Manchester United look set to rotate their squad after the exertions of their midweek 1-1 Champions League draw with Real Madrid. With the Red Devils currently 12 points clear at the top of the Premier League, Sir Alex Ferguson can certainly afford to give some of his bigger names a rest at home to Reading as he continues his quest for a first FA Cup since 2004, having only reached one more final (in 2007) since then.
Nemanja Vidic looks set to return to central-defence after Jonny Evans was preferred to the club captain at the Santiago Bernabeu. Elsewhere, there could be returns for Javier Hernandez, Nani, Ashley Young, Tom Cleverley, Anderson and Alex Buttner in place of the likes of Robin Van Persie, Wayne Rooney, Michael Carrick, Phil Jones and Patrice Evra. Veteran Paul Scholes is still missing with a knee injury.
Reading certainly have more pressing needs than an FA Cup run but with their Premier League form catching so much momentum of late, Brian McDermott will be wary of making too many changes and falling foul of a morale-crushing humiliation in front of the watching audience at Old Trafford on Monday night.
However, there could still be some rotation, with the likes of Jem Karacan, Ian Harte, Adam Le Fondre and Noel Hunt in line to make starts. Elsewhere, midfielders Jimmy Kebe and Mikele Leigertwood are doubts with unspecified knocks, with the only absentees being long-term victims Jason Roberts and goalkeeper Alex McCarthy, who have hip and shoulder problems respectively.
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