Preview: United v Newcastle United

Sir Alex Ferguson will field an experimental side as Newcastle United visit Old Trafford for the third round of the newly renamed Capital One Cup on Wednesday night. In common League Cup policy over many years, Ferguson will use the tournament to blood youngsters and offer minutes to squad played under-used so far this season. But the Scot’s team is likely to play in a half-empty stadium, with the club having sold just over 40,000 tickets for the match. Years of price rises having finally taken a serious toll on attendances.

News of Nemanja Vidić’s injury is a serious blow to United’s short-term ambitions, with the Serbian defender likely to miss at least two months of the campaign. Although the defender was never likely to feature in Wednesday’s match with Alan Pardew’s visiting Geordies, the match takes on even greater significance for Ferguson’s other defenders who must now get, or stay, fit.

To that end Irishman Jonny Evans is likely to start, with the 24-year-old Irishman needing minutes in his own road towards full fitness, while youngsters Scott Wooten and Michael Keane come into the frame.

Meanwhile, winger Antonio Valencia will definitely miss the match having left Anfield on crutches according to press reports. United is yet to release details about the wingers reported foot injury, although there is an outside chance Wayne Rooney could make United’s bench.

Far better news comes in the shape of Darren Fletcher who will start a first team game after more than 10 months out. The Scot, who suffers from a serious bowl problem, should line-up in central midfield. Anderson, Bébé, Federico Macheda, Nick Powell and Alexander Büttner should all feature as the Reds defend an outstanding record against Newcastle at Old Trafford. Newcastle has not won at the ‘Theatre of Dreams’ since February 1972.

Büttner was outstanding on his debut against Wigan Athletic, while Cleverley may get some minutes after sitting out United’s win over Liverpool at the weekend.

Manchester United v Newcastle United, Capital One Cup, Old Trafford, 26 September 2012, 7.45pmBut it is to United’s under-21 side that fans will direct a collective gaze in the hope Ferguson will hand senior caps to a swathe of talented kids. In addition to Wooten and Keane, Tyler Blackett, Angelo Henriquez, Davide Petrucci, Jesse Lingard, and Larnell Cole could all play some part in Wednesday’s fixture.

Powell scored a stunning 25-yard goal on his last outing for the Reds against Wigan a fortnight ago, while many fans have waited in eager anticipation of Chilean striker Henriquez – a £4 million summer capture.

“We have some really talented young players and I’m looking forward to seeing some of them,” Rio Ferdinand told United’s official website on Wednesday.

“I’m looking forward to maybe seeing our new signing from Chile, Angelo Henriquez. I’m sure Nick Powell will play and I’m looking forward to seeing him again too as he’s a very exciting prospect. I’m excited to perhaps see Jesse Lingard play and I think Larnell Cole as well. There is Michael Keane at the back too.

“There are loads of them and I could go on and on and be here all day. Hopefully they can stamp their authority on the cup this year. I just think it’s a natural progression for the senior players and it becomes your duty almost to not force it on the young players but to lead the way and lead by example.

“When you need to talk to players or give them a nudge in the right direction, you’re there to do that. That’s what comes with being a Manchester United player after a few years. We want it to be as comfortable and normal as possible for the young players coming into big stadiums, in front of big crowds with big expectations. It’s a new world they are entering and, as experienced players, we want to make that a much smoother ride if we can.”

Meanwhile, Newcastle arrive in mediocre form, having slipped to 10th in the Premier League table, although the Capital One Cup offers Pardew the opportunity to rotate, while easing Fabricio Coloccini and Cheick Tiote back into the side. However, Tim Krul and former Red Danny Simpson are definitely out.

Pardew is expected to make numerous changes to the side that beat Norwich City 1-0 at the weekend.

“In respect to this competition, the Capital One Cup, we’ve got to look to win it,” claimed Pardew on Tuesday.

“We have got a tough game right from the off, going to Old Trafford. But it’s a fantastic place to go and play football, and we are going to hopefully enjoy it and get a positive result.”

Certainly, United will want no repeat of the last fixture between these sides, when Pardew’s team came out 3-0 winners at St. James’ Park last January. It was the Magpies’ first victory over Ferguson’s team in more than a decade.

Yet, United boasts a strong record in the competition despite Ferguson’s patchwork selections. Victory at Wembley in February would represent a third League Cup gong in five years, although the Reds have lost to Southend, Coventry and Crystal Palace in recent years. The 40 thousand plus who shelled out full prices to attended Wednesday’s game expect better, of course.

