THE magic of the cup is alive and well!

After not doing THAT well in the knockout comps over the last few years, we’ve found ourselves on a cup run.

OK, we’ve only won an FA Cup third round tie against lower league Peterborough United, but it felt like a welcome distraction from the struggles in the league.

And given the fact we’ve got Norwich City at home in the next round, who isn’t dreaming of an extended stay in the greatest cup competition in the world?

Certainly the next four league games, on paper at least, don’t appear to be likely to provide much cheers so we have to get our kicks somewhere.

I’ve always been a big believer in a good cup run actually helping a team’s form because it often gives the players some would consider to be on the fringes competitive games at a decent level, which in turn feeds competition for places.

That said, listening to Sean Dyche’s press conference as I write this, we’ve got a few injury and illness worries which means the boss might have to call on the less regular members of the squad.

JBG and Ashley Barnes are both out of the trip to Chelsea with different injuries whilst Jay Rodriguez – who has impressed on recent outings – and Phil Bardsley have both missed sessions this week through illness.

I’m not going to have another rant about the transfer market but an already thin squad losing four key players like that should be reason enough to loosen the purse strings.

Chelsea on Saturday is a peculiar proposition in that they’ve been a little bit up and down in recent weeks.

Bournemouth, who haven’t looked any great shakes themselves this season, went there and picked up a win on the back of a poor run and we have tasted success ourselves there in recent years.

Who could possibly forget the 3-2 opening day win back in August 2017?

We’d certainly have to show a bit more ambition than we have in the last couple of Premier League games but if the starting line-up is to have a different feel to it – heck, we might even see Matej Vydra get a start – then maybe the shackles will be off.

We know we can play good football, we know we can worry teams if we can get everything to click.

The multi-million pound question is how quickly can we do that?