12:03 AM EST, Sat November 29, 2014
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The Busby Babe 13 hours ago

Falcao and Rojo may return to face Hull City

A bit of good news on the injury front, with two of United's South American contingent returning to training. It's Friday, it's mid-afternoon, and that's means it's time for Louis van Gaal's thoughts on the game ahead. Do not, incidentally, mistake an afternoon press conference for a morning one. Not even when you're in the right. Still getting used to Van Gaal's ways. "Morning," we said today. He stared back. "Morning has passed." (It was 11.56am). — Daniel Taylor (@DTguardian) November 28, 2014 So, what news? Well, Luke Shaw's out for a few weeks but no longer, as he has a...

Ander Herrera and Jonny Evans return for Manchester United

The injury crisis rages on, but there's some comfort in the news that Ander Herrera and Jonny Evans are back and fit to be selected. TBB does not understand many things about our erstwhile dictator, and one of them has been his curious treatment of Ander Herrera. We've heard some specious stuff about him not wanting to rush players back from injury, yet Herrera was stuffed into a corset to put in a miserable display a few weeks ago, before being on the bench without getting a minute for several games after. Like we say, confusing. But we may get to see him in action soon, assuming some...
The Busby Babe Nov 26, 2014

Watch all Eric Cantona's United goals here

It was 22 years ago today ... November the 26th is a big date. In 1476, Vlad the Impaler assumed the rulership of Wallachia. In 1917, the National Hockey League formed in Canada. And in 1977, the Southern Television broadcast interruption took place: a mysterious voice called "Asteron" or "Gillon" broke into a Looney Tunes cartoon to warn TV viewers in the south-east of England that, by order of the "Intergalactic Mission", they had only a short time to learn to live together in peace. As anybody that's been out in Hastings on Christmas Eve will tell you, nobody was listening. Most...

Happy Eric Cantona day!

It's the anniversary of Eric Cantona joining Manchester United, so please share your memories. Today marks the 22nd anniversary of a very special date - when King Eric Cantona decided to join Manchester United. Of course, we could give you the usual stories - him only signing because of a conversation where Leeds tried to buy Denis Irwin. And we could post countless Youtube videos, that press conference, that goal against Sunderland, that volley against Liverpool in the cup, and oh, so much more. But they've all been done to death and done a thousand times. So we ask you, TBB readers, to...
The Busby Babe Nov 24, 2014

Are United really after an injured Barcelona defender?

According to some really weird reports, United are now actively looking for injured defenders, and have decided that Thomas Vermaelen fits the bill perfectly. Transfer rumours are a lot like sausages. Like sausages, they can be either satisfyingly plump and nourishing or hideous, mechanically recovered tubes of water and rusk and pig eyelash. Like sausages, they're better than nothing, but generally not as good as proper meat. And, most relevantly for today, like sausages they come in strings. Sausage the first. This morning, several of the English newspapers carry word that both Manchester...
The Busby Babe Nov 24, 2014

Van Gaal explains how United beat Arsenal

Tactics, tactics, and more tactics. We think LVG enjoyed this one. If there's one thing more satisfying than getting things right, it's getting things right and then telling the entire nation how you did it. So tBB imagines that Louis van Gaal greatly enjoyed explaining to the press exactly how he decided to beat Arsenal on Saturday evening. Step one? Well, step one after riding out an opening 25 minutes in which the home team should have had one and could have had three? Take advantage of the fact that Arsenal are the most predictable football team in the history of football, and switch to...

Arsenal vs. Manchester United: Player ratings

A very mixed performance on an individual level from United, with Marouane Fellaini, David de Gea and Paddy McNair excellent, but the less said about Robin van Persie and Michael Carrick the better. David de Gea 8 Most of his saves were from shots right at him, but he had a confident game in goal and was pretty faultless other than perhaps his positioning for Arsenal's goal. Chris Smalling 7 His best performance in a while, not doing too much wrong and producing one fine tackle in particular. Still never a United player. Paddy McNair 8 Did little wrong and was the most composed head in the...

