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I like the way the matches are scheduled.. the two Copenhagen games back to back. Hopefully we'll already have the group sewn up before the final game against Benfica.

Meanwhile, this from the United web site on availability for tomorrows match..

Team News: United have picked up just one injury in their first two games, with skipper Gary Neville suffering a recurrence of his calf injury. Michael Carrick should be fit to make his full-debut, while Paul Scholes and Wayne Rooney are still suspended. Ben Foster is not allowed to face United under the terms of his loan deal, while Watford have doubts over Clark Carlisle, who has a knee injury.

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BBC on the Watford match today:

Keeper Ben Foster is unable to play for Watford under the terms of his loan deal from Manchester United so Richard Lee or Alec Chamberlain will step in.

Captain Gavin Mahon has recovered from the illness that forced him off at half-time against West Ham.

Gary Neville has been told to rest a long-term calf injury so will not feature for Manchester United.

Defender Nemanja Vidic is out with a broken wrist but Michael Carrick is expected to make his first start.

Watford (from): Lee, Chamberlain, Doyley, DeMerit, Shittu, Powell, Bouazza, Mahon, Francis, Young, King, Henderson, Stewart, Mackay, Spring, Priskin, Chambers, Mariappa, McNamee, Bangura, Jarrett.

Man Utd (from): Van der Sar, Kuszczak, Brown, Ferdinand, Silvestre, Evra, Ronaldo, Fletcher, O'Shea, Miller, Richardson, Carrick, Park, Giggs, Saha, Solskjaer, Rossi.


1. Kicked off the new season with a 5-1 home thrashing of Fulham, then crushed Charlton 0-3 at the Valley with second half goals from Darren Fletcher, Louis Saha and sub Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

2. Boasting the strongest attack in the highest League (eight goals in two games).

3. Bidding for a fourth successive Premiership victory. Won the last three with an aggregate of 12-1.

4. Won six of the last seven League and Cup games on the road.

5. The 3-0 defeat by champions Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on 29 April are the only points dropped in seven away matches.

6. Based on Premiership matches played in 2006, the Red Devils have the best record with 45 points, comprised of 14 wins, three draws and three losses. Liverpool are second best with 43 points and Chelsea only third with 39.

I like that last statistic.. :o

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This from the 'super, soaraway" Sun on Hargreaves..:

Bayern do dirty on Owen


BAYERN MUNICH double-crossed Manchester United after agreeing a £12million fee for Owen Hargreaves.

The England star had a medical on August 15. But Bayern pulled the plug just as the deal was due to be confirmed two days later.

They ordered Hargreaves back to Germany and upped their asking price to £17m.

Bayern have since been accusing United of an illegal approach.

And their chief executive Uli Hoeness branded Hargreaves, 25, a ‘prostitute’ for offering himself to the Premiership club.

United are now hoping Old Trafford director Bobby Charlton’s friendship with the Germans’ president, Franz Beckenbauer, can help smooth the move before Thursday’s transfer deadline.

Bayern agreed the deal the day before Hargreaves played for England against Greece.

An announcement was set for the day after the Old Trafford international — until Bayern pulled out.

It is believed their stubbornness may be simply to placate their fans who are already angry at losing Michael Ballack to Chelsea.

But Hargreaves has made it clear he wants to quit Munich.

He accused the Bundesliga champions of treating him with no respect after nine years of service to the club.

Hargreaves said: “I’ve given everything to Bayern and I want to be treated with respect.

“I simply want them to accept United would be a great step for me. The manager does not want to let me go. That’s his right. But he knows what I want.

“It’s simply a great challenge. I’m an England player, part of my family lives near Manchester. A lot of things come together.”

Bayern argue that the midfielder was happy to sign a new deal only last season, keeping him at the club until 2010.

Hargreaves admitted: “The contract was a great honour but a lot of things have developed in a different way. I have a great chance to become a key player for England.”

And while United hope to wrap up the deal by Thursday, Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge last night insisted there is no chance.

Rummenigge said: “Owen is free to swap sides — but not before July 1, 2010.

“This is the last word. If I say this, that is what it is going to be.”

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I wonder..? this deal might happen..:

United still hoping for Hargreaves

By Oliver Kay

THE words of Cristiano Ronaldo yesterday, professing his love for Manchester United just weeks after flirting so brazenly with Real Madrid, serve as a reminder that footballers can be persuaded to ignore their itchy feet when faced with firm opposition. At Old Trafford, however, there remains optimism that the Ronaldo situation will not be replicated in the case of Owen Hargreaves, recalled today to play for Bayern Munich only days after being accused of “prostituting” himself to United.

After missing Bayern’s meeting with VfL Bochum with what was officially described as “flu”, Hargreaves has been named in the squad to face Nuremberg today. Coming only two days after his latest plea to be allowed to move to Manchester, his selection is intended as a statement of intent from Uli Hoeness, the Bayern general manager, but, even with time running out, United are confident that any truce will be short-lived and that the England midfield player will join them in a £17 million deal before the transfer window closes on Thursday evening.

