Erik ten Hag previews FA Cup final
Troy Deeney thinks Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes could become frustrated in Saturday’s FA Cup final. Manchester United go into their clash with Manchester City as underdogs. And they’ll need to be at their best to damage Pep Guardiola’s hopes of a stunning treble.
Both Rashford and Fernandes are expected to start for United when they lock horns with City in the capital.
And Deeney, writing for The Sun, thinks the pair could become frustrated due to how much Guardiola’s side love to keep hold of the ball.
The former Watford star was part of the Hornets side that suffered a nightmare 6-0 defeat in the cup final back in 2019.
Deeney said: “If you try to press this City team, they can go long to Haaland.
“Even their keeper, Ederson, has a sledgehammer of a left foot. Sit off them and it’s death by a thousand passes. World-class players everywhere, running at you from all angles.
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“Players like Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes, who demand the ball and are so used to seeing plenty of it, get starved of action and they will feel that frustration, which is unique to facing City.
“United have far more quality than we had at Watford and I’d really like to tell you that I think this Cup final will be a great contest — but I don’t think it will even be close.”
Deeney continued: “You can say it’s a one-off game. You can say that anything can happen in a derby.
“You can say United are in decent form. You can say that United beat City at home the last time they met.
“Try all you like to make a case for Erik ten Hag’s men but you will be ignoring just how good City are.
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“Even Real Madrid got spanked at the Etihad in the Champions League. City are world football’s Galacticos now.”
Deeney also believes City are a team capable of emulating United’s treble winners of 1999, too.
“City completed English football’s only domestic treble when they defeated us in 2019 but this team can emulate the United team which did the ultimate Treble in 1999,” he said.
“That side, along with Arsenal’s Invincibles, are generally regarded as the best Premier League teams ever and City will stand alongside them if they win today and defeat Inter Milan in Istanbul next weekend.
“United have motivation, too.
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“Stopping City winning the Treble would mean more to them than any other club, and if they complete a Cup double, having qualified for the Champions League, it will end up being an excellent first season for Ten Hag. But I’m not seeing it.
“Maybe it’s that I’m still haunted by the 2019 final. I’m still convinced we were in that game for half an hour.
“We had a decent penalty shout and Roberto Pereyra squandered a one-on-one with Ederson when it was still goalless.
“But you simply have to be ruthless when you get a chance against City.
“To beat City, you must be ruthless, you must be impeccable and you will need to have fortune on your side.
“Good luck, United. You are going to need it.”
United have faced City twice so far this season.
They lost 6-3 at the Etihad Stadium, but did get revenge with a 2-1 victory at Old Trafford back in January.
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