Kagawa puts Man Utd in 4-3-3 'Turkish hell' attack

Memories of 1993 suggest a tough fixture ahead

At last, Manchester United’s midfield has emerged.

And we are not talking about Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs. Or even Antonio Valencia.

We are talking about what has been promised for some time.

Michael Carrick as the holding lynchpin. Capable of scorching long balls and clever interceptions.

However, Shinji Kagawa is out for another month at least.

Carrick finally shed the centre-back hangover and returned to what Sir Alex Ferguson had predicted would be the “key to United in Europe this season”.

His recent performances will lift the hearts and hopes of Red Devil fans dreaming of league and Europe double.

However, the emergence of Tom Cleverley and Anderson has also given Fergie the chance to play a scathing 4-3-3 formation, with Van Persie, Chicharito and Danny Wellbeck upfront.

Cleverley and Carrick to orchestrate, Ashley Young to attack one wing and Valencia down the other.

What Carrick in midfield gives is cover for these marauding runs.

However, not since the heady 1999 team has Old Trafford finally been able to consider a direct all-out 4-3-3 attack formation.

Ferguson vowed there would be no repeat of last season's early Champions League exit as he prepares for Galatasaray away.

Ryan Giggs knows what to expect from Galatasaray.

United met the Turkish giants in the Champions League second knockout round in 1993.


Their visit to Istanbul was greeted by the message ‘welcome to hell’ from the home supporters.

After drawing the first leg 3-3, United needed a victory to go through.

But they could only play out a goalless draw.

Galatasaray are making their first appearance in the Champions League for six years.

Galatasaray are leading their domestic league, but coach Fatih Terim knows they are going into the match at Old Trafford as underdogs.

"We will be playing against one of the best clubs in the world," he said. "Can anyone deny they are more likely to win?

Umut Bulut, who has scored five goals in four league games this season, is set to partner former Bolton Wanderers forward Johan Elmander in attack.

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