- match commentary
- English FA Cup
- 18 February 2013, 8:00pm
- Old Trafford
- Attendance: 75,213
Goals from Nani and Javier Hernandez were enough to help treble-chasing Manchester United into the last eight of the FA Cup with a 2-1 win against Reading.
Substitute Nani made an immediate impact soon after coming on and broke the deadlock with a right-foot drive which flicked off Sean Morrison and past Adam Federici after 69 minutes. The hosts doubled their advantage three minutes later as Javier Hernandez met the Portuguese winger's cross at the near post to head in.
Reading pulled a goal back with time running out after some woeful defending allowed Jobi McAnuff time to slot his effort away. The Red Devils could have added a third late on as the Royals pushed on, but it was Sir Alex Fergsuon's men who progressed in the end.
They will now meet the winners of the tie between Middlesbrough or Chelsea in the sixth round.
live match commentary
90+6 mins: That's full time! United progress to a home tie against Middlesbrough or Chelsea in the quarter-finals! They made life difficult for themselves in the end, but deserved their victory after running Reading ragged in patches of the game.
90+5 mins: Federici denies Hernandez who tests him late on with a fine strike! We're in to Fergie time as the man himself chunters into fourth offical Dowd's ear.
90+4 mins: Karacan gets his head to it and it's deflected wide for a corner - Federici's staying up... this time it's cleared and the race back is on for the keeper but it's knocked out of play on the break and Reading can attack one more.
90+3 mins: Karacan is shoved over by Nani for a free-kick down the right - keeper Federici races up for it...
90 mins: United have four minutes of added time to see out and avoid a pesky replay.
89 mins: Alert defending by Morrison to deny Welbeck after lovely vision from RVP gives him a sniff of goal.
87 mins: So close! RVP sets Hernandez free through the middle and he terrorises the Reading full-backs before stinging the palms of Federici from 16 yards, Nani then fires the loose ball into the side netting from a tight angle!
84 mins: Taxi for Welbeck! United break and it has '3-1' written all over it - Nani motors through the middle, sets Welbeck free down the left and as he bids to check inside in the box he stops the ball with one foot and kicks it out of play with his trailing leg. Doh.
83 mins: Fergie makes a change, sending Carrick on for Anderson.
81 mins: READING ARE BACK IN IT! United don't react quickly enough to a loose ball in the box, MCANUFF is on it in a flash and holds off Smalling before sidefooting under De Gea! Game on!
79 mins: McAnuff cuts in from the left and has a shot blocked, the follow-up is too amid shouts of hand-ball but ref Marriner's not interested.
77 mins: Valencia sets Nani free down the right, he crosses looking for RVP but it's claimed by Federici.
74 mins: Welbeck tries to cheekily backheel Hernandez in but it's just to far ahead of him and Federici claims.
72 mins: HERNANDEZ DOUBLES THE LEAD! It's Valencia with the assist again, curling a cross in from the right for Chicharito to leap and flash a header home! Reading's resistance has been magnificent, but they've fallen apart in the last five minutes as their legs started to go.
70 mins: NANI FIRES UNITED AHEAD! Valencia feeds him in the box from the right, the ball pops up a little with his first touch before he rattles it into the net via a deflection off Morrison! Unstoppable.
68 mins: RVP has a shot blocked by Morrison on the edge of the box. Reading have 11 men behind the ball as they deal with wave after wave of United attacks.
66 mins: Nani goes close again! This time he booms one a yard past the left post with Federici beaten. United are starting to turn the screw.
64 mins: The Main Man is finally on as RVP replaces Young, with Welbeck moving over to the left. Reading meanwhile send Guthrie on for Leigertwood.
60 mins: Federici denies Anderson on the run! The Brazilian whips up the crowd as he races across to take the corner. It comes to nowt, though.
57 mins: Corner to United down the right but Young's poor delivery is headed clear at the near post. The Red Devils soon have another though, Young's delivery is better second time round and Vidic sees a 12-yard header come off Morrison and get hacked clear.
54 mins: Hunt's in the book for scything down Smalling over the top of the ball. And he's even arguing about it!
51 mins: Cleverley has a rocket blocked by a defender, United then win a corner down the right which is headed clear by Kelly. Nani then has a pop from distance which is smothered by Federici - he could have taken that on a few more strides. United have started the second half like they did the first - peppering the Reading goal.
48 mins: RVP's limbering up. Plenty of you have been calling for him to come on via your texts - looks like you're going to get your wish.
46 mins: Reading get the second half under way playing left to right with no subs to report. Hunt's still soldiering on with his wound patched up and is going to have it properly seen to after the match.
Tom, London: "this game has 1-0 to utd written all over it."
Dean from Sheffield: "Rvp should come on. He'll make a difference"
Leon, Old Trafford: "Atmosphere here is crazy! United 2-0"
45+4 mins: That's half time! Reading looked like they were in for a long night after United started with a bang, but they kept the scores blank and got more into the game as the half wore on. United came closest to breaking the deadlock when Nani, only on for minutes as a sub after Jones went off injured, rattled the post with a thunderous volley. Join me at 2105 for live commentary on the second half, when we'll see who will go on to face Chelsea or Boro in the quarter-finals.
45+3 mins: Strong stop by Federici from a booming Nani 18-yarder, Cleverley dropping a poor shot wide from the corner.
45+2 mins: Le Fondre cuts in from the left and shapes to shoot but he's robbed by Anderson who brings it away.
45 mins: There'll be four minutes added on as sub Nani, from the edge of the box, smashes a stunning volley against the post and away!
44 mins: Superb strike from 25 yards by Le Fondre which is bending just inside the right post, that is until De Gea makes a smart stop!
