Can Wayne Rooney’s Derby County derail Manchester United’s FA Cup hunt?
Odds, preview and betting tips for FA Cup fifth-round tie
After 13 years at Manchester United, Wayne Rooney is set to face his former side as a Derby County player tonight.
Rooney won 16 major honours during his time at United and this will be only the sixth time he’s faced them as an opponent.
Phillip Cocu’s side have struggled in the league so far this campaign, sitting in 13th place, eight points off the play-off spots. They’ll be buoyed by a win last time out against Sheffield Wednesday and could see an FA Cup run as valuable respite from their league form.
As for the hosts, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could view the FA Cup as their best chance of picking up silverware this campaign despite currently being joint-fourth in the betting at 9/1.
Manchester United are overwhelming 8/15 favourites to win in 90 minutes. They’re 1/4 to qualify. Derby County are underdogs at 11/2 to win in 90 minutes, or 14/5 to qualify. The draw is available at 13/4.
Martyn Waghorn is favourite to score first for Derby at 7/1. You can find 9/1 on Wayne Rooney haunting his former club with the opening goal, or 7/2 anytime.
Anthony Martial and Odion Ighalo are the favourites to open the scoring for United at 3/1. There’s 6/5 on Mason Greenwood scoring anytime, or 8/5 on Bruno Fernandes goal in the tie.
At the start of 2020, Solskjaer’s job seemed to be under threat after poor performances left them ten points off fourth spot in the league. A few months later, the signing of Bruno Fernandes appears to have rejuvenated the Red Devils squad.
Solskjaer’s side now sit fifth in the league, only three points behind fourth-placed Chelsea, and are 7/2 favourites for success in the ever-unpredictable Europa League, despite having their own minor injury crisis.
The Red Devils boss will be without Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Daniel James, as Paul Pogba remains a long-term absentee alongside Marcus Rashford
Solskjaer’s unlikely to take any risks ahead of Sunday’s Manchester Derby, which could see some of United’s fringe players like Jesse Lingard, Andreas Pereira and Diogo Dalot get a runout.
Axel Tuanzebe and Timothy Fosu-Mensah recently made their return from injury in an under-23 game and could use this as a vital step up to get full match fitness.
As for the home side, they’ll be without one of their more experienced heads in the middle of the park, as Tom Huddlestone misses out through injury.
Duane Holmes and Krystian Bielik are also facing a spell on the sidelines, with Rushian Hepburn-Murphy ineligible to play after featuring for Tranmere Rovers in the earlier rounds.
Cocu will hope that the experience of Chris Martin, Martyn Waghorn or Rooney can take advantage of any United defensive errors, or goalkeeping slips like we’ve seen in recent weeks.
Whether we see a cupset from Rooney’s side, or Manchester United show their Premier League quality, we could be in for an FA Cup thriller at Pride Park. A trip to Carrow Road to face Daniel Farke’s Norwich City side awaits the winners in the quarter-finals.
View the latest Derby v Man Utd odds.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of date of publication.