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Played
January 29, 2014 3:45 AM SGT
Old Trafford — Manchester
Referee:‬ C. Pawson‎
Attendance:‬ 75301‎
 
 
59′ Ashley Young
 

Manchester United - Cardiff City Preview: Mata in line for Old Trafford debut

David Moyes has indicated he wants the former Chelsea man, who completed a £37.1 million move on Saturday, to be involved, while Ole Gunnar Solskjaer returns to his former club

By Peter Thompson

Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata
Getty
Record signing Juan Mata is set to make his Manchester United debut against former Old Trafford striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's Cardiff City on Tuesday.

The Spain midfielder completed his £37.1 million move from Chelsea on Saturday and is expected to go straight into the starting line-up.

Mata's arrival is a timely boost for United, who crashed out of the Capital One Cup on penalties in their semi-final against Sunderland last week on the back of a 3-0 top-flight defeat at Chelsea.

MAN UNITED LATEST
4/1 Juan Mata is 4/1 with William Hill to open the scoring v Cardiff
Manager David Moyes will be expecting Mata to provide the touch of class that United have been lacking in what has been a disappointing season so far for the Premier League champions.

United's prospects of retaining their title are forlorn, as Moyes' men are seventh in the table and 14 points adrift of leaders Arsenal.

Moyes will still be confident of clinching qualification for the Champions League, though, with Liverpool six points better off than the Old Trafford outfit.

United drew 2-2 at Cardiff back in November in the first meeting between the two sides since 1975, but Solskjaer has since replaced Malky Mackay at the Welsh club.

The 40-year-old can expect a rapturous reception on his return to Old Trafford, where he spent 11 years during his playing days and enjoyed a major role in such a successful period in United's history, including scoring the winner in the 1999 Champions League final.

The Norwegian has been charged with the task of keeping Cardiff in the Premier League, but they slipped to the bottom of the table with a 4-2 defeat at Manchester City in their last top flight match.

Cardiff need to improve their away form if they are to avoid a return to the Championship, as they have won only once on their travels in the top flight.

Solskjaer's side did win at Bolton Wanderers in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Saturday, but Cardiff have taken just a point from their last six Premier League games.

The Cardiff boss will be hoping United strike duo Robin van Persie (thigh) and Wayne Rooney (groin) are not yet ready to return.

Moyes will also assess the fitness of Rio Ferdinand (knee), Nani (hamstring) and Michael Carrick (ankle), but captain Nemanja Vidic will not definitely not feature as he serves the second of a two-match suspension following his red card at Chelsea.

Kenwyne Jones could make his Cardiff debut if a swap deal with Stoke City involving Peter Odemwingie goes through in time and forward Jo Inge Berget could make his bow following his move from Molde last week.

The likes of Fraizer Campbell, Steven Caulker and Craig Noone are expected to return to the starting line-up.


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Head to Head
England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Jan 29, 2014 Manchester United 2 - Cardiff City 0
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Nov 25, 2013 Cardiff City 2 - Manchester United 2
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Last Five Matches
Odds
Returns: Man. United 12.20 Ladbrokes Sign up with Ladbrokes for a free bet up to $100
Returns: Draw 60.00 Ladbrokes Sign up with Ladbrokes for a free bet up to $100
Returns: Cardiff 120.00 Ladbrokes Sign up with Ladbrokes for a free bet up to $100
Team News
Available Squads
1David de GeaGoalkeeper
2RafaelDefender
3Patrice EvraDefender
4Phil JonesDefender
6Jonny EvansDefender
12Chris SmallingDefender
11Ryan GiggsMidfielder
18Ashley YoungMidfielder
25Antonio ValenciaMidfielder
8Juan MataStriker
20Robin van PersieStriker
13Anders LindegaardGoalkeeper
23Tom CleverleyMidfielder
24Darren FletcherMidfielder
44Adnan JanuzajMidfielder
10Wayne RooneyStriker
14Javier HernándezStriker
26Shinji KagawaMidfielder
1David MarshallGoalkeeper
4Steven CaulkerDefender
5Mark HudsonDefender
25Kevin McNaughtonDefender
42Declan JohnDefender
7Peter WhittinghamMidfielder
8Gary MedelMidfielder
16Craig NooneMidfielder
18Jordon MutchMidfielder
10Fraizer CampbellStriker
39Craig BellamyStriker
32Joe LewisGoalkeeper
6Ben TurnerDefender
13Bo-Kyung KimMidfielder
15M. EikremMidfielder
17Aron Einar GunnarssonMidfielder
29M. DaehliMidfielder
34Jo Inge BergetStriker
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
29 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
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Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Man City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man. United
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Man City
15 0