Man Utd v Coventry preview
Manchester United host Championship side Coventry in the third round of the Carling Cup.
By Steven Morrison
Last Updated: 26/09/07 11:58am
Manchester United will be looking to make up for an embarrassing campaign in last season's Carling Cup as they start this year's competition against Championship side Coventry.
The Red Devils only reached the fourth round of last year's tournament - they narrowly beat Crewe in their first game but were then knocked out by Southend after fielding a near full-strength side.
Coventry had an equally humbling tournament; they failed to make even the second round after being eliminated by League Two side Hereford in their first game.
The Championship outfit have a poor recent record against Manchester United, the Sky Blues last beat the Premier League champions in 1997. However that victory was the only win in the last 24 games between the sides.
Despite that record 11,500 Coventry fans will be in attendance at Old Trafford, as Iain Dowie looks to orchestrate a cup moment to remember for the club.
His side have already won twice in the competition this season and have not conceded a single goal, putting both Notts County and Carlisle out of the cup in earlier rounds.
United are set to name some of their talented youngsters in the stating line-up and Alex Ferguson could give a full debut to defender Jonny Evans.
They are also likely to use the tie to ease some of their star players back to fitness, with Wayne Rooney, Louis Saha and Owen Hargreaves likely to feature at some stage.
Coventry will continue their cup policy of playing Andy Marshall in goal in place of Dimi Konstantopoulos, and could make other changes from the side that lost 4-1 to Ipswich at the weekend.
The sides last met in the League Cup in the 1980-81 season, when Coventry won both games of a two legged tie to knock United out in the second round.
The Sky Blues went on to reach the semi-finals that year, which matched their best ever performance in the cup.
However a Coventry victory in tonight's game seems unlikely with United being tipped to go on and lift the trophy at Wembley next spring.