Ferguson to rest Manchester United stars for West Ham FA Cup replay

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 16 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 16 January, 2013, 4:36am


Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson plans to rest key players for today's FA Cup replay with West Ham United as the English giants eye a treble success.

Seven points clear at the top of the Premier League and with an eagerly awaited last 16 Champions League encounter with Real Madrid on the horizon, United will book a fourth-round home tie with Fulham or Blackpool if they overcome the Hammers at Old Trafford.

It is United's sixth match in a little over three weeks. And should they overcome West Ham, United face five league and cup games before they travel to Spain to take on Real Madrid on February 13.

"I shall continue to juggle my squad because although December was a busy month, there is still no let-up," said Ferguson.

"The replay with West Ham is quickly followed by an away trip to Spurs. Then we will hopefully have a fourth round tie against Fulham or Blackpool to give us another two-game week before another busy week of fixtures against Southampton and Fulham."

Midfielder Michael Carrick, defender Patrice Evra and winger Ashley Young were all absent for the original tie, which ended 2-2 at Upton Park.

Swansea City will visit the Emirates Stadium today hoping to repeat their December league victory against Arsenal and set up a fourth-round trip to face Championship club Brighton. They will face an Arsenal side still smarting from a 2-0 defeat by Manchester City. "I am confident the group will respond on this defeat, and I'm confident we can get a result on Wednesday," said Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen.