FT: Manchester United 2 Reading 1

Thanks for all your comments today folks! Don't forget, you can always follow me on Twitter: @RazMirza to send me your views so speak to you all soon!

FULL-TIME: Manchester United are through to the FA Cup quarter-finals after holding off stubborn Reading at Old Trafford. Goals from Nani and Javier Hernandez were enough to see the hosts progress despite a late reply from Jobi McAnuff. They will next face the winners of the tie between Middlesbrough or Chelsea for a place in the last four.

Adam Federici has gone up for it and the ball into the box is almost met by Adam Le Fondre, but it's a Reading corner now.

Nani fouls Jem Karacan for a free-kick to Reading.

FOUR added minutes of stoppage time at the end of this tie then and the Reading fans seem optimistic.

Nemanja Vidic hacks the ball away for a Reading throw deep in United territory and a base camp for the visitors to build an attack.

Stephen Kelly launches the ball into the box, but United break through Javier Hernandez although his shot is parried out once again by Adam Federici before Nani drills the rebound into the side netting.

Brian McDermott's men are strong finishers to matches as we have seen in recent Premier League matches.

Reading have found a second wind here as they pump the ball in the box and they now win a throw.

Nani breaks away and sets up Danny Welbeck, but the England striker's touch lets him down.

Michael Carrick comes on for Anderson as Sir Alex Ferguson looks to close this game out.

Wow! Well, Reading may still have a chance in this game as they pull a goal back after some woeful defending from the home side. Nobody reacts to a ball in the box except for Jobi McAnuff who slides it under the body of David De Gea from 10 yards. Game on!


United are in control of this game and are cruising into the last eight of the competition and a possible meeting against either Middlesbrough or Chelsea at Old Trafford.

The Royals have run out of steam I'm affriad Declan. Those goals seem to have deflated them.

@Deco2002 says: "Oh dear come on you Blue and whites you still have roughly 20 mins to do this."

@sach3198 Tweets: "Could be a good cup run and possibly just Possibly repeat the 1998/1999 Season with the TREBLE!!"

Robin Van Persie is showing is class after coming on as he spreads the play to Nani before looking for the return in the middle. Great stuff!

Nani hits another thunderbolt, but this time it's blocked. You would have to say the game changed when Robin Van Persie came onto the field.

This time Nani supplies the cross from the right-hand side of the field for the Mexican striker to meet the ball at the near post and surely put Manchester United into the last eight of the FA Cup.


Reading very nearly strike straight back though as Noel Hunt wins his header at the far post before Adam Le Fondre's shot is parried away by David De Gea.

Hal Robson-Kanu replaces Garath McCleary as Reading make their second change.

Antonio Valencia finds Nani who controls the ball with his left-foot before firing it into the far corner past a deflated Adam Federici via a slight deflection off Sean Morrison.


Robin Van Persie starts another United move and comes close to finishing it with a left-foot strike, but it deflects away to safety.

The Reading players are sitting deeper and deeper now as Robin Van Persie's inswinging corner is headed away.

Nani comes close to breaking the deadlock with a fizzing strike which ends up flying just wide of the far post.

Rafee Ahmed says: "What a poor half from united expected much better from them, still united will get this when RVP comes on 3-1..... RVP hattrick"

So, can RVP do the business for treble chasing Manchester United at Old Trafford?

Robin Van Persie replaces Ashley Young for Manchester United as Danny Guthrie comes on for Mikele Leigertwood in a Reading change.

Stephen Kelly makes a great clearance as the cross came in from the right and here come the changes.

Adam Federici produces yet more heroics as Brian McDermott looks to make his first change of the match.

Well Declan, your dream very nearly came true as Adam Le Fondre's shot is well blocked. However, at the other end Anderson's shot is parried away for a corner.

@Deco2002 Tweets: " I think this could go to a replay but if anyone scores for Reading I hope it is Le Fondre."

