Manchester United vs Middlesbrough Final – LIVE Football Reddit Score 4 Feb 2022
Man Utd have won the FA Cup 12 times in their history and how the club could do with making that 13 victories this season given that their title challenge has evaporated. Championship side Middlesbrough provide the opposition at Old Trafford and would love nothing more than to emulate the Boro side of 1997/98 that made it through to the final of this illustrious competition.
Manchester United have won five of their last six meetings with Middlesbrough with the pair’s last head-to-head being back in 2017 when Boro were a Premier League side. Man Utd have won four of their last six matches in all competitions, keeping clean sheets in their last two home games. Boro failed to score in their last away game, going down 1-0 at Blackburn Rovers.
Man Utd claimed a 1-0 win in their last game at home to West Ham but were made to wait until deep into stoppage time in the second half before Rashford scored the all-important goal. Man Utd also had the home advantage in the last round of the FA Cup against Aston Villa where Rangnick’s man secured yet another 1-0 victory. Three of Manchester United’s last five matches have produced 1-0 scorelines, two of which have gone in their favour.
Middlesbrough beat Coventry 1-0 at the Riverside Stadium thanks to a 58th-minute effort from Sporar. That result leaves Boro sitting 6th in the Championship table and looking to compete for the play-offs and a return to the Premier League. Boro made the trip to Mansfield in the FA Cup 3rd Round where a 5-goal thriller ended in a 3-2 victory for the Championship side. Obviously, Boro will play their strongest starting eleven at Old Trafford and will genuinely fancy their chances of causing an upset.
Manchester United’s bid for a 13th FA Cup win continues Friday as they get the fourth round of the competition underway at Old Trafford. Ralf Rangnick’s side return from their international break on a reasonable enough run of form having beaten Brentford and West Ham in their last two games, but they are yet to really excel under new management.
Their opponents, Middlesbrough, might feel this is a good moment to be playing the Red Devils. Chris Wilder’s side have won eight of their last 10, losing just once, but their rise up the Championship table could also have them considering whether now is the right time to be competing on multiple fronts. Might they send a weakened team to the Theatre of Dreams? Here is how you can watch the match and what you need to know:
Manchester United: Mason Greenwood’s arrest on suspicion of rape, sexual assault and a threat to kill saw the young forward withdrawn from consideration for Rangnick and had a knock-on impact in squad building in the final days of the transfer window. A move for Jesse Lingard was partly blocked to ensure United had sufficient attacking options following the departures of Anthony Martial, Donny van de Beek and Amad Diallo. However Lingard will not play on Friday having been granted leave until next week to clear his head.
One player who could come into contention is Paul Pogba, sidelined for the last three months with a thigh issue. “Paul will be part of the group,” said Rangnick. “He might even be in the starting XI.”
Middlesbrough: Whilst Wilder acknowledges it would be a shock for his side to emerge from Old Trafford victorious, the former Sheffield United manager, who beat United last year, is not in the business of letting his players get carried away with the magic of the cup or the occasion that comes with a game against some of the game’s biggest names.
“Their team sheet will come in the dressing room and it’ll be [David] De Gea, [Raphael] Varane, Harry Maguire… let’s not crumble in that process,” said Wilder. “They have some fabulous individuals that can hurt you, and hurt teams around Europe and the Premier League. A huge array of talent to choose from.
Manchester United entered the FA Cup in the third round, meeting fellow Premier League outfit Aston Villa, who they beat 1-0 courtesy of an early Scott McTominay goal. The Red Devils are currently on a four-game unbeaten run, bouncing back well since suffering a shock 1-0 defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers last month.
On the other hand, Middlesbrough played an engrossing FA Cup third round tie with Mansfield Town, edging out the League Two side 3-2, with Elliott Hewitt scoring an injury-time winner. Boro’s recent form has largely been strong, with Chris Wilder’s men suffering only one defeat in their last ten outings, putting themselves in contention to secure promotion to the Premier League.
Manchester United beat Middlesbrough 3-1 the last time they met each other, back in 2017. Ahead of the latest meeting between the two sides, The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at the FA Cup fourth round encounter.
“But it is not sight-seeing for our players. It is not a shirt-swapping situation. I don’t want people going to Old Trafford to enjoy the visit. If they want a shirt, do it in the changing rooms after. We don’t want to be looking at them all fuzzy-eyed. They are up against a competitor.”
Man United made it three wins in their last four matches in all competitions when they beat West Ham United 1-0 before the break, with Marcus Rashford’s last-gasp winner securing a vital three points for the Red Devils, who currently occupy fourth position in the Premier League table.
Ralf Rangnick’s side also overcame Brentford in the league on January 19, while they booked their spot in the fourth round of this season’s FA Cup courtesy of a 1-0 success over Aston Villa at Old Trafford.
Off-the-field matters involving Mason Greenwood means that the build-up to this match has been overshadowed, but the players will be raring to go following a short break, and the Red Devils are still fighting on three fronts this season, with the first leg of their last-16 Champions League contest with Atletico Madrid due to take place at Wanda Metropolitano on February 23.
Man United are the second-most successful side in the history of the FA Cup, winning the competition on 12 occasions, the last of which was in 2016, while they lost in the quarter-finals to Leicester City last season and Chelsea in the semi-finals of the 2019-20 campaign.
Friday’s contest will be the first time that the 20-time English champions have faced Middlesbrough since a Premier League contest in March 2017, with the Red Devils running out 3-1 winners at the Riverside Stadium courtesy of goals from Marouane Fellaini, Jesse Lingard and Antonio Valencia.
A lot has happened at Manchester United since the last time they played a game. On Friday, the Red Devils’ interim boss Ralf Rangnick will be bereft of the services of at least four first-team players. At the same time, two other stars will no longer be called upon following their loan departures in the January transfer window.
Anthony Martial has joined Sevilla on a loan deal for the remainder of the season, while Donny van de Beek has signed for Everton in a similar transfer. In addition, Jesse Lingard and Edinson Cavani miss out despite being fit, with the latter returning late from international duty with Uruguay while the former needs some time off after failing to secure a deadline day move away from Manchester United.
Lingard’s blocked move came courtesy of the controversy surrounding Mason Greenwood, who will not feature for Manchester United until further notice. The other absentees for the Red Devils are centre-backs Victor Lindelof (illness) and Eric Bailly (ankle). But there is some good news, as Paul Pogba has rejoined training after recovering from a hamstring injury.