Coventry City v Manchester United | FA Cup Match Preview
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Coventry City v Manchester United | FA Cup Match Preview

16/04/24 19:23

This Sunday, the second fixture in the FA Cup Semi Finals takes place in a match that shows the magic of the FA Cup is truly still alive and kicking. Premier League giants Manchester United taking on Championship side Coventry City at Wembley Stadium.

Coventry’s run to this stage has been special. Knocking out Oxford United, Sheffield Wednesday, and Maidstone United before defeating Premier League opposition in Wolves, thanks to two incredibly late goals from Ellis Simms and Haji Wright. The belief in the Coventry camp is sure to be higher than ever despite what has been a lacklustre league campaign for them. They truly believe they can pull something off in the capital.

But it certainly won’t be an easy task for them. Manchester United, despite being poor at times and arguably scraping through this competition thus far will be filled with confidence coming up against, what in all honesty is, much weaker competition. Wins against Wigan Athletic, Newport County, Nottingham Forest and Liverpool have got them to this stage. That victory against Liverpool in particular showed the fight that this team have with Amad Diallo scoring late to win it for the Red Devils.

Coventry City v Manchester United Stats

Both sides last games ended in disappointing results - something they will ideally want to turn around in this game.

For Coventry, it was a 3-0 loss at the hands of Birmingham City. As the 8th placed team in the league to lose to the side in 21st in that fashion is surely not to be looked upon very fondly. Playoff places seem a very long way off now so ultimately Coventry are in a poor spot.

United, on the other hand, have had a season filled with ups and downs. This weekend saw them take on Bournemouth. A game that ended in a 2-2 draw. Bruno Fernandes’ two goals were the only shots on target registered by United in the game. The performance was dreadful and arguably they got incredibly lucky to come away with anything.

The Sky Blues don't have a rich history of doing well in this competition. However, they did win it back in 1987, beating Tottenham Hotspur in the final. That victory earned the only major trophy Coventry have won in their entire history.

In complete contrast, Man United are the second most successful team in the FA Cup winning it on 12 different occasions. Only Arsenal (14) have won it more times. The last time they won it being in 2016. Something they will be eager to change - especially considering they lost last season's final against rivals Manchester City.

Historically, Manchester United has also had the better of Coventry City when both sides have met one another. Having played each other 83 times in their histories, the Red Devils have come out victorious on 43 occasions. Coventry only winning 23 times.

Despite this, if it’s anything to take away, the last time both sides played one another Coventry actually came away with the win. This was back in September 2007 in the League Cup. Two goals from Michael Mifsud getting the better of Sir Alex Ferguson’s side. Could we see something similar in this one?

Coventry City v Manchester United Players To Watch

Coventry’s Haji Wright has had quite the season so far. The US international, as previously mentioned, got the winner in the last round match against Wolves. Scoring in the 100th minute to book Coventry’s place in this game.

Not only that but he has also had a remarkable season overall as well. In the 40 games he has played this season he has managed 15 goals and six assists - topping the scoring and assists charts for Coventry this season. If anyone is going to be the difference maker for them it will be him.

Man United’s quality speaks for itself. Even if they have been quite poor this season. With a leading performance in the last game, Bruno Fernandes will surely be a key contributor again in this one. The United captain led by example in the last game, despite an overall poor performance, getting the two goals which saved them from embarrassment. Where needed Fernandes tends to pop up so expect the same at Wembley on Sunday.

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Coventry City v Manchester United Team News

In terms of injuries, Tatsuhiro Sakamoto and Jamie Allen are the only absentees for the Sky Blues. Josh Eccles is also expected to come back into the starting line-up in this game which is surely a positive for Coventry fans.

United still have quite a big injury list going into this game. Lisandro Martinez, Raphael Varane, Luke Shaw, Scott McTominay, Jonny Evans, Victor Lindelof and Anthony Martial will all miss out. Tyrell Malacia returned to training this week but will also be expected to miss out on this game.

Coventry City v Manchester United Where To Watch

This is sure to be an interesting one with a powerhouse taking on an underdog. Could the FA Cup work its magic again?

You can find out as the action gets underway from Wembley at 15:30pm on Sunday.

The game will be live on ITV1 while also being available on ITVX.

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