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Preview: United v Birmingham

Rob Bromilow Friday, January 21, 2011

Manchester United host Birmingham this Saturday afternoon in a game that will test the Premier League leaders. After a very defensive display at Spurs on Sunday, United will be glad to be back at home and able to play their own game - hopefully getting the 3 points they need to maintain top spot. With Manchester City away to Aston Villa later on Saturday it is a chance for United to put their rivals under some pressure.

In terms of the team itself Rafael is suspended so either his brother Fabio could come in, Wes Brown could feature or long shots would be O'Shea or even Gary Neville. The rest of the team will look something like this:

Van der Sar
Brown Ferdinand Vidic Evra
Nani Carrick Anderson Giggs
Rooney Berbatov

Bench: Kuszczak, Fabio, Smalling, Fletcher, Scholes, Obertan, HernandezBirmingham will line up with 5 across midfield with Cameron Jerome returning upfront in place of Matt Derbyshire. Scott Dann will miss the rest of the season through injury so Liam Ridgewell moves to the centre and Daryl Murphy will slot in at left-back. David Bentley, Keith Fahey and Alexandr Hleb will provide the flair in contrast to Barry Ferguson and Lee Bowyer in the middle.

Carr Johnson Ridgewell Murphy
Bentley Ferguson Bowyer Fahey Hleb

It will certainly be a tough test for United against Birmingham who they drew with 1-1 at St Andrews in December. Recent games between the two at Old Trafford have generally ended in 1-0 wins for United but they won't be taking anything for granted this time.

Prediction: United 2-0 Birmingham

To read more of Rob's blogs on football check out Sports Reports Online.


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