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Premier League

  • December 1, 2012
  • • 17:30
  • • Madejski Stadium, Reading, Berkshire
  • Referee: M. Halsey
  • • Attendance: 24095
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Reading - Manchester United Preview: Royals hope to upset table toppers at the Madjeski

Reading - Manchester United Preview: Royals hope to upset table toppers at the Madjeski

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The Red Devils travel to the Madjeski on Saturday evening hoping to continue to set the pace at the top of the Premier League, with Brian McDermott's men sitting second from bottom

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

READING

Federici
Cummings, Morrison, Mariappa, Shorey
Robson-Kanu, Leigertwood, Tabb, McAnuff,
Roberts, Le Fondre
MANCHESTER UNITED
 
Lindegaard
Rafael, Smalling, Evans, Evra
Valencia, Carrick, Cleverley
Welbeck, Van Persie, Rooney


Reading boss Brian McDermott will have the same set of players to choose from after Jem Karacan (knee ligament) failed to overcome his injury in time for the visit of the Premier League leaders, and thus may leave Kaspars Gorkss out once more.

Chris Gunter (hamstring), Danny Guthrie (leg) and Jimmy Kebe (groin) are all expected to remain out of first-team action until in the new year.

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Feguson could welcome back Antonio Valencia (hip) after the winger sat out during Manchester United's 1-0 over West Ham midweek. Paul Scholes in also in contention after serving a suspension in that win.

Nani (hamstring) is still sidelined with injury alongside other long-term absentees Shinji Kagawa (knee) and Nemanja Vidic (knee), however Rio Ferdinand could return to the starting line-up after he was rested against the Hammers.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Reading have conceded a joint-divisional high 78% of all their goals in the second half of games this season.

  • The Royals have kept the joint-fewest clean sheets in the Premier League this term.

  • Despite being a game behind most other sides in the league, Brian McDermott's men have allowed more shots against them than any other team.
  • The newly-promoted club have had 23 goals scored past them this season, with only Southampton, Queens Park Rangers and Wigan letting in more.
  • Manchester United have scored more headed goals than any other team in the top flight (10).
  • The Red Devils have drawn just one of their last 22 Premier League away ties.

  • Sir Alex Ferguson's side have recovered more points from losing positions than any other team in this season’s Premier League (18).

  • Wayne Rooney (pictured) has a joint-league high six goal assists this season, along with Chelsea’s Juan Mata.

  • All of United's last four league defeats on their travels have been by a 1-0 scoreline.

 

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Adam FedericiGoalkeeper
20Nicky ShoreyDefender
3Adrian MariappaDefender
15Sean MorrisonDefender
24Shaun CummingsDefender
8Mikele LeigertwoodDefender
11Jobi McAnuffMidfielder
16Jay TabbMidfielder
19Hal Robson-KanuMidfielder
9Adam Le FondreStriker
30Jason RobertsStriker
12Stuart TaylorGoalkeeper
26Alex PearceDefender
23 Ian HarteDefender
12Garath McClearyMidfielder
35Danny GuthrieMidfielder
29Pavel PogrebnyakStriker
10Noel HuntStriker
13Anders LindegaardGoalkeeper
2RafaelDefender
3Patrice EvraDefender
5Rio FerdinandDefender
6Jonny EvansDefender
8AndersonMidfielder
16Michael CarrickMidfielder
18Ashley YoungMidfielder
24Darren FletcherMidfielder
10Wayne RooneyStriker
20Robin van PersieStriker
1David de GeaGoalkeeper
4Phil JonesDefender
12Chris SmallingDefender
23Tom CleverleyMidfielder
14Javier 'Chicharito' HernandezStriker
19Danny WelbeckStriker
Players to Watch
Jobi McAnuff
Jobi McAnuff
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 11
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The Reading skipper was instrumental in the Royals' promotion to the Premier League last season. However, the 31-year-old has yet to really impress in the top division. Saturday's home game against the top flight's leaders will provide ample opportunity for the winger to show what he can do.
Antonio Valencia
Antonio Valencia
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 25
Games Goals YC RC
1 0 0 0
Valencia could return to the staring line-up after missing the midweek game against West Ham. The winger is one of Manchester United's main attacking outlets - with Ferguson's side often lacking width when without the former Wigan man. His newly forged relationship with Rafael, down that right flank, is also one of the success stories of the Red Devils' season so far.
Prediction
Expect Manchester United to leave the Madjeski with all three points in this one. Sir Alex Ferguson has an advantage in being able to rotate his squad for the fixture, whereas Reading boss Brian McDermott will most likely stick with the first eleven that lost to Aston Villa in midweek. The game is likely to be won through the individual brilliance of Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie, with them facing a leaky Reading defence.
Editor's Prediction

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