FA Cup: Manchester United v Reading match preview
look ahead to Monday’s FA Cup fixture at Old Trafford
Manchester United are likely to rest a number of players following their midweek draw against Real Madrid when they take on Reading in the FA Cup fifth round. Sir Alex Ferguson’s side beat West Ham in the third round before a comfortable 4-1 win against Fulham in the fourth. It is worth noting that the last two times United beat the Cottagers in the FA Cup, they have gone on to win it (1999 and 2004).
Reading meanwhile have been impressive as of late, winning sixof their last nine games. The defeat at Stoke last time out brought a six-game unbeaten streak to an end, but January’s Manager of the Month Brain McDermott will hope his side will pull off an upset against the runaway league leaders on Monday night.
With Ferguson ruling out Paul Scholes for a further two weeks, there may be a recall for Anderson to the starting line-up, with the Brazilian making a short appearance from the bench on Wednesday night in Madrid. The Royals have had a full week to prepare this game, while the trip to Spain will have taken its effect on Ferguson’s team, giving Reading a real possibility of pulling off a shock result against a side that haven’t won the cup since 2004.
PAST THREE MEETINGS...
Reading 3 (Robson-Kanu, Le Fondre, Morrison) Man Utd 4 (Anderson, Rooney 2, Van Persie), Premier League, December 2012
Reading 0 Man Utd 2 (Rooney, Ronaldo), Premier League, January 2008
Man Utd 0 Reading 0, Premier League, August 2007
Reading have only won once in 12 FA Cup meetings between the two sides, with United claiming six victories along with five draws.
Ferguson’s side have conceded just once in their last five FA Cup matches at Old Trafford.
Only once in the last 12 occasions that Reading have drawn opponents from the same division in the FA Cup have they progressed to the next round.
Wayne Rooney has scored three goals in his last two appearances against Reading.
The Premier League clash earlier this season saw all seven goals scored in the first 35 minutes.
It will be United’s 39th consecutive FA Cup game to be shown live on TV, a staggering record dating back to the 2005 third round.
Manchester United to win: 1.3
Reading to win: 12
TV: Live on ESPN at 8pm. Highlights on ITV4 at 10.30pm.
Latest in Sport
Manchester United can learn lessons from the transfer template of rivals Manchester City
Pavement The Forum, London
Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea top the list of the Premier League's most expensive squads
Bayern Munich 'training camp' to supply refugees with food, footballs and German lessons
David De Gea, Peter Odemwingie and the 18 weirdest transfer deadline day stories
- 3 Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees
- 4 Refugee crisis: Aylan's life was full of fear - in death, he is part of 'humanity washed ashore'
- 5 German police forced to ask public to stop bringing donations for refugees arriving by train
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 100,000 back our campaign
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up