United can stroll into the FA Cup fourth round with victory at Wigan | Football

Rasmus Hojlund can open the scoring at Wigan (Picture: Visionhaus/Getty Images)

Could a seismic shock bring the third round of the FA Cup to a shuddering conclusion with League One Wigan beating  Manchester United at the DW Stadium? 

It would be a giant-killing of epic proportions and has to be considered as feasible given United have already lost 14 times in all competitions this season and were woeful in defeat at Nottingham Forest last time out.

An early exit along the road to Wembley could cost Erik Ten Hag his job even though new minority shareholder Sir Jim Ratcliffe, who is taking over football operations at Old Trafford, is believed to back the former Ajax coach.

However, this should be a match which will renew confidence in United’s squad ahead of the weekend showdown with visiting Tottenham and they should stroll to an emphatic victory.

Wigan are just four points above the relegation zone with an immediate return to the Championship after dropping down a level last season already dismissed.

Erik Ten Hag should enjoy a comfortable night at the DW Stadium

Erik Ten Hag should enjoy a comfortable night at the DW Stadium (Picture: AMA/Getty Images)

The competition also represents United’s last chance to win any silverware this term and Ten Hag is set to field a strong side in a bid to return to Wembley after reaching the final last season, when they were beaten 2-1 by Manchester City.

Scoring goals has not been easy for United and they have failed to find the net in five of their last eight matches but this can also be corrected against a club 54 rungs below them in the football ladder.

Rasmus Hojlund missed the defeat to Forest but is expected to return to the fold and, after scoring in the 3-2 victory against Aston Villa on Boxing Day, the Denmark international can break the deadlock at 7/2 with Coral, Ladbrokes and many others.

Bruno Fernandes is also worth backing to find the net and is 9/5 with BetUK and Unibet to make the scoreboard tick over. 

United will want to put to bed early any suggestions they will be beaten by the underdogs so they can be backed to lead HT/FT at Coral’s 4/5 and they can make an easy night of it by giving a large travelling support a big win.

Three of the last four meetings between the clubs have ended in 4-0 victories for United and a repeat of that score is worth a flutter at 12/1 with Betfair.

• Jordan Thompson, who beat Rafael Nadal at the Brisbane International before losing to eventual champion Gregor Dimitrov in the semis, should have an easier time in Adelaide this week. The Australian is worth an each-way bet at 20/1 with bet365.

• Karolina Pliskova is worth a small each-way interest at 50/1 with bet365 for the WTA event at the Adelaide International.


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