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United welcome Suarez & Co

Neville v CarragherIn years gone by the welcome awaiting the scousers would be turgid and hostile with an edge to it that only a United/Liverpool derby clash could create. Now, despite even the recent history and politics surrounding the fixture, the welcome awaiting the scousers will be tepid in comparison.

On the pitch however, Liverpool will find United in no way welcoming as they staunchly protect their 7 game unbeaten run assisting them hopefully on the way to furthering their record breaking 19th league title. If our betting prediction partner Betegy are to be believed, United have a 33% chance of putting three past the scousers in Sundays early afternoon showdown at Old Trafford.

In the last 10 seasons United have been beaten by Liverpool at Old Trafford just twice, winning the other eight contests with a superior goal difference of +14 overall.

This season United already sit 21pts ahead of their rivals and look ominously on target to increase their title haul while Liverpool’s wait for a title fast approaches 23 years.

Remember the shit we used to endure for waiting 26yrs? What goes around comes around. I hope I never have to see them lift another one again.

With no fresh injury worries and no midweek game, Sir Alex approaches the game with an almost fully fit and rested squad. At his presser today Ferguson intimated that Wayne Rooney was in training and would hopefully make the cup replay next Wednesday. But is that just a smokescreen? He went on to admit that Wayne’s injury was ‘straightforward’ so don’t be too surprised if he starts come Sunday.

Anderson and Nani return to the squad for Sunday as does Phil Jones. But Jones, Ferguson says, is more likely to feature on Wednesday.

Betegy give United a 45% chance of winning, so their odds of 1.8 across the bookies means they’re a definite value bet in amongst your accumulator.

United v Liverpool Betegy 2013 Jan

With a full squad to choose from you have to think Sir Alex’s starting XI will be heavily swayed by current form with the main instruction regarding the opposition being ‘watch Suarez’, much in the way the instruction v Swansea would have been ‘watch Michu’. We failed to stop Michu that day, hopefully Sunday will be different.

United v Liverpool Formation Jan 2013That could spell trouble for the woefully out of confidence Antonio Valencia. I’ve no idea what’s got into him recently but he appears to have lost the power of thought! He just can’t beat his man, he stands still thinking what to do before running into his marker! Nani you feel could feature if Sir Alex removes Valencia although my guess is he’ll persevere with Valencia in the hope his form returns.

Defensively I think Ferdinand will return to the middle to partner Vidic with Evans sitting out until Wednesday. Rafael should continue at rightback with Evra on the left.

Midfield could be anything, Sir Alex could opt for Scholes and Giggs although I’m sure we sincerely hope not! More likely Carrick and Cleverley with support on the left from Ashley Young or the evergreen Ryan Giggs.

Presuming his Rooney remarks were not a smokescreen and given the tremendous form of Hernandez, I guess Hernandez will partner RvP up top in what’s fast becoming a deadly partnership.

Any fixture between these two clubs requires guts and character and players with the ability to mix it up, if you don’t, you find yourself on the end of a defeat, simple.

How do you see the game going? Are United a shoo-in for victory on Sunday or is this a weekend we make a mistake?

My prediction- 3-1: Given Liverpool’s ability to score (scored in 7 of their 9 away fixtures) and United’s sometimes shambolic defending, I’m going with Betegy and their 3-1 scoreline. Good luck.

25 Comments

25 Comments

  1. Pingback: United welcome Suarez & Co - Unofficial Network

  2. Pingback: United welcome Suarez & Co | Manchester United News

  3. The_Philosopher

    12 January 2013 at 06:57

    I don’t know who’s gonna line up for us on Sunday.

    But we have a fuller squad now. Vidic is back. Smalling, Jones, Rafael, Ferdinand and Evans are all fit. We’re fully loaded in defense.

    Anderson and Nani are back fit or training. Rooney is back. kagawa is back. Valencia and Young are ready.

    Having a full squad always gives Ferguson lots of confidence. So I expect us to win it.

