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France v Spain – watch it live for FREE

LIVE France v Spain: Watch the crunch clash in Group I as Les Bleus take on the world and European champions

PUBLISHED:

10:23 GMT, 26 March 2013

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UPDATED:

16:15 GMT, 26 March 2013

Welcome to Sportsmail's coverage of what promises to be the game of the night as France take on Spain in Group I.

The French can take a huge step towards qualification for Brazil 2014 with a win over their near neighbours in Paris.

Victory would move them five points clear at the top with just three games to go and leave the reigning world and European champions staring at the prospect of a two-legged play-off.

The sides drew in Madrid last October and Spain followed that up by sharing the points with Finland on Friday night while Les Bleus eased past Georgia.

Sergio Ramos, on his 100th appearance for his country, captained Vicente del Bosque's side against Finland and led by example with the goal.

Karim Benzema, his Real Madrid team-mate, drew a blank in France's victory and will be out to make amends if he is given the nod after being booed by the home support for missing chances in the Stade de France.

***Full coverage will start at 8pm***

Live : France – Spain par ffftv

Laura Robson loses to Alize Cornet in Miami

Robson forced to wait for No 1 sport after losing three-set battle to Cornet in Miami

By
Steven Donaldson

PUBLISHED:

11:59 GMT, 23 March 2013

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UPDATED:

11:59 GMT, 23 March 2013

Laura Robson passed up the chance to become British No 1 on Friday night, beaten in three sets in the second round of the WTA Sony Open by Alize Cornet.

The 19-year-old started well but, in a match which lasted two hours 36 minutes but was stretched over seven hours due to rain delays and power cuts in Miami, the 32nd-seeded Frenchwoman eventually emerged a 5-7 7-5 6-1 winner.

World No 36 Cornet, who wrapped up the win with a run of five straight games, will face American Lauren Davis in round three.

Beaten: Laura Robson lost to Alize Cornet in Miami

Beaten: Laura Robson lost to Alize Cornet in Miami

Beaten: Laura Robson lost to Alize Cornet in Miami

Beaten: Laura Robson lost to Alize Cornet in Miami

Roy Hodgson will "wait and see" if Rio Ferdinand has an international future after withdrawing from England squad for San Marino and…

Rio can do what he wants… but I can't guarantee he'll get another England invite, says Hodgson

By
Matt Barlow

PUBLISHED:

17:29 GMT, 21 March 2013

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UPDATED:

18:01 GMT, 21 March 2013

England manager Roy Hodgson has said he will 'wait and see' if Rio Ferdinand has an international future following the United defender's decision to withdraw from the national squad this week.

Hodgson's side take on San Marino on Friday with a depleted defence after Ferdinand withdrew from the squad to look after his chronic back problem.

But Ferdinand
sparked fresh controversy as Sportsmail exclusively revealed that the
Manchester United defender will fly to Qatar to work on a television
broadcast of Friday’s World Cup qualifier.

Waving goodbye Roy Hodgson said he will 'wait and see' if Rio Ferdinand has an international future

Waving goodbye Roy Hodgson said he will 'wait and see' if Rio Ferdinand has an international future

Unhappy: Hodgson is disappointed that Ferdinand is not with the England team

Unhappy: Hodgson is disappointed that Ferdinand is not with the England team

When pushed on Ferdinand's future as
an England player, Hodgson said: 'I think we should just wait and see, I
think it's more a question of how his injury situation will impact upon
him playing for England, so we'll have to wait and see what happens in
the future.

'At the moment it's speculation about
a longer-term future whereas my focus is on these next two games, which
are important for us in our bid to qualify. I am happy with the squad
we've got.'

Hodgson deflected questions on what he thought of Ferdinand's decision to miss the two World Cup qualifiers.

He said: 'I don't have any serious
thoughts on it. I was disappointed when he couldn't accept our
invitation. It would have been nice to have him here.'

Double header: England take on San Marion on Friday night before facing Montenegro next week

Double header: England take on San Marion on Friday night before facing Montenegro next week

Hodgson also refused to comment on Ferdinand's decision to embark on a 15-hour round trip to Doha to work as a TV pundit.

'As we all know he wasn't able to
accept the invitation so what he actually does now and how he operates
in the coming couple of weeks, that's his business and the club's
business.

'You're asking me questions that I
really don't want to go into. It really shows a lack of respect to some
extent for the players who are here,' he said.

'In this instance Rio made it clear
that he wasn't able to accept my invitation on this occasion and we will
see what happens in the future.

'What happens during this period of
time when he's looking after himself, it's up to us to look after
ourselves and do the job we've got to do in these next two matches.'

