Manchester United vs Cardiff City preview

January 27, 2014
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Manchester United vs Cardiff CityAll eyes will be on Old Trafford on Tuesday night as Manchester United face Cardiff City with marque signing Juan Mata likely to be handed a debut.

The Red Devils fans are hoping the Spaniard’s arrival will help the team kick-start their season, and they won’t get many better chances to record an easy home win than the clash with rock-bottom Bluebirds.

The first part of the season has been utterly disappointing for the Old Trafford outfit, with only their Champions League campaign going according to plan.

Meanwhile, Manchester United were eliminated from both Capital One Cup and FA Cup, while slipping to seventh in the Premier League standings.

And with star players Rooney, Van Persie and Carrick on the sidelines, David Moyes was all too aware he needed a star signing to kick-start this season, and it is fair to say he couldn’t do much better than Juan Mata.

The Spaniard will be extremely motivated to prove his worth following the clash with Jose Mourinho and he is priced at 3.00 (2/1) to score on his debut.

Manchester United are 1.80 (4/5) for a half-time/full-time win, as they can be trusted to attack their less illustrious opponents from the off.

Nemanja Vidic misses out through suspension, whereas Wayne Rooney, Marouane Fellaini and Robin van Persie are unlikely to return into action.

Michael Carrick is set for a three-week spell on the sidelines, whilst Rio Ferdinand and Nani are injury doubts.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): De Gea – Rafael, Evans, Smalling, Evra – Fletcher, Jones – Valencia, Mata, Januzaj – Welbeck.

Cardiff City boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is likely to receive a warm welcome on his return to Old Trafford, but this is clearly not the right time to be facing the Red Devils.

While Manchester United are buoyed by the capture of Juan Mata, the Bluebirds sit at Premiership rock bottom following a dismal run of results.

Cardiff City only picked up one point from last six Premier League fixtures, although the good things is they are just one point adrift of safety.

The Bluebirds can take some comfort from their FA Cup displays, with away triumphs over Newcastle and Bolton giving them reason for optimism ahead of the trip to Old Trafford.

And having notched a total of five goals in last three fixtures on the road, Cardiff City are 2.25 (5/4) to continue the scoring run.

Apart from Andy Taylor, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has fully fit squad to choose from, with quite a few players to be recalled after they were rested in midweek.

Probable starting line-up (4-4-1-1): Marshall – Catherine, Caulker, Turner, McNaughton – Noone, Medel, Gunnarson, Whittingham – Mutch – Campbell.

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