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Bristol City v Manchester United preview: Carabao Cup quarter-final


Manchester United will be looking to avoid complacency when they face in-form Championship side Bristol City in the Carabao Cup quarter-final at Ashton Gate on Wednesday, live on Sky Sports Football.

Jose Mourinho used the Carabao Cup as a springboard for success during his debut season at Manchester United as his team beat Southampton 3-2 in the final before going on to win the Europa League.

While Mourinho is expected to make changes to his side for the trip to Ashton Gate, he will be expecting his players to remain professional against one of the Championship's surprise packages this season.

Bristol City have defied pre-season expectations by challenging at the top of the Championship table and they currently sit third following a 2-1 victory over Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

Team news

Lee Johnson will be without a whole host of first-team players with Famara Diedhiou, Gary O'Neil, Jens Hegeler, Ivan Lucic (all knee), Callum O'Dowda (ankle) and Eros Pisano (hamstring) all absent.

Paul Pogba could return to the Manchester United squad after serving a three-match ban

Zlatan Ibrahimovic may make his first competitive start of the season having been so far restricted to substitute appearances following his return from a knee ligament injury.

This will be the first meeting between these sides in the competition, and first of any kind since a top-flight clash in February 1980. Manchester United won that match 4-0, with Joe Jordan scoring twice on top of a Sammy McIlroy strike and an own goal from Geoff Merrick.

Bristol City are the first side from a lower division to eliminate three top-flight clubs in a single League Cup campaign since Bradford City in 2012-13. Only one lower league team has ever knocked out four top-flight sides in one League Cup campaign before - Sheffield Wednesday in 1990-91, who eliminated Derby, Coventry and Chelsea before beating Manchester United in the final.

The Robins have won both of their previous League Cup quarter-final ties, beating Fulham after a replay in 1970-71 and Bradford in 1988-89.

United have now reached the quarter-finals of the League Cup in seven of the last 10 campaigns. They've progressed to the semi-finals in four of the previous six.

But Manchester United have been knocked out in three of their last six League Cup ties against sides from a lower division (Crystal Palace in 2011-12, MK Dons in 2014-15 and Middlesbrough in 2015-16).

Bristol City are the highest scoring team in this season's EFL Cup, with 14 goals in four games.

No manager has won the League Cup more than Jose Mourinho (4 times), with the Portuguese lifting the trophy with Chelsea in 2005, 2007 and 2015, and Manchester United in 2017.

Marcus Rashford (2 goals, 2 assists) and Jesse Lingard (3 goals, 1 assist) have each been involved in 67 per cent of Man Utd's six Carabao Cup goals this season.

Source: SKY Sports

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