FC Bayern vs. Manchester United: View from the opposition

Posted on April 08, 2014  by El Rob  in Champions League, El Rob, Man United, Match Previews   No Comments »
Vidic-BayernAnother brilliant headed goal (and defensive display) by Vidic would be nice.

On Wednesday night, United face their biggest match of the season in Munich. After last week’s stirring 1-1 draw at Old Trafford, the Reds have to summon a performance for the ages to get past European champions Bayern, and reach the Champions League semifinals.

This past weekend, Bayern lost their first match of the Bundesliga season, 1-0 at Augsburg, with a starting XI featuring stars of the world game such as Mitchell Weiser, Pierre Emile Hojbjerg and Ylli Sallahi. United beat Newcastle 4-0, a really good performance that built upon their improving away form. Mr. Moyes was also able to rest key players such as Carrick, Ferdinand and Vidic, while Rafael may be fit to start on Wednesday. Unfortunately, man-of-the-match Juan Mata is cup-tied and therefore unavailable for the game. Robin van Persie is still injured and will be out for some time again, while Wayne Rooney is likely to start after suffering from a toe injury at the weekend. Patrice Evra will be available after a one-match suspension, though – amazingly – there is the possibility that Alex Büttner will get the nod at left back, after a disciplined and controlled defensive performance last week.

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Manchester United v. Aston Villa: A view from the opposition

Posted on March 29, 2014  by El Rob  in Aston Villa, Man United, Match Previews   No Comments »

 article-2524043-1A1F324700000578-864_634x437The reverse fixture saw one of United’s best 2013/14 performances – Danny and Adnan were especially good. 

Coming off another entirely predictable, soul-crushing, unfortunate defeat to local rivals Manchester City, Manchester United take on Aston Villa at Old Trafford on Saturday. Villa Park was the site of one of United’s better team performances in 2013/14, as the Reds ran out 3-0 winners. Since that game, United have lurched from consistently bad performances to awful results, with lots of overlap between the two, of course. To preview the match, we’re got a view from the opposition with Jamie, a Villa fan and NFL blogger at Any Given Sunday Night. You can follow him on Twitter (@JamieCutteridge) here. As always, we welcome feedback in the comments from both sets of fans.

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Manchester United vs. Manchester City: View from the opposition

Posted on March 24, 2014  by El Rob  in El Rob, Man United, Manchester City, Match Previews, Premier League   1 Comment »
Yaya Toure out muscles Fellaini
Fellaini experienced his first Manchester derby in September, as Yaya Touré bossed things at the Etihad.

Manchester United take on local rivals Manchester City at Old Trafford on Tuesday, in a match that will hold massive significance for both sides, though for potentially different reasons. With little else in the league to play for, United will want to keep building the momentum built by their last two wins on the trot – a rarity this season – and to gain some measure of revenge for the 4-1 shellacking received at the Etihad in September. David Moyes will want to see an better performance than United’s last home game – a soul-crushing 3-0 reverse against Liverpool.

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Manchester United vs. Liverpool view from the oppo

Posted on March 16, 2014  by Stretford-end  in Liverpool, Man United, Match Previews   1 Comment »
Manchester United's Robin van Persie celebrates scoring
Robin van Persie will hope to be on the scoresheet when Manchester United take on Liverpool

Manchester United host Liverpool in the 190th match between the two clubs. United haven’t lost at home to the visitors since the 4-1 defeat back in 2009. At that time, United were in the hunt for a second successive European Cup, the Premier League title and the FA Cup. As we now know a Andres Iniesta inspired Barcelona, with a little help from Lionel Messi, stopped United from reclaiming the European title, whilst David Moyes’ Everton beat United on penalties in the semi-final of the cup – with Dimitar Berbatov taking a horrendous spot kick. United did go on to win the title, three on the trot.

Fast forward half a decade and United are looking up at their rivals who are now 11 points clear. It is highly unlikely United will qualify for the Champions League, even with thirty points left to play for. United will be hoping a win over Liverpool will help to raise confidence ahead of the return Champions League fixture on Wednesday, with the home side 2-0 down from the first leg.

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WBA Vs. Manchester United preview view from the oppo

Posted on March 08, 2014  by Stretford-end  in Man United, Match Previews, Premier League, WBA   No Comments »
Manchester United's Wayne Rooney heads at goal against West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League
Wayne Rooney and Manchester United vs. WBA earlier in the season at Old Trafford.

Manchester United travel to WBA in the early kick off hoping to avenge the 2-1 defeat at the hands of their west Midlands opponents earlier in the season. United haven’t played since the disastrous 2-0 defeat away at Greek Champions Olympiakos, which was even worse than the 1-0 defeat away at Lille in 2005, a defeat generally considered the ‘Massimo Taibi benchmark’ of European defeats.

The Hawthorns was the scene of Sir Alex Ferguson’s last match in charge, an epic 5-5 draw – the first of its kind in the Premier League. Fast forward ten months and United are out of the title race, out of both domestic cups and have it all to do in the return leg of the European Cup last 16. David Moyes wrote a letter to Manchester United season ticket holders praising the support from the fans and will no doubt be under pressure yet again to try and close the enormous gap on Manchester City in fourth spot.

Phil Jones (hip), Jonny Evans (calf) and Nani (hamstring) are all doubtful for the visitors, whilst Chris Brunt and James Morrison, who were both injured on international duty, face a late fitness test for the home side.