Plane stupid: Ferdinand pulled out of the England squad before agreeing to work as a TV pundit in Qatar

Plane stupid: Ferdinand pulled out of the England squad before agreeing to work as a TV pundit in Qatar

Hodgson also dismissed suggestions that Michael Carrick could step in at centre back to solve England's defensive crisis.

The England boss said: 'To accept that I would have to
accept we have problems in central defence. I think we have four very
good central defenders here.

'As far as I’m concerned I would be
loathed to start using people like Michael Carrick who has been selected
for his prowess as a midfield player.

'It would be harsh on those who have been selected as central defenders.'

Not interested: Captain Steven Gerrard is not dwelling on Ferdinand's withdrawal

Not interested: Captain Steven Gerrard is not dwelling on Ferdinand's withdrawal

England captain Steven Gerrard
believes the team have trained well without Ferdinand and is not
dwelling on the United defender's absence.

He said: 'I don't think it's for me to comment. That's something for the manager to deal with to be honest. I just look at the players in the squad and worry about them players really.

'Of course it's disappointing Rio's not here, because he's a fantastic player and he's in top form, and it would've been nice for him to be here, but he's not, we move on without him and training's been really good.'

Asked if England can cope without Ferdinand, Gerrard said: 'Yes I do, certainly on the evidence I've seen in training the last few days.

'Repeating what the manager said, the four guys have been working hard and training well and they are all pushing for places.

'I'm confident that they can not only do the job tomorrow but on Tuesday night as well.'

Gary Cahill out of England against San Marino

Taylor called up to replace crocked Cahill as England's defensive crisis deepens after Ferdinand farce

By
David Kent

PUBLISHED:

09:58 GMT, 19 March 2013

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UPDATED:

10:19 GMT, 19 March 2013

Gary Cahill has joined the list of England casualties after being ruled out of Friday's clash with San Marino.

Cahill hurt his knee during Chelsea's win over West Ham at the weekend and will play no part against the minnows in Rimini.

Manager Roy Hodgson, who has already lost Rio Ferdinand and Michael Dawson and brought in Joleon Lescott and Steven Caulker, has called up uncapped Newcastle centre-half Steven Taylor.

Crocked: Gary Cahill picked up an injury during Chelsea's win over West Ham and will miss out for England

Crocked: Gary Cahill picked up an injury during Chelsea's win over West Ham and will miss out for England

Fitness fight: England defender Cahill will be reassessed before Tuesday's crunch clash with Montenegro

Fitness fight: England defender Cahill will be reassessed before Tuesday's crunch clash with Montenegro

An FA statement read: 'Chelsea
defender Gary Cahill has been ruled out of England’s World Cup qualifier
with San Marino on Friday evening.

'Cahill
was assessed by England medical staff on Monday and will not be able to
take part in the match, but will be reassessed later in the week with a
view to the second of England’s two qualifiers, against Montenegro on
Tuesday.'

Taylor earns his call-up on the back
of a string of fine performances for the Magpies. He has represented
England at every level from Under 16 through to Under 21 and earned a
place in the full squad for a friendly against Germany in 2007.

More to follow…

SOS: Newcastle defender Steven Taylor has been called in to the England squad by boss Roy Hodgson

SOS: Newcastle defender Steven Taylor has been called in to the England squad by boss Roy Hodgson

Madness at Chelsea! Suggs visits Blues

It really is Madness at Chelsea! Superfan Suggs drops in to visit Blues

PUBLISHED:

13:35 GMT, 1 March 2013

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UPDATED:

13:35 GMT, 1 March 2013

There was more Madness at Chelsea on Friday morning as superfan Suggs turned up at their Cobham training ground.

The players are preparing to face West Bromwich Albion at the end of an eventful week which saw interim boss Rafa Benitez launch an extraordinary attack on the club's fans and owner Roman Abramovich.

Benitez slammed the supporters after Wednesday's win at Middlesbrough, claiming they were not doing the team any favours by continuing to boo him.

Our house: Suggs paid a visit to Chelsea's Cobham training ground

Our house: Suggs paid a visit to Chelsea's Cobham training ground

But Suggs' commitment to the Stamford
Bridge outfit can never be doubted. The 52-year-old, who has a string
of hits under his belt with Madness and as a solo artist, reached No 22
in the charts in 1997 with Blue Day, the song he recorded with the
players for the FA Cup final.

The west Londoners beat Middlesbrough
2-0 in the Wembley showpiece with former manager Roberto Di Matteo
scoring after 42 seconds.

