Date: 19th October 2007 at 3:33pm
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Apparently it’ll be Rugby World Cup Final day on Saturday, forget the egg chasers, it’s all about Villa V Manchester United.

Vital Quotes:

Villa boss Martin O’Neill believes that his side most definitely have what it takes to end the 11 year run without a win against United: ‘There is unquestionably a confidence about the side, and i think that the win against Fulham was so, so important.’

‘They are showing a bit of vibrancy, a bit of panache. It has been good. I look forward to the games we play, I genuinely do. That must auger well. I always look forward to games but I feel as if we have a chance.’

O’Neill also thinks that his side are much better prepared than last years squad, that saw three defeats although one being down to a certain Gabor Kiraly. Speaking to the boss said: ‘The game down here we were battling strongly for 60 minutes. They scored a great second goal from Paul Scholes after Ronaldo had put them ahead where it bounced off a defender and he lashed it into the net.

‘But if our boys return fit I think we are better equipped to take them on now. You want to prove yourselves against the big clubs. You’d want to do precisely that.’


On the other side of things, United winger Ryan Giggs was glad of the international break and now feels refreshed and ready to go once more: ‘It was a big decision,’ Giggs told MUTV.

‘I said at the time I hoped it would prolong my United career and even though I’ve only missed a couple of internationals, I feel I’ve benefited already.’

Aston Villa Team News:

Olof Mellberg is likely to be passed fit to play. This is despite rumblings of a back injury that must not have affected him too much, considering he scored the opener in Sweden’s Euro 2008 fixture against Northern Ireland.

Moustapha Salifou can now be added to the squad now he has a work permit, though if he was even on the bench I must admit I’d be somewhat shocked!

Everyone else seems to be fit for Villa, so unless we go 4-5-1 I’d be expecting the same side that started the 1-0 victory over West Ham.

Player to watch: Scott Carson

Carson’s going to be a busy bee as United look to continue their title fight against a team they’ve found relatively easy to beat in recent years.

With Paul Robinson cocking up once again for England, it could be time for the on-loan keeper to make a name for himself.

Lets face it, he can’t do any worse than Kiraly, can he?

Manchester United Team News:

Sir Alex Ferguson is likely to welcome back Edwin Van Der Sar who will likely take back his starting role, in goal, from the Pole, Thomasz Kuszczak.

Unfortunately the impressive centre-back Nemanja ‘No Martin Laursen’ Vidic may be passed fit late on.

Gary Neville, Luis Saha and Owen Hargreaves will all sit this one out.

Player to watch: Wayne Rooney

He’s highly talented, but a viciously aggressive, rude, and abusive player who made a monumental error against Russia following his stunning strike to put England 1-0 up.

Expect a Rooney backlash and if you’re taking your children to the game and sitting pitch side, take some ear plugs for the kids.

If you’re a member of the Villa playing squad reading this, don’t forget your shin pads!

Match Stats:

If he scores (assuming he plays any part), Marlon Harewood could score his 100th league goal.

Villa have not conceded a goal at Villa Park for 354 minutes.

The last time an Aston Villa side beat Manchester United was in 1999, as Julian Joachim, Ian Taylor and Steve Stone all scored in a 3-0 League Cup win.

If England wins the Rugby on Saturday, I won’t care as it’s a stupid sport anyway and it will all be forgotten within a month.

Ref Watch:

Rob Styles takes control of this one.

Mr Styles has only been involved in 7 games so far this season, managing 25 yellow and 2 red cards!

Match Prediction:

1-1 draw and I don’t think it’s going to be a pretty one.

Next Up:

Following Manchester United comes a trip to Bolton, who in the past 2 days have seemingly tried to sign every mediocre manager currently employed in the English leagues.