Sir Alex Ferguson, whose team hope to continue their impressive start to the season away to Watford this afternoon, was coy on the matter yesterday, saying that United “really need Bayern to tell us what’s happening” before mumbling a denial that he had approached Hargreaves without permission.

“I haven’t spoken to the boy,” he said. “I have not read the comments ’s governing body, but that is not right.”

Hargreaves, though, claims that he received a telephone call from Ferguson while on holiday in Canada after the World Cup finals. That — along with a petty grudge over the fact that United allowed Ruud van Nistelrooy to move to Madrid rather than Munich, when there were discussions over the possibility of a swap involving Hargreaves — is the basis of Bayern’s complaint, but, with their resolve boiling over into animosity on the part of Ho eness, the player is determined to do whatever it takes to secure the move.

It is rather different to United’s handling of Ronaldo, whose pleas to join Real after the World Cup were effectively ignored by Ferguson. One key difference is that Ronaldo failed to attract any significant interest from Real but the Portugal winger, it appears, has been successfully reintegrated into life at Old Trafford.

Ronaldo had expressed fears that his status as public enemy No 1 in England, after his role in Wayne Rooney’s sending-off during the World Cup, would make it impossible for him to stay at United, but he seems to be thriving on the abuse from opposition supporters.

After the 3-0 victory over Charlton Athletic at The Valley in midweek, Ronaldo made a point of showing his gratitude to the United supporters. “That was to let them know that they have a special place inside me,” he said. “I wanted to thank them and tell them I am Manchester through and through — in my heart and soul.”

Standby for some ostentatious badge kissing from Ronaldo this season followed by a move to Real Madrid..

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Ronaldo shrugs off Boo Boys (as if he gives a <deleted>*k anyway)

By James Pearson - Sky

Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo does not believe consistent booing from fans at away grounds will affect his form.

The Portugal international winger is an unpopular figure in England for his part in Wayne Rooney's sending off in this summer's World Cup.

Ronaldo played his first Premiership game away from Old Trafford on Wednesday in United's 3-0 success over Charlton.

The 21-year-old was one of Sir Alex Ferguson's star performers at The Valley despite his every touch of the ball incurring the wrath of the home support.

Ronaldo believes he handled the additional pressure well and does not believe being an unpopular figure on away trips will be a problem throughout the campaign.

"I know I'm going to get whistled at in every game I play but I am calm about it," explained Ronaldo to the Sun.

"I have been through one away game now in The Premiership and I had to concentrate hard on the match.

"Of course I heard it all, I'm not deaf. I just blocked my ears and concentrated on the game."


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Game preview;

Watford goalkeeper Ben Foster will miss out on an appearance against parent club Manchester United on Saturday.

Foster is spending the season on loan at Vicarage Road from United, after also enjoying the last campaign with The Hornets.

But Premiership rules prevent the keeper from playing against The Red Devils, so Adrian Boothroyd will be forced into a change.

Richard Lee should start between the posts, with Boothroyd likely to put the veteran Alec Chamberlain on the bench.

Aside from that, Boothroyd could opt for the same outfield players who started the 1-1 draw with West Ham in midweek.

Marlon King scored a cracking goal against The Hammers and is likely to continue his partnership with Darius Henderson in attack.

Jay DeMerit and Hameur Bouazza came into the side on Tuesday and should retain their places for the visit of the early Premiership leaders.

For the visitors, Sir Alex Ferguson's biggest decision is whether to hand summer signing Michael Carrick his first start for the club.

After missing the thrashing of Fulham with an ankle complaint picked up in pre-season, Carrick came on as a late substitute in the midweek win over Charlton.

But John O'Shea and Darren Fletcher impressed as a midfield pairing at The Valley and Ferguson could elect to give Carrick more time to regain his fitness.

Wayne Rooney and Paul Scholes are still suspended, so Ryan Giggs is likely to stay as the foil to Louis Saha, who has scored in both games.

Nemanja Vidic and Gabriel Heinze remain injured, while Gary Neville still has a slight calf problem, so Wes Brown is likely to continue his deputy role at right back.

Cristiano Ronaldo can again expect a hot reception, but the Portuguese winger seemed to be unaffected by the Valley hostility on Wednesday, while Park Ji-sung will patrol the other flank.

Skysports.com Prediction: 1-3

Watford to put up a brave fight, but class to tell in the end.

Player to watch: Ryan Giggs.


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Tevez sparks transfer scramble

26-08-2006 12:26

Carlos Tevez has announced that he is close to joining an English side, with Manchester United reportedly favourites for his signature.

The Corinthians forward confirmed last week he had played his last game for the club, following the Botafogo clash, and has since gone AWOL back to his homeland.

With a host of top European clubs competing for his signature, the 22-year-old is seemingly set for a big money move to England.

