Chris Hughton insists Norwich do not fear playing Manchester United at Old Trafford

United are on an unbeaten league run now standing at 15 games - 13 of which they have won

Norwich manager Chris Hughton has stressed the prospect of taking on Barclays Premier League champions-elect Manchester United at Old Trafford on Saturday holds no fear for his players.

United, 12 points clear at the top of the table, appear to be on an unstoppable march towards this season's title, with their unbeaten league run now standing at 15 games - 13 of which they have won.

Ahead of this weekend's contest, though, it is notable that the Red Devils' last top-flight defeat - a 1-0 loss in November - came at Norwich, who last Saturday halted their own nine-match winless streak by beating Everton 2-1.

Previewing his side's trip to Manchester, Hughton said: "We know our season is not going to be based on results at Old Trafford, but you also know there is a chance you can get something.

"There will be no fear from our players - we will want to go there and play."

Following the Everton victory, 12th-placed Norwich are eight points clear of the relegation zone and looking fairly secure with 11 games to go.

Another team heading in the right direction are Newcastle, now 13th and six points above the drop zone after defeating Southampton last Sunday.

Ninth-placed Swansea were crowned Capital One Cup champions the same afternoon and they host the Magpies tomorrow.

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is not anticipating the Welsh side will have a Wembley hangover, saying: "They are having a fabulous season and to win the cup was the real icing on the cake.

"But they have still got a big part of the season left and I am sure (Swansea manager) Michael Laudrup will be reminding them as such."

The major relegation battle last weekend saw Wigan move out of the bottom three - clear of it on goal difference alone in 17th place - by winning at Reading, who are now second-bottom, a point behind the Latics and 18th-placed Aston Villa.

Wigan are at home against Liverpool in Saturday's 5.30pm kick-off and boss Roberto Martinez said: "There is a strong fight for the top four and a strong fight for a European place but the biggest fight is to avoid those three positions at the bottom of the table.

"It could definitely go to the final whistle of the last game."

Reading are at Everton, while rock-bottom QPR - six points adrift of the Royals - travel to Southampton, who are three points better off than Wigan in 16th.

In Saturday's other matches Stoke entertain West Ham, Sunderland welcome Fulham to the Stadium of Light and fourth-placed Chelsea play at home against West Brom - a game where there could be a decent reception for the Baggies' head coach, ex-Blues player and assistant boss Steve Clarke, but a distinctly frosty one for Rafael Benitez, the interim manager at Stamford Bridge, following his outburst this week.

Sunday sees the north London derby at White Hart Lane between Tottenham (third) and Arsenal (fifth), as the race for a Champions League berth hots up.

Second-placed Manchester City then make the trip to Villa on Monday evening.

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Extras
indybest
Travel
Flocking round: Beyoncé, Madame Tussauds' latest waxwork, looking fierce in the park
travelIn a digital age when we have more access than ever to the stars, why are waxworks still pulling in crowds?
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Judi Dench appeared at the Hay Festival to perform excerpts from Shakespearean plays
tvJudi Dench and Hugh Bonneville join Benedict Cumberbatch in BBC Shakespeare adaptations
Sport
Is this how Mario Balotelli will cruise into Liverpool?
football
News
Ronahi Serhat, a PKK fighter, in the Qandil Mountains in Iraqi Kurdistan
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Poet’s corner: Philip Larkin at the venetian window of his home in 1958
booksOr caring, playful man who lived for others? A new book has the answer
Arts and Entertainment
Exhibition at the Centre Pompidou in Metz - 23 May 2012
art
News
Matthew McConaughey and his son Levi at the game between the Boston Red Sox and the Houston Astros at Fenway Park on August 17, 2014 in Boston, Massachusetts.
advertisingOscar-winner’s Lincoln deal is latest in a lucrative ad production line
Arts and Entertainment
Alfred Molina, left, and John Lithgow in a scene from 'Love Is Strange'
film
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site