Match Details
Manchester United v Newcastle United – Capital One Cup, Old Trafford – Wednesday 26 September 2012, 7.45pm

Possible Teams
United (4-3-3): Johnstone; Keane, Wootton, Evans, Büttner; Fletcher, Cleverley, Powell; Bébé, Hernández, Macheda. Subs from: De Gea, Anderson, Welbeck, Lingard, Vermijl, Petrucci, Tunnicliffe, Cole, Blackett, Brady, Henriquez.

Newcastle: (4-3-3): Elliot; Perch, Williamson, S Taylor, Santon; Gosling, Tiote, Bigirimana; Obertan, Sh Ameobi, Amalfitano. Subs from: Harper, Ferguson, Tavernier, Anita, Marveaux, Vuckic, Abeid, Ba, Campbell, Sa Ameobi

Officials
Referee: Anthony Taylor

Form
United: LWWWWW
Newcastle: LWDDDW

Head-to-Head
Last 10: United 5, Newcastle 1, Draw 4
Overall: United 77, Newcastle 40, Draw 37

Prediction
2-2

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Comments

  1. Sidsidney says

    The Glazers are taking the piss charging normal ticket prices for the League Cup. You’re talking 30-40 quid plus, to see two second string sides in the least meaningful competition. The game will suffer as a result. You’ll have 40,000 people (yeah right) wanting value for money, so loads of moaning and sighing. Arsenal’s cheapest ticket was a tenner, and they’ve sold out. That’s the way to do it. They’ll probably play well and win.

  2. RobDiabloRobDiablo says

    sidney said:
    …to see two second string sides in the least meaningful competition. The game will suffer as a result…

    This is probably true, but considering the way United have been playing in the EPL and Champions League this season, I’m not certain that anyone will be able to tell.

  3. Herbie Simms says

    Vidic out for two months. Bad knees. What have I been saying all along? Torn ligaments end your career. Vidic will never be the same, look at Tiger Woods. Bad knees are his problem, he had to change his golf swing because of this and he still can’t get it right. Its good that we will get a chance to look at our youngsters, hopefully one will go on to become a superstar. Have not seen any superstars coming out of the academy, just a lot of youngsters with potential. Where is the quality?

  4. Alfonso BedoyaAlfonso Bedoya says

    sidney said:
    The Glazers are taking the piss charging normal ticket prices for the League Cup. You’re talking 30-40 quid plus, to see two second string sides in the least meaningful competition. The game will suffer as a result. You’ll have 40,000 people (yeah right) wanting value for money, so loads of moaning and sighing. Arsenal’s cheapest ticket was a tenner, and they’ve sold out. That’s the way to do it. They’ll probably play well and win.

    Games like this, the club should be giving boat loads of free tickets to kids groups and charities, and filling up the stands with excited screaming newbies who’d not normally get to see a game.

  5. machedinho says

    Don’t agree with your lineup fella! Do u watch the 21′s? Doesn’t look like it! Id go with DDG, VERMIJL, keane, evans, Buttner, Lingard, petrucci, anderson, brady, macheda, hernandez!

    I DON’T want Fletch to play to be honest! Yes he’s on the way back but this comp is for the youngsters! Give them a go instead.

    Would love to see tunnicliffe, cole, henriques and powell all involved too but that’s a but too much to ask init ye?

    Petrucci deserves his chance more than Powell does to be honest! He’s captained the reserves last season and performed really well! I hope he gets his chance!

    • says

      machedinho – yes I do but this is, as always, a guestimate of what Ferguson may do. There’s a pecking order at United. Entry from reserves to first team is rarely about form alone.

      Not sure it calls for the sarcastic comment. Adding value? Not a lot.

  6. Sidsidney says

    Alfonso Bedoya said:
    Games like this, the club should be giving boat loads of free tickets to kids groups and charities, and filling up the stands with excited screaming newbies who’d not normally get to see a game.

    Aye, those kids are the next generation of United fans. Get them hooked while they’re young etc.

  7. bman says

    I’d enjoy watching a midfield trio of Fletcher, Cleverly, and Powell. That could theoretically be our best midfield combo in a season or two, if Fletch is still any good.

  8. marlon says

    De Gea
    Vermijl Keane Wootton Buttner
    Fletcher Cleverley Anderson
    Rooney Welbeck Chicharito

    Shame no Powell but the others definitely needed to play.Like the defence. Hop Rafa is just rested and wasn’t injured vs. liverpool. Same with Evans/Rio.

