in 2003-14, scoring 12 goals.

FIFA allows Matip to represent Liverpool during AFCON

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 29: Joel Matip of Liverpool heads to score his team's third goal during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Liverpool at Selhurst Park on October 29, 2016 in London, England.  (Photo by Christopher Lee/Getty Images)
Photo by Christopher Lee/Getty Images
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Joel Matip is going to get to play for Liverpool during AFCON after all.

The center back had turned down the chance to represent Cameroon at the Africa Cup of Nations, and Liverpool was forced to apply to FIFA for a waiver.

[ PL PREVIEW: Swansea vs. Liverpool ]

Matip suffered an ankle injury in December, adding to his desire to stay at Anfield. He declared himself internationally retired and was one of six Cameroon players who refused call-ups for AFCON.

He last played for the Reds on Dec. 11, and can be selected by Jurgen Klopp against Swansea City on Saturday.

Man United captain Rooney raises $1.5m from charity game

FILE - A Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017 file photo of Manchester United's Wayne Rooney leaving the field after the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford stadium in Manchester, England. Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney says he raised 1.2 million pounds ($1.5 million) for charity from a friendly game against former club Everton last year. (AP Photo/Dave Thompson)
AP Photo/Dave Thompson
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MANCHESTER, England (AP) Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney says he raised 1.2 million pounds ($1.5 million) from a friendly game against former club Everton last year.

That represents the profits, after operational costs, from August’s sellout match at Old Trafford and goes toward the Wayne Rooney Foundation’s target of raising 5 million pounds for children’s charities.

[ NEW HOMES: Fonte | Berahino ]

Rooney said: “I’d like to thank all the fans who came to the testimonial and made it such a special night. They’ve raised a huge amount of money for children who are disadvantaged and it will make a real difference to their lives.”

Rooney is one goal from breaking Manchester United’s scoring record, with the striker currently tied with Bobby Charlton on 249 goals.

Rooney joined United from Everton in 2004.

WATCH: Lewandowski’s juggling stoppage time winner

Bayern's Robert Lewandowski celebrates after scoring his side's first goal during the German soccer Bundesliga match between SC Freiburg and FC Bayern Munich in Freiburg, Germany, Friday, Jan. 20, 2017. (Patrick Seeger/dpa via AP)
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Robert Lewandowski picked up where he left off.

The Polish striker scored twice for Bayern Munich, once in stoppage time, as the Bavarians improved their Bundesliga lead to six points after toppling Freiburg 2-1 on Friday.

[ MORE: Bundesliga second half preview ]

And what a winner it was, Lewandowski taking a Douglas Costa cross with two juggling touches before hitting an offspeed bouncer inside the post.

It was the league’s first match following the winter/holiday break, giving Bayern a cushion before RB Leipzig takes the pitch against Eintracht Frankfurt in a Top Five tilt on Saturday.

Lewandowski moves closer to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the goal scoring chart. His 13th and 14th goals have him two back of Borussia Dortmund’s striker, as Lewandowski pursues a third Golden Boot in four seasons.

Full Weekend Schedule
Freiburg 1-2 Bayern Munich — Friday
Augsburg vs. Hoffenheim — Saturday
Schalke vs. Ingolstadt — Saturday
Darmstadt vs. Borussia Monchengladbach — Saturday
Werder Bremen vs. Borussia Dortmund — Saturday
Wolfsburg vs. Hamburger SV — Saturday
RB Leipzig vs. Eintracht Frankfurt — Saturday
Bayer Leverkusen vs. Hertha Berlin — Sunday
Mainz vs. Koln — Sunday