Thew club's official Twitter page
said this morning: 'We've been fortunate enough to welcome legendary
Chelsea fan Suggs to Cobham this morning! #CFC #BlueDay.'

SAM TOMKINS: This is the biggest year in our sporting history and I can"t wait to give the Aussies a beating

This is the biggest year in our sport's history and I can't wait to give the arrogant Aussies a World Cup beating

.

Well
even though Leeds just came up short losing 14-18, Kevin still gets my
vote. When you see him train he’s utterly ruthless, he’s one of this
country’s finest sporting leaders and is so important to Leeds and
England.

Cameron Smith of Melbourne Storm poses with the trophy

Kevin Sinfield of Leeds Rhinos

Winners: Cameron Smith (left) may have held the World Club Challenge trophy aloft last Friday but Kevin Sinfield (right) gets Sam's vote as deserved player of the year

Away from rugby league and I was immensely proud to see my brother Joel selected for a Six Nations squad last week, although he didn’t make the match-day squad against France.

Joel and I are really close and when
he moved down to London I found it quite hard. We used to train together
every day and even though he’s only two hours away on the train it was
weird not seeing him.

I’m
delighted that he’s taken to life down south so quickly and hopefully in
the not too distant future will get a place in the full England team.
I’ll definitely be down there cheering him on should he
make it.

Pride of a Lion: Sam's brother Joel (left) was called into the England rugby union squad for the Six Nations game against France

Pride of a Lion: Sam's brother Joel (left) was called into the England rugby union squad for the Six Nations game against France

Also, I was shocked to read about the awful racist abuse Mario Balotelli got in football's Milan derby at the weekend.

There is absolutely no place for racism in any sport and the worst part is generally its a minority that spoil it and damage the reputation of a club.

Shocking: Balotelli (foreground) was racially taunted by Inter Milan fans at the wekeend

Shocking: Balotelli (foreground) was racially taunted by Inter Milan fans at the wekeend

FA Cup fourth round: The ultimate guide to all of this weekend"s fixtures

FA Cup fourth round: The ultimate guide to all of this weekend's fixtures

PUBLISHED:

10:32 GMT, 25 January 2013

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UPDATED:

12:05 GMT, 25 January 2013

With a huge 758 clubs entering the FA Cup this season, there are just 32 left as we head into the fourth round of the competition.

Here Sportsmail has teamed up with statistic giants Opta to bring you all the latest facts and team news ahead of ALL this weekend's fixtures.

Destination Wembley: Sixteen teams will make it through to round five

Destination Wembley: Sixteen teams will make it through to round five

Millwall v Aston Villa

Aston Villa midfielder Ashley Westwood and striker Jordan Bowery will return to the squad for Friday evening's FA Cup fourth round clash at Millwall.

Westwood and Bowery were cup-tied for the midweek Capital One Cup semi-final setback against Bradford at Villa Park after playing in the competition for Crewe and Chesterfield respectively.

But defender Nathan Baker is again ruled out with a hamstring injury and it is too soon for centre-back Richard Dunne to be considered after recovering from his groin injury.

Millwall are short of options in attack with on-loan Derby forward Nathan Tyson injured, while Darius Henderson joined Nottingham Forest on Thursday.

Martyn Woolford is cup-tied, Shane Lowry is suspended and Scott Malone is still sidelined with a back injury but Liam Feeney is fit again.

Available: Ashley Westwood (right) was cup tied midweek for the aggregate defeat to Bradford in the Capital One Cup semi-final

Available: Ashley Westwood (right) was cup tied midweek for the aggregate defeat to Bradford in the Capital One Cup semi-final

Millwall and Aston Villa have met five
times previously in the FA Cup, with Millwall progressing twice (both
after replays) and Villa going through on three occasions.

They were last drawn together in the fourth round in 1986, with Millwall progressing after a replay following a 1-1 draw at Villa Park.

The Lions have only lost two of their last 17 FA Cup games on home soil (W10 D5).

Villa were eliminated in the fourth round last year, when they faced Arsenal at the Emirates losing 3-2.

Millwall have only won two of their last seven games (L3 D2), with both victories coming at the New Den.

Aston Villa have now progressed through each of their last 10 FA Cup ties against lower ranked sides. Darren Bent has scored in four of his last five matches in the FA Cup.

Aston Villa provisional squad: Guzan, Given,
Marshall, Lowton, Vlaar, Clark, Lichaj, Stevens, Bennett, Ireland,
Westwood, N'Zogbia, Bannan, Delph, Holman, Benteke, Agbonlahor, Bent,
Bowery, Weimann, Burke, Johnson, Williams, Carruthers.

