Everton vs Manchester United
Barclays Premier League, Matchweek 35
Sunday 20th April, 2014
16:10 KO BST
Goodison Park, L4 4EL (40,221)
Manager Roberto Martinez: “We are paying huge respect to this team because they are the reigning champions, they’ve got phenomenal footballers, and that’s not going to change. They are in a very good moment of form, especially away from home, they’re solid defensively, they’ve got real pace on the counter attack and we know it’s going to be tough and difficult. ”
After a 30-minute post-injury cameo on Wednesday night, midfielder James McCarthy is likely to feature.
“He is massively important to us and he should be fine. He’s fully fit, he came through okay and he’s preparing well for Sunday. I don’t expect that to be a problem,” Roberto Martinez revealed.
Phil Jagielka remains a doubt so John Stones should continue his run in the side. “To play 90 minutes, I would say no,” Martinez said.
Steven Pienaar will not feature, a knee injury keeping him out. “Steven is doing really well but he’s not ready for Sunday,” his manager stated.
Everton come into the game on the back of a shock 3-2 home defeat to Crystal Palace on Wednesday night. The loss put a halt to a run of 9 successive home wins.
Bryan Oviedo (broken leg), Darron Gibson (knee), Arouna Kone (knee) and Lacina Traore (hamstring) all remain on the treatment table.
On-loan striker Romelu Lukaku has scored 13 goals in 25 Premier League starts this season.
Predicted line-up: Howard, Coleman, Stones, Distin, Baines, Barry, McCarthy, Mirallas, Barkley, Naismith, Lukaku
Home record: P17 W12 D3 L2 F34 A16 Pts39
Away form: W W W W W L
David Moyes ahead of the visit to his former club: “I go there as manager of Manchester United and I’m delighted to be that. I was proud to be manager of Everton at that time but my job now is to make sure I get a result for United.”
Robin van Persie remains sidelined with a knee injury. “Robin is in Holland and improving but we always thought it would be four to six weeks,” Moyes revealed.
Wayne Rooney has overcome his toe injury and is fit to play.
“Rooney trained great this week and has been in really good form,” David Moyes said on Friday.
Marouane Fellaini should also return after injury. “We expect him back fit because he has trained all week,” Moyes said.
Jonny Evans has made progress after a knock and could feature.
Rafael, however, is out. “Rafa is the one player not available,” the manager revealed.
Moyes stated that James Wilson could feature before the end of the season: “I think he’s got a good chance, the boy, and we want to keep him right but keep moving him up and progressing him when we think the opportunities are there.”
United head to Goodison Park with the best away record in the Premier League – 33 points from 17 matches played.
Predicted line-up: De Gea, Jones, Smalling, Vidic, Evra, Fellaini, Carrick, Valencia, Mata, Kagawa, Rooney
Away record: P17 W10 D3 L4 F34 A19 Pts33
Away form: L D W W W W
Away record vs Everton: P90 W29 D19 L42 F118 A171
Last five meetings at Goodison Park
Everton 0-1 United (29-10-11)
Everton 3-3 United (11-09-1-)
Everton 3-1 United (20-02-10)
Everton 1-1 United (25-10-08)
Referee: Mark Clattenburg.
The 42-year-old official has taken charge of 24 Premier League matches this season, brandishing 81 yellow cards and 3 red cards. He has awarded 6 penalties. Was last seen by United fans during last month’s 3-0 home defeat to Everton’s Merseyside neighbours Liverpool, where he controversially awarded the away side 3 penalties.
Assistants: S Beck, G Beswick.
Fourth Official: Craig Pawson.
United have lost just 3 of their last 19 visits to Goodison Park.
Ryan Giggs is 1 goal shy of becoming United’s club record goalscorer vs Everton.
United have won just 1 of 11 matches against the current Premier League top 6.
Everton have won 9 of their last 10 games at home.
Everton will be looking to complete a league double over United for the first time since the 1969/70 season.
Everton have lost only 3 of their last 40 Premier League matches at Goodison Park.
United are on a run of 5 successive Premier League clean sheets away from home.
Romelu Lukaku is one of three players to have scored a Premier League hat-trick against Manchester United (along with Dirk Kuyt and David Bentley).
Everton 7/5 Draw 23/10 United 15/8
Score prediction: Everton 2-1 United