Premier League: Manchester United vs Cardiff preview


The defending champions have fresh hope of turning things around in the league as record-signing Juan Mata is set to make his Manchester United debut against Cardiff City on Tuesday. The Spanish midfield maestro completed his £37.1m move from Chelsea on Saturday and is expected to make the starting line-up against Cardiff, the side managed by former Red Devils striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. David Moyes' men were knocked out of the Capital One Cup on penalties in their semi final against Sunderland last week, right after a severe 3-0 league defeat at the hands of Chelsea.

Manchester United drew 2-2 at Cardiff in November in the first clash between the two sides since 1975. Since then Solskjaer has replaced Malky Mackay as manager of the Welsh club and the new boss will probably enjoy a warm reception on his return to Old Trafford, where he spent 11 years during his playing days. Cardiff slipped to the bottom of the table following a 4-2 defeat at Manchester City in their last Premier League match. The Welsh club have won just one away match in the league this season and have produced just a point from their last six Premier League matches. They did beat Bolton in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Saturday though.

Robin van Persie (thigh) and Wayne Rooney (groin) might not be yet ready to return while Rio Ferdinand (knee), Nani (hamstring) and Michael Carrick (ankle) are also in doubt for Manchester United. Captain Nemanja Vidic will not feature as he serves the second match of his suspension following his red card at Chelsea. Kenwyne Jones could make his debut for Cardiff after completing a swap deal with Stoke City involving Peter Odemwingie. Forward Jo Inge Berget could make his first Premier League appearance after his move from Molde last week.

Here are the odds for Tuesday's match at Bet365:

Manchester United win - 1/4
Draw - 5/1
Cardiff win - 15/1

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