Stoke v Man City

Stoke defender Andy Wilkinson's back problem is likely to keep him out of Saturday's FA Cup fourth round tie at home to Manchester City.

The full-back sustained the problem in their third round replay last week and while Ryan Shotton played 45 minutes in a midweek friendly after a hamstring injury he may not be risked.

Thomas Sorensen is set to replace Asmir Begovic in goal, as has been the policy for cup matches this season.

Stoke and Man City have been drawn together seven time before in the FA Cup, with the Citizens progressing (or winning the final) four times and the Potters progressing on three occasions.

The most memorable of these meetings was the 2011 final, where Man City secured the trophy with a 1-0 win, courtesy of a Yaya Toure goal.
When drawn at the Britannia, the Potters are unbeaten in nine FA Cup games, winning seven and drawing two.

The last time City travelled to the Britannia in the FA Cup, they were eliminated, losing 3-1 in a replay back in February 2010.

The Citizens are enjoying a five game winning streak, netting 14 goals and shipping just three in the process.

City have won just two of their last eight on the road in the FA Cup, drawing three and losing three.

Man City are unbeaten in seven against the Potters in all competitions (three home wins, one neutral win and three away 1-1 draws).

Stoke provisional squad: Sorensen, Cameron,
Shawcross, Huth, Upson, Whelan, Nzonzi, Walters, Kightly, Etherington,
Jones, Sorensen, Whitehead, Crouch, Jerome, Adam, Palacios, Owen,
Shotton, Begovic.

Bolton v Everton
Bolton have not lost to Everton in the FA Cup since 1908, winning all three ties since then including in the semi-final back in 1953.

Overall, these North West rivals have been drawn together six times before, with Bolton progressing four times and Everton twice, both following a replay.

The Toffees are unbeaten in their last six away games in the FA Cup (W4 D2).

Everton have only kept three clean sheets in their last 14 FA Cup games, and only one on the road since 2009.

The Trotters are unbeaten in four games now (1W 3D), their second-longest run without defeat this season (six games in November).

Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard netted on the last occasion these sides met, though Bolton still won 2-1 at Goodison Park.

There have been three red cards in the last five clashes between the Trotters and the Toffees in all competitions.

Brighton v Arsenal

Arsenal will be without captain Thomas Vermaelen (ankle) for Saturday's FA Cup fourth-round tie at Brighton.

Midfielders Abou Diaby (thigh) and Tomas Rosicky (calf) are set to be available again, but Mikel Arteta (calf), Francis Coquelin (hamstring) remain out.

Forward Gervinho is away at the African Nations Cup and goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski (foot) is not yet in contention.

This will be only the fourth time the clubs have met in the FA Cup and the third time in the fourth round. Arsenal have won all three previous ties without needing a replay.

Setback: Tomas Rosicky (left) has played only four times for Arsenal this term

Setback: Tomas Rosicky (left) has played only four times for Arsenal this term

Their last meeting came in the fourth round in 1988, with The Gunners claiming a 2-1 victory.

Brighton have won their last two home FA Cup ties against Premier League opposition.

Arsenal are unbeaten in 33 games against lower ranked sides in the FA Cup, not losing since a 0-1 defeat at Sheffield United in 1996.

The Gunners have won none of their last three games on the road, losing one (v Chelsea) and drawing two (v Swansea in the FA Cup and v Southampton).

Brighton and Hove Albion defeated Newcastle United in the third round of the 1983 competition as they did earlier this campaign; they went on to reach the final 30 years ago.

The Gunners have not kept a clean sheet in any of their last seven away FA Cup games, shipping 12 in total in this away run.

Arsenal provisional squad:
Szczesny, Gibbs, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Sagna, Podolski, Cazorla,
Walcott, Ramsey, Wilshere, Giroud, Mannone, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Santos,
Arshavin, Jenkinson, Diaby, Rosicky.

Derby v Blackburn
The two sides have been played each on 10 previous occasions in the FA Cup, with both sides progressing five times apiece.

The last meeting between these Championship rivals came back in 2001 at this stage, when Blackburn won 5-2 away in a replay after a 0-0 draw at Ewood Park.

Blackburn have lost their last four away games in the FA Cup.

The Rams have won five and lost none of their last six home FA Cup matches against teams from the same division.

Overall, the Rams have suffered just one defeat in their last five games, winning two and drawing two.

Blackburn have won two and lost just one of their last four trips to the home of the Rams, drawing the other 1-1 earlier this season.

Huddersfield v Leicester
Huddersfield and Leicester have never met in the FA Cup.
The Terriers have won four out of their last five home games in the cup (1L).

