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07 December 2023

Man City's Lopes hoping for another chance to send Watford out of FA Cup


Manchester City teenager Marcos Lopes is hoping manager Manuel Pellegrini will give him another chance to help send Watford out of the FA Cup again.

The midfielder, 18, featured as City completed a 9-0 aggregate League Cup semi-final win over West Ham in midweek and played a part in two of City's goals in the 3-0 second-leg win at Upton Park while also clipping the bar in an impressive display.

Now the Portuguese rising star is hoping to get a chance against Watford - a year on from becoming City's youngest scorer when he netted in the 3-0 win over the Championship side in the third round of last season's FA Cup.

"Cup games represent a big opportunity for the younger players at the club and I'm looking forward to being involved in more matches," Lopes said.

"I was lucky enough to score a goal when I came on against Watford the last time we played them and it's a night I will never forget," he added ahead of Saturday's fourth round tie at Eastlands.

"I can remember everything about it from being named in the squad, to the warm up and finally the goal. Afterwards all my friends and family were congratulating me and as I say, it's a night I will always remember.

"Now we have Watford again and I hope I can play again or be in the squad because it is a team I will always have good memories of playing against.

"It's a different level playing for the senior team - a high-intensity 90 minutes, but it's good for me to learn with these players and play these games. I have to do my work and my job and hopefully I'll get more chances.

"I'm ready and will give one hundred percent because these are the games when you can make an impression."

The midfielder also believes City can win the quadruple this season - the Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup and Champions League.

He added: "If we are in all four competitions, we can win all four competitions. We will see. I think we can do it because we have too much quality in this team and we can make things that have never been done before.

"It would be good if we won all of these trophies and our team is capable of doing this. People say that the League Cup is not important but we don't care about that. We just want to win the competitions this season."

Watford were beaten 3-0 at City in the FA Cup last season when Gianfranco Zola was in charge. Now another Italian, Beppe Sannino, will try to upset the odds - something he believes is a lot more likely than in his homeland.

"Here you have the FA Cup; in Italy we have the Coppa Italia," he said. "The difference is that in Italy, from the start you know how it will end. The best eight teams go straight into the last 16, and the strongest side always plays at home.

"Last year Wigan won the (FA) Cup and were relegated. This year Sheffield United, a team near the bottom of League One, beat Aston Villa, a team from the middle of the Premier League, away from home.

"In Italy it could never happen. It's just impossible. The spirit of English football is all there, in the FA Cup. It is very difficult for the small clubs to win, but they always have a chance."