United target Wembley showdown


Zemanta Related Posts ThumbnailHaving started 2014 in terrible fashion with consecutive home defeats against Spurs and Swansea, United travel to Sunderland tonight hoping to take another step towards the Capital One Cup final, at the moment the Reds’ most realistic chance of silverware in this disgraced season.

Sunday’s showing in the FA Cup was nothing short of embarrassing – something we’ve become somewhat accustomed to in the first six months of the campaign – and United must improve, if they’re to secure a positive result against a side that might be bottom of the table, but will undoubtedly be fired up for the occasion.

Much like their incapacity to string two passes together, United’s injury crisis seems to know no end, with Rio Ferdinand joining Wayne Rooney, Robin Van Persie, Ashley Young, Nani, Rafael, Phil Jones and Marouane Fellaini on the sidelines, while Fabio is suspended after his red card against Swansea.

Injuries and the all-too-familiar lack of option will force David Moyes’ hand yet again in terms of team selection, with Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez likely to retain their place up-front, while Patrice Evra, Ryan Giggs, Michael Carrick and David De Gea could return in place of Alexander Buttner, Tom Cleverley, Darren Fletcher and Anders Lindegaard.

United’s last trip to Sunderland saw the arrival on the scene of Adnan Januzaj, who netted twice in his first start for the club to rescue a 2-1 win, after United had fallen behind to some calamitous defending, and the youngster could be involved from the start tonight, given Moyes is desperate for a positive result.

While at the start of the season the Capital One Cup might have been last by a long distance in United’s list of priorities, with the league and the FA Cup having already vanished five months into the season, English football’s second cup could prove to be a lot more important for the club than it’s ever been.

Securing a place at Wembley would give David Moyes the chance of finally break his silverware duck and picking up a trophy in his first season at United would go some way in buying him time and boost his confidence, not to mention that lifting a cup could give the whole team a much-needed lift.

Furthermore, should United get past Sunderland – hardly a formality on current form, given that the Black Cats have knocked out Chelsea and won at Everton on Boxing Day – a final against City looms large, given that they’re likely to obliterate West Ham over two legs.

Two games away from a possible derby at Wembley. If that doesn’t get us going, God knows what will.




  1. Call me cynical and un-patriotic, but I’d rather we lose tonight against Sunderland than humiliatingly in the final against City.
    Sorry 🙁

    • @Karl: If losing tonight means Moyes is one step closer to an exit then I’m all for it as well.

      • @The_Philosopher: To each their own, but in my book that’s an appallingly pathetic attitude. Hoping to see the club you claim to support lose because you don’t like the manager is utterly ludicrous mate.

        • @Dan: Excuse me if have not resigned myself to 2 more years of David Moyes and the continued damage he will do to this club (and the inevitable sacking) just yet.

          I would rather be rid of him now.

          I didn’t say I want us to lose. Ofcourse I want us to win. But if a defeat tonight means that the knives will be out for David Moyes then I’m all for that.

          I’m all for getting rid of MOyes.

          I’m not all for losing.

          If losing means Moyes will go then I won’t lament the loss.

          Do you think I enjoy watching professionals like Chicha and Kagawa and RVP and Januzaj and Jones walk off the pitch with their heads hanging?

          Ofcourse not.

          I want to win.

          And I want us to play good football. And I want these lads to have great careers.

          David Moyes isn’t gonna bring any of that.

          The mediocre stuff that Moyes has been dishing up and will keep dishing up is way less than our boys deserve.

          And without outright disaster (like a lot of defeats for example) the powers that be at Manchester United will persevere with Moyes.

          So again, please excuse me for not accepting David Moyes’ dubious reign.

        • @Dan: Why?
          At the end of the day, we all want what’s best for the club. We just differ on what we believe is best for the club.

        • Why? Because losing games isn’t good for any football club, that’s why.

        • @Dan: Won’t you say that that particular view is a bit narrow-minded?
          I could argue that if we lost a few games under Fergie, then he would have realised how screwed up our midfield was. But, because we kept winning, every crack was papered over. To such an exten5 that even someone like me would utter the words “but Fergie would have won with this bunch”.

          Nah, sometimes its a good thing because it forces one to “take stock” and assess everything.

          Same as with disciplining a child. You don’t like it, but its for the child’s own well-being.

      • @The_Philosopher: I understand Phil, but we all have to realise that Moyes WILL NOT BE SACKED. Ferguson seems now to run the club as his post retirement hobby. It would reflect badly on him if he had to sanction the removal of HIS chosen manager. He should never have been appointed in the first place, but that is history.
        Most worryingly the reason, bar the fact he is Scottish, he was employed because he could work on a budget. Our net spend for the past 5 years has been £2m more than Stoke and £3m more than Aston Villla. Would Mourinho or Pep been happy to work under such sanctions? But lets be honest, he wasted £27m on Fellaini and £5m over the release clause. Can we blame Moyes for this, yes certainly in part. He knew how Everton would react to such a situation, he did it the same with Lescott. Was Woodward totally inept as well? Defiantly, certainly it it was clear Fellaini was last chance saloon, the quintessential panic buy.
        The club is a rudderless ship, losing Fergie and especially Gill has derailed a slickly run machine. Hiring a manager with no track record on a £5.5m, 6 year contract was ludicrous. Fergie again looking after his own. Klopp who has demonstrated he is a more progressive manager and has the ability to work on a budget was the shoe in choice, if Pep wasn’t interested.
        Moyes has been unlucky with injuries, but he cannot motivate the jaded, older players who have more medals in their cabinet than Moyes can only dream of. He looks out of ideas and his only tactic is to move the ball out wide and sling in crosses. This doesn’t work as out wingers are awful, or not tried (Zaha) He also employs this archaic tactic and puts a left footer Januaj on the right!
        The issue is we are stuck with Moyes for at least 18 months. Sacking him would cost the club knocking £30m and would reflect badly on the Godfather. Fergie would rather see the decline and do what is perceived as the honourable thing in giving his mate time. We are in a massive hole, Fergie, Woodward and Moyes are all responsible for this. People have been talking about transition. What transition, bar Fellaini, what have changed, only the manager and the coaching staff. A lot has been make of his working the players too hard, well surely the spate of injuries we are currently suffering has a lot to do with this. We would all love for Moyes to go, but we are stuck with him I am afraid.

  2. De Gea, Rafael, Vidic, Evans, Evra, Valencia, Carrick, Cleverley, Januzaj, Giggs; Welbeck. Subs: Lindegaard, Smalling, Hernandez, Fletcher, Kagawa, Büttner, Zaha.

    • @gator: Is this a 4411? Moyes’ secret formation!!!

      De Gea,
      Rafael, Vidic, Evans, Evra,
      Valencia, Carrick, Cleverley, Januzaj,

      OR maybe he went all crazy and is using 4231:
      ——– De Gea, ——-
      Rafael-Vidic-Evans-Evra —
      —-,Carrick, Cleverley—-

      Only Moyes knows… until game starts and we go hung-ho:

    • @gator: Nice to see United leading a half-time. It was an excellent half for once with Giggs and Valencia and Cleverley controlling the game throughout. Wembley here we come!

  3. Hattrick of losses!!! First time in 13 years!!
    Sunderland beats United! First time in 29 games!!!

    Moyes is setting all the wrong records…

    • @Opti: Anyone mentioning referees as a reason why United is losing is deluded. United should be able to compete 11 vs. 12 or 10 vs. 11, so I don’t care if the ref is a bought and paid for. I expect United to overcome…

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