The glory tie arrives for Yeovil, as Manchester United roll into town for this FA Cup fourth round clash. Glovers' boss Daren Way has promised birthday boy Jose "a good Somerset cider", but the Special One should beware: it's a potent drop they brew down there, on and off the pitch!
Will Jose and his men be nursing an FA Cup hangover or celebrating the win? Our man with the cast iron constitution puts the pork scratchings to one side and gives us his lowdown on the match, below:
YEOVIL TOWN V MAN UNITED
This is what the romance of the FA Cup is all about: League Two strugglers Yeovil are battling to stay in the Football league itself, and yet here they are, welcoming one of European football’s true powerhouses to Huish Park. David v Goliath. Sporting underdog, battling against the odds. Will there be a ‘Roy of the Rovers’ moment? Let’s put down the rose-tinted specs for a moment and run the rule over both teams tonight.
The teams have met three times before, latterly when a Louis van Gaal side led the Red Devils to a nervous 2-0 win a Huis Park. United, unsurprisingly, have won all three games, with a total score of 13-0. Will history repeat? Possibly. The Glovers have lost two of their last four home games and sit in 21st in the league, with 28 points. Obviously, escaping relegation will be their biggest battle and aim this season, but as they showed in the previous round, the escapism of the FA Cup can do wonders for the morale. It will take an effort of Heculean proportions… that, or perhaps manager Daren Way extends his offer to birthday boy Jose to the Unitred team, pre-match!
"I want to make sure that we can offer him (Jose Mourinho) a good Somerset cider of Thatchers, because he's coming down to Somerset, so it's important that he is actually privy to what we drink down here."
United, as you might expect, arrive as heavy favourites. True, they were knocked out of the League Cup by a team from a lower league, Bristol City, but to be fair the Robins are a Premier League outfit in all but name. Jose’s men have won their last four on the bounce and are unbeaten in seven. They have the joint best defensive record in the Premier League and can now boast the mercurial talents of Alexis Sanchez to boot. The Chilean superstar, signed from Arsenal, could make he’s debut tonight. Okay, he may set world cups alight, led his country to consecutive Copa Americana titles, and generally sits easily amongst the footballing pantheon, but can he do it with a bellyful of ale on a cold, wet night in Somerset? We’ll see!
What We Sayin’?
Martial has scored in each of his last three starts, whilst Lingard looks lively. United are yet to concede against Yeovil, with the Red Devils having kept a clean sheet in each of their last five competitive fixtures. Worrying reading if you’re a Glovers fan, but perhaps solid pointers if you’re having a punt…
- BTTS - No, +2.5 goals | 7/5
- Martial 1st GS | 13/5
- Lingard 1st GS | 3/1
- HT/FT - United/United| 2/5
- Our scorecast (0-4) | 13/2
Whoever you decide to back, don't forget to follow us on Twitter (@stanjames) as we mark your card with all the latest updates: it's just like being pitchside yourself!
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