Barclays Premier League
Saturday 28th September 2013, 3pm
Old Trafford


Albion boss Steve Clarke will take charge of his 50th game.

The Baggies have won just one of the last 21 league meetings between the sides.

Albion's last game on September 28 came back in 1996 when they played out a goalless draw at home to Ipswich Town. The Baggies' last win on this date came in 1991 with a 1-0 win over Hull City in a Third Division match at The Hawthorns.

United's last game on this date came in 2004 - a Champions League tie with Fenerbahce. A Wayne Rooney hat-trick helped United to an emphatic 6-2 win.

Albion's last six league games: Arsenal (H, LC) 1-1 (3-4 on pens); Sunderland (H) 3-0; Fulham (A) 1-1; Swansea City (H) 0-2; Newport County (H, LC) 3-0; Everton (A) 0-0.

United's last six league games: Liverpool (H, LC) 1-0; Manchester City (A) 1-4; Bayer Leverkusen (H, CL) 4-2; Crystal Palace (H) 2-0; Liverpool (A) 0-1; Chelsea (H) 0-0.



Claudio Yacob should return having recovered from a dead leg that forced him to miss the midweek game with Arsenal whilst boss Steve Clarke is hopeful both Victor Anichebe (ankle) and Nicolas Anelka (knock), will also be able to take part.

Chris Brunt (groin) is expected to be missing for a third successive game whilst Matej Vydra, Zoltan Gera (both hamstring), George Thorne (knee) and Ben Foster (foot) all remain sidelined.

Squad from: Myhill, Camp, Reid, Olsson, Popov, Ridgewell, Lugano, McAuley, Dawson, Jones, Yacob, Morrison, Sinclair, Dorrans, Amalfitano, Mulumbu, Rosenberg, Long, Anichebe, Sessegnon, Berahino, Anelka.

Manchester United

Robin van Persie and Tom Cleverley have returned to training and could both feature in the game. Van Persie missed United’s matches against Manchester City and Liverpool due to a groin problem whilst Cleverley sat out the Capital One Cup win over Liverpool in midweek with a knock.

Squad from: De Gea, Lindegaard, Amos, Rafael, Fabio, Jones, Smalling, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Buttner, Valencia, Giggs, Carrick, Cleverley, Fellaini, Anderson, Kagawa, Nani, Young, Van Persie, Welbeck, Rooney, Hernandez.


Baggies' Head Coach Steve Clarke:

“I've never been afraid of going to Old Trafford. You have to relish it - it's fantastic. You go there, you go on the pitch, look at the crowd, it makes you feel good.  It should make you ready to play the best you can.

“I don't hold with the fear factor or the thought that you should go to these places and be intimidated. You should go there and relish the challenge. I never understand why people would ask a professional whether they’re going anywhere to win or not. As a professional, I think I’m going to win every single game I go into. If I don’t think that, how can I convince the players. And I hope every player I’ve got goes to Old Trafford with the same feeling as me - that we can win the game. It’s a game where the pressure is not on us because everyone expects Manchester United to beat us. But that doesn’t mean we don’t expect to go there and do well. Maybe 99 per cent of the country don’t expect us to go there and do well. But we expect to go there and get a good result.

“We're determined to continue our good away form. I went to watch the game last Sunday and United couldn't get a foothold in it until they were 4-0 down.  But United have had setbacks before and always bounce back.  We’ll look to put on a good performance. We go full of hopes and full of dreams.  They have already bounced back from the City reverse. That's what the top teams do. We are only thinking about ourselves and when you go to a place like Old Trafford, you need to play at your best.  We need to play to our maximum and keep concentrating to get a result.”




Albion Win: 10/1, United Win: 3/10, Draw: 4/1.

First Goalscorer

Albion: Anelka 11/1, Anichebe 14/1, Long 14/1, Sessegnon 14/1, Berahino 16/1, Rosenberg 16/1, Morrison 20/1, Sinclair 20/1, Brunt 25/1, Dorrans 25/1, Amalfitano 25/1, Dawson 33/1, McAuley 33/1, Mulumbu 33/1.

