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Man United vs Chelsea: The starting XI

by Tom Newbold

Manchester United will want to get revenge on Chelsea for their FA Cup exit whilst halting the London club’s Champions League qualification charge and Sir Alex Ferguson will no doubt put out a strong team to overcome the Blues. Danny Welbeck is still out injured but Paul Scholes is set to feature on the bench.


David de GeaOne of United’s top five performers this season has made some important saves against Chelsea in the past, a team he must now relish playing.

RafaelAnother top performer this season, Rafael has really made the right-back spot his own. He will be raring to go against Chelsea after being left out in the most recent match between the sides.

Rio Ferdinand: Any opportunity for high-flying Ferdinand to silence the boo-boys is one he will relish.

Jonny Evans: Evans has been in good form of late and his partnership with Ferdinand may keep him in the side ahead of Nemanja Vidic.

Patrice Evra: Evra is another who has history with Chelsea and could be vital getting forward down his side if Ferguson picks an unnatural left-winger.

Antonio Valencia: The Ecuadorian will be looking to end his mixed season strongly and continue his good run of form as of late.

Michael Carrick: United’s pivot could be the key against Chelsea. If he pulls the strings effectively then, United will be favourites.

Phil JonesWith Tom Cleverley seemingly out of favour, another midfield start for Phil Jones is in the offing.

Shinji KagawaA start for Kagawa is likely. If selected out wide, he will need to be disciplined in his defensive duties to stop Chelsea’s marauding full-backs.

Wayne RooneyRooney will probably get the nod over Robin van Persie because of his arguably better footballing relationship with Chicharito (see below).

Javier HernandezHernandez’s goal record against Chelsea speaks for itself. A start for the Mexican is almost inevitable.

Chelsea leagueFormation

United are likely to line-up in a 4-1-4-1 formation with Rooney or Kagawa behind Hernandez up front and the other out wide. In-form players like van Persie and Giggs may have to settle for a place on the bench but could be vital coming into the game late on.

This is likely to be United’s last ‘strong’ line-up with Ferguson looking to give all his squad playing time before the season climaxes and United’s first team will be looking to show the best of themselves against a tough Chelsea side.

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