    But it won’t be an easy game.

    Ian I like your setup with Chicha playing infront of van Persie. I think they are possibly our most lethal combination up front.

    I don’t know about Vidic and Ferdinand playing together. They are both great defenders and they have heaps of class and experience but Ferdinand’s legs have gone and Vidic is still finding his form.

    Sterling and Suarez could run them both ragged. i think we need the youth and energy of Evans. Vidic and Ferdinand need to partner Evans. But I’m not sure they can play effectively together.

    But maybe they don’t need pace. Maybe their experience and class can carry them.

    I just like Jonny Evans.

    • Ian

      12 January 2013 at 09:46

      @The_Philosopher: I lik Evans too, it’s difficult to leave him out based on form but I just have a feeling with the CBs he’ll opt for the exp like you say rather than form because, like you say, there’s not a great deal of pace in their team.

  4. The_Philosopher

    12 January 2013 at 08:12

    The comments were turned off on the Zaha write up.

    I think Zaha would be a good buy for the future. From what I have heard about him I he seems like a United player.

    He his the right winger of the future. Him and Rafael will be the future of our right wing.

    But we still need a left wing with a LEFT foot.

    Ryan Giggs was awesome in his day on the left.

    I hope we can sign Lampard. His experience will ease the loss of Giggs and Scholes to retirement.

    And Lampard would be a great professional to learn from for the likes of Cleverley, Anderson, Petrucci, Tunnicliffe etc.

    I keep thinking about Lewandowski. And I have a few angles on this issue:

    1) Ferguson must be thinking about his legacy. So he is gonna buy a lot of young players to fill the pipeline to ensure that when he’s gone United have the foundation setup already for the next generation of success.

    Ferguson has always been a master at building and rebuilding teams.

    2) Enter Lewandowski. He is the perfect young striker to carry our club through the end of van Persie and Rooney’s striking careers.

    Welbeck might not fullfil his potential.

    Lewandowski will be the stop gap to bridge the gap between Rooney and Joshua King and Angelo Henriquez.

    big question marks over Macheda.

    • Ian

      12 January 2013 at 09:47

      @The_Philosopher: Josh King signed for Blackburn last week mate.

      • The_Philosopher

        14 January 2013 at 06:35

        @Ian: Oh wow.

        Didn’t know that. thanks.

        Now I do.

  5. The_Philosopher

    12 January 2013 at 08:36

    Lewandowski looks to be in better form than Welbeck.

    Is it wrong for a club like ours to just replace Welbeck like that?

    Is that how United operates?

    There are so many players that Ferguson has persevered with.

    But in Lewandowski I see the perfect swap. The only draw back is the morality of cutting a player like Welbeck who is loyal and could yet prove to be an important player for the squad as the years role on.

    Lewandowski can also be loyal and prove to be just as important if not more important, however.

    As a straight swap it feels like stabbing Welbeck in the back. But if Lewandowski is a better player. . . what can you do? 😐

    • Moscow

      12 January 2013 at 14:38

      @The_Philosopher: The way I see it we’d just be replacing a striker with a much better striker.

      • RMJ

        12 January 2013 at 20:55

        @Moscow: problem is how it will affect squad harmony? welbeck i think is content playing as our fourth striker and so is hernandez at #3. We rarely play with more than two strikers at the top and welbeck for all his faults can play out wide and so ca nrvp and rooney while levandowski doesnt and kagawa in an interview called him a very selfish player and didnt like playing with him

        • Moscow

          12 January 2013 at 22:26

          @RMJ: I know mate. Lewandowski may be a much better striker than Welbeck but frankly, a lot of other strikers are as well. Why not splash the £24 million on a world class central midfielder so we can just wrap up the league here and now? And stand a chance against Real?

          Interesting quote from Kagawa, especially as Lewandowski currently spearheads an interchanging, quick passing Dortmund team.