"I know there are some negotiations for transferring me to a European team, especially an English one," said Tevez.

"But I don't have a problem in playing for Corinthians, I would do it only for the supporters. If they want me to go back I will, but many things would have to change."


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From the Observer on the match:

Giggs proves that United have lost none of their bite

Amy Lawrence at Vicarage Road

Sunday August 27, 2006

The Observer

There was a school of thought that the sale of Ruud van Nistelrooy to Real Madrid would leaveUnited toothless. Evidently this has irked the squad the Dutchman left behind sufficiently for most of them to chip in with a response.

Mikael Silvestre and Ryan Giggs were the latest to earn a goal bonus, making it eight different scorers in eight days. Without playing at their best, United did enough to leave Watford trumped.The last team to beat the newly promoted side at Vicarage Road were Millwall, which crystallizes how far Watford have journeyed in recent months. The Hertfordshire men go into the international break with considerable food for thought.

Premiership-quality performances from the likes of Jay DeMerit at the back and Ashley Young in midfield are encouraging. But despite competing brightly in their opening games, Watford have only one point to show for it. Aidy Boothroyd had made a point of stressing how his players were not here to think about swapping shirts with their illustrious opponents, but the occasion was all a bit too much for Richard Lee, the home-grown keeper standing in for United's loanee Ben Foster.

His first touch was nervy, a hashed clearance. Although he showed more authority to deal with Michael Carrick's curled cross-shot, he was beaten in the 12th minute when Mikael Silvestre cantered up from left-back. The weight of Louis Saha's pass and the stray positioning of Lee invited Silvestre to plant the ball into the far corner. It was a pity for Watford, who had begun enthusiastically. But how quickly they were stretched out of shape.

Midway through the first half there was abundant room for Carrick and Giggs to spread the ball around, for Cristiano Ronaldo to jink. United might have snaffled a second via Saha's stooping header, but on this occasion Lee was able to smother at close range. Boothroyd acted fast to plug the holes with a substitution on the half hour. Inspired? Within a couple of minutes of Matthew Spring coming on to help get a hold on midfield, Watford conjured their first genuine chance and instantly levelled.

Not the best defending by United. Ashley Young skipped past Silvestre with ease and crossed for the unmarked Damien Francis to tap home his second goal of the season. Vicarage Road erupted. Ronaldo came close to scoring before half-time but lashed a daisy-cutter narrowly wide. The Hornets responded. Spring's header required a smart catch from Van der Sar.

United needed to perk up after the break, as the vision of Sir Alex Ferguson in his shirtsleeves, hands on hips in the dugout, emphasised. There was a signal of fresh intent when Ronaldo's dinked chip fell to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. The Norwegian, making his first start for two and- a-half years, was just off target. But Fergie had to watch as yet again slack marking let Watford in.

From a free-kick Darius Henderson ghosted on to a sitter but stabbed it just the wrong side of an inviting net. Such wastefulness was swiftly punished by Giggs, who in the 52nd minuted intercepted Spring's backpass and danced round Lee to steer into the empty net on his 600th game for United.

Lee, who had started the game so shakily, ended in better shape with a brave block to halt Saha. Four minutes of stoppage time provoked Fergie to glare at the fourth official, before stepping on to the pitch to aim a long-distance hairdryer at the referee. He need not have worried. For United, two more goals were enough.

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good win not at our best but the 3 points will do.

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Agreed Nev, a few players off their game but a good result in the end. Newly promoted side, away from home.. and a physical team as well.. those games can be dangerous. Happy we got the result.

Ronaldo again looking sharp.. Rooney and Scholes back soon, Heinze, Vidic and Neville to return..

Looking good!

Let's hope Blackburn can frustrate Chelsea today...

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yes we have players comming back but i did here ferdinand has broke his toe could be out for 2 months.

hope sparky does us a favour.

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Not keen on this idea;

Press speculation in Italy is linking Manchester United with a renewed bid for Juventus striker David Trezeguet.

Reports claim the French striker's agents have met with officials from the Premiership club to discuss a possible move to Old Trafford.

United are still on the lookout for a striker to replace Ruud van Nistelrooy, who joined Real Madrid earlier in the summer.

However, with just four days to go before the transfer window closes, Sir Alex Ferguson was thought to have turned his attentions to bringing another midfielder to the club.

Trezeguet has been constantly linked with a move away from Juventus during the summer following their relegation to Serie B because of their part in the match-fixing scandal.

But the 28-year-old was expected to remain at the Stadio Delle Alpi after insisting he was happy at the club.

French champions Lyon are another side ready to make a fresh bid for the French striker.

The Ligue 1 outfit have money to spend after the sale of Mahamadou Diarra to Real Madrid and are thought to be readying an increased bid for Trezeguet.

Meanwhile, Trezeguet will miss Sunday's Coppa Italia match against Napoli because of injury.


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why you not keen on him redrus he has a great record and i think he would be excellent for us.

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