Writer: Mike Field
Date:Friday January 4 2008
Mellberg will be making his 250th appearance in claret and blue since joining in July 2001.
He missed the third round tie last season through suspension, so he is relishing the opportunity to put over our Cup bogey team in what may be his last season at the club.
But he knows unless Villa can find some consistency and actually play in both halves of the game, we don't stand a chance against the inform Mancs.
Speaking on the IC Brum website, he said:
'We've really struggled against Manchester United in the past, especially in the FA Cup.
'This is the third time I've played them in the third round and we've been beaten every time. Hopefully we can do better this year.
'We seem to get these tough draws, but we're in good form now and hopefully we can get something out of it.
'We gave them a fright and went ahead in a really good 20-30-minute spell, but then had a really bad 10-15 minutes.
'You must be consistent against these teams and you need to play well over 90 minutes and hopefully we can do that tomorrow.
'We know we can do it because we have done it against top teams such as Chelsea and Arsenal this season.
'But United are so good. If you drop too deep, they will punish you so you can't afford any lapses.
'Maybe within the game you have to raise your lowest level a bit and then try to punish them when you have your good spells.'
One thing is for sure, our defence will need to be at their best, regardless of any injury concerns United may have.
In other news, Martin O'Neill has said that John Carew will be given as long as possible to recover but at the moment it's still touch and go as to whether he will make the match.
There are however no other injury concerns for us as we head into what will no doubt be an interesting, and entertaining game.
Date:Friday January 4 2008
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