Erik ten Hag: Man Utd will do everything to stop Man City treble.
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has pledged fans that his team will ‘give all’ to defeat Manchester City in the FA Cup final, perhaps ending the club’s treble dreams.
City qualified for next month’s cup final after defeating Sheffield United in their last four match on Saturday, with United following 24 hours later after defeating Brighton on penalties.
City are also new title contenders after Arsenal salvaged a 3-3 draw against Southampton on Friday night, surrendering points for the third game in a row. If Pep Guardiola’s team beats Arsenal at home on Wednesday night, they will be just two points behind with a game in hand – and in far better form.
In Europe, City have also reached the semi-finals of the Champions League, a title that they have yet to win. They face Real Madrid in the more difficult of the two semi-finals, with the other being an all-Milan tie.
Although Barcelona and Inter have accomplished a league, cup, and European Cup trifecta in Spain and Italy, respectively, United are the only English team to have done it – they notably did it in 1999 with Premier League, FA Cup, and Champions League victories.
Last season, Liverpool had the potential to complete an unprecedented quadruple, but they fell short in the Premier League title fight and lost in the Champions League final.
“We will give everything we have.” And when I say everything, I mean it!” Ten Hag explained.
“Of course, I understand the feelings of Manchester United fans about [playing City in the final].” We want to give them that victory over City, and we want to give the fans that trophy, and we know we can do it because we’ve shown we can beat them.
“It’s not easy; [City] is a great team, but we have a great team and players as well.” We need to play flawlessly, although we beat them earlier this season.”
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Ten Hag was alluding to United’s 2-1 Old Trafford victory over City in January, when late goals from Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford cancelled out Jack Grealish’s opening.
City won the FA Cup in 2019, defeating Watford 6-0 in the final. United were barely defeated by Chelsea at Wembley in 2018, having previously won with an extra-time strike from Jesse Lingard against Crystal Palace in 2016 – their first victory in 12 years.
Neither Manchester team has reached either of the last three finals, and this year’s FA Cup final will be the first in the competition’s 151-year history.