Man Utd vs Birmingham: Preview

The Interwebs have been acting up lately, to my chagrin. And that is the reason I couldn’t post yesterday. I really wanted to post something yesterday, you know, with it being the last day of 2007 and all; I had a Best of 2007 post lined up. Anyhow I will get around to doing that sometime later today or tomorrow.

At the moment, though, we have the small matter of a match today, where we invite Birmingham and hope to kick off 2008 on a bright note. Speaking of which, here’s wishing all readers a very happy new year. How did you spend last night?

Sir Alex would have realised that his best way to guarantee wins would be to field his best XI as much as possible. So that would mean playing Anderson and Hargreaves in the middle of the park, at the least. Giggs and Ronaldo will take up their customary positions on the wings, although I suspect Park might also be there in the mix. Meanwhile, Rooney should return after being absent from the West Ham defeat due to a virus. I wouldn’t expect too much alteration in the defensive line either. It also remains to be seen if EVDS would return to the bench at least.

With the transfer window opening, one would expect the tabloid chatter to be kicked into overdrive, so we have a few strong rumours relating to the club. First we have, for the millionth time, Ramon Calderon talking up Real’s interest in Ronaldo. “He wants to play in Spain”, he reckons. We all know that, don’t we? I think it’s got more to do with the winter break in La Liga that drains the Iberian peninsula of news pertaining to the happenings on the football pitch.

The other rumour is about Berbatov moving to United. Now he’s shown what an excellent player he can be, if he wants to. I have been critical of his attitude in the past, but I admit he is a terrific player. However, I am not entirely convinced if the club will be willing to spend 20 million pounds to prise him away. I also don’t know how he will be slotted into our XI while keeping everyone happy.

Back to the game, Don Howe, the Arsenal supporter that he is, is extremely happy to see that West Ham have now unearthed a ‘chink’ in United’s armour. Apparently we are shite in defending set pieces. So I would suppose that Saturday’s game represents the first time we’ve conceded set-pieces in our half, and hence the meanest defence in the league is now doomed. Pffft! Why are people allowed to write columns when it is clear that they are approaching senility?

Anyway, we should hope to do better with set pieces against Birmingham. And hope to avoid slipping up, as Avram Grant seems to think we will.

Prediction: 2-0 to United and a Happy New Year once again!


  1. huntelaar would be a great buy… young, quick, out and out striker and can run at defenders… would be a better buy than berbatov considering we have time to mould him

  2. Huntelaar is cheap(5-9 mill quid) and wouldnt be complaining to be on the bench, cause he has said that hed rather be sub on a winning team rather than lone striker in a 2nd, 3rd placed team. He is exellent in the air, great finishing with both feet, strong, scores at least four overhead kicks in one season and is a marvelous poacher. The bad thing is that he is selfish, slow and his passing/vision is worse than PIG! He is a great goalscorer, but in his own half up to 40 yards from goal he is useless.

  3. Hey Red Ranter, when does the match report about the Birmingham game come? Ive been waiting all day. I enjoy reading the match reports when I am bored and u guess if I have been that today! Match reports are better when they are written by an United supporter that writes the truth and own meaning, rather than a shitheaded scouser in MEN or Sky Sports.

  4. RedDevil you have no sense of footballing valuations. I don’t mean that in a bad way but you undervalue everyone. Huntelaar would be worth 10m at least, since he’s young and a goalscorer. But looking at your opinion of him and Utsav’s, I’m slightly confused,is he fast or not? And is he good on the ball? I just don’t see us buying him though, since we won almost nothing with Ruud in our team, and he seems to be fairly similar.

  5. Huntelaar’s a natural goalscorer, but nothing else. He’s not particularly strong or good at holding up the ball and he’s slow. Still he’d be sure to cost us a lot and if we got him he would score goals. It won’t happen though, he’s not good enough. Jermaine Defoe’s a better player. There’s more chance of him coming to united.
    Carrick can still do a job and i think he’s a better player than fletcher.

  6. Conor-Since Huntelaar plays in Ajax, he should be sold quite cheap. Sneijder was their best player and I think he was sold for about 9 mill. If I am wrong in Sneijders value, then I am wrong in Huntelars value too! But if Im not, then Huntelaar should be under Sneijders value. Sneijder is almost like Gerrard(still a cunt): All action midfielders, can play on the wing and he has better free kicks than Stevie G. Huntelaar is slow and is only one that can play in front of goal, not like Roo, Tevez or even Saha that can help to build an attack. He is a first class finisher in every way, but in the build up….I would rather have PIG.

  7. Can I just add to the discusion how good it is to have Park Ji-Sung back, considering he has been out for 9 months I thought he did well when he came on at Sunderland and did well yesterday aginst Birmingham. With the big debate as to whether Giggs or Nani should be playing as one of the wingers, I think Park could well be in with a shout to be ahead of both of those players soon…..

    I like the sound of the Carrick/Berbatov swap but I cant see it happening. To be fair we dont desperatly need another striker as we have Rooney/Tevez/Saha then Ronaldo as an emergency striker if need be(prob a better shout than berbatov or Anelka anyway!)

  8. Just another thing, the worryingly long absence of our skipper and the contract situation with Brown I think right back is the only position we may look at strengthening. Someone like Micah Richards would be great but dont see that happening….!!!!

  9. Thats a fair point actually RedDevil, he should cost around the same amount as Sneijder, but it says on the official Ajax website that he went for 27 million euros. So I would assume Huntelaar should cost around 15m. And thats what I mean about Huntelaar, we have to change our style of play again if we want him in our team because our strikers are very much involved in the build up, even Saha, so I don’t see him as an option. And Ryan as much as I would absolutely love to have Micah Richards in our team I don’t think it will happen because of how well Man City are doing and how much he would cost.

  10. What i meant was that Wayne Rooney could deputise in midfield effectively if something went wrong with Hargreaves/scholes, so we not feel bad about losing carrick in order to get berbatov.

  11. Seems like our target Ivanovic is also going in chelsea’s way !! as far as i heard he is a tough tackiling full back who can play on centre as well ! he wud have been a good addition ! Fergie lets go and get him..but u know better !huntelar is a bit slow who is zero in build up play and i wud rather have Benzema by offering Saha silvestre ..then also go for that serbian wonder kid striker Jovatic ! guess he is valued around 7-8 mn…In summer we can go for full back since brown will be leaving on free

  12. ronny is leaving for real apparently, his agent has agreed a deal in principle, we have to ask our selves, if ronny goes, will we be as good as we are now?

  13. I don’t think it is at all likely we will spend more than ten million during the January transfer window. The swap deal isn’t happening: Ferguson obviously admires Carrick even if he has fallen down the pecking order and is going through a bad patch of form. Brown will stay till the end of the season and leave (Bosman?).

    The sort of business I see would be a stop-gap signing most likely to give us a bit more cover in defence (I think Ferguson believes he will be able to manage our three main strikers to ensure that at least two are fit at any given time-you can see this from the way he has limited Saha’s first team appearances even when Rooney or Tevez are not available).

    I don’t know who is available but I think Ferguson will surprise us.

  14. Where did you hear this dan? And the answer is most definitely no, we won’t. Even if we got maybe 50m for him who could we buy that would suit us better? No-one! Bond i wouldn’t mind Benzema either, would prefer him over Huntelaar, and they would be around the same price I’d say.

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