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Manchester United v Sunderland Preview: There Will No Sentiment In The Air

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Manchester United will be looking for their first league win of November at home to Steve Bruce’s Sunderland at Old Trafford tomorrow afternoon.

It would be fair to say that October was a difficult month for Untied which saw them drop points away at Anfield to Liverpool and at home to Manchester City in a derby that no doubt City fans will be talking about for years. November has to be a month where Untied get back to taking maximum points or further questions about the team will no doubt be asked.

Sunderland have had a difficult start to the season but for their manager and former Old Trafford favourite Bruce it looks as if they might be turning the corner which will be good news for their owner Ellis Short who (if rumours are believed to be true) is thinking of selling the club.

After losing Darren Bent in January the last thing that Sunderland needed was the sudden departure of Ghanian forward Asamoah Gyan to UAE side Al Ain for (in his words) a ‘new challenge.’ They have been struggling for goals this season despite being a side many pundits had tipped to have a good season. the Black Cats will be up for this one and will be looking to spring a suprise.

So what can we expect from tonight’s game. What will be the key battles on the pitch?

Nemanja Vidic v Stephane Sessegnon

After missing United’s comfortable Champions League win over Otelul Galati on Wednesday, Nemanja Vidic will be fresh and ready to play this weekend. There’s no doubt that his presence boosts United’s backline and gives the team an extra 10-20% whenever he is on the pitch.

Sunderland’s little striker Stephane Sessengon is certainly one striker who can improve in the league. Whilst he has the pace to trouble any defence in the league, sometimes his own tricky can work against him and he’ll end up losing the ball instead of passing it on to a team-mate in space.

Nani v Phil Bardsley

The form of Phil Bardsley over the last couple of seasons has gone pretty much unnoticed but it’s fair to say that since joining Sunderland in 2007 that the former United full-back has become a consistent and popular member of the Black Cats first choice staring eleven.

Nani though will test the Scottish international to his fullest. This will be an important game for United’s Portuguese winger who after starting the season on fire has to a degree gone back into his shell in recent weeks. But that could very much change tomorrow.

Wayne Rooney v Wes Brown

Sometimes when players go back to their old clubs, they are welcomed back with a cold reception. That will not happen to Wes Brown who will be one of 3 former United players returning to Old Trafford tomorrow. The defender was a great servant to the club and will be welcomed back with open arms.

Wayne Rooney thought will be saving ‘catch-up’ talk for after the game and will want to get one over the defender who was his team-mate for seven seasons. Bruce though will no doubt have motivated Brown all week to work as hard as he can to prevent the England striker from scoring.

In terms of a prediction for the game, as I stated earlier on in a on in a predictions article, I believe that United will win 3-1 and I have a hunch that Danny Welbeck – if selected – will get on the score-sheet keeping up his good start to the season.

He will be looking to score against the side he spent last season on loan at and it would be a kicker for Bruce if the big forward (who he would love to have signed on a permanent deal).comes back to haunt him tomorrow.

By Adam Dennehey @ADennehey87