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Man Utd vs West Ham – Team News, Match Preview & Likely Line-Ups

copyright Andrew Orchard

copyright Andrew Orchard

Date: Saturday, December 21 Venue: Old Trafford Kick-Off: 15:00

Can Manchester United continue their mini-revival in the Premier League, or will they fall to three successive home league defeats for the first time since 1978-79 when West Ham visit Old Trafford?

Team News

Wayne Rooney “has a chance” of being fit to play against West Ham, despite missing the midweek League Cup win over Stoke, according to United manager David Moyes.

However, Nemanja Vidic is a doubt while Michael Carrick and Robin van Persie are definitely out.

West Ham captain Kevin Nolan serves the last game of his three-match ban, but James Tomkins will return from a groin injury.

Andy Carroll, Stewart Downing, Mladen Petric, Winston Reid and Ricardo Vaz Te are all sidelined.


Key Stats

If United lose to West Ham, they will have lost three successive home league games for the first time since 1978-79.

However, they have not lost to the Hammers in their last nine league encounters.

West Ham have won just two of their last 15 Premier League matches (W2 D5 L8).

The Red Devils have 25 points after 16 matches – their lowest at this stage of a Premier League season since 2001-02.

Likely Line-Ups

Man Utd
De Gea, Rafael, Jones, Evans, Evra, Valencia, Cleverley, Giggs, Januzaj, Rooney, Welbeck

West Ham
Jaaskelainen, O’Brien, Collins, Tomkins, Demel, Diame, Morrison, Collison, Noble, Jarvis, Maiga

Match Preview

Media Image Ltd

Media Image Ltd

This fixture used to be a nailed-on six-pointer for Manchester United, but is now one that could represent another banana skin based on recent form.

United have not lost to West Ham in their last nine league encounters, have picked up twenty wins from 23 Hammers visits to Old Trafford since 1986, and haven’t conceded a single goal against the visitors in the last five.

Yet this season is different, and the Theatre of Dreams is no longer an impenetrable fortress where opponents fear to tread.

United have lost three times at home already this season, and haven’t lost more games in front of their own fans in a single season since 2001-02 – and it’s not yet Christmas.

A loss here would represent a third-successive home league defeat for the first time since 1978-79 and would, pardon the pun, Hammer the final nail into the coffin of their title defence.

Fortunately, West Ham aren’t exactly in a rich vein of form themselves – two wins in their last 15 Premier League matches have left the Londoners a point and a place above the relegation zone, and they could slip into the bottom three by the end of play this weekend.

For all United’s fallacies this season, I’m still backing them to get back on track and put serious pressure on Sam Allardyce’s side.


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