Friday, 12 February 2016

Sunderland Vs Man Utd


How to follow the match: Saturday’s 12:45 GMT
kick-off will be broadcast live in the UK on BT Sport
1. Fans can also follow the action via’s match blog and the club’s Twitter
account @ManUtd . MUTV's Match Day Live
programme starts at 12:00 GMT and the club’s
official channel will show the full game at 18:00
GMT on Sunday.

Scene-setter : Louis van Gaal's men will be looking
to respond after a late goal denied the Reds
victory at Chelsea last weekend. Currently six
points off the top four, the United boss will be
hoping to close that gap with a win against the
struggling Black Cats, who sit 19th in the table .
Sam Allardyce's side will have been buoyed by a
credible draw at Liverpool last weekend, but have
plenty of work to do if they are to secure their top-
flight status for another year.

Form guide : United have lost just one of the last
nine games and are unbeaten in 13 previous league
trips to the Stadium of Light. The sides drew 1-1 in
last season's corresponding fixture, but the Reds
had claimed victories on the three trips to
Wearside before that. On an individual level, Wayne
Rooney has scored seven goals in eight
appearances since the turn of the year and netted
three times against Allardyce's side last season.
The skipper’s seven-goal tally against the Black
Cats is the most by any United player in the
Premier League era. Meanwhile, Jesse Lingard will
be hoping to score the Reds' opening goal for the
third game in a row, after netting against Stoke City
and Chelsea.

Latest team news : Will Keane has been named in
the travelling squad for Wearside. Adnan
Januzaj and Guillermo Varela are both unavailable
after limping out of the Under-21s' 7-0 thrashing of
Norwich City on Monday while Phil Jones also
sustained a knock. The game is also likely to come
too soon for Ashley Young and Bastian
Schweinsteiger . Marcos Rojo and Antonio
Valencia are closing on a return, while Luke Shaw
is still out. The home side are without Younes
Kaboul, Sebastian Larsson, Jeremain Lens and
Duncan Watmore while Adam Johnson has had his
contract terminated.

View from the dressing room: Michael Carrick says
his side need to battle on after last week’s
Stamford Bridge disappointment. "There is plenty
to play for this month and of course plenty of
points to play for in the league. We’re not giving
anything up just yet," he said on Tuesday.

have to battle on through, keep going and play
something like we have been doing over the last
few weeks and then see where it takes us."

View from the opposition : Sunderland goalkeeper
Vito Mannone thinks his side’s precarious league
position makes Saturday’s clash very important. "In
the last three weeks, no matter who we’re playing
we want to get three points; we want the three
points (on Saturday)," he told the club’s official

Danger men : After six months in the MLS, Jermain
Defoe has managed to recapture the form that
once made him one of England’s hottest strikers.
The 33-year-old has averaged a goal a game this
year and will be crucial to any success the hosts
may have if he is deemed fit to feature on
Saturday. January arrival Wahib Khazri has
impressed in his two Sunderland appearances thus
far, providing a slick assist for the former in last
weekend’s Anfield draw.

Betting : Club partners Marathonbet price United as
odds-on favourites to take the three points at
39/50, while Sunderland are deemed long-shots at
43/10 and the draw is available at 139/50. You can
get odds of 79/20 on Rooney adding to his previous
successes against the hosts with the opening goal,
and 44/5 on Lingard netting the opener for the third
consecutive game. Visit Marathonbet's website for
more offers .

Referee : Andre Marriner will take charge of his first
United match since last season's visit to Everton.
The West Midlands official has sent off seven
Sunderland players in his last 17 games involving
the Black Cats and presided over their 6-2 defeat
at Goodison Park earlier in the season, as well as
last term's 8-0 caning at Southampton. United have
lost four of the last five games he has overseen.

Rivals watch : The top four all face off against each
other on Sunday, with Leicester City visiting
Arsenal and Manchester City hosting Tottenham
Hotspur. Liverpool travel to Aston Villa on the
same day.


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