Manchester United vs Reading Betting Preview

By Ernie Bibby, Thursday, January 26, 2023 8:28 pm

Manchester United will face Championship outfit Reading in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Saturday evening. The game will take place at Old Trafford at 8pm UK Time.


Man United

The Premier League may be taking a break this weekend, however, Manchester United have been incredibly busy with back-to-back cup commitments. The Red Devils breezed past Nottingham Forest in their midweek EFL Cup assignment with January signing Wout Weghort grabbing his first goal for the club.

Combo 6
Football Manchester United Reading
Home 1.17
Draw 7.96
Away 15.59
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This performance was the ideal way to bounce back from a 3-2 defeat at the Emirates last weekend. Although Erik Ten Haag is likely to make changes for this contest, he may opt to retain the in-form Marcus Rashford. The 25-year old has now netted in nine of his last ten appearances and has been in sensational form since the conclusion of the 2022 World Cup.

Although Ten Haag has heavily rotated his XI in the EFL Cup, the Dutchman opted to play a relatively full-strength XI in the previous round of this competition. Casemiro, Christian Eriksen and Bruno Fernandes were all given starts against Everton whereas Antony and Tyrell Malacia have both been featuring in recent cup contests.



Reading have one of the smallest squads in the second tier, yet they are comfortably entrenched within mid-table. Manager Paul Ince, who has heaped upon his opposite number, made over 200 appearances for Manchester United in the 1990s and will be keen to record a famous win over his former employers.

He will be buoyed by the fact that his side have a strong home record. The Royals are unbeaten in each of their last three matches at the Madejski and have lost just three of their 13 games in front of their own fans. However, away trips have proved tricky for the Royals and this is an incredibly tough draw for the Berkshire outfit.

The visitors have won just three times on the road all season (each by a 1 goal margin) with one of those victories coming against Wigan, who have comfortably the worst home record in the division.

Having failed to score in four of their last seven away trips, Ince’s men could struggle on Saturday evening.


Head to Head

This is the third time that these two clubs have met in the FA Cup since 2017. They also met in this competition back in 2013. Each of those contests have been staged at Old Trafford with the hosts coming out on top.

In their most recent meeting, United ran out 2-0 winners with goals from Juan Mata and Romelu Lukaku scoring the decisive goals. The Royals have drawn three consecutive blanks when visiting this ground.

The visitors have never beaten this opposition in 11 attempts. They did manage to claim a point when the two sides met in the Premier League back in 2007.



Key Betting Stats

  • Man United have won 12 of their last 14 home FA Cup ties. They were knocked out of the competition at this stage last season by Middlesbrough on penalties.
  • Reading have won just one of their last ten away FA Cup ties in 90 minutes (vs Blackpool)
  • Since beating Wigan on September 17th, Reading have won just once on the road.
  • This is just the second time since 2017 that the Royals have made it through to the fourth round.
  • Across all competitions, United have won ten consecutive home matches. They’ve also been victorious in 11 of their last 12 here.
  • Reading’s Tom Ince has scored four of his six goals on the road this season.
  • Marcus Rashford has netted seven of his nine goals at Old Trafford.


Match Prediction

Manchester United have been formidable at Old Trafford across all competitions and it’s hard to imagine poor-travellers Reading ending their unbeaten run. With a much deeper (and far more talented) squad to pick from, Erik Ten Haag’s men should be far too strong. Reading have failed to score in their last two visits here and it wouldn’t be a surprise if they draw yet another blank on Saturday night.


Winning Combo

Manchester United to Win, Over 1.5 Match Goals and Both Teams to Score? No

Odds – 21/20 with Bet365’s Bet Builder


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