Preview: Huddersfield v Manchester United

Huddersfield will be looking for revenge when they host Manchester United at the John Smith's Stadium in the FA Cup fifth round on Saturday.

FA Cup
17 February 2018
Fifth round
Kickoff: 19:30
Venue: The John Smith's Stadium
Referee: K. Friend
Assistants: G. Beswick, M. Wilkes
Fourth officials: A. Taylor

Head-to-head summary:

TEAM MATCHES WIN DRAW LOSS
Huddersfield 44 10 15 19 
Manchester United 44 19 15 10 

Previous encounter:

Manchester United 2-0 Huddersfield (03/02/2018) Premier League

Manchester United goalscorers: R. Lukaku (55'), A. Sanchez (68')

Players to watch:

Huddersfield's back-up players are likely to get a run out this weekend, with manager David Wagner probably wanting to prioritise their Premier League survival. He will want a fully rested and ready team for their key relegation six-pointer against West Brom next weekend so the likes of Philip Billing will be pushing for a starting role. The midfielder has impressed every time he has been given minutes on the pitch and he will be itching for the chance to show he deserves a regular spot in the first team.

Up front, Laurent Depoitre was the destroyer in chief when the Terrier's beat the Red Devils back in October so he could well start again this weekend, especially since he was rested last time out.

For United, the man to watch is definitely Alexis Sanchez. He scored his first ever goal in a Manchester United shirt, against Huddersfield, but has not had the explosive start he would have been hoping for at his new club and will want to be the man responsible for guiding them into the sixth round of the FA Cup.

Team form and manager quotes:

Huddersfield have won both of their previous two fixtures, scoring four goals in each, but it is difficult to tell if this is a genuine change in form or just a happy blip on an otherwise depressing radar. Aside from their last two fixtures they have won just one of their last 10 games in all competitions – a 2-1 win over Bolton in the FA Cup.

It is also difficult to predict how seriously they will be taking this game, as advancing in the FA Cup will mean nothing if they end up getting relegated. Wagner praised his side's courage in the 4-1 win over Bournemouth in the Premier League last time out and will be hoping for more of the same against United, but probably won't be too upset if they don't win this one.

Wagner told his pre-match press conference: "We are happy, excited and glad to host Manchester United; this is a game for our supporters.

“This is our present for them, to play against Manchester Untied in the Fifth Round of the Emirates FA Cup, the oldest cup competition in the world, at home.

“We will try everything to create, together with our supporters, the special Emirates FA Cup atmosphere, which you usually see in every game; this is what we ask of our supporters, they know how important they are."

Manchester United's form has been pretty wobbly of late. Two wins and two draws from their last four games has left manager Jose Mourinho more than a little grumpy. Following their disastrous 1-0 defeat at the hands of Newcastle last time out, he urged his team to show him something else against Huddersfield.

Mourinho told MUTV: "We want to go to the quarter-finals so we go with a serious approach. I have more Premier Leagues and League Cups so, of course, I'd like more [FA Cups] but I'm not thinking about myself. I'm thinking about the club and the fans."

Team news:

Tommy Smith has recovered from injury, but it remains to be seen if Wagner will start him or ease him back into first team action by giving him a few minutes off the bench.

Marcus Rashford, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Ander Herrera are all still injured for the Red Devils, but there is a slim chance Eric Bailly could return this weekend.

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