Manchester United take on Everton at Old Trafford aiming to go 12 points clear at the top of the Premier League after Manchester City’s defeat at Southampton yesterday. Many say the title race could well be over already, but Everton have proved their quality and last seasons 4-4 draw was the game Ferguson felt his team had lost out on the title.
It is difficult to predict the Manchester United side today with the opportunity to go 12 points clear but with Real Madrid away on Wednesday. Ashley Young is set to return after five games out with a knee injury. Phil Jones is also set to return after his reported shingles was not as serious as first feared when the defender pulled out of the England under 21 squad. Michael Carrick has also recovered from a hip injury which saw him withdraw from England duty.
Everton are hoping Marouane Fellaini, often the thorn in United’s side, will be fit to play after he missed out playing for Belgium with a hip injury. Phil Jagielka is also set to return but Tony Hibbert and Seamus Coleman are still out for the Toffees.
Everton are high on confidence after losing just three games this season and will be aiming to do the double over Manchester United for the first time since the 1969-1970 season. While Manchester United have narrowly won games against Southampton and Fulham, this is also a key quote from the footballing book of clichés that it is a ‘sign of champions’. However, they are also on a run which has seen them collect 35 points from a possible 39 in the last 13 matches.
Manchester United have struggled to keep clean sheets this season but have excelled with their striking talents scoring at least 2 in every home game but the 1-0 victory over West Ham. While I think Everton will push them close I think Manchester United will take advantage of Manchester City’s slip-up and win 2-1.