The Foxes have struggled of late on the road in the FA Cup, winning only once in nine games (D1 L7).

Jermaine Beckford has scored seven goals in his last five FA Cup appearances and 16 in 19 overall.

Simon Grayson’s Huddersfield side have won just one of their last 13 games (1-0 v Charlton in FA Cup), losing six and drawing six.

Leicester have won each of their last five games, netting 14 goals and conceding just one goal in the process, with that goal against coming in their 6-1 thrashing of Huddersfield on January 1st.

Hull v Barnsley
The two sides met in the third round in 1958, with the tie going to a replay after finishing 1-1. The Tigers eventually progressed to the fourth round after securing a 2-0 victory.

The Tigers have reached the fourth round 23 times, progressing 12 times, including in three of their last four at this stage.

The Tykes have won just one of their last eight fourth round games on the road outright; though they have drawn five of these and gone on to win the replay on each occasion.

Barnsley are enjoying a three game unbeaten streak (W2 D1), their longest run without defeat this season.
On home soil, Hull have enjoyed just one win in their last four games, drawing two and losing one.

The last four clashes between these Championship rivals have all ended in home wins, while only one of the last eight has been won by the away side.

Macclesfield v Wigan

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez looks set to make several changes for Saturday's FA Cup fourth-round tie against Macclesfield.

Roger Espinoza and Angelo Henriquez are likely to start after making their Wigan debuts in the third-round win over Bournemouth, while Callum McManaman and Fraser Fyvie could also make rare appearances for the Latics.

Arouna Kone is unavailable as he is on African Nations Cup duty with Ivory Coast while Antolin Alcaraz (groin), Ivan Ramis (knee), Adrian Lopez (hamstring), midfielders Ben Watson (broken leg) and Albert Crusat (knee) and striker Ryo Miyaichi (ankle) are still unavailable.

Cup shock: Macclesfield players celebrate after eliminating Cardiff in round three

Cup shock: Macclesfield players celebrate after eliminating Cardiff in round three

This is the first time in Macclesfield’s history that they’ve reached the fourth round.

The Latics and the Silkmen have never met in the FA Cup before.
Wigan haven’t advanced through the fourth round since 1987, where they claimed a 1-0 victory against Norwich City.

The Silkmen have never defeated top flight opposition in the FA Cup.

Despite enduring another difficult season, Wigan are unbeaten in their last three games on the road, winning two and drawing one.

Matthew Barnes-Homer has scored six goals in his last five appearances in all competitions for the Silkmen.

Wigan have won both previous competitive meetings with Macclesfield, beating them 1-0 away and 2-0 at home in the 1998/99 division two.

Wigan provisional squad: Al
Habsi, Pollitt, Boyce, Caldwell, Ramis, Figueroa, Beausejour, Jones,
Maloney, Espinoza, McCarthy, McArthur, Stam, McManaman, Di Santo,
Henriquez, Boselli, Fyvie, Redmond, Mustoe, Orsula, Morris.

Middlesbrough v Aldershot
Boro and Aldershot will meet for the first time in the competition in this clash.

The Shots have scored eight goals in three FA Cup games so far this season, though they are yet to face a team from a higher division.

Aldershot have not won away from home against a side from a higher division since 1983, when they won 3-1 at Portsmouth.

‘Boro have won 11 of their last 15 home FA Cup ties against sides from lower divisions than them (D3 L1).

At the Riverside, ‘Boro have lost just one of their last six games, winning the other five.

Aldershot’s Danny Hylton has only scored one league goal in 19 games all season, but has netted seven times in three FA Cup appearances for the Shots.

Aldershot Town have made the fourth round of the FA Cup for the first time since 1987, when they lost to Barnsley.

Norwich v Luton

Norwich manager Chris Hughton will again rotate his squad for Saturday's FA Cup fourth-round tie with Blue Square Premier side Luton at Carrow Road.

Declan Rudd will come into goal, while the likes of fit-again midfielder Andrew Surman, playmaker David Fox and winger Elliott Bennett are likely to get a chance to impress.

Full-back Steven Whittaker (hip) has resumed full training this week, so could come back into contention, but centre-half Sebastien Bassong (calf) may be rested again while striker Steve Morison (thigh) and England goalkeeper John Ruddy (thigh) remain sidelined.

This will be the fourth meeting between the Canaries and the Hatters in the FA Cup; the Hatters the first two, including the1959 semi, before Norwich won the most recent clash.

Cupset: Non-league Luton knocked out Wolves in the third round

Cupset: Non-league Luton knocked out Wolves in the third round

The last clash between these sides in the cup also came in the fourth round and Norwich won 2-0 (1976).

It’s the first time since 2007 that Luton have made it to the fourth round. That year, they were eliminated by Blackburn Rovers.

Luton haven’t beaten a Premier League side since 1993/94, when they defeated West Ham 3-2 in sixth round replay.

Chris Hughton’s Canaries have managed just one win in their last seven games (3-0 v Peterborough in the FA Cup), losing five and drawing one.
The Canaries have won their last three against Luton in all competitions, winning both meetings in 2006/07 3-2.

Norwich provisional squad:
Rudd, Barnett, Martin, R Bennett, Tierney, Fox, Surman, Snodgrass,
Johnson, E Bennett, Jackson, Steer, Garrido, Tettey, Pilkington, Kane,
Holt, Whittaker, Hoolahan.

QPR v MK Dons
The R’s and the Dons met for the first time in any competition in the FA Cup last season, where they drew the original fixture 1-1 before QPR won 1-0 at Loftus Road, courtesy of a Danny Gabbidon strike.

The R’s have not won an FA Cup tie without the use of a replay since January 1997, when they beat Barnsley 3-2 at this stage in 1997.

MK Dons have scored 10 goals in their last four FA Cup games and they have never helped them reach the fourth round for the first time.

The Hoops have been improving under Harry Redknapp and remain unbeaten in 2013, winning two, drawing three, scoring four and shipping just two in the process.

The Dons have won two and drawn two of their last four games, shipping a total of just two goals in those four fixtures.

Milton Keynes eliminated a higher ranked side for the first time in their history in the third round of this season, beating Sheffield Wednesday 2-0 in a replay.

Reading v Sheffield United

Reading are without striker Jason Roberts (hip) for Saturday's FA Cup fourth round clash against Sheffield United.

Midfielder Jem Karacan suffered an unspecified knock in training but should be fit, while goalkeeper Alex McCarthy (shoulder) and midfielder Hope Akpan (cup-tied) are unavailable.

Striker Adam Le Fondre could start after scoring two vital goals as a substitute in the Royals' 2-1 Barclays Premier League win over Newcastle last weekend.

Royal no show: Jason Roberts (left) has been ruled out for Reading

Royal no show: Jason Roberts (left) has been ruled out for Reading

Reading’s only previous encounter against the Blades was back in 1998 and ended in a 1-0 home victory for the Sheffield side.

Reading have kept only two clean sheets in 15 home cup ties.
The Blades have only won once in their last 18 away FA Cup games to higher level opposition, drawing three and losing 14.

The Royals have won their last three games in a row, the first time they’ve managed consecutive wins this season, with Adam Le Fondre netting five goals in total in those games.

Reading have won five of their last six FA Cup games against sides from lower leagues, though they did lose their last one at home (0-1 v Stevenage last season).

The Blades are unbeaten in five against Reading in all competitions, winning four.

United have also won their last three at the Madejski Stadium, not tasting defeat there since the 2006/07 Premier League.

Reading provisional squad:
Federici, Ugwu, Taylor, Gunter, Kelly, Cummings, Pearce, Morrison,
Mariappa, Shorey, Harte, McAnuff, Carrico, Tabb, Karacan, Kebe,
McCleary, Robson-Kanu, Leigertwood, Le Fondre, Hunt, Pogrebnyak.

Manchester United v Fulham

Ashley Young and Jonny Evans will remain on the sidelines for Manchester United's FA Cup fourth round tie with Fulham at Old Trafford.

England winger Young suffered a knee injury against Liverpool a fortnight ago, whilst Evans (hamstring) has not featured since the FA Cup draw at West Ham three weeks ago.

United manager Sir Alex Ferguson must decide whether to stick with David De Gea in goal or recall Anders Lindegaard, who took over for the replay win against the Hammers.

Old Trafford return: Dimitar Berbatov left Manchester United to join Fulham last summer

Old Trafford return: Dimitar Berbatov left Manchester United to join Fulham last summer

Fulham midfielder Kieran Richardson will miss the chance to take on former club Manchester United.

The 28-year-old suffered a calf injury in last weekend's defeat at Manchester City and will not be fit in time for the game at Old Trafford, although he is likely to return to training next week.

Mahamadou Diarra (knee) is not likely to play again for a month whilst Kerim Frei (pelvis) is also absent.

The two clubs have met nine times before in the FA Cup, with United progressing through the last seven after elimination in the first two (1905 and 1908).

The last time they played each other in the fourth round was in 1979, when the Red Devils won 1-0 in a home replay after drawing 1-1 in London.