Arsenal 1-2 Manchester United: United poor, but win regardless

Manchester United won a bizarre game at the Emirates 2-1, thanks to a Kieran Gibbs own-goal and Wayne Rooney. Our worst performance in the league so far under Louis van Gaal? Quite possibly. Our best result? Without any doubt whatsoever. Manchester United put in a pretty meek display, could have been out of it inside twenty minutes, failed to get any control on the game whatsoever, and missed a couple of good chances themselves. The result - 2-1 to Manchester United. The game opened with a series of Arsenal attacks against United's makeshift defence, with Paddy McNair (4 wins from 4 starts...

Manchester United vs Arsenal, team news: Van Gaal reverts to three at the back

Louis van Gaal has moved to a three-at-the-back system again as his side take on Arsenal in the Premier League. Another day, another new formation. It's nice to have a clear philosophy and plan these days, eh? Yes, Louis van Gaal has picked another system, this time a 3-5-2. In fairness, it's probably largely decided by injury, so it's Smalling, Blackett and McNair at the back with Valencia and Shaw on the flanks. Oddly, Ander Herrera is still only on the bench, so it's - ugh - Michael Carrick and Marouane Fellaini in midfield. Angel di Maria then links all that to Wayne Rooney and Robin...
The Busby Babe Nov 22, 2014

Daley Blind NOT out for six months

However, Manchester United's versatile midfielder will still miss a fair chunk of the season. Manchester United's official Twitter account is a strange thing. That it sprang to life so soon after Alex Ferguson's retirement suggests that old Ferg didn't want anything to do with it, but since then, it's flourished into a prime example of Corporate Twitter: lots of "customer engagement", much of it embarrassing. But one thing you'd normally assume is accuracy. Whoever is running the thing should, by virtue of being the Official Twitter Account, have good information. So when @ManUtd announces...
The Busby Babe Nov 19, 2014

Blind crocked, Di María possibly crocked ... it's the international round-up

Injury, injury, they've all got an injury. Taking the positives, we can at least be sure that whatever the source of Manchester United's injury curse, it's nothing to do with Old Trafford itself. Cross 'ancient Pictish burial ground' off the list. United's players are perfectly capable of injuring themselves all over the world, from Manchester to Glasgow, from the Netherlands to Belarus. Let's start at home. Ángel Di María took part in a prestige friendly at Old Trafford, his (and, alright, Lionel Messi's) Argentina side taking on Nani's (and, okay, Cristiano Ronaldo's) Portugal. And it...
The Busby Babe Nov 18, 2014

United's injury nightmare deepens with two further doubts ahead of Arsenal game

Ángel Di María and Luke Shaw both appeared to pick up injuries on international duty. Manchester United's ongoing injury crisis may have claimed another prominent name, after it emerged that Ángel Di María was having "x-rays" on a foot injury following Argentina's 1-0 loss against Portugal at Old Trafford. Di María picked up a knock in the first half after Nani -- still a United player -- stamped on his foot. Rumours that the Portuguese is attempting to engineer a January recall have just been made up now, by us. Di María played on with no apparent ill effects but was substituted...
The Busby Babe Nov 18, 2014

No "short-term fixes" for United in January

Ed Woodward indicates that Manchester United are unlikely to be doing any shopping this January. Bad news for Ron Vlaar and Winston Reid. Well, bad news for their agents, at any rate; the players might be perfectly happy where they are. Either way, Manchester United's designated money-spunker Ed "Eddington Woodington" Woodward has ruled out the possibility of United charging into the transfer market this January. Woodward asked about possible transfers in January. "We're not looking to enter the market for short-term fixes." — Rob Dawson (@RobDawsonMEN) November 18, 2014 As such,...
The Busby Babe Nov 18, 2014

The injury crisis is lifting! A bit! Possibly!

