Tuesday 20 March 2018

Reigning FA Cup champs Arsenal waiting for Manchester United if they can beat Preston

Arsene Wenger
Arsene Wenger

Manchester United will be rewarded for their 3-1 victory at Deepdale this evening with a home quarter-final against holders Arsenal.

The draw took place shortly before kick-off at Preston, with the balls selected by England manager Roy Hodgson and Brian Finney, son of the late, great Preston winger Tom Finney.

They gave both sides on show a mouth-watering pre-match incentive, a chance to depose Arsene Wenger's Gunners whose Wembley success over Hull last May was their first silverware in nine years.

United did trail to Scott Laird's deflected effort but goals from Ander Herrera, Marouane Fellaini and Wayne Rooney saw United through.

Liverpool's hopes of reaching Wembley on the occasion of the departing Steven Gerrard's 35th birthday were also boosted as they were drawn to face Sky Bet Championship side Blackburn at Anfield.

Giant-killers Bradford, fresh from ousting top-flight opponents Sunderland and Chelsea, avoided Premier League opponents this time and will instead take on second-tier Reading at Valley Parade.

That pairing ensures at least one Football League side will make it to the final four of the competition.

The remaining quarter-final pitted midlands neighbours Aston Villa and West Brom against each other, with Villa at home.

There will be no repeat of the controversy surrounding the decision not to show Bradford's defeat of Sunderland on television, with all four games being broadcast live by BBC or BT Sport.

As lead broadcaster the BBC have first and third picks, with BT choosing second and fourth.

The draw for the sixth round of the FA Cup is as follows:

Liverpool v Blackburn

Bradford v Reading

Preston/Manchester United v Arsenal

Aston Villa v West Brom


Ties to be played March 7 and 8.

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