Manchester United: van Persie 5/2, Rooney 3/1, Welbeck 4/1, Hernandez 4/1, Kagawa 9/2, Fellaini 5/1, Nani 11/2, Zaha 13/2, Young 7/1, Januzaj 15/2, Valencia 8/1, Giggs 11/1, Cleverley 12/1, Anderson 16/1, Carrick 20/1, Evra 20/1.


Michael Oliver (Northumberland)

Refereed four Albion games last season - the 2-1 defeat at home to Liverpool in the Capital One Cup in September, the 2-1 win over Chelsea at The Hawthorns in November, the 2-1 defeat at Everton in January and the 5-5 draw with United in May.

Oliver took charge of two United games during 2012/13 other than the 5-5 draw with Albion - the 4-0 win over Wigan Athletic at Old Trafford in September and the 1-1 draw at Swansea City in December.

The Northumberland official has handed out 14 yellow cards in the four games he has refereed so far this season.


Tickets for the game are no longer available to Albion fans.


Partly cloudy, 17°C


Albion's first league meetings with Newton Heath - who would in time become Manchester United - took place in the First Division during the 1892/93 season. The first game between the sides, at Stoney Lane, ended in a goalless draw. Just one week later, in the return game at United's North Road ground, Albion ran out 4-2 winners thanks to two goals from Archie Bostock and one each from Roddy McLeod and Billy Bassett.

The Baggies' biggest win against United came in April 1968 when they recorded a 6-3 victory at The Hawthorns with the late great Jeff Astle netting three of the Albion goals. Other big wins for Albion include 5-1 at The Hawthorns in 1925/26, and 5-3 at Old Trafford in December 1978 - a game that is generally recognised as one of Albion's greatest ever performances.

United's best win over Albion came at Old Trafford in April 1970 when they ran out easy 7-0 winners against an Alan Ashman led team. Other notable wins for United include 5-0 in 2008/09, 5-1 in 1985/86, 5-3 in 1966/67 and another 5-1 in 1951/52.

Albion’s last league victory over the 'Red Devils' came at The Hawthorns on March 31, 1984 when Cyrille Regis and Steve MacKenzie scored the goals which gave the Baggies’ a 2-0 win over Ron Atkinson's United. Since then, Albion have picked up just three points out of a possible 54 against the men from Manchester.

The Baggies' last victory at Old Trafford came in the aforementioned December 1978 game. Goals from Tony Brown (2), Len Cantello, Laurie Cunningham and Cyrille Regis helped Albion to a very well documented 5-3 win.

Albion and United have met each other 14 times at Premier League level with the men from Manchester winning 11 of the games, the other three ending in draws.

In May 2013, Albion and United created a record for the highest-ever score draw in the Premier League. Baggies' striker Romelu Lukaku hit a hat-trick as the two teams shared ten goals in what was Sir Alex Ferguson's last game in charge of United.

Despite their awful recent league record against United, the Baggies did beat them in a Carling Cup 4th round tie at The Hawthorns in December 2003, Bernt Haas and Scott Dobie scoring the goals in a 2-0 victory.


Sunday 19 May 2013 - Albion 5-5 Manchester United - Premier League - The Hawthorns
Saturday 7 May 2005 - Manchester United 1-1 Albion - Premier League - Old Trafford
Wednesday 3 December 2003 - Albion 2-0 Manchester United - Carling Cup 4th Round - The Hawthorns
Saturday 4 September 1982 - Albion 3-1 Manchester United - First Division - The Hawthorns
Saturday 27 December 1980 - Albion 3-1 Manchester United - First Division - The Hawthorns
Saturday 30 December 1978 - Manchester United 3-5 Albion - First Division - Old Trafford

Wednesday 1 February 1978 - Albion 3-2 Manchester United - FA Cup 4th Round Replay - The Hawthorns
Wednesday 5 March 1958 - Manchester United 1-0 Albion - FA Cup QF Replay - Old Trafford


Manchester United 2-0 Albion
Barclays Premier League
Saturday 29th December 2013, 3,00pm

Manchester United: De Gea; Smalling, Vidic, Evans, Evra (c); Valencia, Carrick, Cleverley (Scholes 82), Young; Kagawa (van Persie 65), Welbeck. Subs not used: Lindegaard (gk), Ferdinand, Giggs, Hernandez, Buttner.

