Manchester United welcome Tottenham Hotspur to Old Trafford on Sunday hoping to narrow the six-point gap between themselves and their opponents who sit one place above them in the league. Jose Mourinho’s side are sixth as things stand, a whopping nine points off fourth-placed Manchester City, United must pick up maximum points this weekend if they are to have any chance of finishing in the top four come May.
The Reds have incredibly won just one of their last eight league games, the 3-1 victory over struggling Swansea City last month. On the flip side to that, United have only lost once in that time too, six draws in eight league outings have seen Jose Mourinho’s men fall well behind in the race for the top four, let alone a title challenge. While the results have been far from what you’d expect, the performances have been to a much better standard that we’re used to seeing since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson. It’s the inability to see a game out or kill a team off, that is the problem at present.
The home side can take heart that Spurs have only won twice on the road April, let’s take a look at some players who have represented both sides.
Michael Carrick has spent the majority of his playing career at Old Trafford following his move from Spurs in 2006. He started out at West Ham United as a youngster before moving across London to Tottenham Hotspur. He spent two seasons at White Hart Lane before joining the Reds for £18.6m aged 25, an absolute bargain if you ask me! The Englishman is embarking on his eleventh season at The Theatre of Dreams and is still pulling the strings even today, I’d be very surprised if he didn’t start on Sunday.
The English striker spent five seasons at White Hart Lane during his first stint with Spurs, scoring 99 times in all competitions before joining the Reds in 2007 aged 31! He enjoyed four successful years at Old Trafford, winning everything domestically apart from the League Cup as well as the Champions League in 1999 in which he scored the equalising goal before teeing up Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for the winner. Sheringham actually rejoined Spurs after his contract at Old Trafford expired in 2001, spending two years with his former club before hanging up his boots via Portsmouth, West Ham United and finally Colchester United.
If there ever was a player to divide opinion then it was/is Bulgarian striker Dimitar Berbatov. He joined Spurs from Bayer Leverkusen in 2006 and went on to make 102 appearances for the London club, finding the net 46 times. United swooped in for the striker on the final day of the 2008 summer transfer window, he cost United £30 million, a club record at the time. He spent four years at Old Trafford, making almost 150 appearances in all competitions and scoring 56 times, none more memorable than the hat-trick he scored against Liverpool at Old Trafford in 2010.
Speaking of Berbatov, Fraizer Campbell was a part of the deal that saw the Bulgarian move to Old Trafford. Having only made four appearances for the Reds since coming up through the youth ranks as a youngster, Campbell joined Spurs on loan for the 2008/09 season following loan spells away at Royal Antwerp and Hull City previously. He scored just three times in 22 appearances for the Spurs that season and returned to Manchester United where he was subsequently sold to Sunderland in 2009. He now plies his trade at Crystal Palace following a spell at Cardiff.