Fans will tomorrow be treated to a dress rehearsal for the soon to come Carling Cup final at the end of the month. United take on Aston Villa tomorrow in what should prove to be a stern test for the Champions who are clearly hitting form at the right time in the season. We've grown accustomed to seeing United hit at least three past the goalies but we many have to make do with one tomorrow.
In one of my earlier posts, I wrote that United had the best attack and defence of the league. After looking at Villa's stats recently I beg to correct myself. Aston Villa have statistically the meanest backline in the league. It says a lot about the task awaiting United tomorrow when you consider that Villa have kept four clean sheets in their last four games. Furthermore, they have let in just seven goals all season at Villa Park---the venue for tomorrow's battle.
Take nothing away from their back four but I think their form at the back is down to the brilliance of Brad Friedel. The American veteran can be as good as any goalkeeper in the world at times and you only have to look at his performances against United and you'll know what I'm talking about. He is one of the most consistent goalkeepers in the Premier League every season.
Our forwards will therefore have to take the chances that come their way as Villa will not mind taking a point from this one.
Having said all that I'd like to think that our side has also turned a corner as far as defending is concerned. We've let in just the one goal at the Emirates in our last four so that should give us confidence in our defence as well.
Rooney is red hot so hopefully he maintains that for us.
I like the mentality in the camp at the moment. Wes Brown has come out and said it's not about the want to win now, it's that we have to win. I really hope that's the mentality our players will carry into the next few weeks.
Tomorrow's game is our last game before we play AC Milan in the Champions League. We need to go into that game on the back of a win. Infact the next four or so games could basically define our decision.
Sir Alex trusts the players to deliver and so shall we!