United v West Ham- Preview

Last updated : 22 February 2010 By Manchester Evening News

Sir Alex Ferguson has not had his first-choice central defensive partnership available since October but with Ferdinand now clear of suspension and Vidic over the nerve problem that has prevented him making an appearance in 2010, both are expected to start against the Hammers.

With the Carling Cup final just five days away, Ferguson might have been tempted to rest Wayne Rooney but that hardly seems likely in the wake of Saturday's defeat at Everton that left the Reds four points adrift of Chelsea. Nani is still suspended.

West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola, meanwhile, has doubts over striker Benni McCarthy for the trip.

The South African star, who signed for the Hammers on the last day of the January transfer window, has been out with a knee problem since the 2-1 defeat at Burnley on February 10.

England midfielder Kieron Dyer and defender Danny Gabbidon (both hamstring) are not yet fully fit.

Herita Ilunga is set to miss out with a tendon injury while Luis Boa Morte (knee), Calum Davenport (leg) and Zavon Hines (knee) are all long-term absentees.

Manchester United (from): Van der Sar, Kuszczak, Foster, Neville, Brown, Rafael, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evans, Evra, Fabio, Park, Anderson, Valencia, Carrick, Scholes, Fletcher, Gibson, Rooney, Owen, Berbatov, Diouf.

West Ham United (from): Green, Stech, Spector, Faubert, Tomkins, Da Costa, Daprela, Parker, Behrami, Kovac, Collison, Diamanti, Stanislas, Cole, Mido, Ilan, Franco.

United league form: WWWDL

West Ham league form: DDLWW

Key opponent: Carlton Cole - powerhouse centre forward always a handful

Prediction: United 3 West Ham 1 - The Hammers are in form, but their style should suit United

Agree with the prediction? Have your say.




Source: Manchester Evening News

Source: M.E.N.