Football

Manchester United predicted XI v Aston Villa

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Manchester United suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of their nearest rivals in midweek, but they now must re-focus their attentions for another Premier League clash against Aston Villa on Saturday.

Just when it seemed as if things might be starting to look up for the defending champions following a truly wretched 2013/14 season to date with satisfying wins over the likes of Olympiacos - in the Champions League - and West Ham, they were brought crashing back to reality by Manchester City on Tuesday evening.

A brace from Edin Dzeko and an effort from Yaya Toure secured an emphatic 3-0 win for the visitors at Old Trafford, with several Manchester United fans - who have so far appeared surprisingly patient with the struggles of David Moyes - finally seemingly to turn on the beleaguered Scot.

While nothing is guaranteed amid such a putrid campaign, Saturday's tie with Villa - the weekend's early kick-off - should surely provide Manchester United with a good opportunity to get back to winning ways.

Although Paul Lambert's side - who currently sit 12th in the Premier League, 17 points adrift of their next opponents - recently shocked Chelsea with a 1-0 victory at Villa Park, their morale is sure to be low after last Sunday's 4-1 thumping at the hands of Stoke City.

In terms of team news for Manchester United, star striker Robin van Persie remains out with a knee injury suffered during the tense win over Olympiacos while Nemanja Vidic should return after completing a suspension picked up in the defeat to Liverpool.

Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans, meanwhile, are rated as doubts with hamstring and calf problems respectively.

Team selection for this particular fixture is sure to be tough for Moyes, particularly with Tuesday's clash with Bayern Munich in mind.

While I personally think that Moyes will resist the urge to rest the likes of Wayne Rooney given the mutiny that would surely occur if Manchester United were to lose this game, I do think we could well see Alexander Buttner start just to give him a warm-up with Patrice Evra suspended for the Champions League quarter-final first-leg tie.

Predicted Manchester United XI v Aston Villa:

De Gea; Rafael, Jones, Vidic, Buttner; Carrick, Fellaini; Kagawa, Welbeck, Mata; Rooney.

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Topics:
Juan Mata
Aston Villa
Manchester United
Football
Wayne Rooney
Premier League

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