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United unhappy with scheduling of cup tie

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Wayne Rooney. Photo: PA

Wayne Rooney. Photo: PA

PA

Wayne Rooney. Photo: PA

Manchester United are disappointed that their FA Cup tie against Derby County, when they will face their former player Wayne Rooney, is being scheduled just three days before they take on arch rivals Manchester City in the Premier League.

Pep Guardiola's team travel to face Sheffield Wednesday on March 4 and will have an extra day to recover for their clash with the Red Devils, who face Derby the following evening.

Rooney, United's record goalscorer, will face his former club two months after he returned to playing in England with Derby, following his spell in America with DC United. He is also taking his first steps into coaching with Derby.

All of the fifth-round FA Cup ties are being spread across midweek for the first time, starting on Monday and going through to Thursday, to accommodate the inaugural Premier League winter break.

There are no replays from this round onwards, with the matches decided on penalties if necessary.

Arsenal kick off the cup fixtures at Portsmouth on the Monday night, while Chelsea's clash with Liverpool is one of the ties of the round and will be shown on the BBC on Tuesday night, when Reading take on Sheffield United and West Bromwich Albion face Newcastle United.

Tottenham Hotspur will host Norwich City and Leicester City take on Birmingham City on March 4.

Irish Independent