Venue: Old Trafford
Date: Sunday, 10 March
Kick-off: 16.30 GMT
United. A game I’d usually feel nervous about, a game I’d be well up for – until now. Now I’m just dreading it.
Yep, more doom and gloom but let’s be honest the idea of being up against the likes of Rooney and Van Persie can’t fill many of you with confidence today either. Whilst they’ve even got Kagawa scoring hat-tricks for them at the minute, we have a mannequin up front who couldn’t shake off a cold nevermind a half decent defender. And while their manager will undoubtedly have had the hairdryer out after their exit from Europe (once all the toys were safely out of the pram), ours is more likely to have sat rocking in a corner, notepad in hand, applying for any available posts without the word ‘interim’ in the title.
Going into today’s game, I reckon Fergie’s trying a bit of reverse psychology (whilst peeing his pants laughing), saying “I’m not going to kick anyone when they’re lying down. It’s not my style. My concern is Manchester United. What happens at Chelsea doesn’t really affect me. Chelsea have a terrific record in the FA Cup, probably the best of any team in the last decade. It doesn’t matter when you play Chelsea or who’s in charge, we’ll have a hard game.”
For United, Phil Jones (ankle) and Paul Scholes (knee) are out injured, whilst Giggs is likely to get the day off to rest up. Apart from that, Fergie seems to have some selection problems because most of his lot are performing too well to drop – and of course my heart bleeds for him.
For Chelsea, Romeu (knee) remains out long term and JT whilst not injured will undoubtedly have his pride to nurse if FSW makes him sit this one out as rumoured. Cole, Mata and Ramires should start – mind you, so should Demba Ba but whether or not he will, we’ll have to wait and see.
UNITED (Possible line-up): De Gea, Rafael, Smalling, Evans, Evra, Valencia, Anderson, Carrick, Kagawa, Rooney, Van Persie
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Cech, Ivanovic, Luiz, Cahill, Cole, Ramires, Lampard, Mikel, Mata, Hazard, Ba
Chelsea 5-4 United AET (31st October 2012) League Cup
Sod the stats, let’s be honest, anything better than defeat will be a massive bonus the way we’ve played under FSW.