Up next, a happy hunting ground for Aston Villa… NOT!
It’s Manchester United away at the Theatre of Dreams, a theatre where we’ve witnessed some shocking plays – we dropped out of the league there in April 2016, but this is a new-look Aston Villa, and we certainly have the potential to give United a game this Saturday lunchtime.
Both sides suffered an early exit from the Carabao Cup in the week and will be looking to bounce back with a result in Saturday’s lunchtime encounter.
Manchester United have started the season in splendid form, winning four and drawing one of their opening five games, they’re also buoyed by the return of Cristiano Ronaldo who has 4 goals in 3 appearances so far!
Aston Villa will be looking to build on their 3-0 win against Everton at Villa Park last weekend and we’re long overdue a result against Manchester United, our last win at Old Trafford coming curiosity of a Gabby Agbonlahor winner in 2009! (Check out ‘The Blast From The Past’ feature at the bottom of this article).
18 games have surpassed since then with only 4 points gained for the boys in Claret and Blue, so can we get anything out of this game, we’ve certainly got the players capable of causing an upset; I’m looking forward to the challenge!
Ahead of the game, I chat with Jordan from the OldTraffordFaithful to hear the views of The Opposition.
UTV PODCAST X OLD TRAFFOLD FAITHFUL
Manchester United are looking like a real force this season, strengthened by the signings of Ronaldo, Sancho and Varane, for Manchester United to have a successful season – what must be achieved?
Anything other than lifting some sort of trophy would be a disappointment. Obviously, that challenge became a little harder as we were dumped out of the EFL Cup last night.
However, with the fire-power we have in this squad, us United fans would like to think we’re now ready to challenge for the Premier League title – while also making a decent run in the Champions League.
Ronaldo has picked up exactly where he left off all them years ago, how good is it to have him back in a United shirt?
It’s still a surreal feeling. It has been twelve years since he left for Real Madrid and I always assumed we’d never see him back in Manchester.
Deadline day was a real mixture of emotions when it looked like he was heading to City – but to have him back is extremely special.
What happened at the weekend – De Gea saving a penalty – Haha! How impressed have you been by his attitude, returning early to preseason and regaining his number 1 jersey?
I’m a massive Dean Henderson fan and I genuinely believe this was going to be his season. Sadly, he suffered with Covid-19 in pre-season while carrying an injury over the summer. Credit to De Gea, who has used that to his advantage and not looked back. Dare I say our superstar Spaniard looks back to his best? Fair play to him!
Villa once again loaned Axel Tuanzebe after struggling to make the breakthrough into the United starting eleven despite a very impressive performance away at PSG; pocketing Mbappe. What are your thoughts on why Axel couldn’t make the step up to feature regularly?
You’ve got it spot on. I love Axel, but his problem has always been consistency. He can look like a world-beater one week, then a bang average non-league player the next. Some of that can be attributed to a lack of consistent starts here at United. Honestly, at this point I’d be surprised if he gets another chance, particularly with Varane looking as good as he has.
hours minutes seconds
MAN UTD VS ASTON VILLA
Our record against United is shocking, have you seen anything from our new-look side that could threaten that record on Saturday?
I’m a big fan of the work you’ve done over the summer. Losing someone like Jack Grealish is always going to be hard, but Leon Bailey is a top tier replacement, while adding Danny Ings will only increase the goal output at Villa Park. All credit has to go to Dean Smith, he’s done a cracking job and I genuinely believe this will be a close game.
We both have managers in place that; a) have a fond connection to the club and b) been given time and support to build a squad to challenge for our respective ambitions, what’s your thoughts on Aston Villa’s progression since our return to the Premier League?
I’m not sure I was particularly shocked with how well Villa have done. Some serious cash was spent, by a manager who knows exactly what his squad needs. I always assumed you guys would stay up relatively easily, and in a few years, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Villa pushing for the European places. That’s how impressed I’ve been with what’s going on at Villa Park. Fair play.
PREMIER LEAGUE HISTORY
Man Utd – 37 Wins (20 Home)
Draw – 12 Draws
Aston Villa – 3 Wins (1 Away)
Finally Jordan, what’s your score prediction?
I’ll go for a tight 1-0 victory, with Ronaldo scoring again!
12.30pm K/O | Saturday 25th September 2021
Location | Old Trafford
Referee: Mike Dean
Assistant referees: Darren Cann and Eddie Smart
Fourth official: Michael Salisbury
VAR: Andy Madley
VAR assistant: Simon Beck
BLAST FROM THE PAST
Manchester United 0-1 Aston Villa
Saturday, 12 December 2009 | Old Trafford | Attendance: 75,130
Aston Villa ended a 26-year wait to beat Manchester United in the league at Old Trafford as they moved up to third place in the Premier League.
Gabriel Agbonlahor scored the winner, heading in from Ashley Young’s cross.
Aston Villa Starting Line Up
Brad Friedel, Stephen Warnock, Carlos Cuéllar, Richard Dunne, Luke Young, Stiliyan Petrov, Ashley Young, James Milner, Stewart Downing, Gabby Agbonlahor, Emile Heskey
James Collins for Stephen Warnock 62’
John Carew for Emile Heskey 74’
Nigel Reo-Coker for Stewart Downing 81’
Not Used: RB Habib Beye, Fabian Delph, Steve Sidwell, Brad Guzan
LAST TIME AT OLD TRAFFORD
Manchester United 2-1 Aston Villa
Aston Villa saw their five-match unbeaten run come to an end as they opened 2021 with a narrow 2-1 defeat against Manchester United on New Year’s Day.
Anthony Martial’s close-range header handed the hosts the lead just before half-time at Old Trafford.
Bertrand Traore’s third goal in four games levelled matters in the 58th minute but Bruno Fernandes’ penalty moments later, after Douglas Luiz was adjudged to have brought down Paul Pogba, proved the difference and settled an evenly-matched encounter. (avfc.co.uk)
Villa: Martinez, Cash, Konsa, Mings, Targett, McGinn, Luiz, Traore (Ramsey 79), Grealish, El Ghazi (Davis 84), Watkins.
Subs: Heaton, Taylor, Guilbert, Hause, Elmohamady, Nakamba, Hourihane.
PREMIER LEAGUE FIXTURES
SATURDAY 25 SEPTEMBER
Manchester United v Aston Villa (12:30)
Chelsea v Manchester City (12:30)
Everton v Norwich City
Leeds United v West Ham United
Leicester City v Burnley
Watford v Newcastle United
Brentford v Liverpool (17:30)
SUNDAY 26 SEPTEMBER
Southampton v Wolverhampton Wanderers (14:00)
Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur (16:30)
MONDAY 27 SEPTEMBER
Crystal Palace v Brighton & Hove Albion (20:00)
(15:00 unless stated)
PREMIER LEAGUE TABLE
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