Down The Wings

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FA Cup Preview: Norwich City vs Manchester United

Fa Cup Preview | Norwich City vs Manchester United |KO: 17:30| Carrow Road|BBC One

The road out of lockdown continues for Manchester United this Saturday as they travel to Carrow Road to face Norwich City in the FA cup semi-final, knowing a win will send the reds to Wembley and potentially on their way to a record equalling thirteenth triumph in the competition.

United enter the match on good form, following their 3-0 annihilation of fellow top four contenders Sheffield United on Wednesday evening, a match in which Anthony Martial scored The Reds’ first league hattrick since Robin Van Persie in 2013.

With the Canaries struggling in the Premier League, sitting rock bottom, United will surely fancy their chances of sweeping the hosts aside in their pursuit of silverware.

How do Manchester United Look?

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United impressed, and were unlucky to not score more, in their 3-0 victory at Old Trafford on Wednesday, with every player rising to the occasion, so competition for a place in Saturday’s starting eleven is high.

Hat-trick hero Martial was the stand out player from that match, but honourable mentions must be given to Aaron Wan Bissaka, Marcus Rashford, and the midfield due of Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba for their displays, making it a much more comfortable game than it may have otherwise been.

With regards to United’s upcoming match, boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hinted that there may be some adjustments to the team, stating “there will have to be a few changes, because there is a game again on Tuesday and then Sunday.

It therefore can be expected that Solskjaer will field some players who are yet to receive many minutes since the restart, including Brandon Williams, Odion Ighalo, Andreas Pereira, Jesse Lingard, Eric Bailly and potentially even goalkeeper Sergio Romero.

In terms of those who are unavailable for selection, the boss confirmed that “we came through unscathed (against Sheffield United). Its still Axel and Phil, they’re out”, meaning Tuanzebe and Jones are still the only two United players who face time off through injuries.

Opposition: Norwich City

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Norwich, who sit bottom of the Premier League and face almost certain relegation, may welcome the chance of an FA cup run to take their minds off their harrowing league campaign.

Their top scorer this season is Teemu Pukki with eleven, but the ‘Pukki party’ has not been enough to save last season’s Championship winners from an uninspiring season.

On their road to the semi-final, however, The Canaries have shocked a few people. They beat Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur away from home in the previous round, albeit on penalties, setting up Saturday evening’s clash, showing they have what it takes to overcome the odds and beat one of the top teams, and managers, in England.

Norwich boss Daniel Farke has suggested that he may field a slightly alternative side for this match, saying “its not healthy to rotate all eleven positions, but it makes sense to make a few changes”, leaving it difficult to predict the side Untied will come up against.

Key Stat

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Anthony Martial became the first Manchester United player in 2618 days to score a hattrick in domestic competitions, since Robin Van Persie in 2013.

It may be wishful thinking, but it is well within the realms of possibility, that United’s ruthless attacking threat provides us with another hattrick against Norwich on Saturday, and there would be no-one that deserves it more than lifelong United fan Odion Ighalo.

You never know, United hattricks could be like London busses- you wait 2618 days for one, then two come along at once.


Norwich City 0-4 Manchester United. Goals from Odion Ighalo (x3) and Bruno Fernandes.

Match Preview Writer

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