Match to be played on Saturday 29th March 2014 at 12:45. Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester.
This is the fixture which saw United seal the Premier League title last season and David Moyes’ men need to produce a much better performance than they have in recent games against Liverpool and Manchester City.
Moyes could go back to basics with this potentially strong side.
GK – David De Gea
De Gea has added incentive to perform well over the rest of the season following news of Victor Valdes’ ACL injury. Consistency could see him become Spain’s number one for the World Cup.
RB – Rafael
The Brazilian needs to do the basics well at both ends of the pitch. His instinct will tell him to get forward where possible but Villa have the pace to hurt United on the counter attack.
CB – Phil Jones
Jones needs to become more consistent. He’s having too many brilliant and poor games at the moment.
CB – Nemanja Vidic
Vidic missed the Manchester derby through suspension but he stands a good chance of coming back into the side.
LB – Patrice Evra
Evra provides experience over on that left hand side. He was badly caught out on more than one occasion by City and should be determined to react in positive fashion.
RM – Antonio Valencia
Valencia has to play on the right because he provides natural width on that side of the pitch. He’s also very quick and can take advantage of Villa players who leave space down his side.
CM – Michael Carrick
Carrick doesn’t need to try and be the creative player in United’s midfield, he just has to do what he does best; sit in and make it difficult for the opposition to play.
CM – Marouane Fellaini
Fellaini’s job has to be to carry that power and presence in the middle. He can drop off and break off the play when United are under pressure and push forward, harassing the Villa defence when United are on top.
AM – Juan Mata
Mata is at his most effective in the middle of the pitch. Why he’s consistently played in wide positions is a mystery because he’s not a winger and isn’t effective down the right or the left.
LM – Danny Welbeck
Welbeck can create real problems for any defence driving in off of the left hand side. He’s good enough to know when to stay wide and when to push forward to become a second striker.
ST – Wayne Rooney
Rooney needs to concentrate on getting into the right positions to score goals. Pure and simple.