Home » Teams » Manchester United » Sunderland v Manchester United, Relegation Battle v Revenge to Make Proceedings Spicier – A Match Preview, Team News and Prediction

Sunderland v Manchester United, Relegation Battle v Revenge to Make Proceedings Spicier – A Match Preview, Team News and Prediction

Sunderland v Man UTD

As the Premier League enters that phase where the battle for the top spots and the Battle for Relegation intensifies, the former isn’t quite suited to the league leaders Manchester United in the current context as they seem to have complete control and daylight on their March towards what is now just a formality awaiting to be completed; i.e. getting their hands on title No.20. While the latter, the battle for Relegation, has certainly intensified towards the bottom and finds Sunderland right in the mix, surprisingly enough for a team with so much potential and with one of the finest managers of the modern premier league era has at his disposal.

Manchester United are on a run, a run which has set them on an unbeaten streak right from mid-week of November last year. Adding insult to injury, they are on a perfect winning streak on their last 6 outings having won last 4 of their matches with a Clean Sheet! And clearly, the Red Devils would be raring to avenge the Sunderland fans for their infamous Poznan last year during the final moments of the last game! If there was one reason that could spur on Manchester United today, it would be this fresh etched memory.

In Form Carrick - Setting Up Goals Seamlessly
In Form Carrick – Setting Up Goals Seamlessly

Although it is going to be a tough match considering how difficult it has been for teams to emerge victorious at the Stadium of Light. In addition to this, Sir Alex Fergusson has been forced to narrow down his team’s approach in the last few games and their solid defense have scuppered all over managing to save themselves from further assaults all time. There’s only one reason to this; the traditional United style of play from the wing – the lack of form & lack of domination from their wingers has been the sole reason which has been giving Sir Alex, his team and the UTD fans from all over the world some nervous moments, especially towards the end of last few games. Much credit to the prolific form of the Spaniard David De Gea, who looks set to start each and every match, considering the form he has been in which has seen UTD come out on top at several occasions. Nothing but this has given their back four, an elixir of confidence in blocking out each and every attack coming their way. While much credit has to be given to Carrick, Cleverley and Giggs in the midfield for having provided some delicious balls for their frontmen to score a few goals, thereby emerging victorious. If you are a Manchester United fan, you could only expect for better things to follow especially from Valencia and Young, considering their hot form for their respective countries during the current International Break.

Turning our attention to the turmoil that is prevailing at the Stadium of Light, Martin O’Neil has been one manager who simply hasn’t been able to stamp his tactics and make them work over his current crop. Much to the dismay, they find themselves with the number of matches played just one less than the number of points they have managed over the entire season. With potentially 6 teams still battling it out for Survival, Sunderland are one among them. They have just taken 2 points from the last 6 matches, losing to relegation threatened sides like QPR and Reading. These two loses could only give us a guide on the current hiatus at Sunderland.

Sessegnon - Black Cats Key Player in Fletcher's Absence
Sessegnon – Black Cats Key Player in Fletcher’s Absence

High hopes were placed upon the England International Adam Johnson, although all those hopes have been dashed considering the poor run of form he has been through. If there was one player who could trouble De Gea today, it would be Adam Johnson who is capable of searing runs through the wings in addition to his gifted quality of shooting long from outside the box. If there was a period of time where O’Neil needed to go attack and come out on top, this should be the match where he would be required to execute his plans considering two reasons. The first one being we could expect an experimental Manchester United side today considering their FA cup replay clash at Chelsea in two days’ time and secondly, the tipping point for action has arrived and with such quality oozing through the entire squad, an experienced manager like O’Neil is “required” to work his plans out.

Team News


The Black Cats would have been distraught to have seen their Captain and inform player Steven Fletcher being carried away on a Stretcher during Scotland’s 2-1 defeat to Wales and ruling him out for the rest of the season with Ankle ligament damage. Joining the captain is Lee Cattermole who has been ruled out for the season due to going under knife with a Knee Surgery. With doubts over David Vaughan and Stephan Sessegnon who returned early from International Break due to Groin Injury, this Sunderland side looks savaged with Injuries.

Sunderland (from): Mignolet, Westwood, Bardsley, Rose, O’Shea, Kilgallon, Bramble, Mangane, N’Diaye, Gardner, Colback, McClean, Larsson, Johnson, Vaughan, Sessegnon, Graham, Wickham.

Manchester United:

Unlike his counterpart, Sir Alex has his full squad at his disposal with Nani, Jones and Scholes all fit from knocks they had, thereby giving Sir Alex the flexibility to rotate his squad keeping in view the Monday night fixture against Chelsea. Though Valencia and Hernandez could be given an off, considering their long journeys back from their International Duty.

Man Utd (from): De Gea, Lindegaard, Amos, Rafael, Smalling, Jones, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evans, Evra, Buttner, Giggs, Valencia, Scholes, Carrick, Cleverley, Anderson, Young, Kagawa, Nani, Welbeck, Rooney, Hernandez, Van Persie.


It was just yesterday that we at Soccersouls were discussing how better a side Sunderland were than the current reality. They need to pull their socks up and put their hearts out for the final assault going into the last 8 matches of the season. Considering an injury savaged team at Martin O’Neil’s disposal, known as a man who doesn’t give much excuses, he would want to prove a point! While many Manchester United fans and players alike are looking for “revenge”, this is all the energy that the Red Devils need to charge on to yet another win, which would be another difficult victory if it comes by.

Manchester UTD (in favour) – 2-1