United await FA Cup third-round draw
Manchester United fans should look out for ball number 25 in the FA Cup third-round draw, which takes place this Monday evening.
Forty-four teams from the top two divisions enter the competition at this stage, with the Reds hoping for a strong first campaign under Louis van Gaal. Last year's home elimination at the hands of Swansea City was a huge shock, ending a three-year run of progression from the third round. In the previous seasons, United had beaten West Ham in a replay with a great early goal by Wayne Rooney (2012/13), knocked out Manchester City with a thrilling 3-2 away win (2011/12) and engineered Liverpool's exit with a Ryan Giggs penalty (2010/11) at Old Trafford.
To find out who will be United’s first opponents in the 2014/15 contest, follow the club’s Twitter account, @ManUtd or visit ManUtd.com on Monday from 19:00 GMT.
Reds midfielder Ander Herrera is eager to sample the FA Cup for the first time as a player, having watched it from afar in Spain. And with no club honours from his time at Athletic Bilbao, the no.21 would love to add a line on his CV by helping United to win the competition for a record 12th time and for the first time since 2004 when Ruud van Nistelrooy (twice) and Cristiano Ronaldo both scored in the final against Millwall.
“I think it’s good that it can be down to just one game – it makes it very emotional,” Herrera told Inside United. “I like the FA Cup, I always watched it in Spain. I want to play in it and it’s a big chance for us to win a trophy. It’s an important competition but all of them are important because we want to win everything.”
Finally more games for team to play in ...
SOUTHAMPTON V UNITED
9 December 2014 4:00:00 am
another 3pts to get into top 3. the highest since SAF left us!
But playing away against the surprise package this season is not going to be easy. Having lost to Man City and Arsenal consecutively, Southampton will try to bounce back strongly against us.
But still, all the best, and it will be 3 points in the bag!
Pictures always should have a special story behind it or a special meaning to the photographer.
Tonight is also a battle of tactics between 2 Dutch tacticians.
just hope we dun just soak up the pressure and play on the counter attack, just like what we did against Arsenal ...
A brace by RVP saves the day up to no.3 highest since SAF's days...
Southampton 1-2 Manchester United
Possession: 59% 41%
On target: 4-2
3-5-2 is not the system for us ... lucky LVG change ...
Stats says it all! But who cares all impt is 3pts!
Last edited by melvin; 9th December 2014 at 10:40 AM.
Into the peak period of the season ...
22 Nov Barclays Premier League Arsenal --- 3pts.
29 Nov Barclays Premier League Hull City --- 3pts.
02 Dec Barclays Premier League Stoke City --- 3pts.
08 Dec Barclays Premier League Southampton --- 3pts.
14 Dec Barclays Premier League Liverpool
20 Dec Barclays Premier League Aston Villa
26 Dec Barclays Premier League Newcastle United
28 Dec Barclays Premier League Tottenham Hotspur
01 Jan Barclays Premier League Stoke City
11 Jan Barclays Premier League Southampton
12/30 points as of now ...
FA Cup third-round draw
Arsenal v Hull City
Southampton v Ipswich
Stoke v Wrexham
Charlton v Blackburn
Dover Athletic v Crystal Palace
AFC Wimbledon v Liverpool
Manchester City v Sheffield Wednesday
Aldershot or Rochdale v Nottingham Forest
West Brom v Gateshead
Blyth Spartans v Birmingham City
Aston Villa v Blackpool
Rotherham v AFC Bournemouth
Huddersfield v Reading
Oxford or Tranmere v Swansea
Cardiff v Colchester
Bolton v Wigan
Sunderland v Leeds
Burnley v Tottenham
Millwall v Bradford
Derby v Southport
Brentford v Brighton
Fulham v Wolves
Leicester v Newcastle
Scunthorpe or Worcester City v Chesterfield
Everton v West Ham
Cambridge United or Mansfield v Bury or Luton
Chelsea v Watford
Barnsley or Chester v Middlesbrough
QPR v Sheffield United
Accrington or Yeovil v Manchester United
Preston v Norwich
Doncaster v Bristol City
Ties to be played on 3-6 January
crappy win, still a win!
This Sunday's big game! 3 pts is a must no less.
UNITED V LIVERPOOL
14 December 2014 9:30:00 pm SGT
Think both sets of defenders plays a crucial role in this traditional rivalry match up.
Di Maria and Smalling to miss Liverpool
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has confirmed Angel Di Maria and Chris Smalling are both unavailable to face historic rivals Liverpool on Sunday - but the club's injury situation is otherwise improving.
