Arsenal and Manchester City booked spots in the the next stage of the FA Cup after fourth round wins against Burnley and Aston Villa on Saturday.
The Gunners grabbed a 2-1 win at the Emirates Stadium, while the Sky Blues dismantled their opponents 4-0 at Villa Park.
Tottenham Hotspur joined their fellow Premier League top-four competitors in the fifth round as they saw off Colchester United 4-1 in the day's early game.
Two goals from Nacer Chadli plus strikes from Eric Dier and Tom Carroll helped Mauricio Pochettino’s side through what was potentially a tricky clash at the Colchester Community Stadium.
Here is a look back at all the action and results from Saturday’s FA Cup fourth round fixtures:
|12:45 p.m.||Colchester United||1-4||Tottenham Hotspur|
|3 p.m.||Aston Villa||0-4||Manchester City|
|3 p.m.||Crystal Palace||1-0||Stoke City|
|3 p.m.||Nottingham Forest||0-1||Watford|
|3 p.m.||Oxford United||0-3||Blackburn Rovers|
|3 p.m.||Shrewsbury Town||3-2||Sheffield Wednesday|
|3 p.m.||West Brom||2-2||Peterborough|
|5:30 p.m.||Liverpool||0-0||West Ham United|
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino was clearly taking no chances in this one, with Erik Lamela, Christian Eriksen and Harry Kane in the starting XI. The manager was vindicated with a strong opening to the game from his players, as they sought to silence a raucous home crowd.
Lamela came close to opening the scoring for the hosts 12 minutes in, but his swerving effort crashed off the upright. Pressure continued to mount on the League One side, though, and eventually Spurs made their dominance count in the 27th minute.
Chadli broke through on the right flank, latching onto Lamela’s pass. From there, the Belgian steadied himself and thrashed a wonderful finish into the corner; here’s a look at the goal, courtesy of BT Sport Football:
Before the break, Spurs had chances to add to their lead, with Kane in particular proving a major threat. However, Colchester held firm, and they received a rousing reception from their supporters.
After the break, the hosts showed a little more ambition, with Darren Ambrose firing a shot just inches wide.
It wasn’t too long until the game was safe for Spurs, though. Striding out from the back, Dier decided to try his luck from around 30 yards, and the ball took a wicked deflection to leave the Colchester ‘keeper Jake Kean stranded.
As noted by Stats Football, Tottenham have seen plenty of different players help themselves to goals this term:
Eight different Tottenham players have now scored at least 4 goals in all competitions this season.— STATS Football (@STATS_Football) January 30, 2016
With the hosts dejected, the Premier League side helped themselves in the last few minutes. Chadli, who had netted in his two appearances prior to Saturday’s clash, fancied another, and his stooping header made the game safe with 11 minutes to go.
Those in attendance at the Colchester Community Stadium got something to shout about late on, though, as Ben Davies turned the ball into his own net; it was a just reward for some impressive attacking play from the third-tier side in the second period.
However, Spurs got the final say in the match, as Carroll capitalised on some slack defending to restore their three-goal advantage. Goal.com’s Harry Sherlock was delighted with the response from the Tottenham players:
Lovely response to Colchester's goal. 4-1. Super.— Harry Sherlock (@Harry_Sherlock) January 30, 2016
There were some flashes from Colchester, who can be pleased with their showing and take encouragement back to their league campaign. Spurs will be delighted to have negotiated a potentially testing tie with a very professional job and can watch on for the rest of the weekend safe in the knowledge they’re in the hat.
In Saturday's other FA Cup ties, Arsenal made tough work of lower league opposition, defeating Burnley 2-1. A superb Calum Chambers goal set the Gunners on their way after 19 minutes, but Sam Vokes headed the equaliser on the half-hour mark.
It was left to the returning Chilean superstar Alexis Sanchez to make the difference, and the forward turned in Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's cross after 53 minutes. The game was Sanchez's first start since November, and he looked in good shape, always busy through the midfield and final third of the pitch.
It was an easy day at the office for Manchester City as they crushed Aston Villa without having to move through the gears. The 4-0 win was facilitated by a hat-trick from 19-year-old hero Kelechi Iheanacho, who was the star of the show with his treble effort.
The teen opened the scoring after just four minutes, and doubled his haul with a penalty after Raheem Sterling was fouled in the box.
The Nigeria international completed his hat-trick in the second half, as Sterling added a fourth for good measure.
Joining Spurs, Arsenal, City and Manchester United in the hat for the next round draw are Watford, Leeds United, Hull City, Crystal Palace, Blackburn Rovers, Bournemouth, Reading and Shrewsbury Town, who were all victorious on Saturday afternoon. Peterborough United earned a replay at West Bromwich Albion, drawing 2-2 at the Premier League club.
In Saturday's late kick-off, Liverpool and West Ham United played out a 0-0 draw at Anfield, triggering a replay at Upton Park to decide who will progress.
City look the strongest team left in the competition after their destruction of Villa, but Arsenal have a wonderful pedigree in the cup over the past decade.
However, many Premier League have survived until the fifth round this term, making this one of the most competitive FA Cup competitions in recent memory.