Man Utd’s Shinji Kagawa set to face Braga after sitting out Stoke clash
Shinji Kagawa looks set to start Manchester United's clash against Braga on Tuesday after being rested at the weekend
Shinji Kagawa is set to start when Manchester United take on Braga at Old Trafford on Tuesday after the Japan international sat out Saturday’s win over Stoke.
The 23-year-old was not included in Sir Alex Ferguson’s squad for the 4-2 victory over the Potters and the United boss said he took the decision to give the summer signing a rest ahead of the Champions League clash.
“Shinji Kagawa didn’t play on Saturday so he can prepare for tomorrow,” said Ferguson. “Also, Stoke’s a different team to any other side he’s played. But mainly it was to give him a rest before tomorrow.”
Ferguson also confirmed that defenders Rio Ferdinand and Patrice Evra will sit out Tuesday’s group-stage clash, while Ashley Young is back in contention for a place after recovering from a knee injury.
“I’m not playing Rio tomorrow,” said Ferguson. “We have a game on Sunday against Chelsea and it’s a big one for us so I’m leaving a couple of players out. Rio and Patrice Evra are the older players – those are the two main changes for tomorrow. Other than that we’ve got a big squad.
“We’ve got Ashley Young back and he’ll be involved tomorrow. We’ve got Nani, [Antonio] Valencia, [Ryan] Giggs – plenty of wide players. Of course, we also have plenty of central midfield players. So I have an issue in terms of picking the team. Hopefully I get it right.”
United currently top Group H on six points after winning both of their European games.
Man Utd v Braga: Pre-match facts
• United have never lost at home to Portuguese opponents but José Peseiro’s Braga are on a seven-match unbeaten sequence on their travels in Europe.
• United’s home record against Portuguese teams is W8 D3 L0. In addition, they won the first of their three European Cups by beating Benfica 4-1 in the 1968 final at Wembley.
• United have won 100 games in the Champions League, group stage to final.
• Ryan Giggs has scored in a record 16 different Champions League seasons. He is also the competition’s oldest scorer, at 37 years and 289 days.
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