According to the papers, Manchester United might soon be in the odd position of having some fit defenders. Good news. Or at least, reports of good news. According to the usually-pretty-reliable Mark Ogden in the Telegraph, Manchester United's injury crisis is easing, just a little bit. Ogden information is that three players, Phil Jones, Jonny Evans and Radamel Falcao, will be fit to take their place in the match squad for Sunday's game against Arsenal in London. With the return of Chris Smalling from suspension, this could mean that United have, for the first time in living memory,...
The Busby Babe Nov 17, 2014

REVEALED: Manchester United fans love Macaulay Culkin, hate cats

Thanks to market research data, we now know exactly what Manchester United fans are like. A bit odd, apparently. Today in international break avoidance tactics, we're getting introspective. What are Manchester United fans like? Where do they come from? What do they like doing? What sets them apart from the general population. And where do they stand on the Big Questions, such as the worthiness of Home Alone 2: Lost in New York as a follow-up to the original? Well, now we know. Sort of. YouGov, one of Britain's most prominent market research firms, has unveiled a cute little tool called...
The Busby Babe Nov 16, 2014

Daley Blind substituted with knee injury on international duty

United's luck doesn't seem to be getting any better. Manchester United have had some pretty terrible luck on the injury front recently, and it doesn't seem to be improving in a hurry. The latest Red Devil to go down is midfield anchorman Daley Blind, who was withdrawn in the first half of the Netherlands' Euro 2016 qualifier against Latvia: Manchester United fans, look away now... Daley Blind has limped off in the 20th minute of Netherlands vs. Latvia. — ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) November 16, 2014 The good news is that Blind was able to walk off the field, and it's possible that he's just been...
The Busby Babe Nov 14, 2014

David de Gea ruled out of action with finger injury

United's goalkeeping star suffered a dislocated finger on international duty. Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea has been ruled out of action after suffering a dislocated finger in training with the Spanish national side. The upshot is that he'll certainly miss Spain's Euro 2016 qualifier against Belarus on Saturday, and possibly their friendly against Germany next week. However, he is staying with Spain, which is generally a pretty good sign. Had they sent him packing for Manchester, there'd probably be a longer layoff on the cards. As it is, we can pretty well hope to see Big Dave...
The Busby Babe Nov 13, 2014
United midfielder injured on international duty

United midfielder injured on international duty

Michael Carrick limped out of training with England and has returned to the club. Michael Carrick, occasional footballer, has limped out of his England comeback after just twenty minutes of training. One medical scan later, he was on the road back to Old Trafford with a groin problem. It appears that the Curse of the Manchester United Central Defender extends even to those footballers only filling in. It's not clear how long Carrick will be out for, though early reports suggest that it may not prove to serious, and Sky Sports have Louis van Gaal targeting United's next game, against Arsenal...

United to sell Juan Mata and replace him with wonderkid playmaker?

There's a suggestion doing the rounds that Manchester United may sell Juan Mata and bring in Mateo Kovacic as a replacement. But there's a problem... Juan Mata is a fairly divisive player among Manchester United's support. Even the ruling council of TBB is split on the matter, unable to decide if he's a luxury player who goes missing when we need him most, or whether he's a genius who guarantees goals and assists. So it may intrigue some people for a variety of reasons to hear that Mata has apparently been put up for sale for the sum of just £20m. Juventus, Valencia and Atletico are among...
The Busby Babe Nov 11, 2014

Robin van Persie ruled out of Netherlands friendly with "minor injury"

There's hope the striker will still be fit for the Netherlands' weekend fixture. United striker Robin van Persie will miss the Netherlands' friendly against Mexico on Wednesday with a "minor injury." Fortunately, "minor" doesn't seem to be being used euphemistically, as there's hope the veteran forward could recover in time to play in their Euro 2016 qualifier against Latvia on the weekend. Quoted in the Guardian, Dutch manager Guus Hiddink said: "Van Persie is not quite fit. He trained today, but he did not fully participate. I don't think he will be used against Mexico." That he was...