Goalscorers: McAuley 9 (own goal), van Persie 90+1

Booked: Valencia 63 (foul)

Albion: Foster; Jones, McAuley, Tamas, Ridgewell; Thorne, Brunt (Morrison 75); Dorrans (Fortune 82), Rosenberg (Lukaku 67), Odemwingie; Long. Subs not used: Myhill (gk), Jara Reyes, Dawson, El Ghanassy.

Booked: Dorrans 62 (ungentlemanly conduct)

Attendance: 75,595

Referee: Jon Moss (West Yorkshire)

Robin van Persie's 17th goal of the season ensured Manchester United claimed yet another scalp on their march towards what they hope will be a 20th league title at Old Trafford. Yet the performance of skipper Nemanja Vidic was equally notable, as he guided United to only their fourth Premier League clean sheet of the season after Gareth McAuley's early own goal had put the hosts in front against West Brom. Plagued by injury for the past 16 months, and restored to the United line-up for the only the second time since his most recent knee operation, Serbian Vidic used all of his experience to ensure the hosts were not made to pay for a lacklustre second-half display. And when Van Persie curled home a brilliant effort in the final minute, the Red Devils' handsome seven-point lead at the top of the table was preserved.

After all the furore around Ferguson's confrontation with Mike Dean on Boxing Day, mascot Fred the Red probably approached the United boss with a degree of trepidation as the pair met on the touchline prior to kick off. The exchange was cordial, though, as was the jocular encounter between Ferguson and fourth official Phil Dowd shortly afterwards. And once the match started, referee Jon Moss did little to get the United manager vexed, beyond an inexplicable free-kick against Tom Cleverley when the midfielder had been looking at a dropping ball on the edge of his own box when Billy Jones crashed into him. By that point, United had got their noses in front courtesy of McAuley, who could only divert a bullet cross from Ashley Young into his own net. It should have been more. Vidic was wide with a couple of headers and Gabriel Tamas turned away Michael Carrick's goalbound shot. The nearest United went to doubling their lead was when Young strode onto a deflected Antonio Valencia cross. He hit it sweetly on the half volley, only for former Red Devils keeper Ben Foster to respond with a brilliant save, which earned his slice of good fortune when he shoved the ball onto the crossbar and over. Danny Welbeck - afforded a rare start in a central striking berth - and Shinji Kagawa - back for the first time since suffering a knee injury in October - both sparkled for the hosts, who were so obviously on top. With a defence that has leaked so many goals this season, Ferguson would not have felt safe. Yet the presence of Vidic offered some degree of comfort. The Serbian has been absent so often over the past 15 months it has almost been forgotten what a calming influence he is. His bravery is unquestioned too. And when Chris Brunt drilled a free-kick goalwards in the final throes of the opening period, it was no surprise Vidic should be the one to emerge from a crowd of bodies having headed it away.

