When the fixtures were released in June one of the first that fans looked for was when Cardiff would play Manchester Utd. Whether you like them or not United are the current Premier League Champions and one of the biggest clubs in the world.
The last time the teams met was in the 1974/75 season in the old second division. United won both matches. 1 - 0 and Ninian Park and 4 - 0 at Old Trafford.
The Red Devils come to Cardiff as red hot favourites to beat Cardiff with Robin Van Persie as low as 3/1 as first goal scorer. The establishment give City little chance but they didn’t give us much hope against Man City either and look what happened there.
It’s a big week for Cardiff with Arsenal coming to CCS next Saturday. Any points gained from these games will be a bonus. The way some results have gone in the Premier League this season will give City encouragement. Don’t write Cardiff off. The atmosphere at 4pm on Sunday will be red hot and Cardiff will put their bodies on the line to try and upset United.
This is a Man Utd side in transition after the departure of Alex Ferguson. David Moyes has seen a mix of results including a home defeat to West Brom but since then they are unbeaten in five in the League.
A week before his 40th birthday Ryan Giggs returns to his home town for the first time in a League fixture. While he may have upset Welsh fans with his absences from international games there’s no denying his status as a Premier League legend.
The match is live on Sky Sports and will be beamed around the world. Let’s hope that little old Cardiff City will be making headlines again and sending David Moyes and his troops home empty handed.
Early team news:
Cardiff striker Peter Odemwingie has recovered from a minor muscle injury, while Aron Gunnarsson is fit despite hobbling off for Iceland on Tuesday.
Andreas Cornelius, sidelined since August by an ankle injury, is also fit.
The Dane has been sidelined for 10 weeks since suffering the injury in the Capital One Cup tie against Accrington, but he featured for the Under-21s last week and is available to face the league champions.
Manchester United are without Michael Carrick and Phil Jones because of respective Achilles and groin problems.
The Red Devils will assess strikers Robin van Persie and Danny Welbeck, both of whom withdrew from international duty because of injuries.
David Moyes must decide if Nemanja Vidic is fit to lead United. Vidic needed hospital treatment after suffering concussion against Arsenal immediately prior to the international break, but has now returned to training.
All three are expected to be available.
“It’s the league we are in and it’s something that we relish. You want to play at the best level. You want to test yourself against the best players.
“I want to test myself against the best managers and that’s what we are doing at the moment. And in the next seven days we are testing ourselves against two of the best teams and I’m testing myself against two of the best managers.
“It is what you should want to happen if you want to be the best and play at the best level which is what Cardiff City want to do.”
“Malky’s done a great job, not just this season, but in past seasons with other clubs he’s been at. He’s done a brilliant job at Cardiff and they should really be thankful they’ve got him. He got them back in the Premier League and they’re doing all they can to stay there. You can see he’s working really hard at it.”
Referee: Neil Swarbrick. Assistants: S Bennett, S Child. Fourth Official: J Moss.
- The clubs have not met in a competitive fixture since March 1975, while the last top-flight encounter was in February 1962.
- The Red Devils have won the last four meetings.
- Cardiff's last win in this fixture was a 3-0 victory in a top-flight match at Ninian Park on 26 November 1960.
- Cardiff are looking to record back-to-back home wins in the top flight for the first time since April 1962, when they defeated Birmingham and then West Ham.
- Seven of their nine league goals this season have been scored after half-time.
- The Bluebirds have conceded six goals from outside the penalty area this season, a league high coming into the latest round of matches.
- Steven Caulker has blocked 19 shots this season in the Premier League - seven more than any other player (prior to this weekend).
- The Red Devils are unbeaten in nine league and cup games (W6, D3). They have won their last three Premier League fixtures.
- Prior to this weekend, Robin van Persie was the leading Premier League scorer in 2013 with 19 goals. The Dutchman has scored in each of his last four top-flight appearances.
- Not only has van Persie scored more goals than any other player in the Premier League since the start of 2011-12 (63), he's also hit the woodwork the most often (19).
Cardiff (from): Marshall, Connolly, Taylor, Caulker, Hudson, Turner, Whittingham, Cowie, Medel, Cornelius, Campbell, Brayford, Kim, Smith, Gestede, Noone, Gunnarsson, Mutch, Odemwingie, Mason, Maynard, Lewis, Moore, Bellamy, Theophile-Catherine.
Manchester United (from): De Gea, Lindegaard, Amos, Rafael, Smalling, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evans, Evra, Fabio, Valencia, Nani, Fellaini, Cleverley, Giggs, Anderson, Young, Zaha, Januzaj, Kagawa, Rooney, Van Persie, Hernandez, Welbeck.