Sheffield United are warned by FA Cup opponents Reading

Mark Bowen, the Reading manager, has warned his players will be gunning for Sheffield United when they meet in the FA Cup next month.

Wednesday, 5th February 2020, 12:14 pm
Updated Wednesday, 5th February 2020, 3:47 pm

Speaking after his team secured a fifth round tie against Chris Wilder’s side following a penalty shoot-out victory over Cardiff City, Bowen explained why he is not prioritising results in the Championship above reaching the quarter-finals.

“The fans haven’t had too much to cheer over the past few years and you’re trying to give that back to them,” Bowen said. “The excitement of the cup will never go away.

“I’m a traditionalist, I’m looking forward to a home game and that’s all you can ask for.”

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“It (the magic) will never go away for me,” Bowen added. “You want to go through and not look too far ahead - bring on Sheffield United.”

After travelling to the Welsh capital following a 1-1 draw in Berkshire, Reading have now won their last seven replays in the competition, but next month’s tie at the Madejski Stadium will be settled on the night.

Sone Aluko converted the winning spot-kick, after his team mates had fought back from 2-0 down to take the match into extra-time. Omar Richards and Andy Rinhimota scored those goals, while Yakou Meita was also on target after Cardiff had restored their advantage.

Bowen, admitting Reading are ready to exploit any lack of focus in the United ranks, said: “We’ve got a very hard team in Sheffield United but it keeps things bubbling along.”

Reading manager Mark Bowen says he is an FA Cup tradionalist ahead of his team's meeting with Sheffield United: Bradley Collyer/PA Wire.
Chris Wilder takes his Sheffield United side to the Madejski Stadium next month: Simon Bellis/Sportimage
Reading manager Mark Bowen watched his team set up their meeting with Sheffield United by beating Cardiff City in an FA Cup fourth round replay: Bradley Collyer/PA Wire.