Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester.
Date: Sat 7th Dec, 2013.
Kick off: 12.45pm.
Referee: Andre Marriner.
UK TV: BT Sport.
Well both teams go into this one still reeling from defeats in midweek.
For the Magpies, Alan Pardew’s four game winning streak was brought to a shuddering halt after a tactical masterclass in adversity from Swansea’s Michael Laudrup. After losing their third striker Alvaro Vazquez to a groin strain, Laudrup reacted by bringing on Nathan Dyer and using Jonjo Shelvey in a so called ‘false nine’ role. They went on to transform the game with a goal each, with Shelvey also forcing Mathieu Debuchy into scoring an own goal for a 3-0 defeat.
Newcastle United are still roughly where they should be in the league though, seventh. Meanwhile, Manchester United certainly aren’t after their midweek defeat to Everton. The Red Devils thought they’d try a grumpy Glaswegian as manager for a change, but now find themselves languishing two places below the Magpies in ninth place with only six wins from their fourteen Premier League games so far.
Anyway, we’ll have two teams looking to bounce back like Alan Partridge this afternoon.
Last six Premier League games, most recent first.
I won’t linger for long on this section as I should be posting the final team sheets very soon (around an hour before kick off).
Once again, Newcastle United are doing pretty well on the injury front, with only long term injury, Ryan Taylor definitely out at the moment. Hatem Ben Arfa will return to contention after recovering from illness and Papiss Cisse is a slight doubt with his heel but we’ll see.
On the other side, Michael Carrick will definitely be out and there will be no ‘Fatman and Robin’ partnership up front for the Reds as Rooney is suspended and Van Persie will be a doubt, along with Shinji Kagawa.
What the managers have been saying.
David Moyes: “They had a defeat against Swansea. But they had four straight wins before that, which is a great record to get, because I know what’s it’s like to win three or four games in a row in the Premier League, it’s a hard thing to do. So congratulations to them, but obviously they come to Old Trafford and we’re going to make it as hard and difficult for them as we can.”
Alan Pardew: “I think there’ll be a reaction from Manchester United to their defeat and likewise from us so it’ll make for a game which is quite pressurised. Therefore we need to have calm heads in that game – and hopefully we can retain the ball better than we did at Swansea. They (Manchester United) had gone 12 games unbeaten up until that game so it’s not like there’s a crisis there. They’ve lost a game, which anybody can do in the Premier League at the moment, and their reaction is going to be a little bit larger than ours, so I think there’s a bit of pressure on them.”
My usual reminders. This game will broadcast live in the UK on BT Sport, but I will post some links for those of you who can’t get it, as well as posting highlights and a video of the whole game for those of you who can’t watch it live.
Howay the Lads!
Manchester United (4-4-2): David De Gea (G); Rafael, Jonny Evans, Nemanja Vidic (c), Patrice Evra; Nani, Phil Jones, Tom Cleverley, Adnan Januzaj; Javier Hernandez, Robin Van Persie.
Subs: Anders Lindegaard (G), RioFerdinand, Anderson, Antonio Valencia, Ashley Young, Wifried Zaha, Danny Welbeck.
Newcastle United (4-3-3): Tim Krul (G); Mathieu Debuchy, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini (c), Davide Santon; Vurnon Anita, Cheick Tiote, Yohan Cabaye; Moussa Sissoko, Loic Remy, Yoan Gouffran
Subs: Rob Elliot (G), Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Jonas Gutierrez, Gabriel Obertan, Hatem Ben Arfa, Papiss Cisse, Shola Ameobi.