It's a landmark moment for Man United manager Sir Alex Ferguson. Picture - Reuters.

Manchester United Vs Sunderland, Saturday 05 November, 1500 GMT

It couldn't be more fitting - Steve Bruce to face his old mentor Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford on the 25th anniversary of the Scot assuming the role of Manchester United manager.

No one has and no one, it's almost safe to say, will ever emulate the feat again in the foreseeable future. Sir Alex has built and rebuilt teams, adapted and reinvented those teams, his players and even himself.

With Bruce as captain, Sir Alex led Man United to their first league title in 26 years in 1993. Since then, he has collected a total of 37 trophies. And surely, there's more to come.

Sunderland and Manchester United face-off on Saturday's lunch time kick-off in what is almost a sub-plot to Sir Alex's achievement.

It is Man United's first league game at home since that 6-1 thrashing against Manchester City - one of Sir Alex's worst defeats as manager. They have won four straight games since that defeat, although in a much more reserved fashion. Players are expected to put in a performance, not in least to give their manager something to remember the occasion by.

Sunderland haven't won at Man United since 1968. Bruce hasn't won against his old manager in 17 attempts. Wouldn't it be a spoiler if they managed to win something today, even though they won't?

Team News

Manchester United will welcome back captain Nemanja Vidic but will be without Michael Owen, Ashley Young, Ryan Giggs, Chris Smalling and Tom Cleverley all of whom are sidelined with injury.

Sunderland midfielder David Vaughan's will face a late fitness test, as he is doubtful with a groin injury while Simon Mignolet is out for two months. Former-United man John O'Shea is also sidelined.

Match Fact

Of the 131 matches between the two sides, United have won 56 times to Sunderland's 39. However, the Black Cats have only won one of 20 Premier League matches against United.


Anything less than a United win here will be a spoiler, not in least due to the occasion. And that's what is likely to happen.

Man United 3-0 Sunderland