Manchester United’s defensive woes have continued after it was revealed Chris Smalling is suffering from tonsillitis, The
Smalling missed the Boxing Day victory over Wigan with a reported cold, but the illness is now worse than expected. United are without Nemanja Vidic, Jonny Evans, Brazilian twins Rafael and Fabio and Rio Ferdinand in defence. Sir Alex Ferguson expects Smalling to return as soon as the Newcastle fixture in the New Year. With a crunch FA Cup third round tie against Manchester City around the corner, United are desperate to see their injury woes subside.
United are also missing Ashley Young, Tom Cleverley, Anderson, Michael Owen and Darren Fletcher and had to shuffle their cards for the Boxing Day win at Old Trafford. Ferguson’s side face Blackburn at Old Trafford tomorrow and may have to start with Michael Carrick in central defence once again. The Red Devils should see the return of Phil Jones against his former side following injury. Jones made the move from Ewood Park to Old Trafford in the summer for £17m.
Premier League leaders Manchester City are not in action until New Year’s Day and United have the opportunity to steal a march on their local rivals by snatching top spot tomorrow. The game comes on the 70th birthday of manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
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