Ashley Young's outswinger is headed by an unmarked Nemanja Vidic, although it's off target and it actually hits Sean Morrison before Reading clear.

The ball is played short before the ball pitches in front of Nicky Shorey and United earn another corner.

Nani is handed plenty of space and he spreads the ball to Javier Hernandez who wins his side a corner.

รพ@Mzelelo says: "Only the goal will make him (Fergie) sit."

Noel Hunt comes over the top of the ball to brind down Chris Smalling and the Reading man is booked by referee Andre Marriner.

@zhrahmed297 Tweets: "I think it's going to be an 2-1 win for United! Van Persie and Cleverley for United and Le Fondre with a late goal for Reading."

Jobi McAnuff works the ball well on the far side before Reading win a throw as the ball comes off Antonio Valencia.

The Royals are struggling to get a hold of the ball as Sir Alex Ferguson watches the action from the sidelines. He has yet to get to his seat!

"Well Raz it's Nick again after seeing the 1st half it doesn't seem like Reading's keeper is going to be beaten. However Nani really has added something to this game if it's still 0-0 for the next 20 minutes, might be time to get RVP out there scoring more goals but I'm sure we won't need him."

Ambitious 40 yard strike from Nani is easily gobbled up by the busy Adam Federici.

United are starting to pile it on now as Antonio Valencia's pull-back is met by Tom Cleverley inside the box, but Reading throw men at the ball.

@CliveEvs Tweets: "Two quick goals early in the second half from United Raz and that will put Reading to bed. We then run away it."

These two teams just don't do goalless games but we're less than 45 minutes from a replay. Antonio Valencia picks out Anderson, but the Brazilian opts against taking the shot on.

Adam Federici came out early ahead of the second half so that he would be ready for this second period.

Noel Hunt had the back of his head stapled and not stitched. That must have hurt a bit.

The winner of this tie will face either Middlesbrough or Chelsea in the last eight of the FA Cup as United get the second half underway.

@zinozizu Tweets: "I think a late 1-0 win for United from Cleverley. Come on red devils!!"

Willen Chimaliro emails in to say: "Man utd will beat Reading 3-1 tonight.. United is more than determined this season."

@Mzelelo Tweets: "Raz, Welbeck and Anderson are so quiet tonight. fergie should get carrick in to pinpoint the passes."

@Deco2002 Tweets: "I really think that Reading could do this and also if they do it could boost their reputation. Come on you blue and whites."

@keval_kamdar Tweets: "I think it's a 2-1 scoreline for United with Hernandez and Cleverley for us..!!"

Don't forget, if you'd like to air your views during the second half, email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish as many as I can.

Manchester United are now 2/5 to claim victory with our friends @Skybet, who make Reading 8/1 and the draw 11/4. United are unbeaten in their past 12 games with Reading in all competitions and have not lost to them in the FA Cup since January 1927 so I decided to go for a comfortable home win - 3-0, which was priced at a steady 7/1 and has now gone out to 9/1. Head now to SKYBET to place your bets on this match.

HALF-TIME: Reading shot-stopper Adam Federici has been in top form to deny Manchester United from taking the lead at Old Trafford. He denied Danny Welbeck, Ashley Young and Tom Cleverley. Nani replaced the injured Phil Jones and he almost made an immediate impact after striking the post with a tremendous right-foot volley.

Nani tests Adam Federici with a left-foot dipper from just outside the box this time. He really has made some entrance to this tie.

Adam Le Fondre tries to take on too many players on the edge of the United box.

We are well into the four added minutes of stoppage time at the end of this half.

OFF THE POST!! Antonio Valencia's cross is cleared away, but only to Nani who thumps a stunning right-foot volley which strikes the far post and bounces away to safety. Best chance of the game!

Adam Le Fondre decides to have a pop at goal but David De Gea watches it all the way.

Alexander Buttner's excellent left-foot cross is headed out of the danger zone. Reading break, but referee Andre Marriner decides to brings the play back which angers some of the visiting players.

Nani comes on for the injured Phil Jones, which means Antonio Valencia will drop to right-back.

@HaniElsayed108 Tweets: "I think the end score will be 4-2 as Man United play strong in home matches."

Adam Le Fondre takes the shot on from the edge of the box when Jem Karacan was standing in a great position next to him.

Nani is preparing to come on as Phil Jones heads down the tunnel. That's the end of his game!

Phil Jones hobbles to the touchline. It doesn't look to be too good for him and looks like he may well be substituted.

Adrian Mariappa clashes into Phil Jones. He played the ball, but the young United man is now receiving some attention.

Robin Van Persie is yawning and I would agree with his assessment of this game. It's not the greatest cup tie so far!

Nicky Shorey's free-kick on halway is headed away by Nemanja Vidic and now Danny Welbeck hands Reading a throw. Ashley Young flicks the ball up before hamemring it away. That gets a few cheers from down the in the corner.

@sach3198 Tweets: "I think prediction 3-1 to United reading are a good team but I think we need to have a more good cup run than past years."

Antonio Valencia's low cross is cleared away for a corner by Adrian Mariappa. The ball in finds the towering Chris Smalling, but he can't keep it down and it's a goal kick.

United have lost their way a little as Tom Cleverley knocks his pass straight out of play. This will please the visiting bench.

Great work by Jobi McAnuff on the left-hand side as he takes on Phil Jones and beats him for pace. However, he fails to get the award of a free-kick after he feels he was held back by the England international.

United do well to clear the ball from inside their six-yard box and now Javier Hernandez is frustrated after failing get the award of a free-kick on halfway.

Alexander Buttner heads the ball out as Reading earn their second corner of the night and Jobi McAnuff comes across to take it.

Phil Coates makes his point: "A Reading win would be nice although not a nice as a few years in the Championship for United, Arsenal and Liverpool. I am so sick of seeing the same old clubs trotting out as winners year in year out for decades on end. I love it when any other club beats those greedy gluttons."

Very little action of note in the last couple of minutes as Reading come forward trhough Noel Hunt, but he fails to keep the ball in play.

Mr McNeilis says: "Noel Hunt is 5 feet 7 and 11 stone 3 lbs. Some tank!" Have a look at him and you'll see what I mean. He's very small, but incredibly wide.

Noel Hunt is abck on the field with his third shirt of the night. How long before he has to come off again I wonder?

Josh Timms says: "Hey Raz, I'm a lifelong Manchester United fan, and I'm not sure this team is better than the 99 team, but a strong improvement from last year's shocking team. But I see this as a 3-1 win, 2 for Hernandez and one for Cleverly!"

GREAT DOUBLE SAVE!! Adam Federici makes a super stop to firstly deny Tom Cleverley and then Ashley Young from the rebound.

United win a throw deep in Reading territory as Noel Hunt is told to go off by referee Andre Marriner after blood covers the back of his shirt. He may need a few stitches!

Rafee Ahmed says: "United will thrash Reading 5-1 just hope De Gea produces a masterclass performance just like he did in Madrid"

At the other end Javier Hernandez backs into Stephen Kelly for a free-kick to the visitors.

Noel Hunt is felled by guess who? Yep, Nemanja Vidic. The free-kick is swung over, but headed away from the danger zone by Nemanja Vidic.

Brian McDermott must be happy with the way his side have hung on and are the better team right now.

Since that opening, United have fallen off the pace as Jobi McAnuff delivers a delicious left-foot cross, but there is nobody in the middle to meet it.

Brave Reading fan Peter Silva says: "I think it is laughable that Fergie believes his side can win the treble this season. Real Madrid will knock them out of Europe and Reading will destroy their hopes tonight! 3-1 Reading."

The Reading kit man has run all the way around the perimeter of the field to hand Hunt a new shirt.