  9. brianofnazarethbrianofnazareth says

    uncleknobheadforfucksake said:
    welbeck needs a goal

    And a new hairstyle. Also a new team…hopefully.

    Looks a lot better paced with this young midfield, even Anderson has shown pace….honest.

  10. uncleknobheadffsuncleknobheadforfucksake says

    he’s been trying to run with it almost every time he has it, he should play more if he’s gonna keep doing that

  11. marlon says

    Like this formation. Fletcher playing so deep really helps balance everything out. Allows rest of the team to press and finally some protection for the back four.

    Really impressed with Chicharito’s link-up play. Love it when Anderson plays well too.

  12. Just1n says

    Anderson looking well up for this. He has run with the ball more than any of our usual midfielders have done this season. Fucking hell i cant remember when last a Man Utd midfielder ran with the ball.

  13. brianofnazarethbrianofnazareth says

    It’s frustrating knowing Ando has this in his locker.
    It’s time Ando and Cleve were given most of the games now, shit or bust before the summer transfer window opens!

    The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits…..

  14. Sidsidney says

    brianofnazareth said:
    I’m starting to have the same feelings for Welbeck that I had for Park and O’Shea.

    Shite.

    Did you not just see his touch/pass from a 60/70 yard ball? Took it out the sky no problem

  15. DamnedUnited says

    Anderson’s fitness levels are shocking. If he can’t last 90 mins after more than a week of rest at the age of 24, he is a waste of space.

  16. davek says

    massive plus tonight was seeing Fletcher come through 90 minutes and still running at the end- he makes such a difference to our midfield. If he can keep fit for a few months it’ll be great for us.
    Roo looked pretty good as well, Clevs had a decent game and I thought the kids looked ok. Would’ve liked Powell to have been given longer as he looks quality.

  17. Alfonso BedoyaAlfonso Bedoya says

    Rooney was great for his first game back… can’t wait for him to start with van Percie and Kagawa now.

    And considering how long he’s been out, how impressive was Fletcher?

    Some very good football all round.

    I don’t have much faith in Hernandez though… just doesn’t do it for me… he’s great if you put it on a plate for him, but that’s it.

  18. Denton Davey says

    Ben Hulston @ 8:40: “If all fit and on form, a midfield three of Cleverley, Ando and Carrick / Fletch, behind Kagawa, Rooney, Van Persie, is how I’d go with our front 6 players”

    Totally agree – the ball was played around by the midfielders much faster without Scholes/Carrick. No wingers, either.

    The young back four looked -errrm – young and not especially convincing. Vermijl was beaten easily for the cross that led to their goal and the guy marking Cisse was, likewise, easily beaten.

    Rooney played in that kind of KagawaBunga role – floating between the three midfielders and the two forwards. DarrenFletcherinho seemed to have the CarrickRole but played more “robustly”, proactively breaking up attacks rather than waiting to fend them off.

    Indeed, the big news was the full 90 minutes by Darren Fletcherinho even if he was playing at about 80% of “football genius” mode.

  19. Denton Davey says

    uncleknobheadforfucksake @ 10:54: “‘theboyrooney’”

    Pay attention – it’s TheWayneBoy.

    I might very well be a complete twat – you’d hardly be the first to say so – but at least I can read.

  20. marlon says

    Ando looked a bit unfit. Similar thing happened against Fulham when he faded in the 2nd half. Extra man in midfield made a huge difference. Makes so much sense to have one player sitting considering most of our CMs don’t have a clue how to defend and how often our FBs get forward.

    The shape of our front three was more interesting. Rooney sat very deep with Hernandez and Welbeck working the channels. Odd to have no obvious threat down the middle but it worked. When we have better, more intelligent forwards it will make hard work for opposing CBs and maybe rein in the attacking of some fullbacks.

    Really hope Fergie sticks with 3 CMs because our midfield control was so much better. Don’t think he will though. It was more of a formation of convenience than a tactical move. Had to give game time to 3 CMs and we’re looking light on wingers. Expect a return to Welbeck and Nani on the wings for tottenham. Interesting to see what he does with the Rooney/Kagawa situation – wouldn’t rule out Rooney or RVP starting on the bench.

  21. han says

    uncleknobheadforfucksake said:
    its like you’re their mates, rather than an inconsequential poster of bollocks

    harsh…

    i see u have found new pickings unc

    oh how i miss the old days….

