Manchester United vs Chelsea: Predicted XI

Man United's Chris Smalling says his side are looking to give a "better account" of themselves, when they face Chelsea in the FA Cup tomorrow, after suffering a heavy Premier League defeat to them previous year.

Antonio Conte: "I've shown at Chelsea, not only Chelsea, every team that I managed, that I live the game with great passion". "Sometimes I want to share my enthusiasm, my passion, with my players, with my staff, also with my fans".

Victory over Chelsea in the FA Cup on Monday could provide a similar milestone; proof that United are showing signs of making their way to back to the level where Alex Ferguson them and helping to inspire their push for more silverware.

While beating Chelsea when at full-strength is hard enough at the moment, Manchester United will have to do it without four of their forwards. Could this encounter serve as a successful opportunity for Mourinho to take his revenge on Conte who thrashed him five months ago when Chelsea out-maneuvered Manchester United with a rather humiliating scoreboard of 4-0?

It led to a touchline spat with an angry Mourinho wagging a finger at Conte and whispering words in his ear before disappearing down the tunnel.

The Portuguese manager often likes to spring a surprise in big matches, but he is yet to win against Antonio Conte as a manager.

"I hope I stay at this club longer than any other".

"Chelsea? It's no different". Since leaving Stamford Bridge with their tails between their legs in October, the 20-time champions have conceded just 19 times in 31 games.

After travelling to Russian Federation for the first leg of their Europa League round 16 tie against Rostov, United will be on the road again for the Cup game against Chelsea.

Martial is also out injured and the trio will join top scorer Zlatan Ibrahimovic on the sidelines, with the Swede serving a three-match domestic suspension.

"We are happy with the trophy, a trophy is always important", Mourinho said.

"It is a massive game, a one-off game, so we're going down there looking forward to it".

"But we must think about the whole Manchester United team. Paul is a really good player, we must pay great attention to him, but it's right to think about the whole Manchester United team because this team is very strong". We can not go with Nicky Butt's team.

It means plenty to him as well that they have a certain responsibility as Cup holders and his claim in the build-up "we do not go with a Nicky Butt team" (one from the academy) means he is going to give this match his full focus.

  • Julie Sanders


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT