Andy’s ready for Royals to take on Man Utd
ANDY RINOMHOTA is relishing the opportunity to play at Old Trafford in the New Year.
Reading have been drawn to face Manchester United in the third round of the FA Cup for the third time in six years with the tie due to take place between 4-7 January, with an exact date yet to be confirmed.
And it is set to be a special occasion for youngster Rinomhota (pictured).
Born in Leeds, the midfielder moved south before joining the Reading academy in 2015 and having broken into the first team in recent weeks, starting the past five matches in succession, he is in line to take on a side he has a soft spot for.
“The thought of going to Old Trafford, playing Manchester United, one of the biggest clubs in the world in front of 70-odd thousand people, that’ll be massive and a whole experience in itself,” said Rinomhota.
“I was brought up supporting Manchester United so it’s always been there for me to want to play at Old Trafford and hopefully now I’ll have the chance.
“Everyone wants to get the result, do well for themselves and give a good account against good quality opposition.”
Rinomhota is not the only player with Man
Utd links among the Reading squad. While the 21-year-old was a boyhood Red Devils fan, three first team squad members used to be on the books at Old Trafford.
Tyler Blackett joined the Royals from United in 2016, captain Paul McShane came through their academy while John O’Shea was a club stalwart, playing almost 400 games for Man Utd, winning a host of trophies including five Premier League titles and the Champions League.
“Everyone’s on a high,” said Rinomhota. “They’re going to be returning to their old club so they’ll want to put in a good performance and play well.
“I think everyone’s massively up for it but obviously the league comes first and we’ll be focussing on that up until the cup game.
“It’s something that’s going to be on people’s minds and we’re looking forward to it a lot.”
Reading have won just once against Man Utd in 20 previous meetings but did pick up two impressive draws at Old Trafford in 2007.
The last time the sides met was in January 2017 when Jaap Stam returned to his old club, but his Royals were thumped 4-0 with Wayne Rooney, Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford all on target.
Before that Reading host Sheffield United in the Championship this Saturday (5.30pm) with the game televised live on Sky Sports.
For a report, photos and reaction from Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Stoke City, see The Sports Paper inside.