How Fulham can capitalize on Manchester United’s crucial weakness in the FA Cup quarter-finals showdown


It wasn’t until Fulham were accused of relying on a goalscorer that he stopped shooting and his teammates began.

The Cottagers depended heavily on Aleksandar Mitrovic as they made their push into Europe in the first half of the season. But the Serb has gone nine games without a goal, a streak stretching back more than two months and spanning 746 minutes of football.

While Mitrovic is struggling, other players need to come to the fore. That means Fulham travel to Old Trafford for their FA Cup quarter-finals on Sunday and are confident they can pose a threat against a Manchester United defense still vulnerable after conceding seven goals at Anfield two weeks ago.

Wingers Manor Solomon and Willian have both scored key goals for Marco Silva’s side in recent weeks to help Fulham in their unlikely push to Europe under Marco Silva. Solomon in particular was in brilliant form, scoring in five consecutive games until Sunday’s 3-0 defeat by Arsenal.

Mitrovic will be confident he can find joy in a dogfight with United centre-back Lisandro Martinez, but it could be in wide areas where Fulham can find the most success. Full-backs Diogo Dalot and Luke Shaw endured a torrid afternoon in the 7-0 defeat by Liverpool and the use of space at the break should suit Solomon and Willian perfectly.

Joao Palhinha also featured in the Group A win over Leeds and is returning from the FA Cup suspension.

His availability is a boost for Fulham, who missed the midfielder badly against Arsenal and are looking to reach their first semi-final since reaching the Europa League final in 2010. Andreas Pereira will return to Old Trafford for Fulham for the first time since leaving United last summer and believes his new team can cause excitement.

“I will have mixed feelings,” Pereira said. “It’s a difficult game but I’m happy to play against them. It will be the first time I come back and feel this atmosphere. I’ve never been there as a visitor, so it will be something new.

Key duo: Willian and Manor Solomon will be crucial if Fulham upset the FA Cup on Sunday

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“You have a lot of confidence. They play really well, but sometimes it’s not good when you’re so confident. We know we have to work very hard to win against them but we will give everything and try to play the perfect game.

“I feel at home here and it’s been great so far. When I first came here they told me they would go down in the Premier League every year. The main goal was to stay in the Premier League but I spoke to the manager and he told me what he wants to achieve and how he wants to play.

“He was very ambitious and I really liked that. When we were five games into the season, we realized we could do something great with the team and it was incredible.” How Fulham can capitalize on Manchester United’s crucial weakness in the FA Cup quarter-finals showdown

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