Reds begin recovery at lowly Aldershot

Sir Alex Ferguson will deploy a strong side against Aldershot Town in the Carling Cup fourth round on Tuesday night, as Manchester United takes its first steps towards recovery. With Ferguson’s team and supporters in a cloud since Manchester City’s 6-1 win at Old Trafford on Sunday, anything bar healthy victory over the lower division outfit is unthinkable.

While the renaissance begins in Hampshire, Ferguson also remains keen to use his full squad in the Carling Cup. It means the Scot is likely to field some major names alongside youngsters at the 7,000-capacity Recreation Ground. Michael Owen, Dimitar Berbatov and Antonio Valencia could all start against Dean Holdsworth’s League Two strugglers.

“At the moment, I’ve got a really strong squad,” Ferguson told MUTV.

“We took 23 players to Romania with us and left Rio [Ferdinand] behind because we weren’t planning to use him in that game. So, with a squad of 24 players, some of them have to have games. Michael Owen and Dimitar Berbatov must have games. It’ll be similar to what we did at Leeds, really. All [the youngsters involved at Elland Road] will be travelling with us.

“Young players emerge and take someone’s position. It’s happened time and time again at this club and I’ve experienced it over my 25 years. You see a young emerging star coming through the youth team, and then comes the Reserves and, before you know it, you say why don’t you put this boy in the first team. It’s down to temperament. That’s important, and ability, courage and determination. They’re all the factors we need for top players at United.”

In addition to Owen, Barbatov and Valencia, Ferguson could also deploy first-team regulars Fabio da Silva, Phil Jones and Park Ji-Sung against a team 81 places behind in the football league ladder. Captain Nemanja Vidic could play after missing Sunday’s defeat at Old Trafford.

Aldershot Town v Manchester United, Carling Cup, Recreation Ground, 7.45pm, 25 October 2011.Youngsters Will Keane, Ezikiel Fyers, Ravel Morrison and Paul Pogba are also included in Ferguson’s squad, while Tom Cleverley could make his very long-awaited return in central midfield after travelling south. Indeed, the latter pair could well start in what would be the French youngsters full United début.

Owen, who scored twice in the previous round away at Leeds United, says the match is essential to a host of fringe United players who have seen very little game time this season. The former-Liverpool striker is yet to start a Premier League game, while Berbatov has begun only one.

“It’s obviously going to be a massive game for Aldershot with Manchester United coming into town,” Owen told MUTV.

“I’m sure it’ll be a full house and we’re treating it as an important game as well. There’s players who weren’t involved against City, me being one of them, and a lot of the lads need games so it’ll be quite a strong Manchester United playing against them. It’s a competition we want to do well in. We’ve done quite well in the Carling Cup over the years and we want to progress and win a trophy. That’s the end game.”

Meanwhile, Aldershot manager Holdsworth says that the fixture is the biggest in the club’s history. Former Wimbledon striker Holdsworth runs the club on a shoestring, with the Hampshire-based outfit struggling in 15th place in League Two. In 1992 Aldershot became the first League club to fold since Acrington Stanly 30 years previously. Reforming that spring, Aldershot began the very long ascent up the football pyramid from Isthmian League Division Three, the ninth run on the ladder.

“On Tuesday night, we’ve probably got the biggest game in the club’s history. It could mean financial security for a long, long time”, said Holdsworth, who scored more than 260 goals in a decade-long professional career.

United and Aldershot have only met once, with the Reds winning 3-1 in September 1970. George Best, Brian Kidd and Denis Law scored United’s goals in the win, and while the Reds will not field two former European Players of the Year tonight, there is no doubt that a win is essential.

Match Facts
Aldershot Town v Manchester United, Carling Cup, Recreation Ground, 7.45pm, 25 October 2011.

Likely Line-ups
Aldershot (4-4-2): Warner;Herd, Straker, Jones, Rodman; Morris, Vincenti, Guttridge, Collins; Rankine, Hylton. Subs from: Brown, McGlashan, Pulis, Brown, Smith, Bubb, Panther, Young

United (4-4-2): Fabio, Jones, Vidic, Fryers; Valencia, Cleverley, Pogba, Park; Berbatov, Owen. Subs from: Lindegaard, Amos, de Gea, Evra, Carrick, Diouf, Giggs, Welbeck, Anderson, Fletcher, Young, Nani, W Keane, Morrison.

Form
Aldershot: LLLLW
United: DDWDL

Officials
Referee: Lee Probert
Assistants: S Burt S Long
Fourth Official: S Attwell

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Comments

  1. RobDiablo says

    “Captain Nemanja Vidic could play after missing Sunday’s defeat at Old Trafford.”

    I guess this mean he won’t play at Everton, then.

  2. alex10 says

    Well we will field one former european footballer of the year up front. Need a big result tonight, I’d like to see Pogba and a few others from the reserves given a chance from the start. If Fergie was really serious (which I very much doubt) about the reasons as to why we did not invest in a proven centre midfielder over the summer, then he needs to show his faith in Pogba, rather than just picking eleven men at random from our squad. On another note, it’s sad that it come to this for Berbatov, the only game time he gets is in the carling cup away at lower league sides. I really feel sorry for him.

  3. ghost says

    Amos, Fabio, Jones, Vidic, Fryers, Valencia, Cleverley, Park, Diouf, Owen and Berbatov.

    Bench: De Gea, Vemijl, M. Keane, Pogba, W. Keane, Morrison, Cole.

