Friday 28, September 2012
Preview: Manchester United vs Tottenham Hotspur
MANCHESTER UNITED and Tottenham Hotspur prepare to face each other
in the Premier League this weekend, after both teams had success in the Capital
One Cup midweek, writes Will Moorcroft.
United narrowly beat Newcastle at Old Trafford, whilst Spurs won comfortably away at League One outfit Carlisle United.
In the league, both clubs are on winning runs; United have won four in a row since their opening day defeat to Everton, while Spurs will be looking to make it three wins in a row for manager André Villas-Boas. Unfortunately for the London club, they have not won at Old Trafford since 1989, and their last victory over United came in 2001, at White Hart Lane.
Nonetheless, records are there to be broken, and Jermain Defoe looks like a player who could end Spurs’ North-West nightmare, with four goals in five games this season.
Aided by the pace of Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon, and the flair and creativity of Clint Dempsey and Gylfi Sigurdsson - who scored his first goal for the club this week - Spurs find themselves with a strong team, more than capable of giving United a good game, especially when they’re missing captain Nemanja Vidic at the back..
At the other end though is the only player to have scored more goals than Defoe this season; Robin van Perise. The Dutchman has settled into Old Trafford with apparent ease, scoring five goals in five games, including the winner against Liverpool last time out, so that will give United confidence that they can keep their winning run against Spurs going.
They will also be buoyed by Wayne Rooney’s impressive performance on Wednesday after a month out with a thigh injury. Add that to his record against Tottenham, five goals in his last five appearances against Spurs, then there is reason for the Londoners to worry.
Both managers are likely to rotate their squads after Wednesday’s changes for the Cup. United will probably see the likes of Evra, Ferdinand, Kagawa, Nani and van Persie return to the starting line-up, whilst Fergie must consider how early to bring Wayne Rooney back, so not to risk further injury.
Antonio Valencia is a doubt though after picking up an ankle injury last Sunday at Anfield, and long-term injuries Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Nemanja Vidic are all out.
Similarly for André Villas-Boas, the likes of Brad Friedel, Clint Dempsey, Aaron Lennon and Jermain Defoe are likely to return to the starting line-up after being rested against Carlisle.
Scott Parker and Younes Kaboul remain injured, and are unlikely to be in contention.
Provisional Squad: De Gea, Lindegaard, Evra, Ferdinand, Evans, Buttner, Wootton, Anderson, Giggs, Carrick, Nani, Scholes, Cleverley, Fletcher, Powell, Kagawa, Hernandez, Welbeck, van Persie, Henriquez, Macheda, Bebe
Provisional Squad: Friedel, Lloris, Vertonghen, Gallas, Naughton, Dawson, Walker, Assou-Ekotto, Dempsey, Huddlestone, Lennon, Bale, Sigurdsson, Sandro, Townsend, Adebayor, Defoe, Dembele
Quays News prediction: 2-2 draw. This will be a hard fought match, and with the talent on offer, the teams will cancel each other out. Spurs will want to break their Old Trafford duck, and their form suggests they might just get a result.
Manchester United vs. Tottenham Hotspur (Barclays Premier League, 17:30)
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