International

United draw Chelsea in FA Cup quarter-finals

2017-02-20 07:57
Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte (Gallo Images)

London - Jose Mourinho will have to get past former club Chelsea if FA Cup holders Manchester United are to keep their hopes of retaining the trophy alive following the quarter-final draw on Sunday.

Giant-killers Lincoln - the first non-league side into the last-eight in over a century after beating Premier League Burnley on Saturday - could have a lucrative trip to Arsenal should the Gunners beat another non-league side Sutton on Monday.

Mourinho, whose side had to come from behind to beat Championship strugglers Blackburn Rovers 2-1, side-stepped the subject of his returning to Stamford Bridge where earlier this season he suffered a 4-0 defeat - the heaviest of his Premier League career.

The 54-year-old Portuguese, who won the FA Cup once in two spells with Chelsea in 2007, opted not to comment on the quarter-final draw.

"I have no reaction," said Mourinho.

"I have to play Saint-Etienne (in the Europa League last 32 second leg on Wednesday), I have to play the final (League Cup next Sunday against Southampton), I have to play, hopefully, another game in the Europa League, I have to fight for a top four position in the Premier League.

"So I have so many things to think about.

"Probably Chelsea can only think about that because they are champions. They have nothing else to play for. The FA Cup is something I believe is important for them."

For Lincoln manager Danny Cowley, the draw was a good one whatever the outcome of the Sutton v Arsenal match. 

"It's a win-win," he told BT Sport. "We wish Sutton all the best tomorrow, I genuinely hope they can do it."

Arsenal's fellow north London side Tottenham will host another giantkiller in Millwall, who ousted ailing Premier League champions Leicester on Saturday despite being down to 10 men.

"It's a cracking draw for everyone associated with this football club," the Lions manager Neil Harris told millwallfc.co.uk.

"The players have had the opportunity to test themselves against some of the best Premier League teams in the previous three rounds but in many ways this is another level altogether.

"Spurs are a fantastic side and this gives my players a chance to see how they can compete with some truly outstanding footballers.

"White Hart Lane is a fantastic stadium, a great place to play football, and it's a tie we're very much looking forward to," added the 39-year-old.

The other quarter-final pitches struggling Premier League outfit Middlesbrough at home to the winner of the replay between Championship high-fliers Huddersfield and Pep Guardiola's Manchester City.   

'Boro manager Aitor Karanka crossed swords with Guardiola when the former was Real Madrid assistant manager and the latter in charge of Barcelona.

Draw for FA Cup quarter-finals made on Sunday:

Chelsea v Manchester United

Middlesbrough v Huddersfield/Manchester City

Tottenham Hotspur v Millwall

Sutton United/Arsenal v Lincoln

Ties to be played March 10-13

Read more on:    chelsea  |  manchester united  |  fa cup  |  soccer
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