In a repeat of the 2013 final, Wigan Athletic and Manchester City will face off in a FA Cup fifth round tie at the DW Stadium on Monday night.
19 February 2018
Kick-off: 21h55 CAT
Venue: DW Stadium
Referee: A. Taylor
Assistant referee: S. Child
Assistant Referee: E. Smart
Fourth Official: J. Simpson
TEAM MATCHES WIN DRAW LOSS
Wigan 28 8 5 15
Manchester City 28 15 5 8
Manchester City 1-2 Wigan Athletic (09/03/2014) FA Cup
Wigan goalscorers: Jordi Gomez (pen. 27′), James Perch (47′)
Manchester City goalscorers: Samir Nasri (68′)
Players to watch:
Former Manchester United forward Nick Powell is expected to be a danger man for the Latics, having scored 12 goals in League One this season. Will Grigg, who has scored six goals in his last five FA Cup games for the hosts, also poses a threat.
Wigan’s defence has been rock solid in this 2017/18 and they have only conceded 18 goals in 30 league games. However, in their last two games — against Southend United and Blackpool — they have shipped five. Manager Paul Cook will be looking for a positive response from his backline.
It’s difficult to tell which players Pep Guardiola will rest for this game, but should he get a run, Wigan will most likely struggle to keep out Sergio Aguero. The Argentine has shone in this competition since his first appearance in 2012, scoring 16 goals in 17 FA Cup games. Raheem Sterling, who has been directly involved in nine goals during his last nine FA Cup starts (three goals, six assists), has also developed a knack for the competition.
Team form and manager quotes:
Wigan lost top spot in League One to Shrewsbury following a 2-0 defeat to Blackpool. Having lost 3-1 to Southend in their previous fixture, they now find themselves under a certain degree of pressure. However, Paul Cook played down the significance of those losses.
“It’s a modern day thing now in football to go from game-to-game. We’ve lost five games out of 30 this season but because our two recent defeats are so fresh in the mind, people are saying we’ve got to do something different or re-find ourselves,” said Cook, addressing the media in his pre-match press conference.
“Football has a funny way of sending out shock results and our belief on Monday night must be that we can win the game.”
Meanwhile, Pep Guardiola stressed that his side will be well-guarded against the threat of complacency when they face a side that has already turned heads with an impressive run in this season’s competition.
Despite having thrashed Basel 4-0 in midweek, the former Barcelona manager is wary of falling at the same hurdle as Bournemouth and West Ham United.
“Of course, I am concerned because I saw the [third round] game against Bournemouth. Bournemouth are one of the teams I like to watch the most in the Premier League and they were able to beat them,” said Guardiola of his opponents.
“I think in the FA Cup, every season, there are a lot of surprises. We are going to prepare as good as possible for this game.”
Wigan will be without the cup-tied Devante Cole, Donervon Daniels and James Vaughan. The trio join the injured Shaun MacDonald and Jordan Flores on the absentee list, while Sam Morsy is suspended.
Gabriel Jesus has returned to training for City, but it’s unclear whether or not he will play any part in the game. Leroy Sane and David Silva are set to continue their injury recoveries after substitute appearances against Basel.