Manchester United v Everton
Eight weeks have now passed since Tony Hibbert had surgery to cure a longstanding calf problem and David Moyes said at the time that the operation would keep the 31-year-old on the sidelines ‘for a while’. Seamus Coleman is doubtful as he continues to recover from a thigh strain sustained at Southampton last month.
A knee problem could again keep Ashley Young out of Sunday’s match. The former Aston Villa winger hasn’t played since Manchester United’s 2-1 win over Liverpool in the middle of January. Also missing is Scotland captain Darren Fletcher, who has been ruled out for the rest of the season following bowel surgery.
Last outing: 3-3 (h) Aston Villa, Saturday 2 February
Last six: WDDWWD
Everton can take heart from not only their recent seven-match unbeaten run but also the fact that they have taken four points from their last two matches against Manchester United. Like Sunday’s opponents, the Blues have only lost three times in the Premier League this season and will be aiming to claw back ground on Chelsea and Tottenham who have accumulated four and three points more respectively.
Last outing: 1-0 (a) Fulham, Saturday 2 February
Last six: WWDWWW
Sir Alex Ferguson’s side are in ominous form ahead of the Old Trafford meeting. The Reds sit nine points clear at the summit of the table, have won seven of their last eight league matches and are unbeaten domestically since the 17 November. United have the best goal difference of all 20 Premier League clubs and have won 11 of their 12 home Premier League fixtures this season, the only blip being a 3-2 home defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at the end of September.
1. Should Phil Neville feature against Manchester United he will be making his 300th appearance for the Blues. The 36-year-old’s Everton league debut, coincidently, was against his former employers in August 2005.
2. Another former Red Devil, Tim Howard, is set to make his 250th Premier League appearance in Everton colours.
3. If Everton are able to register their first win at Old Trafford since 1992, it will mark the Club’s 600th league victory, inclusive of both home and away games.
Everton have recorded some notable results down the years on 10 February. Three years ago, Chelsea were thrust aside courtesy of a Louis Saha brace and, in 2007, Andy Johnson scored the only goal of the game when Blackburn visited Goodison Park. Seventeen years ago, Joe Parkinson and Andy Hinchliffe were on target as Manchester City returned down the M62 empty-handed following a 2-0 defeat.
Everton 1-0 Manchester United, 20 May 1995
It may be approaching 18 years since Everton last lifted the FA Cup, but this final victory against Manchester United still remains one the most revered games in the Club’s 135-year history. Joe Royle’s side were considered big outsiders when the two teams met in the 1995 showpiece after the Toffees had secured their Premier League status a fortnight earlier. However, Paul Rideout’s first-half header, coupled with a valorous defensive effort, ensured the trophy came back to Merseyside for a fifth time. After the final whistle captain Dave Watson, who was named man of the match, had the privilege of leading his team up the 39 steps to the collect the silverware from Prince Charles.
Everton 1-0 Manchester United, 20 August 2012
Everton’s fine season to date was kick-started with an opening weekend win over Manchester United, a match best-remembered for Marouane Fellaini’s imperious performance. The Belgian headed the only goal of the game on an evening when he was quite simply unplayable. Robin van Persie made his debut from the bench following his summer switch from Arsenal but he, along with the rest of the United team, drew a blank on memorable summer night at Goodison.
Looking through the archives, it is possible to pick a full team of players who have represented both Everton and Manchester United, including three of David Moyes’ current first team squad. In goal there is Tim Howard, who is marshalling a back three of Phil Neville, Mark Higgins and John O’Kane. Norman Whiteside and Darron Gibson control play from the central areas, while Andrei Kanchelskis and Mickey Thomas are the outlets on either flank. A three-pronged attack of Wayne Rooney, Brian Kidd and Louis Saha supply the firepower. Peter Beardsley, Jesper Blomqvist, Ted Buckle and Pat Dunne wait for their opportunity from the substitutes’ bench.
Referee: M Halsey
Assistant Referee: R Garfield
Assistant Referee: H Lennard
Fourth Official: A Marriner
David Moyes’ team will be backed by a sell-out support after Evertonians snapped up all of their allocated 2,400 tickets. For those fans that aren’t travelling to the match, live commentary will be available on evertonfc.com shortly before kick-off. Alternatively, follow text updates via the Club’s official Twitter account @Everton.
Our official online betting partner Paddy Power are offering a range of odds on Sunday’s game. Here's a selection of the best:
Everton to win: 9/2
Everton to win 1-0: 14/1
Final score to be 4-4: 225/1
Marouane Fellaini to score first: 8/1
Draw half-time/Everton full-time: 9/1
Kevin Mirallas to score first and Everton to win 2-1: 100/1