However, with the clock ticking by and heavy rain continuing to pour down on a sodden surface that required a precautionary inspection a couple of hours before kick-off, United started to get stuck. Young completely miskicked when Valencia's cross presented a golden opportunity on the hour, which offered a Baggies outfit already growing in self-belief more reason for optimism. Had Brunt's piledriver been either side of David de Gea it surely would have brought the visitors level. As it was, the shot went straight to the Spain keeper. Little wonder Van Persie's arrival midway through the second period was greeted with such enthusiasm, underlining the Dutchman's influence since his summer move from Arsenal. West Brom were in the mood, though. And with United's passing becoming increasingly sloppy, they continued to push on with force. Vidic needed to be in the right place to clear a Romelu Lukaku cross that threatened panic inside the United six-yard box and the sight of his fellow defenders throwing themselves at anything that moved, it had turned into an unedifying backs-to-the-wall effort so unlike the thrill-a-minute action this stadium has become used to. Van Persie was denied by Foster with nine minutes remaining but the former England keeper could do nothing about the Dutchman's late shot, which curled expertly into the top corner from Paul Scholes' pass.

Sporting Life


Ben Foster spent five years at Old Trafford but made just an handful of first team appearances. The Leamington-born keeper had joined United from Stoke City in July 2005.

Albion goalkeeper Luke Daniels started his career at Old Trafford before moving to The Hawthorns in 2004 following his release by United.

Alan Fettis, who had a short spell on loan at The Hawthorns in 1995, is United's Academy goalkeeping coach.


Amongst the players to have turned out at various levels for both clubs are: Arthur Albiston, Michael Appleton, Jack Banks, Peter Barnes, Henry Boyd, Garth Crooks, Laurie Cunningham, Arthur Fitton, Johnny Giles, Jonathan Greening, Graeme Hogg, Jim Holton, Tomasz Kuszczak, Paul McShane, Mick Martin, Remi Moses, Michael Nardiello, Jimmy Nicholl, Mike Phelan, Billy Richards, Kieran Richardson, Bryan Robson, Maurice Setters, Arthur Smith, Jimmy Stanton, Luke Steele, Mickey Thomas and Ronnie Wallwork

Larger than life 'Big' Ron Atkinson managed both clubs; Ex-Albion boss Nobby Stiles was a United player; Stuart Pearson played for United and later became a coach at The Hawthorns; Ex-United boss Jimmy Murphy was an Albion player during the 1930's; Former Albion player Brian Whitehouse later coached at Old Trafford; Mick Brown was assistant manager at both clubs under Ron Atkinson; Former Baggies' boss Johnny Giles started his playing career at United; England legend Bryan Robson started his career at The Hawthorns in the early 1970's before a record £1.5million move took him to Old Trafford in 1981. Robson returned to Albion in 2004 taking over the managerial hotseat from Gary Megson; Michael Appleton played for both clubs and coached at various levels at The Hawthorns; Mike Phelan, who was a coach and then assistant manager at Old Trafford under Sir Alex Ferguson, spent two years as an Albion player between 1994 and 1996, after earlier having played for United.


 Home 61 28 14 19 114 98
 Away 61 12 16 33 75 123
 Total 122 40 30 52 189 221


Sun 19 May 2013 Premier League H 5-5 Morrison, Lukaku 3, Mulumbu - Kagawa, Olsson (og),  26,438
        Büttner, van Persie, Hernández  
Sat 29 Dec 2012 Premier League A 0-2 McAuley (og), van Persie  75,595
Sun 11 Mar 2012 Premier League A 0-2 Rooney 2 (1 pen)  75,598
Sun 14 Aug 2011 Premier League H 1-2 Long - Rooney, Reid (og)  25,360
Sat 01 Jan 2011 Premier League H 1-2 Morrison - Rooney, Hernandez  25,499
Sat 16 Oct 2010 Premier League A 2-2 Evra (og), Tchoyi - Hernandez, Nani  75,272
Tue 27 Jan 2009 Premier League H 0-5 Berbatov, Tevez, Vidic, Ronaldo 2  26,105
Sat 18 Oct 2008 Premier League A 0-4 Rooney, Ronaldo, Berbatov, Nani  75,451
Sat 18 Mar 2006 Premier League H 1-2 Ellington - Saha 2  27,623
Mon 26 Dec 2005 Premier League A 0-3 Scholes, Ferdinand, van Nistelrooy  67,972


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