United start their champions league campaign against Bayer Leverkusen tonight under the floodlights of Old Trafford. At first glance the German side seemed like a good draw for United, but when you consider they finished 3rd last season and only one point behind Borussia Dortmund, you begin to realise we will have a game on our hands.
Coupled with their strong finishing position in the league, Leverkusen’s striker Stefan Kiessling finished as Bundesliga joint top goal-scorer with 25 goals, tied Robert Lewandowski. The German forward has picked up from where he left off last season with 4 goals in 5 games already this season. Midfielder Sidney Sam has also started the season well with the same game to goal ratio. The opposition currently sit 3rd in the table picking up twelve points in five games, their only defeat came away from home to Schalke.
A positive for United is that Leverkusen have only recorded one clean sheet this season and don’t have a defense anywhere near as strong as their attacking line up. United are much more balanced and I hope Vidic or Rio will keep them quiet on the night. I don’t anticipate both to play due to the Manchester derby on Sunday. The same can be said for the likes of Fellaini and RVP. I think Moyes will rest these players with Sunday in mind and maybe have them on the bench if we are in need of them.
United’s performance against Palace at the weekend was a much needed response from the drab ones against Liverpool and Chelsea. Lets hope Moyes can get some momentum going in his Champions league debut. We have a lot of games coming up in a short space of time, and the squad will be utilised by the boss. Lets start with a win at home and make Old Trafford a fortress again in the Champions League.