Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester United – United’s Starting XI?

Wednesday night against Leverkusen was the best performance of United’s season so far, as the weeks go by there seems to be clear improvements with each passing week. The challenges keep coming however with Tottenham, Everton and Newcastle to come in the space of a week. Moyes hasn’t been helped with injury problems but he may be lucky enough to have two returns this Sunday. Speaking about Nemanja Vidic and Robin van Persie the manager said, “They all have a chance.” Whether or not he elects to take that chance remains to be seen.

The United team that takes to the pitch against Spurs on Sunday I imagine will not look an awful lot different to the team that played against Leverkusen. Spurs are coming off the back of an embarrassing defeat to Manchester City last weekend and will be looking to bounce back with a morale boosting victory against the reigning champions.

patrice-evra-vs-cityDavid De Gea, Patrice Evra, Jonny Evans, Rio Ferdinand will all likely retain their starting places on Sunday. Personal preference for me would see Chris Smalling partner one of the two in the centre of the defence, this is because I think Jones will be needed in the centre of midfield again and I don’t believe Rafael will be ready to make a return to the first team even after reports that he has returned to first team training. That means that I would expect Smalling to keep his place from Wednesday night also and start on the right of the back four.

The question of whether to play four or five in the midfield is hard for Moyes, the manager seems to have a preference for playing with two up front which allows him to play both star strikers in Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie. I think that rushing van Persie back to play against Spurs may be a mistake however and it’s a mistake I don’t expect Moyes to make. After the midweek performance I expect Moyes to start with five in the midfield. When I say that I mean with Kagawa playing in between the midfield four and the lone striker.

As I said before I would guess that Moyes will look for Jones to fill in at centre midfield on Sunday with Fellaini returning after his suspension from the Champions League fixture midweek. Other options in this position are Giggs who had a good performance against Leverkusen and Anderson. Ryan Giggs has been a tremendous servant to the club and put in a very good performance in the Leverkusen game but asking him to play two games in such a short space of time seems like a big ask for the man who just turned 40. Anderson is in his prime so those excuses mean nothing but there doesn’t seem to be much faith in the Brazilian so if he starts on Sunday then something will have gone majorly wrong.

antonio-valencia-vs-liverpoolValencia has proven his worth to the manager and has firmly staked his claim to the right side of the midfield, with this being an away fixture I find this even more likely for Moyes to go with Antonio. That leaves just the left side of the midfield in question, Januzaj, Young and Nani could all play in this position. Januzaj has been strong in most games he has played this season but with Nani scoring against Leverkusen I would expect Moyes to keep the faith with the winger and give him the start. Nani is a confidence player, he plays in streaks and after scoring in Europe I wouldn’t be surprised to see his name on the scoresheet again on Sunday.

Up front will see Wayne Rooney take to the field, that is withholding any strange bust up or injury before the game on Sunday. Risking van Persie on Sunday as he returns from injury seems like a step too far.

De Gea

Smalling Ferdinand Evans Evra

Valencia Jones Fellaini Nani

Kagawa

Rooney

The 4-5-1 formation will make it a lot easier for United to compete with Spurs in the midfield and should see United have some success with Nani and Valencia attacking down the wings. Three points on Sunday would be a great way to make up for the dropped points against Cardiff last Sunday and I’m sure Moyes will be aiming for nothing less on Sunday.

How do you think Manchester United will line up against Tottenham Hotspur? Comment in the section below.

21 Comments

  1. uTD looked sharp against the Germans but Moyes problem is like AVB does he use players who played Wed or use players rested and coming back from Inj. I expect him to play a different team to the one you picked De Gea Rafael Vidic Ferdinad Evtra Januzaj Clevely Fellani Vallencia Rooney RVP to stop Lloris Walker Kaboul Chiriches Vertonghan Lennon Capoue Dembele Sandro Townsend Defoe Ady

  2. Moyes, whatever you will do, do, but make sure you come back from white hart lane with three points and nothing less.

  3. Have you not been watching United games this season? No way should Fellaini or Cleverly play (ever if possible) let alone start. Anderson has way more to offer in that position, I wonder why it’s taking Moyes so long to get to know these players.
    Rafael also needs to be returned to the squad, as him and Valencia work brilliantly together.
    Smallimg may be drafted back to his natural position at centre-back to replace calamity Rio, unless of course if Vidic is fit, in which case he and J.Evans should get the nod.

  4. I agree with all thoughts and comments with the exception of Fellaieni and Jones. I think when Fellaini is in a role where it’s not exactly certain who is to go forward or stay back, he has gotten lost and has not contributed to the game. Would rather see Kagawa try the central mid role or at least start Cleverly there until we can buy next month.

  5. David
    Smalling Ferdinand Evans Evra
    . Jones felliani
    . Valencia Kagawa Nani
    . Rooney
    Sub: Lindegad, Rafael, Vidic,
    . Anderson, Januzay, Hernandez
    . RVP

  6. I’d play mostly the same personnel assuming RVP is out still tomorrow. Only i’d change the formation a bit. I’d play it like this.

    De Gea
    Smalling Ferdinand(or Vidic) Evans Evra

    Jones

    Kagawa Fellaini

    Janujaz/Nani Valencia

    Rooney

  7. As close as possible to last Wed’s team.

    Think Giggs is in best form for 2-3 years, but will he play twice in 4 days? Hope so.

    If he is rested I would like to see Januzaj play.

    Can see RVP coming back but I hope he starts on the bench.

  8. The worst player in man united team is fellaini. I wonder how he found himself in united team. There are better players than him who doesn’t start like Anderson, nani, kagawa, cleverley. I rather play either Raphael or Fabio in centre midfield than watching that chamelon, non creative bog playing. The money spent on buying Felaini should have been used to feed the helpless and the needy in the street. However God should forgive the person who bought him for wasting money instead of giving it to the orphanage where children are starving and going without eating.

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