Champions League: Manchester United v Real Sociedad match preview

A look ahead to this week’s Champions League tie at Old Trafford

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The Independent Football

Manchester United and Real Sociedad both changed managers in the summer and have been slow starters in their respective 2013/14 campaigns, with United eighth in the Premier League and Sociedad 12th in La Liga.

Sociedad are without any points after two losses in Group A, and it is crucial they at least draw at Old Trafford to keep their qualification hopes alive.

But the Spaniards come into the match on the back of a 2-1 win at Valencia, and long-serving captain Xabier Prieto is fully-fit again after a thigh injury.

The sides have never met before but United have fared badly in recent matches against Spanish opposition. Over the last two seasons they were knocked out of European competition in the Last 16 by Real Madrid and Athletic Bilbao.

 

KICK-OFF: Wednesday, 7.45pm

 

PAST MEETINGS…

These teams have never met in a competitive fixture.

 

STATS…

Manchester United have won just one of their last six home matches against Spanish teams.

That victory was the 1-0 Champions League semi-final over Barcelona in 2008.

The teams’ leading attackers, Robin van Persie and Carlos Vela, were both on the books at Arsenal for six years between 2005 and 2011, although Vela didn't appear for the Gunners until 2008 after two consecutive loan-spells away from the club.

It is Sociedad’s second match in England. In the first they suffered a 6-0 defeat to Liverpool in the Uefa Cup second round in 1975.

 

ODDS…

Manchester United: 1.5

Real Sociedad: 7

Draw: 4.3

 

TV: Live on Sky Sports 2 at 7.45pm. Highlights on Sky Sports 2 at 10pm

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