  6. Warzycha

    12 January 2013 at 18:35

    Jonathan Walters!
    Now, is he the best No.9 of the league or not?Robin van Persie my ass!
    At least we can hope Danny Welbeck becomes half the player Jonathan is!

  7. Shabz the red ranter

    12 January 2013 at 19:10

    we will never see danny’s full potential untill we sell him out.thats how cruel football gets!!!

  8. ForeverRed

    13 January 2013 at 01:52

    Fergie on Sturridge: ‘…I always rate a player whose priority is wanting to play’.

    But I guess this didn’t apply to Pogba.

    • Opti

      13 January 2013 at 02:52

      @ForeverRed: I don’t think is a compliment… more likely a poke at Liverpool who have spend 35 + 23 + 12 = 70 million pounds on Strikers and all they have is a horse, a racist, and Sturridge. Pretty funny if you ask me 😆 😆

      I can sense that tomorrow we lay down the law of the land on Liverpool. I can smell that this year we will pound them: 4-0? They are ripe for the taking and weaker than in recent years. They have not beaten a team above them in the League so far and have one goal threat with which we are familiar.

      Now is the time to show them that the difference between 18 and 19 is MUUUUUCH bigger than 1.

      Glory glory Man United!!!

  9. Warzycha

    13 January 2013 at 14:48

    2-0 and my god what an atmosphere by the crowd and what a spirit from the players! It’s beautiful from TV!!!

    I wish this atmosphere and spirit happen in our CHL match against RM.

  10. Moscow

    13 January 2013 at 15:03

    We need to make a change now. Bring off Welbeck bring on a midfielder.

  11. Warzycha

    13 January 2013 at 15:08

    What’s going on with our defenders? They just can’t concentrate even in a derby match! They give away the ball so easily and they leave players unmarked. That’s not MU quality.

  12. AndyCR7

    13 January 2013 at 15:39

    Awesome first half. We controlled it well. Second half as usual we let opponents back in the game.
    Evra has been doing good this season for a change.

    Both Evra and Evans have more goals than Welbeck 😛

    Welbeck MOTM??? good joke. Could have awarded it to Young as well.

    • Sahal

      13 January 2013 at 16:44

      @AndyCR7: Welbeck was up and down the entire match,his runs and energy were pivotal to United creating chances.Yes he is poor goal scoring form but if you’re gonna slate him after that performance you might as well give it to the whole team :mrgreen:

      • AndyCR7

        13 January 2013 at 16:49

        @Sahal: I will reply with a standard template used on this site. “A strikers job is to score goals!”

        • Warzycha

          13 January 2013 at 17:12

          @AndyCR7:

          A striker’s job is to be a part of the team that ends the game as a winner. Whether it’s Evra or Vidic or Welbeck who score the goals, I don’t care.
          He was the one that was giving the tempo and the energy upfront in our first half. The rest of the team was a little bit tired.

          Sometimes, Rooney scores one goal per month, and all the fans say “he has to score goals”. Then he is out injured and the whole team is shit. Cause you know… a striker’s job is not only to score goals.
          Have you ever trained for a club even when you were a kid?

  13. AndyCR7

    13 January 2013 at 18:47

    @Warzycha I would have agreed with you 2-3 years back. But this blog has taught me that a striker is useless if does not score goals 😉

    And no I don’t like players who run like donkeys up and down the field without any creativity or technique.

    • Warzycha

      14 January 2013 at 14:47

      @AndyCR7:

      I think that he is not a great player when it comes to “positioning” in the box and maybe he will never mature in this kind of game. To me, that’s why he doens’t score many goals, cause he doesn’t know where to stand in the box. Chicharito in the other hand has this charisma and has improved his first touch, so he scores goals without being THAT technical.
      But at least, you have to admit that Welbeck gave his heart for the team yesterday. In the first half he was pivotal and believe me chances come when the defenders get tired and make errors. He was very important but that’s just my POV.

      Rooney doesn’t score so many goals but he is far greater threat than Suarez.

  14. Pingback: Suarez makes stunning United claim

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