Noel Hunt really is built like a tank and he simply gets up and strolls to the far side of the field.

Nemanja Vidic is also receiving some treatment as Rio Ferdinand warms up on the touchline.

Referee Andre Marriner calls for medical attention after Noel Hunt takes a knock to the back of the head from Nemanja Vidic and blood is pouring down his face.

This is the third time in the past four years that Reading have reached the fifth round; but only the eight occasion in their history. They seem to have settled now although Phil Jones' right-wing cross is well taken by Adam Federici.

John says: "Hi Raz, I'm a life long 'Toffee' fan from the Western Canadian Prairies, who hasn't 'enjoyed' watching Man. Utd. since the 'Busby' days! There has always been FA Cup shockers, and this game just might produce another really 'BIG' one, ..... although most unlikely!"

Nicky Shorey's left-foot delivery is just about touched away by a nervous Nemanja Vidic. Jobi McAnuff sends it back in, but the hosts eventually get it away.

Reading enjoy keeping the ball for a few minutes as they win a succession of throws down the far side of the pitch and Chris Smalling has to concede an early corner now.

'Good form' Nicholas!! Even their second string are looking like a team possessed tonight. They have started like a house on fire and could have been 3-0 up already.

Nicholas James says: "Being a United fan I predict us to get the win but I would not be suprised if reading get a goal or two with Le Fondre but I do believe MU are in a good form at the moment 4-2 final result."

Moments after that Ashley Young's shot is blocked on the edge of the box, but this has been a rip-roaring satrt from Fergie's boys.

SAVE! Ashley Young plays a sliderule pass for Danny Welbeck, but his effort is well blocked by the big frame of Aussie Adam Federici.

That really was some kamikaze style defending from Reading who look very nervous in these opening minutes.

CHANCES! United should be ahead as Javier Hernandez's shot is blocked, but the ball falls to Danny Welbeck who miskicks his shot and then Antonio Valencia heads over from close-range.

Alexander Buttner gets his first touch of the game and now Tom Cleverley spreads the play.

The men in red shirts, white shorts and black socks get this game underway as referee Andre Marriner blows his whistle. Reading are wearing their traditional blue and white stripes.

Old Trafford is looking resplendent because it's a sell-out for this fifth round clash. Reading seem to have sold out their allocation too.

I think 'complacency' is the key word for all you United fans, although you don't seem too worried about the possibility of that heading into this game. Great comments by the way and please keep them coming in as we approach kick-off in five minutes and counting. Email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish as many as I can.

@DarrenHamilton3 Tweets: "I predict a 3-1 win for United! i just cant see Reading getting anything at Old Trafford and I doubt United will be complacent."

Now to my Tweets and @IIAinleyII says: "United need this win as there on a strong run. Hopefully Fergie plays a sensible team! I reckon 3-1 utd!"

Ollie Butt says: "Just popped some cash on 4-0 Utd. No Rooney, No Van Persie - No Problem. Hernandez to bag a brace, Welbeck to get one and the evergreen Ryan Giggs to get one from the bench. United!"

Reading fan Duncan McGeachie is hoping his side can take United back to Berkshire for a replay. "Realistically at best we are looking at a draw, especially seeing as ALF can't come off the bench to help us, but if he can be his substitute self from the start, we could look at an upset."

Joshua Ellingford writes in to say: "I think that with the choice of team made by Brian McDermott tonight combined with what is in my opinion, a fatal decision by Sir Alex Ferguson for Manchester United, that we (Reading) stand a brilliant chance in tonight's game! Hopefully United's players will be as complacent as Ferguson fears as well! URZ!"

Tafara from Ilford says: "Hi Raz, I love the way both teams go all out for goals and as Fergie would say, 'There will be goals'. I worry slightly for Reading because even though they've got ALF who is on fire at the moment, Anderson and Cleverley start together for the 1st time this season and they were tearing teams to shreds at the start of last year. With the extra pace upfront it could be a cricket score to Utd, I predict 5-2." Yes, I agree with you Tafara. There will be a few goals tonight!

