Archive for category Champions League
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Date: Wednesday, October 23 Venue: Old Trafford Kick-Off: 19:45 BST
Can Manchester United seize control of Group A of the Champions League with a much-needed win over Real Sociedad?
Manchester United manager David Moyes has concerns over the fitness of defensive duo Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic ahead of the visit of Real Sociedad to Old Trafford.
The centre-backs missed the 1-1 draw with Southampton at the weekend after sustaining minor knocks.
Midfielder Tom Cleverley has a calf injury and missed training on Tuesday while striker Danny Welbeck was also absent from United’s final training session ahead of this tie.
Adnan Januzaj has however been added to the Champions League squad as a home-grown player and could make his European debut for the Red Devils.
This is the first competitive meeting between these two teams.
Manchester Utd have only won one of their last six Champions League games (two draws, three defeats).
Real Sociedad have won none of their last eight Champions League games (three draws, five defeats), their last win coming against Galatasaray in September 2003.
Wayne Rooney has scored in only one of his last 10 Champions League games at Old Trafford – his brace in the 4-2 win v Bayer Leverkusen this season.
De Gea, Rafael, Jones, Evans, Evra, Carrick, Fellaini, Valencia, Januzaj, Rooney, Van Persie
Bravo, Martinez, Gonzalez, I. Martinez, De la Bella, Pardo, Bergara, Vela, Prieto, Griezmann, Seferovic
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Manchester United play host to Real Sociedad tonight knowing a win is essential to pick up flagging morale.
Domestically, United have made their worst ever start to a Premier League season after dropping yet more points against Southampton at the weekend, and will be looking to get their European campaign back on track also.
A late Shakhtar Donetsk strike in the Red Devil’s last outing ruined what would have been a flawless start to the group stages and with Group A finely balanced with a point separating first and third place, three points here is crucial.
This is the first ever competitive meeting between these two sides but United’s record against Spanish opposition isn’t terrific.
Of their last 12 games against opposition from Spain, Moyes’s men have won only two games – against Barcelona in April 2008 and Valencia in September 2010.
And the last time a Basque club came to Old Trafford? The Reds were outplayed by Athletic Bilbao over two legs and dumped out of the Europa League. Food for thought then for Moyes.
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