Sometimes there comes a point where two teams, for whatever reason, will need to face off against one another more times in a short period than we can even count. As Manchester Evening News and BBC has reported, while we may be exaggerating, Manchester United and Wolverhampton Wanderers will be getting very familiar with one another over the course of the next few weeks.
The two clubs squared off during FA Cup third round weekend, and while the expectations were high for the game, they didn’t quite live up to the hype as they played out an incredibly dull 0-0 draw.
Here we go again
The nature of the cup ensures that the game went to a replay, which was hardly what both teams needed after what has already been an incredibly hectic Christmas period.
It certainly feels like the mood is low in both camps heading into the game at Old Trafford, which serves as a pretty stark contrast from when they went toe to toe at Molineux. The draw in question followed on from their much more entertaining 1-1 draw at the start of the campaign, and as we look ahead to this game, United will be feeling the pressure in more ways than one.
Firstly, they’ll know that the FA Cup serves as a really great chance for them to win silverware this season, and they’ll be putting everything they’ve got into making that happen. Secondly, after dominating this fixture for years, they have now gone five games without being able to secure a win over Wolves – picking up three draws and two losses.
Funnily enough tonight’s game won’t give us the final word on this ‘rivalry’, as they’ll be meeting in just a few weeks time on February 1st, once again at Old Trafford but this time in the Premier League.
Making a statement
In terms of what we think is going to happen we’re actually expecting a stronger squad from United than Wolves, even though there will probably still be plenty of fringe players on display.
That’s because the hosts just have a slightly better strength in depth even with the upcoming game against Liverpool, whereas Wolves are really struggling to get the bodies behind this operation.
There needs to be substantial investment from Wolves during the January transfer window, but now that we’re already half way through, it doesn’t feel like there’s anywhere near as much urgency as there should be.
United have their own set of problems and that much is just kind of obvious, but at the very least, they should’ve built some confidence up from the big win over Norwich City at the weekend.
If this game looks anything like the one at Molineux then we could be in for a seriously long night, but most fans are rightly choosing to look on the bright side of things by hoping that they can make a significant push to try and break into the fourth round of the FA Cup – where Watford or Tranmere Rovers will be waiting.