Writer: J P Fear
Date:Friday January 5 2007
There are all sorts of Villa fans, some never get to a game for whatever reason but would die for the claret and blue, others that never miss a game who sort their life around the fixtures for the mighty claret and blue.
Then there is Nigel Ashford! A fan from before he was a twinkle in his fathers eye and one lucky enough to have seen Villa win everywhere possible. Well, win everywhere possible with one notable exception, in 22 years of going, he has never seen Villa beat Manchester United at Old Trafford.
Well, me old mucker is up to his old tricks this week flatly refusing to miss a single visit UNTIL we come away with the win. Then he has broken all his hoodoos and can rest, or so he says!
I'm not saying one of my oldest mates is mad, but this is the man who came back from Sydney (Australia for the geographically challenged amonst us) early and stayed awake for two days after flying back, getting the train to Manchester and watching us lose in 2005.
Not to mention his return from Cape Town in 2002 where Nigel flew straight in from South Africa and caught the train up to Manchester WITH all his bags left in luggage.
So, tough job on the cards for Villa this week and a tough job for Nigel to travel from London to Manchester twice. For goodness sake Manchester United, just lose for the love of God (aka Paul McGrath)!
Gareth Barry is back following his suspension but Olof Mellberg serves a one match ban for picking up five yellow cards.
Former Sweden international Henrik Larsson is set to make his debut for Manure in the FA Cup third-round tie at Old Trafford on Sunday (2pm kick off, live on BBC1). Edwin Van der Sar looks to be rested and Louis Saha is ruled out with a groin strain.
Man Utd (from): Kuszczak, Neville, Brown, Ferdinand, Vidic, Silvestre, Evra, Heinze, Ronaldo, Park, Fletcher, Carrick, Scholes, O'Shea, Giggs, Richardson, Rooney, Solskjaer, Larsson, Heaton.
Aston Villa (from): Kiraly, Olejnik, Hughes, Cahill, Ridgewell, Bouma, Agbonlahor, Petrov, Davis, McCann, Barry, Osbourne, Angel, Baros, Samuel, Whittingham, Agathe (or is he off or still injured,who knows these days?) Hendrie? Djemba-Djemba (who?!)
Mark Lawrensen says 2-0 adding The problem with Villa is that you struggle to see where a goal is coming from. Not a problem Man Utd have to worry about.
Mystic Mug says 0-1 to Villa, no reason other than blind optimism.
Date:Friday January 5 2007
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