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Nani, Chicharito shine in United’s nervy FA Cup win

Nani scored one and made the other as Manchester United beat Reading 2-1 to book their place in the FA Cup quarterfinals on Monday.

The Portuguese winger was only brought on as a substitute because of a first-half injury to Phil Jones but he certainly made his mark with a powerful second-half strike before setting up Javier Hernandez with a pinpoint cross.

United will now face the winner of Chelsea and Middlesbrough in the quarterfinals as Alex Ferguson’s side continue to challenge for trophies on three fronts despite a late scare when Jobi McAnuff pulled one back for Reading.

“I’m satisfied with the quality of our play,” said Ferguson, who made eight changes to the side that drew 1-1 with Real Madrid in last week’s Champions League clash.  “We should have punished them better though.

“At 2-0 you are never comfortable. Nani deserved to be man of the match, his contribution was terrific. I had a feeling he would win the match for us. We are at home in the next round and we would take that against anyone.”

His Reading counterpart Brian McDermott took solace from the overall performance.

“We came to Manchester United and put on a good performance as well, and we’re disappointed not to be coming away with a result,” said McDermott, whose side face a crucial Premier League relegation clash with fellow strugglers Wigan next Saturday.

The Portuguese winger was certainly out to prove a point after not making the starting line-up and when Antonio Valencia laid the ball to him in the area in the 69th minute, he took a touch before rifling the ball home for just his third of the season.

Le Fondre fired at De Gea within moments but the tie was all but put beyond the visitors in the 72nd minute when Nani crossed for Hernandez who headed in at the front post.

With nine minutes remaining, Chris Smalling failed to clear a cross and McAnuff pounced to pull one back for Reading but they could not get a second to force the replay at their home soil as Le Fondre headed a corner just over in stoppage time.
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