United's defensive injury crisis deepens with Ferdinand injury. Any chance RVP can play centre half?
All the talk has been about Manchester United’s forward line of late, but they will be leaking as many goals as they will be scoring if their defensive crisis doesn’t clear up.
With Jonny Evans, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling already ruled out for the foreseeable future and Nemanja Vidic slowly making his way back to fitness after a long-term injury, the last thing Sir Alex Ferguson needed was another injured defender, but that’s exactly what he’s got on his plate.
According to widespread reports this morning, Rio Ferdinand is facing anything from a couple of weeks to two months on the sidelines after picking up a groin injury in training. He has definitely been ruled out of Monday’s Premier League opener with Everton and given his injury problems in recent years – they appeared to have cleared up to an extent last season – Fergie will fear that a lengthier absence is on the cards.
With so many of his defenders on the treatment table, Michael Carrick could be pressed into action as an emergency centre-half at Goodison Park and may have to play there for a few weeks unless Jonny Evans – who is believed to be closest to a return – becomes available.
The injury marks the end of bad week for the tweet-happy central defender, who copped a £45,000 fine from the FA earlier in the week for appearing to endorse a tweet labelling his former England team mate as a 'choc-ice', a term believed to carry racial undertones beyond it's traditional delicious place in the ice-cream world.
On the plus side the Red Devils have no shortage of options in attack, while there was further good news with the return to action of Darren Fletcher, who played 90 minutes for United’s Under-21 side in an Under-21 Premier League victory over Stoke City yesterday morning.
Fletcher is probably some way away from being available for first team action, however, but the return of a couple of defenders is more of a priority at this stage.
With a makeshift defence and a power-packed attack, Monday night's game with Everton could be very, very interesting.