Lee Johnson
Johnson is anticipating a roasting atmosphere when United come to town. Getty Images

Bristol City boss Lee Johnson has call upon a vociferous Ashton Gate to inspire his side to a shock Carabao Cup victory over Manchester United on Wednesday (20 December).

The Championship promotion contenders have already knocked out Watford, Stoke City and Crystal Palace en route to the last eight and welcome Jose Mourinho's holders to the West Country with another cup upset in their sights.

Johnson has hailed the improved atmosphere since the renovations to Ashton Gate for the start of last season and feels the noise created by the supporters could make for an intimidating setting for United.

"We have a group who want to prove how good they are," he told reporters. "It is a chance for the players and the club to enhance its reputation.

"I am sure United can handle the pressure. The players that they've got in the squad and the manager they've got is full of world-class talent all round.

"This is a difficult place to play. There will be an unbelievable atmosphere and if we can get on the front foot and cause a few problems then who knows?"

Four league wins in a row mean City are third in the Championship, just four points adrift of the automatic promotion places as the second half of the campaign approaches.

Though Johnson admits much of his focus is on the upcoming trip to Queens Park Rangers on Saturday, he is unable to rest players for the game due to a seven-man injury list.

Gary O'Neil, Famara Diedhiou, Jens Hegeler, Ivan Lucic (all knee), Eros Pisano (hamstring) and Callum O'Dowda are missing for the hosts, while Milan Djuric is unavailable as he prepares to have surgery on a long-running groin problem.

"I haven't got a choice [to rest players], we've got five or six injuries to key players," he explained. "That enabled me in the earlier rounds to make changes, and there might be one or two, but not wholesale changes.

"No boosts sadly. We've lost Djuric which is well-documented, he's having his operation tomorrow. That's a big loss to us but hopefully it'll only be three to five weeks that he is out for.

"Some big names for us on the injury list but I am not complaining because it gives the chance to some young talent that we've got in our ranks as well.

"There will be three or four Under-23s the bench tomorrow and I won't fear putting them on. We've got six players playing out position in our first team."

United however are expected to rotate and that could see recalls for Sergio Romero, Luke Shaw, Matteo Darmian and Viktor Lindelof, while Zlatan Ibrahimovic could make his first start since returning from a long-term knee injury.

But regardless of the personnel involved, Johnson is under no illusions over the challenge facing his side.

"Any player associated with Man United, the quality of the squad mean it is going to be a good side," Johnson noted. "Ideally we'd like to play their best team. They've got nine games in December so you would expect them to make some changes.

"Maybe that is the area we can capitalise on. Players coming back to full fitness who haven't played, who haven't played for a while. That is probably the chink in their armour."

Jose Mourinho
Mourinho is likely to ring the changes for the trip to City. Getty