Savvy with a roundup of news from the press conferences ahead of the exciting away trip to Old Trafford tomorrow…
City Boss Chris Hughton has been speaking of the enormity of the task facing City tomorrow as they look to do the double over United after the impressive 1-0 win at Carrow Road in November.
“United have only lost one game at home this season so the magnitude of the task is still there, but we are certainly better going into it for the result of last weekend,” said Hughton. “Beating United at home was one of our best performances of the season, and it had to be because that is the only way you can beat a Manchester United team.
“Any win at Old Trafford would have to see us play extremely well and for United to have one of their rare off-days. But you have to go into every game hoping the work you have done can come right and you can get that result.”
Hughton added: “There will be no fear from our players, we will want to go there and play.
“However, it is very difficult to go to Old Trafford with an open formation. If you are going to go there and take them on at what they do very well, then generally there is only one outcome.”
Alex Tettey and Andrew Surman remain sidelined with knee injuries.
“With Alex it is one we have just decided it`s best to rest it so we`ll assess and see how he can train during the following week. It`s not a major problem. “Andrew is certainly out for the next few games and one we have to continue to assess.”
Alex Ferguson has confirmed that Robin van Persie is fit for the game despite going off injured last weekend.
Fergie told Manutd.com, ‘Phil Jones starts running today. He`s got a fight on his hands to be ready for Tuesday (Real Madrid) but we`ll give him every chance. He won’t be available for tomorrow (Norwich). We have no injury issues. Robin van Persie has trained this week – he’s available for tomorrow. His hip was very tender but he’s okay now. Tomorrow is an important one because Tuesday will look after itself. It’s an occasion on Tuesday whereas tomorrow is the mundane practical situation in that we need to win.’
There are rumours of Rio Ferdinand, Patrice Evra, Michael Carrick and Rafael da Silva all being rested ahead of the Champions League second leg against Real Madrid on Tuesday night, but as always it is difficult to predict a Fergie line up.
The return of van Persie is obviously not great news for City, but he may be rested ahead of the game with Real Madrid just three days later.
Other unavailable United players include Darren Fletcher (ulcerative colitis) and Paul Scholes (knee).