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August 25, 2012 10:00 AM EDT
Old Trafford — Manchester
Referee:‬ K. Friend‎
Attendance:‬ 75352‎
Nemanja Vidic 64′ (OG)
41′ Rafael

Premier League Preview: Manchester United - Fulham

The former Arsenal captain came off the bench in the defeat at Everton, but he will be eyeing a starting role as Sir Alex Ferguson's men play their first home game of the season

By James Burford

Robin van Persie- Manchester United training - Carrington
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De Gea
Valencia, Carrick, Vidic, Evra
Nani, Cleverley, Kagawa, Young
Van Persie, Rooney


Riether, Hangeland, Hughes, Riise
Ruiz, Diarra, Dembele, Duff

Manchester United's defensive woes are set to continue with Rio Ferdinand (groin), Jonny Evans (ankle), Phil Jones (back) and Chris Smalling (toe) all unavailable, meaning Michael Carrick will likely continue in central defence alongside Nemanja Vidic.

Darren Fletcher has returned to training, and featured in United's preseason friendly at Aberdeen, but a Premier League return is still thought to be a while off for the Scot.

Robin van Persie may jump from the substitutes bench into the first team. The Dutchman came on against Everton to make his debut for the club but could be handed a first start at home to the Cottagers.

Martin Jol's main issue continues to be the enforced absence of Clint Dempsey. The American did not feature in Fulham's opening day mauling of Norwich City, and is not expected to play at Old Trafford as he seeks a move away from the club.

The Dutch manager's only injury worries are Kerim Frei (pelvis) and Phillippe Senderos (foot), but he is unlikely to change the side, after their opening-day 5-0 win over the Canaries.

  • On two of the three occasions that Manchester United has lost on the opening day, it has gone on to win the title.
  • Manchester United's last home game was a 2-0 victory over Swansea City, where Ashley Young and Paul Scholes (right) got the goals.
  • Ryan Giggs is now entering his 22nd season with Manchester United.
  • Fulham's last victory over Manchester United came in 2009 at Craven Cottage where Danny Murphy, Bobby Zamora and Damien Duff made it 3-0.
  • The Londoners haven't been on the winning side at Old Trafford for nine years, since 2003.
  • So far in 2012, John Arne Riise has assisted on more Premier League goals than any other left back.

Field Report
Reader's Predictions
Top 3 Predictions
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Last Five Matches
Team News
Available Squads
1David de GeaGoalkeeper
3Patrice EvraDefender
15Nemanja VidicDefender
25Antonio ValenciaMidfielder
16Michael CarrickMidfielder
18Ashley YoungMidfielder
23Tom CleverleyMidfielder
20Robin van PersieStriker
26Shinji KagawaMidfielder
13Anders LindegaardGoalkeeper
6Jonny EvansDefender
11Ryan GiggsMidfielder
18Paul ScholesMidfielder
10Wayne RooneyStriker
14Javier HernándezStriker
19Danny WelbeckStriker
23Mark SchwarzerGoalkeeper
5Brede HangelandDefender
17Matthew BriggsDefender
18Aaron HughesDefender
27Sascha RietherMidfielder
16Damien DuffMidfielder
19Mahamadou DiarraMidfielder
30Mousa DembeleStriker
11Alexander KacaniklicMidfielder
10Mladen PetricStriker
11Bryan RuizStriker
13David StockdaleGoalkeeper
2Stephen KellyDefender
6Chris BairdDefender
5Rafik HallicheDefender
7Steve SidwellMidfielder
8Pajtim KasamiMidfielder
20Hugo RodallegaStriker
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
29 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Man City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Man United
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Man City
15 0