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Man Utd: Ten Hag wary of Coventry threat, says Championship the world’s fifth-strongest league


Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag is wary of the threat Coventry City will pose in Sunday’s FA Cup semi-final, describing the Championship as the fifth-strongest league in world football.

Coventry have been the story of the FA Cup this season, reaching the semi-finals for just the second time in their history, having won the competition when they last did so in 1986-87.

They scored two stoppage-time goals in a dramatic 3-2 win over Wolves in the quarter-finals to tee up Sunday’s meeting with United, who need to lift the trophy to salvage some pride from a miserable second season under Ten Hag.

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While the Red Devils are overwhelming favourites to reach the final, Ten Hag does not expect them to have it all their own way at Wembley Stadium.

Speaking to United’s website about the challenge of facing second-tier opponents, Ten Hag said: “I think it’s the fifth division worldwide and it’s a very good league, very competitive.

“It has players who are very fit and also the technical levels are very high, so you have to play your best game if you want to beat them.”

Having suffered penalty heartache against Luton Town when they last visited Wembley for last season’s Championship play-off final, Coventry have regrouped impressively under former United striker Mark Robins.

Despite losing star performers Viktor Gyokeres and Gustavo Hamer last summer, the Sky Blues retain an outside chance of making the play-offs for a second successive campaign.

Ten Hag has been impressed by Robins’ work, saying: “It’s a huge performance from them and they did so well last season.

“They were so close to promotion to the Premier League, then they lost some good players and then you have to rebuild and that’s normal.

“But they are still playing and fighting for promotion because they can still go into the play-offs and go for another chance to get into the Premier League.”

Harry Carr
Harry Carr
Harry is a freelance sports journalist with experience of working for the Racing Post, Stats Perform, Opta Analyst and more, covering major events across all sports but holding a particular love for the beautiful game.


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