19th of December 2017 Author: Johnny Karp
Bristol City, the only non-Premier League side to reach the League Cup quarter-finals, will try to take their dream further when they host giants Manchester United at Ashton Gate Stadium on Wednesday. The two teams have not met since 1980, when both were playing in the second tier of English football. Overall, Bristol City have won 10 of their 35 matches against Manchester United, while the Red Devils secured 15 victories in direct meetings. The last time Manchester United won at Bristol City was in 1979.
Bristol City have been in good shape lately, they are on a four-match winning streak and they are currently third in the Championship table after having lost just three of their 22 league matches so far this season. They knocked out three Premier League sides en route to the League Cup quarter-finals: Watford, Stoke and Crystal Palace. Gary O'Neil, Jens Hegeler, Famara Diedhiou and Eros Pisano are injured and won't be able to play on Wednesday, while Callum O'Dowda has a slight chance of playing after having missed the last three matches.
Manchester United have recovered from the Manchester Derby defeat with consecutive Premier League wins last week, 1-0 at home over Bournemouth and 2-1 at West Bromwich Albion. They are eleven points behind Premier League leaders Manchester City and their focus is on closing that gap, but getting knocked out of the League Cup by a second-tier side is something that Jose Mourinho would not allow. Paul Pogba has served his three-match suspension and he will probably be in the first eleven to build up his match fitness, while Antonio Valencia, Eric Bailly, Marouane Fellaini and Michael Carrick are injured.
Bristol City: Fielding - Wright, Flint, Baker, Bryan - Brownhill, Smith, Pack, Paterson - Woodrow, Reid
Man United: Romero - Darmian, Lindelof, Rojo, Shaw - McTominay, Pogba - Martial, Mkhitaryan, Rashford - Ibrahimovic
My prediction: 1-1 draw after 90 minutes.
Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:
Bristol City win - 8.00
Draw - 5.25
Man United win - 1.39
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I hope this result will finally bring the question about Mourinho's future in the club.
To say United under-perform this season would be too soft, last one Mourinho had the excuse of the first season, there couldn't be excuses right now.
The team playing too defensive, too slow, too predictable football especially when we have in mind the funds that have been spent in the last few years, just not good enough, it's time for a change if you ask me, but I've had never supported Mourinho's nor Van Gaal appointments on first place.
The board have to be braver and gives a young manager a chance I think.
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