Manchester United welcome a struggling Sunderland side to Old Trafford on Boxing Day hoping to continue their good run of form. The Reds face two home fixtures over the festive period following two away trips on the bounce, the 2-1 and 2-0 victories over Crystal Palace and West Bromwich Albion respectively. Sunderland – managed by former United boss David Moyes – visit the Theatre of Dreams on Monday before the Reds host Middlesbrough on New Years Eve.
Three league victories in a row has seen Mourinho’s men close the gap on the top four. After the 1-1 draw away at Everton at the beginning of the month, United were a whopping nine points off fourth place, now only four points separates them and Arsenal who occupy fourth.
Sunderland travel to United with three ex United players on their books, captain John O’Shea, Donald Love and Paddy McNair. They also have Adnan Januzaj on loan and are managed by former Reds boss David Moyes. Let’s take a look at a few things that connect the two clubs, starting with Sir Alex Ferguson’s successor at Old Trafford in 2013.
Following a successful spell with Everton, David Moyes was told he was to be the next Manchester United boss by the retiring Sir Alex Ferguson in 2013. It was always going to be hard to replace the legendary Scottish manager (Fergie, that is) but to say it didn’t work out for Moyes at Old Trafford would be a massive understatement. United had never finished outside the top three in the Premier League era under Ferguson but after languishing down in seventh with just four league games remaining, Moyes was relieved of his duties following just ten months in charge. An unsuccessful spell at Spanish side Real Sociedad followed before joining the Black Cats in July of this year.