United have only lost twice in their last 18 FA Cup games at home, winning 14.

Fulham have won 10 out of their last 11 FA Cup fourth round ties, though they were eliminated at this stage last season (to Everton).

Robin Van Persie has scored in each of his last six games for United (seven goals in total) and has bagged 11 in his last 11 appearances.

Martin Jol’s Whites have registered just two wins in their last nine games, losing four and drawing three.

The Red Devils have won their last 10 at home to Fulham in all competitions, not even sharing the spoils with the Whites since a 1-3 defeat in October 2003.

Manchester United provisional squad:
Lindegaard, De Gea, Amos, Smalling, Vidic, Ferdinand, Buttner, Evra,
Cleverley, Giggs, Anderson, Scholes, Carrick, Kagawa, Nani, Hernandez,
Rooney, Welbeck, Van Persie.

Fulham provisional squad:
Schwarzer, Somogyi, Etheridge, Riether, Hangeland, Hughes, Senderos,
Riise, Briggs, Dejagah, Baird, Sidwell, Karagounis, Kacaniklic, Duff,
Kasami, Ruiz, Rodallega, Berbatov, Petric, Davies.

Brentford v Chelsea
The only time the West London clubs have met in the FA Cup was in 1950, where Chelsea won 1-0 at Griffin Park.

The Blues have won 15 of their last 16 FA Cup fourth round ties, losing the other on penalties to Everton.

Chelsea have only lost one of their last 35 FA Cup games outright; 0-1 v Barnsley in March 2008 (W29 D5 L1).

The Blues have shipped just nine goals in their last 13 away FA Cup games combined, and never more than once in single match in this run.

The Bees have won just one of their last 13 FA Cup games against

Premier League sides; beating Sunderland at this stage in 2006 (W1 D3 L9).

Juan Mata has now scored four goals and assisted five in just eight FA Cup appearances for Chelsea.

Frank Lampard has been involved in 10 goals in his last nine FA Cup appearances; scoring six and assisted four.

Leeds v Tottenham
The two clubs have faced each other five times in the FA Cup before, with Leeds winning just one tie (sixth round in 1972).

The most recent meeting came back in 2010, in the fourth round, when the original tie ended 2-2. The replay saw Spurs win 3-1 at Elland Road, courtesy of a Jermain Defoe hat-trick.

Spurs have kept three clean sheets in their last four away FA Cup games, but have failed to score in three of the four themselves.

Leeds have been eliminated by North London clubs in each of the last three FA Cups, losing to Tottenham in 2010 and Arsenal in 2011 and 2012.

At Elland Road, Leeds have lost just one of their last eight games (W6 D1), although that defeat came against another Premier League side, Chelsea, 5-1 in the Capital One Cup.

AVB’s Tottenham side are now unbeaten in eight games, winning five and drawing three.

After no goals in his first 13 games in the competition, Gareth Bale has scored in three successive FA Cup games.

Oldham v Liverpool
The two clubs met last year in the third round, in a one-sided match dominated by Liverpool who won 5-1.

Oldham have lost all four matches against Liverpool in the FA Cup.
The Reds have won five and lost just two of their last nine away games in the FA Cup (D2).

Oldham have won two of their last four FA Cup games against Premier League sides, including a win against Merseysiders Everton in 2008.

The Latics have lost each of their last four games at Boundary Park, conceding exactly two goals in each of those defeats.

Brendan Rodgers’ Reds are enjoying a good run of form, winning four of their last five (losing the other one), with Luis Suarez netting six goals in total in those games.

The Reds have won their last three against Oldham in all competitions, but did lose 2-3 at Boundary Park in the Premier League back in May 1993.

Vegard Forren signs for Southampton

Forren policy: Defender seals 4.2m move to Southampton after snubbing Liverpool

, scoring six goals.

Adkins was dismissed by the
Southampton board on Friday morning despite a recent win against relegation
rivals Aston Villa and a draw against European champions Chelsea.

Pochettino said: 'I know about the Southampton squad because I've been researching them for several weeks.'

New faces: Mauricio Pochettino also was appointed as Southampton manger on Friday

New faces: Mauricio Pochettino also was appointed as Southampton manger on Friday

The 20-cap former Argentina defender said he had spoken to Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho about the move, while conceding he has to address the issue of supporter unrest.

'The challenge is to be part of this project, the kindness of the supporters is the biggest challenge I have,' he said at a news conference. 'They are the biggest part of this club and I hope I can convince them with honest and hard work.

'I am very passionate about the Premier League. I have seen many games, the Premier League is an attractive league and I have spoken to people at length about it, people such as Jose Mourinho, who is a good friend of mine.

