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Man Utd v West Ham: Preview

Two games left. Two wins, and the title will be ours.

But again, as they say, it’s one game at a time.

Bogey Team United visit Old Trafford today and the reds know there’s no more excuses for slip ups from this point. The gaffer will also know this fully well, and so would everyone in the footballing fraternity.

Which is why — considering it’s just the two games that needs to be played out — the boss will most likely go with his best possible XI for both these games. The Champions’ League final can wait, and it has a 10 day rest period anyway.

But even with that assumption I’d be hard pressed to name our exact starting XI. Let’s see… Rio and Brown will most certainly start at the back since Vidic is still not expected to make it. It would be tempting to rest Evra, considering he’s probably lost a lung running so much in midweek. But I think SAF might persist with him, although the temptation to play Silvestre might linger. I don’t know what shape Owen Hargreaves will be in considering he’s played a lot over the past week — keeping in mind his injury troubles. If he’s not deemed fit, O’Shea will get a game at right back. I doubt Fergie is as confident playing Neville in that position.

In central midfield, Carrick will play and, alongside him, there might be Anderson. (In my opinion that is a stronger midfield than with Scholes in it, considering he has played a lot of late.) Nani and Ronaldo will take the wings and Park will partner Tevez in attack. I know this is a rather strange suggestion, but I don’t see how else we can have a potent attacking 4-4-2 without Rooney. Oh, which reminds me, Rooney, it appears, might start on the bench; which is still good news. I don’t think starting Giggs would be a good idea, and I also don’t think 4-3-3 to be a bright one at home either.

But what I don’t want to see from Fergie is “resting players for the future”. This is the bloody future: it’s called the present. There are just two games left. So send the team out with specific instructions to take the game by the scruff of the neck and never, ever relent. West Ham are with, perhaps, the largest injury list in the league. So we must win the game today. No excuses, bogey team or not.

Enough of the stodgy displays of the past couple of weeks; at least some excuses could be dreamed up on those occasions. Today we are at home against a weakened opposition with not much to play for. Can we think up any more reasons for motivation?

Come on you reds!

Prediction: 2-0 to United — Manchester United, that is. (You know, that chant about there being only one United.)