43 mins: United do eventually get to make that change, Nani coming on for Jones who is long gone down the tunnel.
42 mins: United are a touch exposed as they're down to ten and crying out to make the sub. Reading retain the ball though until Morrison rakes a tame, low 30-yarder past the left post.
40 mins: There's no quarter given as Jones and McAnuff go for a 50-50 ball, the United man coming off worse. Much worse, judging by the way he's helped to the sidelines for treatment...
37 mins: Young picks out Valencia at the back stick with a superb cross-field ball, but his pull-back is cut out and cleared.
34 mins: United win a corner down the right, Anderson takes and picks out Smalling who rises 12 yards out, but his header back across goal beats both the keeper and the bar.
Chris in Manchester: "Can't beat horse chilli con carne" [In the 15 years I've worked on the Sportsdesk Chris, I'm sure I've eaten a hell of a lot worse than horse!]
31 mins: Young looks to slip Welbeck in down the left of the box but Mariappa does a sterling job in shepherding the ball out of play for a goal-kick.
28 mins: Buttner takes no chances and heads a decent ball from McAnuff behind for a corner. Shorey again trots over and hooks in another fine delivery into the six-yard box, Morrison gets his head to it but can't get it anywhere near the target and Vidic clears.
Griff, Battersea: "You would think mcdermott would wear a wooly hat, one of his backroom team looks like an angry bird."
25 mins: Hunt's back on, and they've even managed to find him a third shirt with a name and number. Either that, or the local dry cleaners have a *REALLY* fast service.
23 mins: The Royals are on the ropes! Cleverley has a crack from 25 yards which Federici blocks, Young is on the loose ball down the left of the box in a flash but Federici pushes his follow-up away too!
21 mins: Hunt's gone off with yet more blood spilling onto his shoulder. The change kit he's in doesn't even have a number, if he has to change again he'll probably be in skins!
19 mins: Vidic gives away a free-kick for a foul on Hunt which Shorey whips in from the right, Vidic pulling off a superb header away in the six-yard box inches ahead of Morrison!
17 mins: Vidic is patched up without much trouble but Hunt's had to have a full kit change, such is the extent of his spillage. The front rows are treated to a quick strip show.
15 mins: Hunt and Vidic are both oozing claret after an accidental clash of heads, Vidic being cut above his left eye and Hunt on the back of the head. Eesh... Hunt's has put me right off my microwave chili con carne meal for one.
12 mins: Jones swings a low cross in from the right, Federici claims in the six-yard box as Hernandez arrives a little late, the striker coming off second best.
10 mins: Smalling gives away a corner down the right which Shorey swings in to the near post, there's panic but United get it away at the second attempt. McAnuff swings a cross in but that's also cleared. Decent spell for the Royals after a rocky opening.
7 mins: Reading finally get near the United box as Kelly crosses but it's cut out by Vidic.
Nick, Bacup: "Id like to see reading win tonight, but, even as a neutral, glad to see man utd taking the f.a cup seriously for once. 2-0 methinks."
4 mins: Federici could be in for a long night between the sticks, but he's off to a solid start as he thwarts Welbeck from close range. United have started with purpose, putting it mildly.
1 min: United nearly take an early lead! Hernandez has a shot blocked from 15 yards after a superb dummy, Welbeck's follow-up is also blocked before Valencia heads the high, loose ball over at a stretch from eight yards!
0 mins: After Hernandez emerges from kneeled prayer and Reading from their huddle, ref Andre Marriner's whistle gets us under way, United playing left to right in the first half, the Royals in their usual
1955: We're set to rock 'n' roll at Old Trafford as the teams emerge from the tunnel. Keep your predictions coming, I'll weave them in where I can.
1950: Sir Alex Ferguson has confirmed that Wayne Rooney is absent tonight due to a "sinus infection" and that he's watching the game from his bed. *strokes chin in a Jimmy Hill stylee*
1915: Evening all! Welcome to Orange's live commentary on the FA Cup fifth-round clash at Old Trafford, with the winners set to host either Middlesbrough or Chelsea in the quarter-finals. Sir Alex Ferguson has done as expected and made eight changes to the side which drew at Real Madrid. Javier Hernandez and Danny Welbeck start up top with Robin van Persie on the bench, and Wayne Rooney not in the squad. Reading make six changes as Adam Le Fondre and Noel Hunt get the nod up front. I'll bring you all the action live from 2000, but in the mean time send me your predictions, bets and any personal problems via the box on the right. Oh *marvellous* - Paolo Di Canio's just quit as Swindon boss. Gives me something else to cram in before kick-off!
Gareth, Manchester: "Hope to see a strong performance from some of the players on the fringe of the United XI tonight."
Al, St Helens: "Cant see anything but a 3-o win for united. Even a much changed side should see united too good. Lets keep the treble alive!"
Norma, Doncaster: "Agree with u Chris at mom seems new buy Kagawa not earning his money. I feel(only my opinipn)Fergie got sum things wrong this season. Not been excited with any of new signings may b RVP ?? but anxious bout match 2 nite."
Chris, Exeter: "Time for Kagawa to 'step up'.. 2 goals (Aug/Sept) &2 assists isnt good enough."
Man Utd: De Gea, Jones, Smalling, Vidic, Buttner, Cleverley, Anderson, Valencia, Young, Welbeck, Chicharito. Subs: Lindegaard, Ferdinand, Carrick, Giggs, Nani, Kagawa, van Persie.
Reading: Federici, Kelly, Shorey, Mariappa, Morrison, Karacan, Leigertwood, McAnuff, McCleary, Hunt, Le Fondre. Subs: Andersen, Gunter, Pearce, Carrico, Guthrie, Robson-Kanu, Pogrebnyak.