Di Maria has not featured since limping out of last month’s 3-0 win over Hull City with a hamstring injury. Van Gaal told MUTV on Friday: "I am not a doctor so I cannot answer but I know he is not ready for Liverpool."
Smalling will also miss the blockbuster clash at Old Trafford after coming off during Monday’s 2-1 win against Southampton, but the England international will only be out for a fortnight.
When asked about the defender, van Gaal explained: "It’s not so heavy an injury, he was very wise to stop immediately. I think it shall take two weeks."
Later, in his pre-match press conference, the manager stated that United "have only four players injured. Only Shaw, Smalling, Di Maria and Blind. That's better than ever I believe."
Rojo rising with United
Marcos Rojo's reputation as a tough, uncompromising defender was bolstered when he was back in the Manchester United team following just two games out with a shoulder injury. With 10 appearances now under his belt, the Argentinian is settling in well, adapting to English football and helping to drive the Reds up the table...
It's great to have you back in the team. How is the shoulder and how do you feel about your form?
I think it's been going really well. It's great to be back and being able to play. Things are going very well, I feel very comfortable. My shoulder is good, back in shape. I feel very comfortable on the pitch, and I’m happy with my performances.
Your recent performances include the game against Stoke, when it seemed - at least for a moment - that you had scored your first goal for the club. Louis van Gaal later credited it to Juan Mata but did you get a touch on the ball?
I certainly felt that I got a touch on it. It didn't change the trajectory of the ball, it didn't look as if I'd made good contact with the ball but I've seen lots of photographs! There is one out there that shows that I clearly did make contact and it was my goal.
What did Juan and the other players say to you when you were celebrating? Did they believe you had scored?
They were laughing about it. We've talked about it since. Some say it was Juan's goal, some say it was mine but I'm taking it. I'm claiming it as mine.
During your time out with injury, did you get frustrated when you could only watch matches, or are you a good spectator?
When you're not on the pitch, you do suffer a bit more during the game. You want to be able to go out there and help your team-mates, but you can't do so. You just want to wish them well.
United's defence has changed a lot this season due to suspensions and the bad luck we've had with injuries. Has this made life more difficult for you and the other defenders?
Obviously we’ve not had the chance to play with the same players too often, there have been many changes, and yes, it can be a bit difficult. But we have so many players who are good at playing there.
How important is communication with the other defenders and, on that subject, how are your English classes going?
Communication is very important, of course - for example, to help tell someone when to make a run. It is very, very important. My English lessons are going well; every week I have classes. I think I am getting better and I'm hoping to get a good grip of English as quickly as I possibly can.
Do the other players help you to learn the language?
Yes, they do. I can always ask them how you say things in English or they might translate something I don’t understand. They do help, yes.
We assume Angel Di Maria is also learning English. How are the two Argentinian amigos settling in?
We go to the classes together, so we have a little laugh while we’re learning. I think that helps us both.
Who is doing better with the learning?
I think I’m doing better than him, but that’s what he said as well!
Back to football – how are you both adapting here at United and what do you think of the standard in the Premier League?
The level is very high. There is no doubt in my mind that it’s the best league in the world. It’s very tight, they’re all difficult games. There is not much of a great difference between any of the teams. I think I’m adapting to it very well. I hope to continue improving and giving the best I can. Angel has also started very well. He’s a great player and he can be the difference for us in every game he plays.
You've helped the team to reach the top four. How do you rate the chances of finishing there or even winning the title?
I think we just need to carry on doing what we're doing. We could hopefully finish fourth but there’s no reason why we couldn't finish top as well. I think the important thing is to keep going right until the end and give everything you can until the end of the season, and then see where we stand.
UNITED V LIVERPOOL
14 December 2014 9:30:00 pm SGT
United XI: De Gea, Valencia, Jones, Evans, Young, Carrick, Fellaini, Mata, Rooney, van Persie, Wilson.
sub: Lindegaard, McNair, Blackett, Herrera, Fletcher, Januzaj, Falcao
Wilson seems to have regular start.
Rojo suffered an injury yesterday on the training pitch ... and that's no.44 injuries ... think the training is wearing off the team!
Last edited by melvin; 14th December 2014 at 09:07 PM.
12 min – Goal! United 1 Liverpool 0. Rooney scores!
40 min – Goal! United 2 Liverpool 0. Mata scores!
71 min – Goal! United 3 Liverpool 0. Van Persie scores