Man Utd prepare for the worst in absence of Nemanja Vidic for the Manchester derby
Manchester United were dealt with a severe blow to their title campaign on Tuesday when their first captain and star center back Nemanja Vidic was ruled out of the Manchester derby. Manchester United are scheduled to play against archrivals Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.
Nemanja Vidic has been on the sidelines due to injury since September this year. The Serb was supposed to return on Wednesday in the last Champions League match of the Group Stages against Cluj, but a setback in his recovery has sidelined him till New Year’s Eve. The 31-year-old defender last played on September 19 against Galatasaray.
The Old Trafford boss Sir Alex Ferguson has been ruing over his frail defense ever since Nemanja Vidic was forced to the sidelines. The Manchester United manager had earlier expressed that Nemanja Vidic would be a welcome addition to Manchester United agonizingly inconsistent defense.
Ever since Nemanja Vidic got sidelined from duty, Manchester United have conceded 26 goals in 17 matches in all competitions. Jonny Evans and Rio Ferdinand have been featuring in the heart of Manchester United’s defense with below satisfactory results.
Manchester United has recorded only two clean sheets in 17 matches without Nemanja Vidic. Interestingly, this is the same number of clean sheets Manchester United had in five matches with Nemanja Vidic.
Sir Alex Ferguson’s backup defenders Phil Jones and Chris Smalling have also been absent from Manchester United’s squad due to injuries since the beginning of the season. This injury crisis forced Manchester United to feature the injury-prone Rio Ferdinand in the starting lineup of 12 English Premier League games this season.
Luckily for Sir Alex Ferguson his fullbacks Rafael and Patrice Evra have started without a hitch in each English Premier League game this season. They haven’t shown any signs of fatigue or injury yet, but the Scotsman should invest in a contingency plan.
Manchester United’s midfield woes are also set to play against Manchester City. Club insiders have revealed that Anderson, Nani, Antonio Valencia and Shinji Kagawa have little chance of playing in the Manchester derby.
By the looks of it Manchester United will heavily rely on their impressive attack to defeat their bitter rivals from across town. Manchester United star Wayne Rooney and Dutchman Robin van Persie would have to record a stellar performance to guarantee Manchester United stay on top of the English Premier League table after the weekend.