Man Utd vs Chelsea Preview, Team News, Likely Line-ups & Predicted Score
Manchester United welcome FA Cup holders Chelsea to Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon for their quarter final clash. Here is a preview with team news for the game
Manchester United welcome holders Chelsea to Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon for their FA Cup quarter final clash.
Much of the pre-match talk has centered around United’s controversial Champions League defeat to Real Madrid on Tuesday with Wayne Rooney’s future also come under serious doubt following his omission from the starting line-up against the Spanish giants.
Sir Alex Ferguson has dismissed reports suggesting the striker is on his way out of Old Trafford this summer and confirmed he would be involved against Chelsea this weekend, with the United boss calling for his squad to move on and concentrate on trying to win the FA Cup for the first time since 2004.
Chelsea’s preparations for the game have also been far from ideal after they limped to a 1-0 defeat to Steaua Bucharest in the first leg of their Europa League last 16 tie on Thursday. But while Rafa Benitez’ priority remains to secure a top-four finish this season, he would welcome the chance to lift a trophy and won’t want the Blues to relinquish their FA Cup without a fight.
Ferguson confirmed Rooney will be involved against Chelsea but failed to confirm whether that would be from the start or not. However, the striker is expected to be recalled to the starting eleven and play behind Robin van Persie up top.
Midfielder Shinji Kagawa was another who may have felt aggrieved to be left out against Madrid following his superb hat-trick against Norwich last weekend, but he’s also expected to be recalled this weekend.
Jonny Evans and Chris Smalling could come in at the back with Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic given a rest. One player who is certain to get a well-earned breather is Ryan Giggs with Fergie confirming the Welshman will not feature on Sunday after making his 1000th senior appearance in midweek.
Benitez will welcome back striker Demba Ba after he was ineligible to play against Steaua on Thursday, with Fernando Torres likely to make way after the Spaniard has scored just two in his last 18 games and both of those came against lower-league opposition in the FA Cup.
Benitez is also expected to recall several first team players who were rested on Thursday. Ashley Cole and Juan Mata were on the bench while Ramires didn’t even travel, so all three are likely to start. John Terry could also make way with Gary Cahill coming in at the back.
Chelsea have an imperious FA Cup record in recent years, winning the cup on four of the last six years. However, their record at Old Trafford in the competition is poor having picked up just one draw in their previous five visits, scoring just one goal in the process. The Blues midweek excursions may also have an impact here with United having two extra days recovery time, so I can see United edging this one. Man Utd 2-1 Chelsea
What would be your starting line-up and what’s you score prediction for the game? Get involved in the comments section below.
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