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United Favourites for City Clash

United will have to cope without their main man

Manchester United will stay on course for a superb treble if they can get past their city rivals in the FA Cup.

United come off the back of a superb win in the Champions League against Chelsea. The 2-1 win now sets them up for a semi-final against either current holders Inter or Schalke 04 from Germany. Either way, the result has created huge confidence among the squad ahead of this game.

In terms of the defence, Sir Alex Ferguson will simply pick the best four players that he has to choose from. Rafael Da Silva has turned himself into one of the best right backs around but Ferguson has cover in Wes Brown and John O’Shea if necessary. Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic and Patrice Evra should all take their regular places for this huge match.

Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes have shown that they are possibly in better form this season than they ever have been. It will be very tempting for Ferguson to pick both players from the start for this game and then put pace and youth around them. However, Scholes is struggling to make the match and Giggs may need a rest after playing so well against Chelsea.

Javier Hernandez will keep his place in the United attack at the expense of Wayne Rooney. This will mean the Mexican playing alongside Bulgarian striker Dimitar Berbatov who he has kept out of the side for much of the recent past.

Rooney was playing as more of an attacking midfield player in the Champions League and it paid off big time but this can be compensated for. He was given a free role in the same way as Lionel Messi at Barcelona. This means he can ghost around the pitch and create chaos for the opposition.

On the injury front there will be no further chances to play this season for Owen Hargreaves. Hargreaves has struggled with injury ever since he joined the club and he could be forced to move on in the summer. Anderson is closing in on a return and could make the bench for this game along with Darren Fletcher.

United will not have to worry about former player Carlos Tevez for this game which means they can be a little more expansive in attack. Tevez could have forced a five man midfield but Ferguson can now go on the attack and take the game to Manchester City.

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