  22. Sidsidney says

    uncleknobheadforfucksake said:
    ‘kagawabunga’
    ‘theboyrooney’
    ‘darrenfletcherinho’
    ‘dannyboy’
    complete twat

    Haha
    Denton is like the Ned Flanders of Rant
    Fletcherinho, okily-dokily

  23. Gabagool says

    Enjoyed this game, don’t get to see the young uns play much now I’m living in the colonies, but I thought they went well. Defence pretty shaky under the high ball and vermijl made a few boo-boos, but the rest held up well.
    Great performance from Anderson too, direct running and looked confident, if he can get a few more minutes on the pitch and a few less burgers in his guts he’ll hopefully show us what he’s made of.
    Bit worried about our strikers though, thought welbeck and Hernandez were ordinary at best. Doesn’t bode well if RVP gets injured.

  24. bman says

    Does anyone think Kagawa counts as a midfielder? If he plays centrally, would we count that as three in the middle? On the basis of the evidence so far I’d have to say no.

    • Gabagool says

      No. I can’t se Fergie playing him with Rooney and RVP in front of him in a central role, hence I think he’ll get punted out on the left wing. I’ve seen him play there for Japan and he went well but drifted in and out if the games bit

    • Gabagool says

      Fuc@ing iPhone…
      Drifted in and out of the game a bit. I believe he much prefers the central role, but he’ll be up against Rooney for it if all are fit.

  25. Denton Davey says

    uncleknobheadforfucksake @ 11:10: ” an inconsequential poster of bollocks”

    Rather like you; birds of a feather, and like that eh ?

  26. madmaxmadmax says

    I’m not really impressed with Cleverly. Good goal and overall played well. But just don’t feel confident about him. Anderson was fantastic in the first half though. Seems to have lost steam in the second.

    • Damian Garside says

      Question is: what does Sir AF think. He will probably take one look at your team and it’s permutations and say that there are “too few pensioners”.

  27. uncleknobheadffsuncleknobheadforfucksake says

    ,

    brianofnazareth said:
    Keeper

    Rafa Rio Vida Buttner

    Tony V Scholes/Cleve/Fletch Nani

    Kagawa

    RVP Rooney

    What do you think?

    well i think it only includes one centre mid, so like all non-fuckwits think it looks shite and youre a cunt

    and whats kagawa done to have the team built around him

  28. Alfonso BedoyaAlfonso Bedoya says

    han said:
    that’s going to be 1 heck of a game
    play the kids and throw caution to the winds

    Yep… I reckon the Renties will field a team of prospects as well… could be a great game if both teams play their kids.

  29. Alfonso BedoyaAlfonso Bedoya says

    madmax said:
    I’m not really impressed with Cleverly. Good goal and overall played well. But just don’t feel confident about him. Anderson was fantastic in the first half though. Seems to have lost steam in the second.

    Agree with both of that… if Anderson could play consistantly, and hold his place in the team, he’d get fit enough though.

    Thing about Cleverly… I think some were expecting him to replace Scholes… I see him more of a Carrick type… steady, but unimpressive.

    I want to see more of Powell.

    • davek says

      are you for real? A ‘not as good as Milner’
      He’s missed most of the last 2/3 seasons through injury so he has is nowhere near where he could/should be as a 23 year old with his talent.
      He is a ball player pure and simple, keep the ball, move it around intelligently, make space play quick football.Stupid to say he’s not a replacement for Scholes as others idiots have, who is? Scholes has been as good as anyone for 15 years.
      I’m pleased he’s a utd player and if he stays fit

  30. Leif Sward says

    Cleverley retains possession and moves the ball quickly. Comparing him with Milner is ridiculous.
    We’ve seen in the past when we have Carrick, Rooney and Scholes in the sames team there are too many long / crossfield passes. We need better variation which is what he gives.
    He used to score regularly for Watford and got a few for Wigan, so hopefully now he’s got his first he can settle down a bit in front of goal.
    I for one quite enjoy watching him play.

  31. uncleknobheadffsuncleknobheadforfucksake says

    he does all the things cleverley does, all the bits and pieces stuff in midfield without having anything standout to his game, jack of all trades type, like cleverley, except better

    looked almost good enough to play for us when he played cm for villa tho, or better than cleverley has so far atleast

  32. marlon says

    He’s never going to be world class but he’ll be a decent prem player who we didn’t pay £25m for. The excitement is just because our CMs are a bit shit and apparently we never going to buy another one. And, of course, he’s English.

