Manchester United have been different proposition in the Champions League so far this season. It's only Match Day 4 but a win tonight in the Basque County of Spain will ensure that United will have negotiated a path to the last 16 of Europe's premier club competition.
However, being a trip to Spain, and against a side that has re-discovered its form of late, the tie dictates caution on United's part. Whereas victory will virtually see us though, a defeat will make the last 2 trickier ties harder to negotiate as it would mean both Bayer and Shaktar will still be able to make it through the group if both can beat us.
David Moyes parked the bus in Ukraine, very understandable in the circumstances, but you wonder whether he'll ask his players to go for it at the Antone stadium. We've got a bigger game this Sunday in the league so you'd imagine anything other than another flood of injuries like we had at the weekend will, in the grand scheme of things do for us. We don't have Evans or Rafael at the back so you'd imagine that Rio and Vida will take up the central defence positions. It remains to be seen which central midfield pair will be chosen but given the nature of the game, I expect Kagawa to start the game in a midfield 5 that should also comprise of Antonio Valencia. Playing just 2 in the middle is suicide in Europe these days, let alone in the league.
Ultimately, it is important not to upset the momentum in the squad with a poor performance and result tonight. We need to make winning the habit so that games like Sunday are within our means to win even when we do not deserve the victory. A win tonight will certainly give Arsenal something to think about on Sunday.
ONWARDS AND UPWARDS!
Labels: UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE