Saturday, February 02, 2008

Spurs v United preview: Why Anderson must start...

United face a much improved Tottenham later today at White Lane and no doubting the North London club will be hoping to avenge last weekend's 3-1 FA Cup defeat at Old Trafford in a game in which Spurs gave a good account of themselves.

In midweek Ronaldo knocked in his second brace of the week against Portsmouth, last weekend Spurs were the victims as the Portuguese star made it 25 goals for the season. Can anyone stop Ronaldo scoring? United's other scorer against Spurs was the Apache, AKA Tevez, and Ferguson is expected to bring back Carlos Tevez who was rested against Pompey. With the return of Paul Scholes last weekend, the battle for starting places got a whole lot harder in the United engine room and Tevez will be keen to send out a message to Fergie today that he doesn't want to be the man who makes way for the returning Ginger Prince.

Competition for places is a good thing and Anderson who has been on the bench for United's last two home games did more than enough in the second-half when coming on against Pompey to warrant a starting place today. Despite only playing for 30 minutes in midweek the former Porto star was a strong contender for the man of the match award.

Ferguson will have a difficult job keeping everyone happy with so many midfield stars, but to achieve that the manager has to be seen to be fair where selection issues are concerned.

In 1999 Ferguson steered United to an unprecedented treble, in doing so he just about managed to keep all of his players happy, the crowning glory was of course the season's two super-subs Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Teddy Sheringham scoring in the Champions League final at the Nou Camp. Reds fans are once again thinking about another treble this season.

However, when players perform well as did Anderson in midweek, it is vital for morale that they are rewarded and as far as I'm concerned this is why Fergie must start with Anderson today in central midfield.

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