    On the other hand, harsh to judge the guy 13 games into his United career.

  33. Clive says

    Can’t believe you’re disrespecting Cleverley! His brilliance maybe a bit more subtle than a player like Ronaldo – but the guy has a proper football brain – great movement, incisive passing, also great awareness – pretty much the perfect midfielder in my view. Plus I think we look a much more polished and smooth team when he plays…

  34. squigs says

    No Pace, No Strength, limited range of passing and injury prone. Not exactly Yaya Toure in terms of a complete midfielder. Cleverley would be a good squad player in a good United side. That he is seen as the future says how low some peoples expectations are.

  35. Herbie Simms says

    Anderson needs to lose some weight and get fit. Needs to do some work on his own to get in better shape. Powell is a class player, should be in the starting team. Cleverley is a good team player like Young and Wellbeck. Anderson came to United as one of the best attacking midfielders in Brazil. But what did SAF do? Try to turn Anderson into a defensive midfielder and there lies Anderson’s problems. He has never grasped playing defensive midfielder so his game looks medicore at times. But if SAF gives him back his attacking midfield role, we will surprise a lot of teams in the champions league. Against Newcastle, Anderson showed a bit of his attacking class and if he can get in better shape, we can be a force to rekon with.

    • says

      Oh Herbie – this myth of Anderson as an attacking player really does bug me. It’s six years since he played in that position. He really didn’t at Porto – I remember having this debate with an Anderson fan on this site a while back. Prompted me to go off and research the whole ‘average position’ thing for Porto’s games – over half he started on the left side of midfield. Ok, it’s small sample but I’m sure you get my drift. He played at number 10 for two games in the 2005 FIFA Under-17 World Cup.. that’s about the last time.

      As for Anderson playing there for United. In preference to whom? Kagawa?!

      Seriously, the big boned Brazilian has a half decent game in the Carling One Cup and people are sucking each other off over it. Will people never learn?!

      • Leif Sward says

        Probably not. He’s just one of those players that people really want to do well and any fleeting good performance just makes you hope for much more. I’ve had a few over the years, Danny Wallace, Cole, Forlan, Veron and probably many more.

  36. threadoflength says

    Seems to me that if Ando can play that well in the first half of games we should be starting him. Just so long as SAF remembers to sub him off for Scholes after an hour.

  37. SpudiatorSpudiator says

    Commenter said:
    Probably not. He’s just one of those players that people really want to do well and any fleeting good performance just makes you hope for much more. I’ve had a few over the years, Danny Wallace, Cole, Forlan, Veron and probably many more.

    I can understand some of the comparisons there, but adding Andy Cole into it seems a bit harsh, he did score more 20 goals a season for 3 years running and was one of our most potent forwards until Ruud van Nistelrooy arrived at the club.

  38. squigs says

    Exactly Anderson was a really good left winger, one who actually stayed out on the wing. He could be moved around a bit for Gremio but played in the champions league for Porto as a left winger.

    He has the attributes to play in the middle of midfield but that is a lazy big time charlie means we are less and less likely to see the best of him.

  39. Alfonso BedoyaAlfonso Bedoya says

    Commenter said:
    Anderson needs to lose some weight and get fit. Needs to do some work on his own to get in better shape. Powell is a class player, should be in the starting team. Cleverley is a good team player like Young and Wellbeck. Anderson came to United as one of the best attacking midfielders in Brazil. But what did SAF do? Try to turn Anderson into a defensive midfielder and there lies Anderson’s problems. He has never grasped playing defensive midfielder so his game looks medicore at times. But if SAF gives him back his attacking midfield role, we will surprise a lot of teams in the champions league. Against Newcastle, Anderson showed a bit of his attacking class and if he can get in better shape, we can be a force to rekon with.

    Fuck me… I actually agree with most of this…

    “Badges, to god-damned hell with badges! We have no badges. In fact, we don’t need badges. I don’t have to show you any stinking badges, you god-damned cabrón and ching’ tu madre! Come out from that shit-hole of yours. I have to speak to you.”

  40. says

    Somebody should please check what I wrote about Anderson in the Liverpool game thread and my description of how he will at least DRIBBLE the ball in the middle and also has the strength to hold off markers.

    He is very unfit though or does not have the engine to be a box-to-box player but I see him, Cleverly, Carrick, Fletcher and the wonderfully balanced Powell and I still am puzzled at why those TWO guys still get a game. It makes no sense whatsoever.

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