  4. han says

    kramer said:
    fuck owen, berba, carrick and the likes.

    would like to see pogba, cleverley, welbeck, morrison etc. play.

    berba deserves a run in the league as well
    all u cunts that stick him in the same bracket as carrick really have got short memories – ffs he was great last season and carried the team whilst shrek was in his swamp for the best part of the 1st half of the season
    SAF will start berba against everton too

  5. uncleknobheadffsuncleknobheadforfucksake says

    is that the team then

    so basically there’s no point watching this til an hour in when he might make subs

  6. han says

    uncleknobheadforfucksake said:
    two bollockless spurs softshite small time embarrassing shells of men, peas in a pod

    don’t bring your bum boyfriend into the equation – cap’n is way above that description u’ve given about yourself

  7. han says

    madredmonkey said:
    We should be playing a few more youngsters.

    the entire 1st team that humiliated us on sunday should be forced to play this evening

  8. sheesh says

    Good to see Cleverley starting but disappointing that Pogba’s on the bench again.

    I’m fearful that Paul will leave us if we don’t give him enough opportunities and another team comes in for him.

    Shame Park didn’t make an appearance against City. We desperately needed his energy in the 2nd half, I thought, especially when the score was 3-1.

  9. Alfonso BedoyaAlfonso Bedoya says

    I’m not happy with this team… I understand that he wants to get the likes of Cleverly and Valencia games…. but Park doesn’t need it and Doofus won’t make it anyway, so why not get Morrison, Tunnicliffe, Pogba involved?

    We’re going to lose Pogba… you just watch… he’s going to do a Pique… and become a monster player for another team.

  10. sheesh says

    Alfonso Bedoya said:

    We’re going to lose Pogba… you just watch… he’s going to do a Pique… and become a monster player for another team.

    That’s my fear. Everyone can see what a talent he is..everyone except the man who should see it… Fergie.

  11. han says

    sheesh said:
    Good to see Cleverley starting but disappointing that Pogba’s on the bench again.

    I’m fearful that Paul will leave us if we don’t give him enough opportunities and another team comes in for him.

    Shame Park didn’t make an appearance against City. We desperately needed his energy in the 2nd half, I thought, especially when the score was 3-1.

    they’ll be time for him in the 2nd half no worries
    don’t see why he persists with doofus though – we all know his future lies elsewhere

  12. han says

    wtf is up with vidic? red on his last outing and now a yellow in the 1st 8 mins
    ffs him and twatter rio are really fucked this season

  13. Sidsidney says

    Pogba isn’t ready

    Fergie just used him as an excuse for not sorting out the midfield, and in doing so got our hopes up

  14. han says

    what the hell has happened to tony v this year? when he came back from injury i thought he looked pretty confident but after the barca game when he looked lost, he really hasnt improved to be the same player he was in his 1st season

  15. sheesh says

    Good to see Berbatov playing with a bit of hunger. I know we’re only playing Aldershot tonight but, if he can keep this up, he will be back in the first team sooner rather than later.

    We have conceded possession far too much for my liking, though. Our ball retention is something we frequently seem to struggle with irrespective of the players we put out on the pitch. You’d think the coaches would work on this in training.

  16. sheesh says

    sidney said:
    Pogba isn’t ready

    Fergie just used him as an excuse for not sorting out the midfield, and in doing so got our hopes up

    Fergie did say that Pogba will leave the club if he doesn’t get chances so surely he must think he’s ready. When it comes to youngsters, the problem is that Fergie often talks them up and then fails to give them the opportunities.

  17. RobDiabloRobDiablo says

    Just1n said:
    Parks done alright.

    Yes, he did, but we already know what to expect from him; we wanted a glimpse of a possible future: Pogba and Cleverley in the cenre of midfield.

  18. Alfonso BedoyaAlfonso Bedoya says

    sidney said:
    Morrisons feet are ace, and he busts a bollock to get back

    He wasn’t on long, but made sure he got involved.

    Always looking for the ball… always available…

    Did nowt spectacular, but impressed the fuck out me, all the same.

  19. Just1n says

    RobDiablo said:
    Yes, he did, but we already know what to expect from him; we wanted a glimpse of a possible future: Pogba and Cleverley in the cenre of midfield.

    Cleverley has just come back from injury. Would be stupid to play him for the full 90.

    He will be back against the toffees.

  20. Sidsidney says

    Alfonso Bedoya said:
    He wasn’t on long, but made sure he got involved.

    Always looking for the ball… always available…

    Did nowt spectacular, but impressed the fuck out me, all the same.

    And on two occasions he burst a bollock to get back and defend when the break was on, so there’s no doubting his committment toward football on the pitch. He’s gifted.

    I like Pogba n all. He’s mature and sensible. But physically I can’t decide if he is closer to an immobile lump like Crouch or a gangly beast like Viera.

    Thing is none of these kids are ready for first team Prem football yet. If they were they wouldn’t be coming on when we’re 3-0 up.

  21. says

    Did anybody else notice how open we were?? Even against Aldershot they were breaking at us with ease. Does the manager have no time for defensive set up at all? Cleverly and Ji in centre-midfield? Talk about piss taking!!

  22. Yang says

    This site is filled with strange comment, Comfortable win, Pitch is so small that even simple long punt ball look dangerous. See most players try to do some basic stuff and make effort resulting in convincing win.

    John get some abusing from Vidic ;) Think he need to learn timing of overlapping.

  23. kramer says

    it was good to see pogba, morrison and cleverley, all of them were impressive.

    i’m not sure why we’ve still got diouf – surely he’s got no future at united.

    and yeah, we were pretty fucking open. would like to see some of the players from the city game get relegated to the bench for a couple of weeks.

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