Sunderland - Manchester United Preview: Red Devils know they need to beat Black Cats to stand a chance of 20th title
Sir Alex Ferguson's side go to the Stadium of Light knowing they need three points to put the pressure on Manchester City on final day of Premier League season
By James McManus
O’Shea, Turner, Kilgallon, Bardsley
Gardner, Cattermole, Colback, McClean Sessegnon, Bendtner
Rafael, Jones, Ferdinand, Evra
Carrick, Scholes, Giggs
Valencia, Rooney, Young
Sunderland boss Martin O’Neill only has a couple of late fitness tests to worry about going into the final league game of the season, with Nicklas Bendtner and John O’Shea both doubtful.
Elsewhere, the more long-term concerns of Wes Brown (knee), Sebastian Larrson (hernia) and Kieran Richardson (groin) will see them all miss the end-of-season clash with the triumvirate all out for the rest of the campaign.
|SPANNER IN THE WORKS?
|6/1||Sunderland are 6/1 with bet365 to beat Manchester United on Sunday.|
For Manchester United, Sir Alex Ferguson has been dealt the blow that Chris Smalling will miss the game after requiring surgery on a groin injury that will see him miss the whole of Euro 2012.
Danny Welbeck also looks set to miss the game with an ankle injury, while Nemanja Vidic (knee). Michael Owen (thigh), Anderson (hamstring) and Darren Fletcher (bowel condition) are all still receiving treatment on the sidelines.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Manchester United go into the final game of the season knowing that even victory will not be enough for them to clinch the Premier league title, as they start the match eight points further back on goal difference to Manchester City.
Manchester United won the title last season with 80 points; a victory over Sunderland will see them finish with nine more on 89.
A potential tally of 89 points would be the highest ever accrued in Premier League history for a second-placed side.
With Manchester United currently on 86 points, this would have been enough to secure the league title in nine of the previous 20 Premier League seasons.
Ferguson’s side have currently won 12 games on their travels so far this term, victory in the Stadium of Light would seal their 13th, their equal best ever total, a feat which they matched in 1993-94, 1999-2000, 2001-02 and 2006-07.
In games in which Paul Scholes has scored, United remain unbeaten since a 2005 defeat to Benfica in the Champions League, winning 20 and drawing four.
Manchester United are unbeaten against Sunderland in their last 19 meetings between the two sides.
Sunderland have only ever beaten Manchester United once in the top flight in 21 attempts, with that win coming way back in 1997 when the club still played at Roker Park.
Martin O’Neill’s side are currently on a seven-match winless streak
Three of the last give goals that the Mackems have conceded to Manchester United have been own goals.
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Top 3 Predictions
Sunderland 0-8 Man Utd.
- 27.6 %
Sunderland 0-3 Man Utd.
- 6.92 %
Sunderland 1-3 Man Utd.
- 6.3 %
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Oct 5, 2013||Sunderland 1 - Man Utd. 2|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Mar 30, 2013||Sunderland 0 - Man Utd. 1|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Dec 15, 2012||Man Utd. 3 - Sunderland 1|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||May 13, 2012||Sunderland 0 - Man Utd. 1|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Nov 5, 2011||Man Utd. 1 - Sunderland 0|
|Dec 7, 2013||Sunderland 1 - Tottenham 2||EPL|
|Dec 4, 2013||Sunderland 3 - Chelsea FC 4||EPL|
|Nov 30, 2013||Aston Villa 0 - Sunderland 0||EPL|
|Nov 23, 2013||Stoke 2 - Sunderland 0||EPL|
|Nov 10, 2013||Sunderland 1 - Manchester City FC 0||EPL|
|27||Ahmed El Mohamady||Midfielder|
|1||David de Gea||Goalkeeper|
|14||Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez||Striker|