Manchester United v Bolton - Preview

  • January 13, 2012 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton return to Premier League action on Saturday when they face the daunting task of playing Manchester United at Old Trafford.

Wanderers were in FA Cup action last weekend as they were held to a 2-2 draw at League Two side Macclesfield Town, while United advanced to the fourth round with a 3-2 victory over near neighbours Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium.

After taking just nine points from their opening 16 games of the season, Owen Coyle's side have managed a further seven from their four festive fixtures and are unbeaten in two league games for the first time this season.

United, meanwhile, have slumped to defeats to Blackburn Rovers and Newcastle United in their last two league outings. A loss to Bolton on Saturday would see them lose three Premier League games for the first time since December 2001.

Despite United's recent poor form, Bolton boss Owen Coyle will need his players to be at their absolute best if they are to stand any chance of pulling off a surprise at Old Trafford.

Gary Cahill's protracted transfer to Chelsea remains on hold, so the England international is in line to feature for Wanderers on Saturday.

Unless a late decision is made to pull the 26-year-old out of the Wanderers squad, Cahill should line up alongside Zat Knight, Sam Ricketts and Gretar Steinsson in the Bolton defence.

Jussi Jaaskelainen is a doubt as he continues to struggle with a thigh injury, so Adam Bogdan is set to deputise once again for the former Finland international.

Wanderers could infact line up with the same side which won at Everton 10 days previously, with Mark Davies, Fabrice Muamba, Nigel Reo-Coker, Martin Petrov and former United-man Chris Eagles operating a five-man midfield behind David Ngog in attack.

Ivan Klasnic and David Wheater were on target at Moss Rose last time out, but both may have to settle for places on the bench with Kevin Davies and Darren Pratley, who have failed to impress for the majority of the campaign so far.

Bolton remain without the likes of Stuart Holden, Lee Chung-Yong, Rob Lainton, Marcos Alonso, Tyrone Mears, Ricardo Gardner, Sean Davis and Josh Vela, who all remain on the treatment table.

United have been boosted by the return of Paul Scholes, who pulled out of retirement to feature in their FA Cup success last weekend.

Scholes is likely to start on the bench, with Sir Alex Ferguson handing starts to any two of Michael Carrick, Anderson and Ryan Giggs in the centre of midfield.

Sir Alex Ferguson will make a late decision on the fitness of Chris Smalling and Phil Jones, but Nemanja Vidic remains on the sidelines after knee surgery.

Bolton Wanderers: from: Bogdan, Jaaskelainen, Lynch, Steinsson, Robinson, Cahill, Knight, Ricketts, Boyata, Wheater, Connolly, Riley, Muamba, Eagles, Petrov, M Davies, Reo-Coker, Pratley, Blakeman, Tuncay, K Davies, Klasnic, Blake, Ngog, Eaves, Obadeyi, O'Halloran

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Sky Bet League Two Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
1 Cheltenham Town 46 82
2 Cambridge United 46 80
3 Bolton Wanderers 46 79
4 Morecambe 46 78
5 Newport County 46 73
View Full Standings >>


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