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Crystal Palace vs. Manchester United view from the oppo

Posted on February 22, 2014  by Stretford-end  in Crystal Palace, Man United, Match Previews, Premier League   No Comments »
Manchester United's Wayne Rooney, left, scores his side's second goal against 10-man Crystal Palace
Wayne Rooney scores a freekick for Manchester United against Crystal Palace at Old Trafford

Manchester United travel to South London today against a Crystal Palace side who haven’t lost at home since a 3-0 thumping at hand of Newcastle United just before Christmas. David Moyes will be surely hoping that this is the fixture that notches up United’s first away win this year. The last away win was over Norwich City by one goal to nil.

Wayne Rooney, who signed a contract extension yesterday, will be looking to get on the scoresheet as he hasn’t found the back of the net since the 3-2 win over Hull post Christmas. The last time United played at Palace was in Rooney’s debut season. The match ended in a dire 0-0 draw.

Manchester United winger Adnan Januzaj could make his first start for the club since January whilst Marouane Fellaini is also in contention. Jonny Evans is still a doubt although Phil Jones is expected to return to first team action.

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Arsenal Vs. Manchester United view from the opposition

Posted on February 11, 2014  by Stretford-end  in Arsenal, Man United, Match Previews, Premier League   No Comments »
Manchester United v Arsenal - Premier League
Robin van Persie scores the winner against Arsenal for Manchester United at Old Trafford

Manchester United travel to the Emirates to take on Arsenal following disappointing results for both clubs over the weekend. The visitors could only manage a draw against bottom club Fulham, whilst Arsenal were hammered 5-1 by a rampant Arsenal. United have only beaten two teams, as it stands this evening, in the top ten – West Ham, who have risen to tenth following their win over Norwich, and Arsenal – with a Robin van Persie header back in November.

Since that game, United have only won three games in the league at Old Trafford – a shocking statistic. The visitors are without Phil Jones and Jonny Evans, who both picked up injuries in the 2-1 defeat away at Stoke City, whilst Arsenal have Yaya Sanogo available from a long term injury.

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Manchester United vs. Fulham view from the oppo

Posted on February 08, 2014  by Stretford-end  in Fulham, Man United, Match Previews, Premier League   No Comments »
Robin Van Persie scores the equalising goal for Manchester United against Fulham
Robin van Persie scores his first goal for Manchester United against Fulham

Manchester United host Fulham on Sunday, with both sides low on confidence following early FA Cup exists and poor league form. United welcome back Rene Meulensteen, who joined the United coaching staff in 2001 and helped Sir Alex Ferguson win a number of league titles and the Champions League in 2008.

Meulensteen has had a tough start to his managerial career in England, with Fulham rock bottom and no having won a league fixture since New Years day. The visitors have lost ex-United forward Dimitar Berbatov to Monaco and have conceded 53 goals so far this term – the worst in the league. United ran out 3-1 winners earlier in the season at Fulham, with Antonio Valencia, Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie getting on the scoresheet.

The home side welcome back Nemanja Vidic, who announced earlier in the week he is to leave the club at the end of the season, who is available again after being sent off against Chelsea in January, whilst David Moyes will be looking to Rooney and van Persie to start working with Juan Mata to form an impressive attacking trio. Time is running out for Manchester United, with Liverpool now ten points clear after their 5-1 hammering of Arsenal, and a win against the relegation threatened Londoners is key.

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Stoke City vs. Manchester United view from the oppo

Posted on February 01, 2014  by Stretford-end  in Man United, Match Previews, Premier League, Stoke City   No Comments »
Manchester United's Wayne Rooney, right, and Stoke City's Geoff Cameron in the Premier League
Wayne Rooney and Geoff Cameron clash in the 3-2 Manchester United victory earlier in the season

Manchester United travel to Stoke City this afternoon looking to build on the 2-0 win over Cardiff City mid week. United have a pretty good record at the Britannia Stadium, having never lost there in the Premier League era. You would have to go back to Boxing Day 1984 to record a Stoke City win the league, although this was at Stoke’s Victoria Ground.

Mark Hughes is under pressure to pick up results, with the home side not winning a league match since beating Aston Villa 2-1 just before Christmas and falling into the relegation dog fight. Stoke City are without Steven Nzonzi, who was sent off in the 1-0 defeat against Sunderland.

David Moyes welcomed back Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney to the first team squad the other night, and with the addition of Juan Mata from Chelsea, United will be looking for a repeat result of the 3-2 victory earlier in the season at Old Trafford. United are without Nemanja Vidic, who is still suspended from his lunge on Eden Hazard in the 3-1 defeat against Chelsea, and Rio Ferdinand who is still injured. Michael Carrick will face a late fitness test, whilst Nani is out for a month.

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Manchester United vs. Cardiff City view from oppo

Posted on January 28, 2014  by Stretford-end  in Cardiff City, Man United, Match Previews, Premier League   No Comments »
Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Cardiff City v Manchester United - Cardiff City Stadium
Wayne Rooney could return against Cardiff City alongside new signing Juan Mata

Manchester United welcome Cardiff City to Old Trafford and the return of a United legend. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer returns to face his former club for the first time as Cardiff manager. The Norwegian former forward notched up 126 goals for United, including that famous goal in the Nou Camp versus Bayern Munich in the 1999 European Cup final. Both clubs have done business recently with Brazilian defender Fabio signing on a permanent deal and Wilfried Zaha heading there on loan.

Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie both training with the first team yesterday and could make an appearance, however – Nemanja Vidic is still suspended from his sending off in the 3-1 defeat against Chelsea. Juan Mata is also set to make his debut for the club after signing from Chelsea for £37.1 million.

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