Manchester United will be looking to bounce back from their midweek disappointment when they welcome Brighton and Hove Albion to Old Trafford on Saturday night for their FA Cup quarter-final clash. The Reds put in a dismal showing on Tuesday night, with their 2-1 defeat the hands of Sevilla eliminating them from the Champions League at the last-16 stage.
Manager Jose Mourinho went on to claim post-match that it was not a bad performance by his players, although the United faithful will claim otherwise. There can be little doubt that the Reds must put in a wholly improved showing if they are to progress to the last four of the FA Cup and keep alive their last remaining chance of silverware this campaign.
Following that loss to Sevilla, a number of individuals were roundly criticised in the press, with Alexis Sanchez and Paul Pogba the two to receive the most flak and the pair’s places in the starting XI may now be under threat. Mourinho may opt to make a number of changes to his line-up, with the likes of Anthony Martial, Juan Mata and Scott McTominay all looking to reclaim their first-team spots. Yet to concede a goal in this season’s FA Cup run, second-choice goalkeeper Sergio Romero could be in line for a recall, with David de Gea afforded a rare weekend off.
Last Saturday, meanwhile, Brighton suffered their first defeat in eight matches in all competitions, losing 2-0 away to Everton but are enjoying their first season in the Premier League and currently occupy 11th place, sitting seven points ahead of the relegation zone. Back in November, the Seagulls pushed United all the way in their Premier League clash at the Theatre of Dreams, with a deflected Ashley Young strike the only difference between the two sides.
Defeat at the hands of Chris Hughton’s men will undoubtedly set alarm bells ringing around Old Trafford as murmurs of discontent begin to grow louder.