As we leave 2010 Manchester United enter the New Year with an away fixture against West Bromwich Albion as they look to extend the lead at the top of the Premier League in the early kick-off on New Years Day.
Going into the game United have no new injury worries and will be looking to make amends following the disappointing draw with Birmingham on Tuesday.
The curse of the away draw has returned as Lee Bowyer’s 89th minute strike gave Birmingham City a 1-1 draw at St. Andrews against Manchester United.
Dimitar Berbatov gave the visitors the lead just before the hour mark but United could find a second and ultimately paid the price as Bowyer’s strike mean two points were dropped.
Following a straightforward victory over Sunderland on Boxing Day, Manchester United travel to St. Andrews to face Birmingham City, a side that have not beaten United in their last 23 attempts.
Though the home team remain a formidable force at St. Andrews losing only one of their last 23 Premier League home matches. But they have dropped to 17th in the standings after their Boxing Day match was called off, so Alex McLeish will be hoping his sides home form will see them through tonight.
Dominant, commanding, adventurous and ever so slightly easy. It has been a while since a Manchester United display could be described in such a manner, but the 2-0 victory over Sunderland at Old Trafford could be detailed in no other way.
It was the Bulgarian Dimitar Berbatov who got the festive schedule underway early on after latching onto the end of a delicately lofted Wayne Rooney cross, to head home at the far post.
Then in the second period he grabbed number two for himself and United after a shot into the far top corner deflected off Anton Ferdinand and trickled into the net past a despairing Craig Gordon.
It may have been nearly two weeks in coming but Manchester United finally get their Premier league campaign back underway against Sunderland after last weekend’s postponement.
The rest may have done United’s stars some good with a very busy schedule in the offing, but first Steve Bruce’s men have to be dispatched at Old Trafford and given their away record this year – only one win – it might proved to be a relatively easy task. However, the victory did come against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
This is going up a little later today than I’d intended, but here’s a little Christmas present from me to all those who love a little Manchester United history.
With Steve Bruce and Sunderland set for a visit this weekend, I thought it’d be fitting to take a look back at one of the finest, if not the finest, moment at Old Trafford for Bruce during his long and successful career at United. Bruce joined from Norwich City in December 1987, and by the time he’d left the club following the 1995/96 season, he’d netted an impressive 51 goals in eight and a half seasons, including 19 in all competitions in the 1990/91 season.
Of those 51 goals, four came during United’s Cup Winners’ Cup run in the 1990/91 season, but even those might not match the importance of his dramatic, momentum-shifting double against Sheffield Wednesday in April 1993.
I’ll soon find out whether Santa Claus has deemed me naughty or nice this year, but it looks like Christmas has come early for me and United fans based in North America, in the form of a rather fantastic news announcement today.
Barcelona, who, if you haven’t heard or seen by now, are pretty darn good, announced today that they’ll be touring the United States next summer, and one of their friendlies will be against United in Washington, D.C. on July 30.
Weather permitting, Manchester United will welcome Sunderland to Old Trafford for a Boxing Day clash on Sunday afternoon. And though Sir Alex Ferguson has convincingly had the upper hand on Steve Bruce during the former United defender’s managerial career, Sunday’s showdown shapes up to be a severe test for the league leaders.
Sunderland stand a surprising sixth in the Premier League table, and they’ve taken at least a point from each of the teams above them, including a 0-0 home draw with United on October 2.
The best result of that success against the Premier League’s title contenders is a stunning 3-0 humiliation of Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Nov. 14, a result that helped open the door for United to make their move towards top spot. Fittingly enough, that shock result was spearheaded by none other than on-loan United prospect Danny Welbeck, and not only was that a pivotal result for his parent club, it also marked the start of a brilliant run for the 20-year-old.