Wes Milly, from Rotherham says: "Man U will probably run out comfy winners, but hope Le Fondra scores first and the Hernandez kicks in with a hat-trick and Nani to make it 4-1 and I'm laughing all way to bookies." Good luck Wes!

Ian Hamilton is first to write in tonight and he obviously likes a good stat: "Man Utd have won 28 matches this season, 18 of them have been by one goal. With some of the big guns missing I see Man utd winning 2-1."

Manchester United are attracting the majority of the money despite being short-price favourites at 2/9 with our friends @Skybet, while Reading are friendless at 10/1. The Royals are 11/2 to earn a replay but that has also gained little support, while Javier Hernandez is popular in the first goalscorer betting at 3/1. United are unbeaten in their past 12 games with Reading in all competitions and have not lost to them in the FA Cup since January 1927 so I'm hedging my bets and going for a comfortable home win - 3-0, which is priced at a steady 7/1. Head now to SKYBET to place your bets on this match.

UNITED TEAM NEWS: Robin van Persie is on the bench and Wayne Rooney is not involved at all as Sir Alex Ferguson made eight changes to his Manchester United line-up for tonight's FA Cup fifth round tie with Reading at Old Trafford. Of the side that started in the Bernabeu on Wednesday, only David de Gea, Danny Welbeck and Phil Jones keep their places, with Javier Hernandez chosen to lead United's assault on a quarter-final meeting with either Chelsea or Middlesbrough.

READING TEAM NEWS: Lifelong United fan Adam le Fondre is included for the visitors and is among six changes by manager Brian McDermott, whose priority for the season will be keeping Reading in the Premier League.

MAN UTD: De Gea, Smalling, Jones, Vidic, Buttner, Valencia, Cleverley, Anderson, Young, Welbeck, Hernandez.

SUBSTITUTES: Lindegaard, Ferdinand, Giggs, Carrick, Nani, van Persie, Kagawa.

READING: Federici, Kelly, Mariappa, Morrison, Shorey, McCleary, Leigertwood, Karacan, McAnuff, Hunt, Le Fondre.

SUBSTITUTES: Andersen, Gunter, Pearce, Pogrebnyak, Robson-Kanu, Guthrie, Carrico.

REFEREE: Andre Marriner (W Midlands).

Teams are in...

Remember, the winner of this tie will play the winner of the tie between Middlesbrough and Chelsea in the quarter-final of the competition. So what do you think fans ... will it be an easy home win or can Reading cause a royal shock tonight? Email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish as many as I can.

United have a 12-point lead in the title race and are coming off the back of their fine 1-1 draw in the Bernabeu against Real Madrid. However, the United boss is wary of any complacency creeping into his squad: "Monday, in many people's eyes, it's Reading, and they will think 'yeah, we've just been to Madrid, it was a great night and Monday will take care of itself'. Monday can't take of itself. We have to take care of it, we have to have a performance which respects our opponents and the fact that the FA Cup can produce shocks."

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has confirmed he will make changes. Javier Hernandez, Ashley Young and Nani are amongst the most obvious candidates to come in, with skipper Nemanja Vidic also primed for a recall. Paul Scholes (knee) definitely misses out.

Reading manager Brian McDermott will fully utilise his squad. Forwards Adam Le Fondre and Noel Hunt are back in contention after coming off the bench in last week's Premier League defeat at Stoke. Striker Jason Roberts (hip) and goalkeeper Alex McCarthy (shoulder) continue their rehabilitation.

If you'd like to air your views before or during the match, email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish as many as I can.

Hello and welcome to our live minute-by-minute text commentary of this FA Cup fifth round clash between Manchester United and Reading from Old Trafford.

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