On Saturday, Manchester is the venue for two heavyweight clashes. First up at high noon – Manchester United take on Chelsea then later David Haye makes his first defence of the Heavyweight WBA title against John Ruiz.
As the United and Chelsea players walk out of the Old Trafford tunnel to “Fanfare to Rocky” by Bill Conti which team will deliver the knockout punch (to continue the boxing theme 🙂 ) in this year’s race to be crowned Champions – I believe the winner of this match will win the title (on points). This match couldn’t be any bigger –the same two clubs slugging it out for honours as they have done over recent seasons.
After recent performances which team will come into the match with greater confidence?
After United’s poor showing against Bayern will we be lacking in self belief? Or has the fact we’re playing Chelsea made Sir Alex Ferguson’s job easier to prepare the players? The players surely won’t require any encouragement for a fixture of this magnitude. .. Chelsea have recently overcome their blip with a blistering return of form scoring twelve goals in only two games with Frank Lampard scoring five goals in the process. Chelsea will be a team with confidence restored and not intimated by the Old Trafford crowd.
How will Manchester United cope if Wayne Rooney gets injured?? United are only a one man team!! Regular readers of my blogs will know how annoying I find these comments – complete dribble and utter nonsense! Now this is the perfect opportunity to show we’re not a one man team, to show Manchester United are and always will be more than one individual (sorry, getting a tad passionate as I type 🙂 ).
There is no doubting Rooney’s absence is huge, he is our best player. Well, this is Dimitar Berbatov’s time to step up – a time for him to repay the faith shown from his supporters and a time for him to prove his doubters wrong. This is a defining moment in Berbatov’s Manchester United career; win the title for United and it will surely silence his critics. I have every faith in Berbatov.
Berbatov will most likely be the lone striker in a 4-5-1 formation. I feel the starting team will virtually be the same as the one that took the field against Bayern. Will Carrick start? He had a shocker against Bayern, his worst performance in a United shirt in my opinion. I would start with Carrick in a three man midfield consisting of Park and Fletcher. Park this season has played much better in a central role rather than a role on the flank, perhaps this should be his future role? Valencia and Nani to start on the wings to ask questions of the Chelsea defence.
The back five will be usual suspects. I wish Evra could have a rest as he seems to running on empty or am I reading too much into his performance against Bayern? There is not a chance Evra will be rested for this game though.
In reverse fixture at Stamford Bridge earlier this season Chelsea were from memory somewhat fortunate to win 1-0, we were the better team and deserved a draw at least. At the time I remember being disappointed with the performance of the referee. I’m not one usually to slag off a referee’s as like players they have good games and bad games so his performance must have been poor. From memory, we could have had one or two penalties and the free kick which Chelsea scored from was a soft decision. Am I being unfair on the referee?
Old Trafford will be buzzing, the match will fly by as all big games do and the atmosphere will be superb – probably the best all season. Perhaps the absence of Rooney will increase the decibel level as we know our team needs us.
I really fancy us to win, my prediction: 2-1 for United.
Danger man: Florent Malouda
Which team has the “Eye of the Tiger”? Which team will be last standing come 3pm on Saturday?
“This Is The One” (Saturday) I’ve been waiting for… 😉