Carling Cup Preview: West Ham V Manchester United

Manchester United's Paul Scholes vies for the ball with West Ham's Luis Boa Morte Manchester United 2010/11 Manchester United V West Ham United 28/08/10 The Premier League Photo Robin Parker Fotosports International Photo via Newscom
Tonight Manchester United take on West Ham at Upton Park in the Carling Cup Quarter-Finals. A win tonight would keep United on course to win the Carling Cup for a third successive year. The last time United lost in this competition was back in September 2007 in a shock defeat to Coventry.

Man United go into the game with their unbeaten record in all competitions still intact after hammering Blackburn 7-1 at the weekend. West Ham go into the game off the back of a 3-1 win over Wigan, which was their first win in six matches.

Hammers boss Avram Grant will be without the injured Jack Collison, Thomas Hitzlsperger, Mark Noble, Manuel da Costa, Anthony Edgar and Peter Kurucz. He will also be missing Scott Parker, who has been suffering from a virus and defender Lars Jacobsen is cup-tied.

Sir Alex Ferguson will make wholesale changes to the side who beat Blackburn with players such as Chris Smalling, Fabio da Silva, Federico Macheda and Javier Hernandez expected to start.

The two clubs have already played each other in the Premier League this season. The Hammers travelled to Old Trafford and were on the end of a 3-0 defeat after goals from Wayne Rooney, Luis Nani and Dimitar Berbatov.

Man United has the better head-to-head record. They have played 120 games against each other in all competitions, West Ham have won 41, United have won 55 and there have been 24 draws.

Referee Mark Clattenburg has been assigned this game. He has officiated two games involving Man United this season, the 3-0 win over West Ham in August and more recently, the 2-0 win against Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford. Clattenburg has also refereed two games involving West Ham- the loss to United and a 1-1 draw with Wolves.

So far this season, Clattenburg has refereed 16 games in all competitions, showing 47 yellow cards and two reds.

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