'He told me the best football in the world is being played here.'

Roberto Mancini faces no punishment from the FA for criticism of referee

Mancini escapes FA rap for claiming referee 'ate too much at Christmas'

By
Liv Lee

PUBLISHED:

14:42 GMT, 10 January 2013

|

UPDATED:

16:27 GMT, 10 January 2013

Roberto Mancini will not be disciplined by the FA for his criticism of referee Kevin Friend on Boxing Day.

The Manchester City manager said that Friend may
have ‘ate too much’ at Christmas after their 1-0 defeat at Sunderland and while the FA have decided not to punish Mancini, they have
reminded him of his responsibilities.

Had they taken action he
would have been facing a touchline ban or a fine.

Mancini will not face any punishment from the FA for his criticism of referee Kevin Friend

Off the hook: Mancini will not face any punishment from the FA for his criticism of referee Kevin Friend

Mancini was angry because he felt City deserved a free-kick following Craig Gardner’s challenge on Pablo Zabaleta in the build-up to Adam Johnson's winner.

He blamed both the referee and the linesman, saying: ‘The referee may have had too much to eat for Christmas. The linesman, too. It wasn’t a great game from them.

'That’s the problem we have sometimes in football. I don’t see how the referee can’t see the foul in the build-up. I don’t know how.’

The Italian was asked to offer observations about his comments by last Friday and after he sent the FA an explanation of his words the matter was dropped.

Harry Redknapp says Roberto Mancini dealt with Mario Balotelli wrong but brands the striker "difficult"

I would never do what Mancini did: Redknapp scolds City boss but brands Balotelli 'difficult'

By
Duncan Bech, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

23:31 GMT, 4 January 2013

|

UPDATED:

23:31 GMT, 4 January 2013

QPR manager Harry Redknapp has questioned the wisdom of managers confronting players after reflecting on the training ground clash between Roberto Mancini and Mario Balotelli.

An argument erupted during Manchester City's practice session yesterday that saw the Italians grapple with each other and Mancini today admitted he lost his temper for 'one or two seconds'.

Redknapp insists such incidents are rare in the modern game and believes there is little to be gained from reading players the riot act.

Redknapp agrees Balotelli is a handful but thinks Mancini got it all wrong

Why always him Redknapp agrees Balotelli is a handful but thinks Mancini got it all wrong

'You shouldn't get in those situations, what can you win It can't happen with players now. Shouting and screaming at players doesn't get you anywhere,' he said.

'Years ago it used to happen. Years and years ago some managers would be throwing cups around. Those days are long gone.

'You lose their respect if you behave like that, you have to talk to them.

'Roberto Mancini's a top manager but I'm sure Balotelli can get you like that. He's difficult.'

Balotelli and Mancini were back in training on Friday morning aftere their bust-up

Glassy eyed: Balotelli and Mancini were back in training on Friday morning aftere their bust-up

On Thursday the two had to be pulled apart as Mancini completely lost his temper

Feud: On Thursday the two had to be pulled apart as Mancini completely lost his temper

There was little danger of Redknapp dueling with any member of QPR's squad yesterday after the 1-0 midweek victory over Chelsea had sent spirits soaring at Loftus Road.

The 65-year-old hopes the club's first win at their west London rivals for 30 years will provide the turning point in their battle against relegation from the Barclays Premier League.

'That win brings the pack back a bit now. We're still adrift but at least we have half a chance. If we can put back to back wins together anything can happen,' Redknapp said.

'Everyone's buzzing on the back of Chelsea, the whole place feels better. There's nothing like it.

'I've been through it so many times before when that big win can change everything. Hopefully it can do that for us now.

'Because of the situation we're in we'll have to claw out results, get some results and nick a 1-0 where we can. We're not going to smash teams up.'

Nelson, Onuoha and Hill celebrate as QPR finally won again against Chelsea

Relief: Nelson, Onuoha and Hill celebrate as QPR finally won again against Chelsea

QPR host West Brom in the third round of the FA Cup tomorrow and Redknapp will give the competition the respect he feels it deserves.

'I often wonder why clubs in the middle of the table put weakened teams out,' he said.

'The only chance you've got of winning something in this country unless you're one of the big four or five is the FA or Capital One cup.

'I don't know why clubs don't have a go for it. Going to Wembley is fantastic.

'Winning's a good habit to get into. I thought we could have taken something out of our recent game against West Brom.

'If you ask the four teams in the semi-finals of the League Cup, they'll all want to be in that final.

'Chelsea might be a bit blasi, but Swansea, Aston Villa and Bradford would love it.'